If…

If the coldness & deadness of winter was all there was,

then I’d be stuck in The Path

If the pain & discomfort of childbearing was it’s end,

then I’d miss the joy of a New Life

If the worm infested grave was The End,

then I’d have no purpose for Living

🖤HOPE – beyond the here and now🖤

✝️HOPE – beyond the grave✝️

 

Grief Group

She decided it was time. One day short of twenty-one months. Tic-Toc, Tic-Toc…can you hear time churning? Thankful for a peaceful commute, and a settled mind focusing on navigating directions. It’s here! Deep breath, prayer…more breathing…let’s go!

Two women buzzing around. Do they see me? No smile, no hello…wait, am I at The Writer’s Club? Deep breath…just stay; fight the urge to run out. “Oh, wait, another women just arrived. She’s too bubbly to be here”, was her immediate thought. This is so painfully awkward. Being an Introvert makes the silence worse. And, so began a grueling two hour ordeal…

“What am I trying to prove? Who am I trying to impress? Why put myself in a torturous situation? Do I not hurt enough? How is it that my mindset is so skewed, so jumbled? I HATE THIS!!!”, and so went an onslaught of chaotic waves of thought, upon thought, upon thought.

There were times I thought, “Yes, the Plastic Faces are coming off!” NOT! Only a glimpse was allowed before the masks were securely fasten, back into place…let’s continue the masquerade.

“Why? What are we afraid of? Is reality so difficult, I’d rather live a lie? Do I not want to be open and vulnerable because of fear? Fear of judgment; fear of being misunderstood; fear of what?”, waves and waves of punches of the mind.

Someone decides to vomit; to splatter all she has been holding onto; to open the gates of her mind in a relentless way. The vent up guilt, trauma flowing. The wrestling with what she thought she knew, which pales in comparison to what is happening to her day after day. She doesn’t shut up! She keeps going! Only to get cliches and pat answers. GRRRR!!!

As I am in my chair, shaking uncontrollably! Being horribly triggered by the rawness of this woman. “Run! Go! Escape! Make her shut up! Why is she saying that? I can’t hear this anymore!”, thoughts that came into the spiraling mind. With the added guilt of not being compassionate enough. However, how do I help her out when I’m in my own spiral?

Home now. “How did I get home? What happened?” Unceasing crying and screaming with tumultuous spasms ensue. Beating myself up for not knowing better; for going, too soon; for not being in control.

Finally safe, curled up in a ball…spaced out, exhausted…sleep is welcomed. BUT the nightmares and images assailed my already beat-up soul. And, so, goes my journey with grief…an unwelcomed companion.

Yeah, I’m thinking it wasn’t time – for this :-\

Beyond Grateful

My daughter was in the autism spectrum. Her comprehension could be difficult at times. Remember the Love Boat🖤🌹? This time of the year was one of great difficulty. It was cruel on her heart and mind, because she thought “everyone” had a special someone. She felt she was the only one in the world without a valentine. Oh, how she cried! She thought that because she was ugly and “different”, nobody wanted her. We had many conversation, where I’d try to make her understand differently.

My heart wells up with gratitude at the thought of two men who took the time to make my beautiful girl feel as special as she was. They didn’t have to. They weren’t told to. It came from a heart of love.

♥My son (Angie’s big bro) took her on a special date for valentines day. She was besides herself. She had me help her pick the perfect outfit, doing her make up,  and helping her with her hair. She felt like a princess. She talked about it, and talked about it. Such a special day for her, and him.

♥A family member brought her fresh flowers every Saturday. We would place them where she could smell and see them. They would brighten up her days. Even on those horrid treatment days, she’d smile when she would see her beautiful flowers.

Just two examples of love and kindness. They might seem small, but they were enormous in a my daughter’s eyes. And, this Momma is beyond grateful.

We decorated her grave…that’s just what we do. But, the memories of love shown to her on this earth are engraved on our hearts.

