Wednesday, January 2, 2013
Some things on my mind.
For many years now (9), my favorite holiday season has been Easter. The long journey of Lent, which if you do it right, can be very arduous, is followed by the hope of resurrection. I am sure I don't even need to explain why that hope of resurrection was so exciting to me. But something changed during Advent of this Christmas. Christmas suddenly became my favorite season again. I can't explain why, what was different in this 9th year after Tim's death. But only that the joy and desire of all this Holy day has to offer maybe broke through the wall protecting my heart a little. And a week or 2 before Christmas I had the thought that without the birth of Christ, there can be no resurrection (I knew this, but had put it aside for many years). And the following Sunday our priest said that exact thing. And right now, our camels and wise men are trekking through our home, on their quest to find the Baby King. It is still Christmas here, and the wise guys will reach their destination on Epiphany, Jan. 6th. (or as we sometimes call it in our house, Epi-fanny)
Life is not easy. Life after a trauma in your life is even harder. I am guessing this is true for most people, but there is not a day that goes by that there is not some reminder of our trauma, and that brings a little low point in the day. Not that we go around moping all our days, or live our lives in a funk, we just go down that roller coaster hill then climb back up again. And for the most part, nobody around us is even aware of our little dips. On the other hand, for me at least, I can also be raised higher by memories of Tim. The roller coaster ride never ends. But how we handle that ride is up to us. We can choose to live again, no matter how hard it might be. Or we can choose to wallow in the miry depths of our despair and never see the light of day again. Life is good if we let it be. It's just not always easy. And we all have our coping mechanisms, and they are not always healthy. It could be drink or drugs, or shutting yourself in. Or like me, eating. It might be healthy, like working through it with exercise, or art. But we can't condemn others for what they need to get through, just offer help and support if they are hurting themselves. But honestly, I am not sure if I chose to live again, or if life chose me.
As a grieving parent, I have met either in person or online, a lot of other grieving parents. And we are friends exactly because of our shared journey. It is unfortunate, but there it is. I would rather not know these people, but they help me, and I hope I help them. Even if we don't grieve the same, or share the same relationship with our dead children, we know what they are going through, even if the cause of death is vastly different. It doesn't matter, you see, because the end result is still the same, our child has died. We can have more empathy, and a touch of understanding, because we have been there, done that. I have reached out more than once to others who have lost their children, just as others have reached out to me. We don't necessarily offer advice, just knowledge borne of experience. We share what helped us, and we listen. I guess maybe it's kind of like war vets having reunions, because they are the only ones who truly know and understand what the others have been through. And we hate that anyone else has to go through this, but we are so glad not to be alone.
I have other things to share, some issues I have, but am not finding the words to write it here right now, so will save that for another day. And so I leave you with this wish, as always, for
And a Blessed New Year.