Disappearing in the Distance

It’s absolutely normal that the space Dominic once occupied in the hearts and minds of his peers gets smaller over time.

He was only a part of their lives-lives blooming and bursting in the spring of their years. 

They are moving and marrying and having children and building careers.  If he were still living it may very well be they would have lost touch by now anyway.

I know all this and yet it still hurts.

Why do I find it unsettling that he is becoming just a distant memory?

With every passing month the bits of him scattered in the hearts and minds of friends and family fade just a little more.

The vibrant hue of who he was is fainter.  

dominic at Robbies wedding funnyHis light dims and is harder to see in the darkness.

I can’t possibly hope to hold all the memories myself.  

I can’t preserve them forever by myself.  

I depend on others who knew him to be memory boxes too.dominic at gray haven





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.

15 thoughts on “Disappearing in the Distance”

  1. Oh my heart beat so many beats faster than normal, reading this post of yours….. followed by huge waves of almost a panic/anxiety attack.
    I’m at 3&1/2 years.
    And this is, and always has been, my greatest fear, that Katie someday will be, simply, forgotten.
    Just writing those words makes tears rain down my face…. after all, how could ANYONE ever forget her? The bright bouncy personality, the shoulder for everyone to lean on, the girl who made sure everyone was always happy and safe (imagine taking that task on, for 20 of your friends, scattered over the dusty plains at Burning Man, in a crowd of 80,000…. But she did. Successfully). How could the memory fade of this girl, brighter than bright, the star in my sky, the color in my world, the girl who loved everyone unconditionally and without expectation? The girl who, last count I heard, was responsible for saving 4 lives? ( if I make my life expectancy, and even have credit for ONE life being preserved because of my actions, that’d be a truly amazing thing. ). Even more amazing was her modesty; I heard none of these heroic efforts spoken of from her own lips , it was after her death that these were revealed to me. Two of them were strangers that somehow heard of her passing, and moved mountains to find the details of her funeral service so that they could get to me, their only intent being to thank me for birthing and raising this incredible human being….
    So I cannot grasp how this dear sweet beautiful so-loved child of mine could disappear as if she was a cloud in the sky……
    24 years was a blink of an eye. And she was gone. I go to the site where she had her car accident, I try not to relive the sheer violence of that night. It’s hard. Looking at the pole she hit, 400 feet away from where her car stopped flipping and landed, I sometimes wish I’d been with her that night. I miss her as much as ever, probably even more now. I feel very alone in that feeling, I can feel her slipping away from other people’s minds and thoughts slowly.
    I just want to scream.
    Remember KATIE.


  2. It’s been 10 years since our Ty left to be with Jesus. Dom reminds me a lot of him–tall, dark and handsome. We sang In Christ Alone at Ty’s memorial service, too. I didn’t think I could survive 60 seconds without one of my children. Your posts have ministered to me and comforted me more than anything else, including GriefShare. Disappearing in the Distance is one I’ve read many times. Your line “his light dims and disappears in the darkness” is like a gut punch. It is so true and so sad that it takes my breath away. This past December 2020, Compassionate Friends held their annual World Wide Candle Lighting. I shared on Facebook and quoted from you that if you know someone who has lost a child a simple thing to do would be to light a candle and take a picture and share it (paraphrase now). I shared with my large number of friends on Facebook and ONE took the time and made the effort to light a candle in Ty’s memory and to share it with me. I think 8 people “liked” my post. I know December is a busy time but I will never set myself up to be hurt like that again. I practically begged for people to remember my beloved son–to set a wave of light across the world, which is such a beautiful and simple thing to do, and ONE person cared enough to light a candle. I’ve had it. It is sad but true that he is disappearing in the distance. I’ll stick with you and other bereaved parents who get it. We will never forget.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think this is one of the things that hurts the most. Being a single mom and my daughters dad never really being a part of her life and completely distant in her death I feel so all alone at times. It helps me so much to read your posts every day. Just passed the 3 year mark and I just long to talk about her and keep her memory alive. Thank you for helping me along this life long journey.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Love all of your posts Melanie but this one really hit home today. Feb 8th will make 15 months that my 33 year old son Steve decided he could not live with his mental anguish any longer and left this world behind. Not sure what I expected from family and friends, thought there would be more posts on his Facebook page of them missing him or memories that would pop up. Family and friends that would share their memories of him with me often. The world moves on and us Mothers grieve ourselves. Thank you for your writings……it is as if I could have written it myself. God Bless You on this journey that none of us want to be on.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Katherine I mirror your feelings. His friends do touch base every now and then but less frequently. I know life goes on but part of me feels like it’s stopped. My sons name was also Steve (Steven) and he was 34 and would have been 36 Feb 6. He passed away July 8, 2018. I will keep you in my prayers this next week especially. I love Melanie’s words I think she puts on paper what’s in our broken heats 💜💜💜🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻


  5. Thank you for sharing Melanie.
    I dread this very thing, Brooke drifting off in the distance. Others forgetting about the precious life of our daughter. The nagging feeling of not wanting her life to be in vain.
    I completely relate to your feelings that maybe you only hold and carry Dominic’s memories as others go in with their lives with new and exciting events.
    I think to myself, “when will they remember and maybe understand what I went through dealing with the scary ups and downs of a teenager ? When THEIR children are teenagers?”
    I also still feel so numb. I look at pictures and touch her things trying to bring to the surface feelings.
    I fear that the feelings of a mother’s love, the proud feelings and protective feelings will disappear over time. It almost feels like it was another life time. I try to think back to when she was little. When she was a baby. All those years that passed. Evidence is everywhere that she was here and real but I can’t wrap my brain around that she is gone. GONE GONE. A talking, feeling person is gone. I don’t like it. I hate it in fact that a person can be born into your life and then be snatched away.
    Thank you again for sharing. I am sorry that we relate but it is also comforting that we have one another.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Everything you write touches my heart in one way or another. Today’s hit me harder than most. I couldn’t put my finger on it but as soon as I read how you felt I immediately knew that’s what I feared the most. Matt will be forgotten, the memories will fade and everyone’s life will go on. Except for mine. As I count down the days to Feb. 12 the balloon in my chest gets bigger and more painful everyday. I want to rip the month off the calendar and forget it ever happened.
    I don’t know what I’m supposed to do. I want the pain to go away, but I’m terrified that the memories I fight to hold on to will also go, so I will continue to collect all I can find and keep his memory as fresh as I can for as long as I can.
    You have shared so much and your words have brought me great comfort.
    Thank you from the bottom of my ❤️

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Denise, I am so very sorry for your pain and your loss. I know that in the beginning I was as sure as you are that if I let go of the pain or it began to disappear on its own, I was in danger of losing what little I had left of Dominic. But I found the opposite to be true: as the pain became more manageable, and I developed the strength to carry the burden better and easier, it made room for MORE memories to surface. Things I hadn’t thought about in decades bubbled up. As mamas, I don’t believe for one minute that we will lose those.

      Praying that as you come up to February 12th you feel the Father’s loving arms around you, lifting you, giving you strength to endure. May He flood your hurting heart with His mercy and grace. You are not alone. You are loved. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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