Dealing with the loss of a child

Tori - posted on 04/14/2011 ( 6 moms have responded )

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I have 4 kids 21,17,17,11. The 1st 3 are girls the last a boy. On March 4th of 2010 my 17yr.old daughter succumbed to the H1N1 virus. She had a double transplant in 2009 and just made a yr out of transplant when she passed. We were on our way to a routine clinic appointment when she passed in my arms in front of our apt. building. my son (10 at the time) witnessed this. My other 2 children were on vacation on Disney world at the time. As you can imagine this ruined their trip. It has only been a year since and I still cannot function. Everyone keeps telling me you're so strong. I don't see it. my daughters Alicia and Jasmine were a year and 9months apart and both were born with this rare disease. The only cure is a bone marrow and liver transplant. I have to do this all over again with my daughter Jasmine and I am alone in this. Their father is no longer in the picture. He has not been for abt 12 yrs. he came back into our lives in mid January 2010 and in 3 weeks my daughter passed. Then he walked out on the family ! month to the day she passed. I just want to crawl under a rock at the thought of having to go through the medical stuff for a second time.

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Dear Tori - the crawling under a rock can be a tempting thing to do - this is so much for one person to go through. My suggestion, for you to personally be more able to get through each moment, is to start with just that:

a moment - one moment, one thought and one peaceful movement at a time. Here are some ideas for when you feel overwhelmed:

"I know that there are people who have been standing in my shoes before, maybe not with the exact same circumstances, but that have faced difficult situations and they have made it through. So I know it is possible to get through this and do it with peace, love and assured good outcomes."

"The only power is right now. Everything that happened in the past is over, I can't change it - I can bless Alicia for all her joy, bliss and lessons on living in the moment with a fire and zest for living - she was a great teacher, and I believe in the power of love to get through this moment."

"I can be peaceful in the middle of chaos - I can trust myself and my instincts to feel what is the best move, choice and way to go when a situation comes up. If I am stuck, if it isn't an emergency I can wait to be guided or find someone who knows the best answer for my choices - the best choosing I can do is good enough. I can't see the future, or control everything but I can get a handle on myself. If I allow chaos and fear to be my dominant, every day feeling then my children pick up on that. Somehow they can relax in the moment and enjoy the TV, a good game, laughter, pancakes or a joke - I can learn to relax into the moment from them. As I do this, I will have a string of peaceful moment to build on."

"I don't have to know the answer to everything in this one moment. Life will unfold, I will trust myself to choose as I go. I can make today the best today I can, and eventually I will create a string of days that worked, where I got through. I've had a year to feel frozen, and if I have a day or two more as time goes on I can love myself anyway and trust that I will feel a little better and a little better each day. I don't have to feel awful to honor the past. I did my best - I will be better and better as each moment comes to me and I can bring peace, trust, faith, laughter and happiness to the moment. In doing this I can share with my family that though there may be situations in life that are overwhelming we can be steady and peacefully trust that the answers we seek will present themselves. It's good to be open to answers. I have watched a flower unfold and it happens slowly - but it does open. I have seen storms come and they do pass leaving behind healthy rain. I can think of ten people who have overcome and I am ok if I wonder, "What would they do? How do they face problems?" "

Donald Trump - though maybe not your favorite person in history, doesn't see a problem and say, "Oh - shit - I quit." No, he, like Ellen, Madonna, Oprah, Mother Theresa, anyone you can think of chooses to think, "Ok, here's is something I want changed. I know it can be done. First: I KNOW it can be done. Next: what will it feel it like when it resolves? What do I want to happen? I will focus on that - and listen for my inner voice to guide me on how to let that unfold by choosing my focus."

When we focus on, "OH no oh no oh no NOT THIS." We are stuck on THIS. When we focus on how good it feels to be in the resolution - we (somehow) guide our steps to the resolution. It is, luckily, one thought at a time. It doesn't have to be a million solutions in one moment - each one works together. A simple odd truth: sometimes when we just get the laundry, dishes or one room in order the whole of our lives feels better. Just getting through one thing effects our ability to get through others. One small goal can help us understand we can achieve greatness with other, larger goals. You won't get it wrong. Taking care of you is a way to take care of others. When we are stuck, we show others, "This is how to be stuck." We can free ourselves and show others, "You can be free." Free of guilt, shame, fear and worry. One. . .small. . .thought

at a time. Love to you - faith in you - peace to you - blessings and clear guidance from the inside out to you.

