I know there is no time frame on the grieving process. Well, that is a relief!! Not sure how long I will take but I don’t want to be dragging it on longer than allowed, or appear I “got over” my loss too quickly, as if anyone has a right to judge either way! The “survivor” stage, on the other hand, has no end…ever!! This is a permanent status from here on out. When do we know we are no longer grieving? I’m not sure we ever stop, but I know it is a metamorphosis that keeps going back and forth like a teeter totter in waves!! I know there is no switch, but I also know I don’t want to be sad anymore!
The date of death for my son has become a landmark, so to speak. It is a mile-marker in time. It designates the dividing line of our life before and our life after. It affirms the fact our lives are forever changed and will never be the same. Looking back, it was my life I took for granted, and then, my life when nothing was a guarantee. According to some talk show therapist, 88% of our being is emotions. I know we are guided by emotions and found that out gaining weight when the grief process started. Food has been a coping mechanism for several in my family. Some eat when stressed, some lose weight when stressed. I appear to be on the “eat when stressed” side of the family. I just cannot pinpoint the emotions that led me before August 20, 2017!
I have several friends, acquaintances, and family who are in this crappy boat of being a parent who lost a child! I am sure they, too, know what I mean about the dividing line and being sad!! I want to be productive and happy, but please don’t think this makes me ok with my loss!! I will never be ‘ok’ with the loss of my son. I do have faith, which I rely on, and I am so, so grateful for the time I did have!! I believe he would be happy that I don’t want to be sad. I think he would encourage that!! I know he is ok and I am coping this well because of my faith! He is at peace, and I want to be at peace with that fact!!
The thing I have tried to do almost since day one is to remove my personal life from my work life. It has been my “safe zone.” It was the one place my son was not a constant, physical presence. Sure, I talked about him at work, but I was able to “zone” into my work and remove my emotions. Doesn’t mean it works all the time, but it is much better at work than when I am home alone with my thoughts. This work zone apparently accounts for 12% of my being. I think that means I am emotionless during that time.
So, here Is a shot at my goal… It sounds like a simple plan. I am going to wake up facing the days as if they have a purpose! I am walking again and hoping to lose more weight! I am putting make up on as if I care how I look!! I am doing things outside the house with friends! I used to think I had a pretty good sense of humor. I want to laugh like I mean it without guilt.
I follow some other blogs of people who have battled and struggle with a loss. One family watched their son struggle after a head injury at the age of 2 until he died five years after. A year after their loss, they are still continuing their blog as survivors. The mother of this child posted a picture of herself after a fundraiser she participated in and she was smiling. Doing good in her son’s memory can make someone feel good, a chance to give back to those who helped her at a low moment. Someone following the blog had the audacity to comment about how ‘happy’ she looked as she mourned her loss!! WHAT!! She was kind in her response before she banned the person. I might not have been so nice! How dare someone try and guilt a mother for having a good moment!!
It seems we are damned if we do, and damned if we don’t. What would my child wish for my future if he could speak to me now? How would he want me to live? I am sure he would be endeared at the fact I am lost without him. He would be sad for me. He would wrap his arms around me and tell it was going to be ok. Coming from my side of the family, he’d have a sick and demented comment about something and try to make me laugh and it would probably work. He would want life to be normal, although we have to create a new normal. But I am trying and feel I am headed in the right direction.
I have so many things to be grateful for in my life! I have a wonderful daughter, a son-in-law, two b-e-a-u-t-i-f-u-l grandkids, a husband who has survived this path as well, and so many wonderful family and friends! I don’t want to ever forget they have also lost a loved one! We all mourn. Their lives were forever changed as well.
We have two choices here: laugh or cry. Well, I say we do both, and go to the next day, repeat. Story of my life. If you catch me smiling, be happy I had a good moment. If you see me laughing, don’t assume I no longer grieve. If you see me crying, just know I had a moment of another kind.
Life will go on around me and I am trying every day to be a part of it. I am forever incomplete. I am a wife. I am a mother. I am a grandmother. I am a survivor!! I will continue to cry because my son is gone, but I will smile because he was here!!
#lifeisforeverdifferent #thegrievingneverends #survivorstrong