As I was flipping channels the other day, there on Hallmark, another lovey, dovey wedding. Who knew, right? So, the couple exchanged their vows (or tv version of the vows), but then I heard “till death do you part.” It hit me rather odd. Does death stop love? I know in wedding vows, it means you will stay married until one of you dies. I get that. But does love stop? I don’t think so, but for the loss of a child, it goes even deeper…
When a spouse dies, the surviving spouse can literally pick up, remarry, and go about their day. Sure, they may miss their previous spouse, and I am sure they do without a doubt. But their days can be replaced with a sense of normalcy. They remarry, share a home, dine together. The void gets filled so to speak. I would want that too. But there is a permanent void when the loss is your child…
There is no replacing that void. I will not get another hug from my child. I will not get to make him dinner. Well, I could, but he’s not eating it! I have nothing to replace that spot he held in my every day world. No sugar-coating. No resemblance of life before. That is the hardest thing for those who have never lost a child to ever understand. Many will have empathy for those of us in this club. I hope those who have never experienced this type of loss never have to. Truly. There is no comparison in life, or death.
So, I write. That is my void filler. I do have situations I will bring my child into now and then. I imagine his reaction. I picture him standing there making fun of me for whatever just happened and it makes me smile, for a second. Then it’s gone and the void comes right back. I have started sharing what happened to him as a goal to bring awareness to what one decision on one night by one person can do to an endless list of family and friends. I hope it helps others. It helps me and brings my son to the center of my conversation and I am good with that. I speak his name often. I don’t want anyone to ever forget him.
I do laugh. I try to be the same person I was before. Living through many losses, parents and grandparents, siblings, etc., I know life goes on. But my “normal” will never be the same. Ever. I cannot rebuild, nor do I want to. I never want to “replace” him, and I have accepted my “new normal.” Denying it doesn’t bring him back, but trying to replace him would be as if I am claiming he never lived. Death does not do us part, my friends. It only changes my future when his was cut short.
Till death do us part, and then some… cherish your family. Here and now, alive or passed away, they are forever in our hearts. Say their names, share their stories, give those that never met them the memories you have, even the ones that made your hair turn gray! Keep them real. Keep them present. Love is eternal between a parent and a child. I cry because he is gone, but I smile because he was here.
#forever24 #gonebutnotforgotten #loveiseternal #thedashinthemiddle