You can, you can, you can - choose each day.

I believe in you.

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6 Comments

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Jo - posted on 08/31/2012

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Well, I have just came across this and I know it's over a year on but my situation is a little similar. My daughter, Ellis, suffered from Cystic Fibrosis and in May 2010 was accepted on to the list for a heart double lung transplant. Her health deteriorated drastically and at just turned 19 she was dying, existing with the use of breathing machines, feeding pumps and IVs, too weak to get out bed, eat drink or breath. Then on the 29th Aug 2010 she got transplant that saved her life. Her recovery was very quick and even though she had a few infections, she was living, our happiness can not be described. As the months went on the infections increased, and her airways narrowed. January 2011 stents were put in to open up the airways and for a while, this seemed to work. But again the infections continued and by September 2011 Ellis was back in a wheelchair, to frail to walk, back on oxygen 24/7 so here I was once again watching my daughter die. Her health worsened and so did her quality of life. Her oxygen levels would become dangerously low and her heart raced at an incredible speed, can you imagine how scary that was? Early 2012 Ellis started to write a blog to process her thoughts I guess, She knew she was dying and on 11 April 2012 she decided she could no longer go on, she wanted to die surrounded by the people she loved, pain free, in the hospital with all the staff that new her, this was the only thing left that she could control. So I drove her to the hospital, where she calmly told her consultant that this was her life and her death and this was how she wanted to do it. She stayed with us for another 5 days, passing away peacefully in my arms on the 16 April. I hate people saying your so strong and incredible, etc, I was just a mum doing what I could to protect my child from pain and unhappiness. Even though I have a 4 year old I feel so lonely sometimes, you cant just stop worrying after caring for someone for 20 years can you? but I will get through, just have to accept these new feelings and this 'whole' in my gut that can not be filled with anything and find a way of moving forward with it, carrying it and trying to be as strong and courageous as Ellis was, she faced death, accepted death and I think that equally I have to face life an live life, otherwise I feel I will be disrespecting the things that she fought so hard to have - good health and a future x I promised Ellis I would keep her blog updated and I have found writing my feelings down helpful. You can check out the blog at http://smeg91.blogspot.co.uk/

Lena - posted on 04/16/2011

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omg girl i am so so sorry for your lost....i dont think no one can get over there lost...your r in my prays...

JuLeah - posted on 04/15/2011

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Don't even know where to start ... I have nothing in my life that comes close to this. I do know pain and greif and I know that each persons process is exactly right for them. I know that how ever you are feeling is the exact way you ought to be feeling in that moment.
There are support groups, faith based and not. Reach out to your community and extended family ... encircle yourself with the love I know your community wants to offer you.

Dawn - posted on 04/14/2011

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Tori... i am soo sorry for your loss. There is no greater pain, then losing a child...

I will keep you and your family in my prayers.



I am curious to know, if you have gotten outside counselling, for you, and your children? This is extremely important for all of you... It wont change the situation, but it can give you the support you need to deal with it.

It does sound like you are doing what we, as moms do... You pull through all circumstances, and continue to breathe in and out... daily. Of this, you should be proud of yourself. You are strong. . . You are hurting... and you are surviving. but... you are NOT alone.



Please, dont ever expect for your feelings to all of a sudden one day, just go away... it doesnt happen. You will always feel an ache. you will always deal with the loss ... but, it will change. It wont be as painful... it wont always make you cry to say her name... You will, be able to feel whole again... and then... you will look back, and see how strong you really were...



We can't chose how these men who help create our incredible children, will behave... all we can do, is teach ourselves, and our c hildren, how to react to the behaviours...



Your children have you... and you have them... Together, you will get through this ... i promise. xo

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