January will be nine years

Tamara - posted on 12/01/2009 ( 1 mom has responded )

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January will be nine years since my 15 year old died of bacterial meningitis. Still feels like it was yesterday. Still have symptoms of post tramatic stress disorder from watching him die suddenly. Still have trouble sleeping most nights. Everyday I get up and go to work and find the joy of the day however the pain of losing him is always just under the surface. My other children have grown and given me beautiful baby grandchildren. Everything is bitter sweet.

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Wanda - posted on 12/01/2009

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today you taught me something ,it is a vocabulary word that explains the stage I have sat in limbo = BITTERSWEET. It has taken me a year and 5 months to reach this goal. I expect to carry this with me but stive to be putting more into my life that is above surface. I have the good friends who ask how I'm doing and the others who percieve I will forever hurt in such strength it causes edgy avoidance. Out of the blue I was delivered a understanding of the subject that held me back.... I once lived in bitter envy of those who did not hurt in mourning.

Recently I teetered on wanting freedom from the burden of loss and all the "what could have been" if we had been spared the loss of my son. On my grandaughters 3rd birthday I saw that she is OK...her mother OK... my daughter ok.... and in the moment I felt ok.

I have feared good happy moments will be ruined. I fear another sadness hitting those I love. I fear the nightmares and setbacks. Getting through all the horrible firsts... first Memorial Day, first Christmas without my child, first birthday he was not on earth. I found myself standing each day in a line of sad people waiting for the day to end so I could crawl into a dark room and spend sleepless hours rehashing the shock of moments in the funeral home and cemetary.

But in the light on the special day I had with those I love..... I saw me standing in a line of happy people for a rare clear moment. I had my cameras full of new photos and people waiting for me to share them. When the thank you's for the pictures came I realized I was participating in normal events after all & I had gained a bit of control in how my emotions would be at days end. My healing is a work in progress still, but to my joy every now and then I stand in the "happy people line" again and again. Being at peace is not a one time only ... passing rare thing I have little appreciation of ==== I see with clearer vision my blessings.

I like a lot of moms understand the post tramatic stress, for me my son also died suddenly === my pain was the auto accident another caused gave me my son in pieces, we viewed him missing body. first there was months of shock, followed by depression and PTS. I could feel my sons spirit and he was not in peace then. I never believed there would ever be closure for any of us. Daily I pretended to have strength and lived a lie that all was fine. Nobody could "fix me" ....and I did feel broken. I became KEEN to spot other broken humans.....I made feeble attempts to support others. Behold !!!! my eyes and brain became aware that not all lived in the bittersweet limbo ....... many many many actually rejoined the living and exited without a blank face mask. TAMARA you helped me because to know I reached this stage is a big improvement.... bittersweet is hundred steps up from looking at my life at the bottom of a deep well. I have reached your level and I will be content here awhile. It is a place I did not know existed until you explained it.

Let me try ...... to help you in return. This year I was given a coworker who was in the nineth year of loss of her son. She hated and blamed 24/7. Anger had become part of her DNA and she could barely hold down a job.... always sick she'd say.... UNLIKE YOU she got not one second of joy in a day/week/month. That woman could not turn on a radio or tv, would not pick up a camera or spend time with girlfriends. The woman who never made it to BITTERSWEET begrudeged others for having simple activites of daily living === like church,piano, a hour in a park. In the toxic presence of the sad lady we almost felt guilt for acting silly or loving in her view. New friend..... I admire your strength and wisdom.... if our children are just under the surface ??? Can this be they are in the area of a mothers heart? Every child is a piece of its MOTHER. Yes there is a void near my heart & my skin will not touch his skin. But, unlike US :o) there are those who carry the lost child out in the open like a unscabbed wound.

I look for the mothers who are new to grief and reach out a hand to walk through stages neither of us alone. Now and then I come to circle of moms to scan for a new sole to take under my wing. And today I saw you and had to respond. WELCOME....and Thank you. Honestly I believe you came to us for a reason. It would not surprise me at all for moms of this group to say hello......we are very much like you...... you remind me of myself.

With love, I care !!!

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