If someone were to just meet me, I am wondering if they would know right off I have a massive loss in my life. Part of me really hopes they don’t because I really don’t like the pity look, but another part of me hopes they do and that they will proceed to ask me about my son so I can talk about him. Wrong? There is no wrong!
I want to go forward with my life, but I don’t want anyone to ever assume I do not miss my son!! I do!! Every single day!! But just because I don’t appear sad 24/7 does not validate a thought that I have overcome my loss. I am trying to honor my son by being the best person I can be! I think I had a pretty good sense of humor before he died. I also had a creative side to me. I am not honoring him or myself if I fade off and turn into someone completely different, even though I know I will never be the exact same.
I don’t ever want to forget that I have a daughter who didn’t die. I don’t want to be a mother who loses one of her children and still has one or more still living who feel their parent lost the child they loved the most, and it was not them. One can inadvertently put that lost child on a pedestal of greatness. It tends to make the grief process so hard when they forget the human side and slate the child for sainthood. There is a difference between being an angel and being a saint. Some of those who have gone before us were saints. They lived a holy life on Earth and have met up with their soul in Heaven. My son is an angel. I truly believe that. He was a good kid on Earth, but far from a saint!! I chose not to put my son on that pedestal. Why? I never want to forget his lame logic, icky tobacco spittoons, and horrible housekeeping! He was human. I will miss that part of him the most! Remembering these things keeps him even more real!
The amount of love I have for my family has been acknowledged more intensely over the last year. Not that I have more love, but I do appreciate them and want to acknowledge my love out of fear I may miss the opportunity. I didn’t know he was going to die so soon. He wasn’t sick and suffering. I didn’t tell him how much I loved him before he left home that evening. I can only hope I showed him how much he meant to me before that fateful night. Word to the wise, tell people how you feel while they are alive to hear you!
Moving forward with my daily activities and remaining an active person of society is not an act of “getting over” my loss. It is an act of accepting a loss, knowing he lives on in my heart and my positive actions going forward. If I get even one mournful parent to find peace in my words, that is a wonderful moment. If one person who experienced a loss realizes they can get up and put one foot in front of the other with a little less guilt, I will feel I have made a huge difference!
Loss is not measured by the amount of grief. Love is not something that goes away because of a loss. Mourning the loss of a child is difficult, and some may never find peace. We are consumed by guilt, questions, and anger. I pray those trapped in those cyclones can find peace even though we will never truly know all the answers. Our future now will be to honor those we have lost, make sure their life had meaning, and to live the best life we can with them close to our hearts! It is what they would want for those of us left behind. Until we meet again…