Child Loss: Finding Courage to Face the Future

I think it was somewhere around two months from Dominic’s departure when my heart realized life was moving forward whether I granted permission or not.  

Not only folks on the fringes and the “bigger world out there” but close by-in my own family, my own circle of intimate friends-people were making plans, having birthdays, going places and doing things.  

I wanted to scream.  

Could the world not take more notice that it was absolutely NOT business as usual?  Was I the only one whose heart was so shattered that the thought of another sunrise was painful?  How could I walk into a future that didn’t include Dominic?

By the grace of God, I did it.  

No one can keep the world from turning, the sun from rising, time from ticking by.  

But it took a great deal of strength and courage.  

takes strengtht to let life pull you forward through grief

First it was a “grin and bear it” kind of courage.  I strapped on my armor and tucked a hankie in my pocket.  I could show up and smile (a bit), talk (awhile) and muddle through.

Sometimes it didn’t go so well.  I had to apologize and leave early.  And I was always exhausted.  

exhausted-over-trying-to-be-stronger-than-i-feel

Then it was an “I’m going to be present for my family” kind of courage.  The last thing I wanted to do was shortchange my earthbound children.  I worked to get a better handle on my thoughts and emotions.  I learned how to pre-grieve major events and milestones.  I found I could bring Dom with me by wearing a meaningful piece of jewelry or tucking a keepsake away where I could touch it if I needed to.

I was able to laugh (most of the time), make small talk and write dates on the calendar again.  

calender

Now the courage that helps me hold on as I’m pulled forward into the future is informed by the fact that every passing day is one day closer to the reunion my heart longs for.  What first seemed impossible is now habitual.  Sorrow and joy can coexist.  I don’t have to be empty of one to feel the other.  The future is not my enemy-it’s where I can and will love ALL my children, husband, family and friends well until the day we are in eternity together forever.

love is courage

My love for Dominic is Background Music to everything I do.  But it doesn’t always demand my full attention.  Sorrow is no longer all I feel and Dominic’s absence no longer all I see.  

 

handprint on my heart

Sunrise is still hard to face some days.  

My heart will always long for the time things were as they should be instead of how they are.  

But I’m thankful for the courage to step into the future even when I’m afraid.  

 

sometimes-fear-does-not-subside-and-you-must-choose-to-do-it-afraid

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.

4 thoughts on “Child Loss: Finding Courage to Face the Future”

  1. I had a ring made with the birthstones of my daughter, my precious son, his wife and their 2 sons. My son’s stone is a diamond and every morning I put that ring on my finger and say good morning to him and I have them all with me every day. It has been 14 months since the worst day of my life and the hole in our lives is still so very big. Everything we do together with my girls and boys (as I call them) reminds me of the one who isn’t there. He is never far from my thoughts and I am trying to let these 2 little boys (5 and 3) learn who their daddy was/is by my stories. But every day I have them all with me when I wear my ring.

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  2. Marcus has been gone now 11 months and just recently like these past couple months I realized life was till happening the world still moves and stuff good or bad still happens then I realized the stuff that was happening made me feel as if I was neglecting my griving for Marcus I felt guilty that I had very important things going on that needed my attention (my other kids) something major happened and for a moment it took me away from Marcus. I felts guilty all around…

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I haven’t lost a child. I lost my husband at the end of May. Gosh, writing that is hard! I have had to tell myself to be brave. I love the saying by Pooh Bear that says, “you’re braver than you believe.”
    I hate the ‘moving forward’ thing because it pushes the time he was alive further in the past and I want to cling to that time.
    So, I like your new phrase, that every moment that ticks by brings me closer to when we will re-unite. Not that I’m hastening my days but just it gives me something to look forward to.

    Liked by 1 person

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