What almost 2 years has taught me about grieving is that no two people grieve the same way nor does any one know the way. It’s just all so personal. Everyone’s heart has its own favorites. As I have said many times, the death of my child has helped me to realize that I have a mother’s heart. In a recent conversation with my sister, I admitted and she agreed, that my passion in life has always been my children.
Another awakening I keep landing on is how in the world did I lose a child when I know the universe was watching and saw how passionate I am about my role as a mother?! My ego does not chirp about how I look, what I do, who I know or where I go? Tap your heels together 3xs — there is no place like home. I get homesick on day trips. Contentment for me was defined by four people — my husband and 3 kids. I have always been as happy as my least happy child. As they grew into young adults, they are still my priority. That is my choice. How did one of my kids die?
What continues to resonate with me is that not everyone will get over certain losses in their lives and not everyone fits into the expert’s categories or predictions of grief. People’s hearts are complicated. Soul wounds are not erased by time. It is my sincere belief that Amy and I have traveled through many lives together and our golden chord is unlike any other chord in my life. That may sound crazy to many, but who cares? Only when you are truly tested with an unimaginable life sentence do certain possibilities become crystal clear.
Not every grieving parent can predict hope. The variables which push us along after this unnatural loss is not based on intention. Yes, let me say it again — it is all so complicated. Never, ever will I stand before a newly bereaved parent and evaluate or make predictions of the right way to grieve. My biggest fear will always be that the pain will be more than they can manage. My pain has been more than I can manage at times so I am familiar with the fleeting thoughts that follow when you begin to believe you cannot handle one more minute. My personal experience can only attest to the fact that 23 months later, I am still standing. Yes, I am wobbly and battered, but as of today, I am still standing.
No one could possibly understand what you are being asked to do unless they have walked down your path. My personal path is based on my relationship with Amy and where I am in my own book of life. When someone recommends that I still have the ingredients in my life to create another life, I just sigh. I am not afraid or unwilling to feel joy nor do I believe that Amy is being held back by my sorrow. Seriously, where do people come up with these notions?
To compare my life to anyone else’s is not helpful. My emotional journey has been unmanageable and frightening. Anger, resentment, jealousy, disappointment, embarrassment, even self-hatred have been emotions I own along the way. Who said grieving is pretty? How unrealistic if you expect a griever to be “just fine” with the loss of their loved one. But 23 months later, I am trying not to call other people names — such as idiot, clueless wonders, shallow, self-centered, jerks, narcissistic — I am working on it.
23 months later, the death of my child has weeded my garden of support. I am indeed blessed to have amazing friends and family who showed up and taught me a lesson about what they are made of when the going gets rough. The absence of those who bailed does not have the same power as it once did and for that I am grateful. It took me almost 23 months to realize their presence is not vital to my survival although I admit there are a few whose sudden departure amplified my broken heart. If I take the time to review the list, I confess there are no real surprises.
23 months has taught me that there are strangers from all over the world who can wiggle their way into your heart to become fast and true friends. My grieving circle of support — my warrior fellow grievers — there are no words to express what I have learned from you all. My Amy exists among the best of the best in her new dimension with all of your amazing children. Thank you to Amy and all of her beautiful friends who have orchestrated our connections here.
23 months have taught me that love never dies and Amy still exists. I have learned numerous times that my Amazing Amy gets on a party line with gifted individuals to validate that she is still here and doesn’t miss a thing.
23 months have taught me that I do not have to defend my right to grieve and that I do not need to prove to anyone that I notice my other two children who are here. If anyone needs clarification, check in with my kids and ask them if I have been missing from their lives.
23 months later, I make no apologies or excuses that I continue to grieve the loss of my youngest child, Amy. It makes perfect sense to me that I will carry the memories of her vibrant life as well as her tragic death with me until I join her. All that 23 months has taught me is how much I love her.
23 months later, I still cry every blessed day and I continue to wonder what the hell happened to my life. I miss my youngest child with every cell in my body.
23 months later, I am always remembering Amy.