I Don’t Know How I’m Doing

People see me, these years and months after Dominic left us and ask, “How are you doing?”

I come up with an answer because that’s the law of conversation-you ask something and I answer, then I ask something and you answer.


Gotta keep that ball rolling.  

If it drops we are both forced to stand there wondering what to do with our bodies, our faces and our thoughts.

But right now, I don’t know HOW I’m doing.

I am definitely past the crying-every-single-day stage.  The deep sense of loss still strangles me but I’ve learned to pretend it’s not there and just keep on keeping on.

I can look at his photo (most times) and not feel the sucker punch as my heart realizes-once again-he is not coming back.  


I’ve developed routines to work around the hardest part of a week-Friday night into Saturday morning-so my mind and body follow the rut like cows headed to water.



“A thousand mile journey begins with the first step” and all that.

I try to lean into the life I have NOW.  The life I would have never imagined or chosen for myself but the one I wake up to every day.

There is no EASY way to lose a child but I almost envy parents whose child’s death has given them a cause to fight for. Sometimes the circumstances surrounding loss lend themselves to a crusade which at least gives a parent somewhere to focus his or her sorrow.

What can I say about Dominic’s leaving?

Don’t ride motorcycles?

Sure, but that was my position before they were ever purchased.  I was always only barely able to contain my anxious thoughts as my sons went from here to there on two wheels with no protective shell.

I’ve learned to push down the pain and that means I stuff every other feeling as well.

I can’t select JUST the pain to hold inside.

So that leaves me here-not knowing how I’m doing.

Am I better?  


Or just plain numb because to feel whatever I’m really feeling is too hard to embrace?

I have no idea.


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.

17 thoughts on “I Don’t Know How I’m Doing”

  1. It has only been two months since my 36 year old son suddenly and unexpectedly went to heaven. I am still overwhelmed by fresh, raw grief. Yet I have people who ask if I’m “feeling better”. It’s not the flu – it’s the severing of my heart from my body. Even at this early stage it’s so hard to know what to say. I’m NOT ok and never will be. Thank you for your post. It was spot on.


  2. Thank you Melanie! Your posts always seem to find me on just the right day
    I bracing myself to go through my 2nd year of holidays without my son. I think I am supposed to be more ok than I am. I actually feel like I’ve never had the freedom to not be ok because I have other children that I am trying so hard to support through their grief. So yeah the numbness, pushing down feelings….I think my body had just had about enough of that. I feel so stressed all.the.time.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Again your words live in my head and yet can’t find a way out. The only thing I would change is the name. My sons name is Scott and he too was involved in a motorcycle accident. His story is different in the fact that his accident rendered him a quadriplegic for almost 10 years before he left us. My heart hurts… I want to talk about my pain but talking about it is unbearable. Thinking about it is so painful that I almost immediately stop thinking. I “push it back down” Life is forever altered, I’m doing ok but I’m not doing good 😢

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am so very sorry for your pain and your loss. Grief is hard work. We are forced to face things that we would rather not. Some days I’m not so good at facing them and turn away, run away and try to distract my heart. But grief won’t be denied. Praying that you feel the Father’s loving arms around you and that you hear Him whisper, “Courage, My child” to your wounded heart. ❤


  4. November 10th marks my first year without Brenton. So from now until that day, are days filled with “lasts”. The last I spoke to him, the last weekend spent as a family together, the “lasts” before the “firsts” started. It is becoming tough as the day comes closer. I hope I am have as strong as you have shown me over the last few months reading your blog. I know this is going to be a rough few weeks ahead and there is no preparation you can do for it but sit down, buckle up, and hold on for the ride.

    Thanks for your blogs they always help!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I will be thinking of you and praying for you and your family these next weeks, especially. Thank you for the words of encouragement. And, you’re absolutely right-all we can do is hold on for the ride-even when it’s one we wish we didn’t have to take.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I know this feeling well as we approach December 30th and the one-year mark since losing Tom. Ours is the “go-to” place for our family for the holidays…we do it up big. But my wife and I have decided we cannot make merry and bright for Christmas, at least not this year. It would feel so forced and fake. Of course we will celebrate the birth of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ, but in a more subdued way.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Subdued is just fine. We did the same the first year and frankly, have continued to do so (this will be our fourth). It is better for our hearts to do it that way. ❤


    3. Totally where you are. November 8th is a year since my son Steve decided to end the pain he’d lived with and could not make better. I just went through the last family gathering this weekend. Then it will be the last phone call and the last text before the final text telling me he left me a message on Facebook. I pray for us all to get through each day the best we can.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. How do you say I’m not doing great but I’m not doing terrible? Could be better, could be worse? People don’t really want to hear that I don’t think. I think it makes them uncomfortable and sometimes I just don’t want to open up that door for comments that may cause me more harm than good. So I say I’m doing alright and try to change the subject quickly. It doesn’t matter what I do, the ache is there, the missing, the shock of remembering, the dread of living the rest of my life without him.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Melanie,
    Your posts always put into words exactly how my heart feels. The days I feel numb are still weird to me. I wonder why and what’s wrong with me. But your sentence about pushing down the pain along with every other feeling make sense. I think about your post “It’s Complicated” so often. Those who aren’t walking this terrible path can’t possibly understand. And those of us who are have to take one day at a time, maybe one breath at a time. I hope you find something today that encourages your precious heart. Hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

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