I am NOT Crazy!

It was just over a year after Dominic’s accident and a friend forwarded an article about odd behaviors of those who were “stuck’ in grief.  Along with the forward was a little tag, “Reminds me of you.”

It hurt my feelings.

And it was inappropriate.

Because not only had I not participated in any of the listed behaviors (most of which anyone would deem odd and some that were actually harmful) but as far as I could tell, I was doing pretty good, considering.

Considering I went to bed one night with four children alive and well and woke in the wee hours of the next day to the news that one was dead.

No warning.  No good-byes.

Just gone.

In the months since that day I had gotten up each morning and taken care of necessary tasks.  I was not abusing alcohol, drugs or food.  I was still exercising when I could.

And I was engaged with my family -working with them to put the pieces of our shattered lives and hearts back together again.

Yes, I cried.  A lot.  No, I didn’t like to be around crowds.  I stayed at home much more than before. I struggled with anxiety when anything out of the ordinary happened.  I found small talk hard to follow and forgot things (still do). And I was not participating in many “extra” activities.

I slept with Dominic’s pillows every night-it was a way to touch what was left of him.

But I was functioning.

My friend’s reaction to the fact that I was “still” grieving after a year is not all that unusual.

I speak to bereaved parents who are often made to feel by others as if they should “be over” the death of their child.

They are told to “move on”.

Or, in faith circles, to “be happy he is in heaven”.

Most mental health professionals agree that child loss is probably the most difficult loss anyone has to bear.  

A simple Google search will turn up dozens of articles that support this understanding of a parent’s heartache and lifelong struggle to embrace the pain of losing a child.

Yet most people are unaware of this fact.

So I’m here to tell you-grieving mama, grieving dad-you are NOT crazy!  

You are not overreacting to one of the most awful things that can happen to someone.  Out of order death is devastating!

When asked about his son years after he had died,  Gregory Peck replied:

every day

As I’ve written in a previous post Am I Normal?

No one thinks it strange that the ADDITION of a child is a life-long adjustment.

So, why, why, why is it strange that the SUBTRACTION of a child would also require accommodation for the rest of a mother’s life?

I understand that if you haven’t walked this path, you can’t REALLY know what it’s like-even if you try.

I don’t want you to know this pain by experience.

It’s awful and unrelenting.

What I do want you to know is I am NOT crazy for missing my son.  I am NOT crazy for wishing I could turn back the clock.

I am NOT crazy because this devastating, paradigm shifting, unbelievably painful event still impacts my everyday life.

Please don’t treat me like I am.

The best help a friend can offer is a listening ear-no judgement-and a hug that says, “I love you. And I’m sorry.”

changed for life

 

Author: Melanie

I am a shepherd, wife and mother of four amazing children, three that walk the earth with me and one who lives with Jesus. This is a record of my grief journey and a look into the life I didn't choose. If you are interested in joining a community of bereaved parents leaning on the promises of God in Christ, please like the public Facebook page, "Heartache and Hope: Life After Losing a Child" and join the conversation.

9 thoughts on “I am NOT Crazy!”

  1. I’m sorry for your loss. I just had a daughter pass away four years ago and it’s not getting any easier in fact it’s getting harder. All her friends graduating, going go college, getting married, having babies, etc. No one can tell us when we or how we grieve

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for sharing. Unless you’ve walked this path, you don’t fully understand. I’d like to add that I found the 2nd year in many ways to be harder. Maybe it’s because everyone else (seemingly) has moved on and is back to normal but I never will be. Their lives go on with the occasional flicker of rememberance but not me. I remember always. Yes, those can be pleasant and fun memories but still they are constant. It is an unfamiliar journey. And, no, I am NOT crazy, I’m a mother.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Absolutely agree. It’s 27 months for me and the further the date of his death falls back on the calendar, the less others are likely to think of him, talk about him or even recognize the glazed over look in my eyes as being a result of deep grief. May the Lord give you the strength you need for each new day and may His grace, mercy and love flood your heart.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I am so sorry Nancy. My personal approach is not to hide (unless sharing would expose me to more stress). I’ve decided that if everything else is going to be drug into the light, so should grief and especially child loss. Not to garner attention or pity but to show that it is real. Praying for you sweet mama.

      Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s