Circling Back

photoDear Son,
I miss you so much. That seems to be the only thing to say. Five little words that describe a large part of every day. I don’t think those words adequately describe what I mean and it makes my head hurt to try and think about how big it is.
When you died, I was not your caregiver. I was your mother, yes and when you were home I did provide all the things I have provided for years. And you, as your sister too does, could get me to do things. They were not things I did not want to do, but both you and sister can manipulate me in ways no one else can.
One of my friends told me that I am a ligament. That in the family I hold the joints together so they move smoothly. I resent that sometimes, but it is true. I have always felt I was good at helping those I love get to the places they want to go. I am good at it. At times because I am good at I make it look like it is easy and I get to feeling I am taken for granted.
I never liked that feeling.
I have to tell you, for the most part, I don’t let missing you keep me from doing the things I need to do. I have a relationship with your dad and your sister that is separate from you and in the past three years I have come to recognize that more fully.
I talked to you last night in the car for about 40 minutes. I figure folks who see me in the car talking out loud these days assume I am using a “hands-free” device. As if I really care. I don’t. Sadly we are hands free, hugs free and voice free.
I miss all the things you provided for me and I miss getting to do things for you. Part of the doing for you was that what you wanted was unique and something we uniquely shared. Cups of tea, strange movies, eclectic books, discussions on subjects I never quite understood but enjoyed anyway. You were truly interested in what I was doing. I think I miss that most of all. It never appeared to be something you pursued just out of courtesy. Selfishly I miss having someone taking that kind of interest.
When I took flight that day on July 2nd to rush to the hospital where you were I remember praying and pleading to God that you would be alright. In my mind I had the idea of what I thought would be “alright.” It was as I got to the four lane that a terrifying thought occurred. I thought what if he is paralyzed or has a head injury that alters who he is, is that part of alright? The weight of that possible reality hit me, and I realized I didn’t know what to pray for.
In the news I hear accounts of people falling from much greater heights than you did and surviving. I am afraid I always shoot out a p-mail to God and ask “why?” “did you have anything to do with this and if so why them and not my boy?”
I remember the doctor trying so hard to keep it together, to be diplomatic – beating around the bush till I asked point blank. “Is there any hope?” He looked down and shook his head.
You probably know that I am sobbing again right now.
We are part of each other, genetically, environmentally, emotionally we each contained parts of the other. Hopes and dreams and expectations knowing who you are and what you could do were dashed. The world has moved on. The days move on.
I move on too for the most part, circling back every now and then.
I meet new people who inevitably ask about family. I tell them. Often times they distance themselves after I tell them. People who have known me for years have distanced themselves too. The comment “they were never the same after their child died.” seems naive and insipid. Really? What do you expect?
We meet people who have lost children too and it is almost like we have a private handshake or signal from our horrific private club. We nod and acknowledge each other and we even talk but it is not about our loss. The fact is we can’t talk about that pain for long because it will swallow us up again.
There are others who have experienced loss who feel called to “minister” to those who have experienced loss. The good ones are the ones who can bear to just listen and say over and over and over again “I’m so sorry.” The bad ones try to fix you or justify and build up their coping skills by telling you how you should do it. Thankfully those are few and far between, yet sadly they usually hold God up for their reason for their words and actions. Poor God. He gets the blame for so many things.
In the car that day I talked to Him a lot. I’ll spend the rest of my life trying to figure out if there was an answer. Regardless there is nothing I can do. Nothing.
I just want you here. I want to hug you and laugh with you and argue with you. I need your encouragement and protection. There is not now, nor will there ever be another person that I treasure like you in my life.
I can say that because I believe that if there is a God that God is love. Love is an amazing thing – it is not able to be divided. It isn’t something that comes in portions. You can give all of your love to a husband or wife and to every child that subsequently comes into your life. You can give all your love to your relatives and friends. Giving it all away to all of them never diminishes the supply.
Once you and your sister came into the world I learned that. Thank you.
So you still have all my love, and I am not afraid to to love someone else but it will be with the love due them. Not the love due you.
But I assume you know that. I know you know that. I am glad we know what we know about each other. Those are the things that mother’s treasure in their hearts.
Forever
Mom

About pathfinder

Artist, Writer, Walking wounded.
This entry was posted in Co-dependency, Coping with the Death of a Child, Family, Friends and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Circling Back

  1. You say it all so beautifully and perfectly. Thank you.

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