Can you think of someone that might need a little extra love? Take the time. Your love and kindness lasts beyond the grave🌸✝️

The Day After

Made it to the other side. The fog has cleared. The tightness released. Now the Grief Unchained and the Unfiltered thoughts are released…brace yourself!

My God has not shrunk. My faith has not been diminished. In fact my faith is what keeps me from ending it all; from escaping this world that seems to be vent on adding vinegar to my wound.

You telling me that Angie is on your heart and mind, doesn’t diminish my pain and envy that you are celebrating your daughter’s special day. Do I always have to take the high road? Do I always have to think nice happy thoughts? Can you allow me to be real and honest about my sorrow and grief? Does it always have to be kosher?

So there’s a timeline? But it has already been x-amount-of-days! Oh, excuse me, I didn’t realize that I’m not on your timetable. I didn’t realize that my grief had an expiration date. Don’t you know that one second without my daughter is an eternity? Don’t you know that until she’s in my arms, I will ache to hold her? Don’t rush me! Don’t patronize me!

You can’t handle my “thoughts”. The continual horrid movie playing, nonstop – unrelenting. My daughter wasting away, until she’s only skin and bones. My daughter vomiting her insides. My daughter looking at Mommie, asking for help. My daughter crying, saying she doesn’t want to die. AND, I, unable to grant her wish. That body bag! That casket! That deep hole!

My Reality! My Journey!

Just another day in the life of a grieving mother😢💔

Losses

Today you are having breakfast with your daughter,

while I eat alone with only memories of mine.

Today you will talk & pray & help your daughter with her wedding attire,

while that desire sharply stings in my empty arms.

Today you will kiss your daughter as you enter the sanctuary to witness her vows,

while I envy the sound of that voice.

Today will be a fairy-tale wedding with sights of flowing gown and veil,

while the sight of a white casket lingers in my eyes.

Yes, it is a joyful day – for you!

As I am sorely reminded and grieve what will never be – for me!

Grief Unchained

Have you ever read something or been told something, so you think “you know” and are “prepared“? (OMG, this word does NOT belong next to or in the vicinity of grief!!!) — Yeah, no creative writing going on around here.

What am I talking about? I’m talking about all the information that is out there regarding “the first year after losing a loved one”. First…everything!

My first Christmas without my daughter was a total BLUR! However, I was “prepared” for “it” to be the worst. AND, let me tell you, I attempted “everything” I had read or been advised to do in order to “minimize” and get through the pain. I even attempted to “be-other-centered” so as to not “turn-in-to-myself”(other peoples words, not mine). Oh, the going caroling at the senior center; the visiting shut-ins and singing songs; the hospitality. What was I thinking?!?!?! Let me tell you, the “pleasing-people-chart” was filled with stars and happy faces. However, I was dying inside. But, true to myself (haha!), I kept this up until I collapsed. Which landed me at my doctors office; which landed me in the ER; which landed me in therapy.

In one of my many talks with My Grieving Friend she said to me, “Grief demands our attention. You cannot ignore it. It will show up whether you like it or not. You might as well pay attention to it and deal with it in a healthy manner.” Now, did I think I was ignoring my grief? Absolutely not! I was just trying to put one foot in front of the other (and, pleasing people while I was at it). My physical body knew otherwise, and hence its total shut down.

Sitting here today – my second Christmas without my daughter – the anesthesia completely gone…fully awake…there isn’t a substance or activity in this world that will take away the pain or even remotely minimize it!

MY DAUGHTER IS NEVER WALKING THROUGH THE DOOR

MY DAUGHTER IS NEVER – ETC., ETC., ETC.,

This side of heaven “it” will never be ok. I’m a Scrooge! I’m a Grinch! If, I could hibernate until all the joyful-sounds were over, I would. However, I know that when I come out of hibernation, the pain will still be there😥💔

Stones

Stones come in many shapes and sizes. Some might be the shape of a heart, so they say. I had a friend that collected “heart-shaped-stones”. To be honest, some had absolutely no shape, but she swore they looked like a heart.

Stones can be rare and expensive; some simply used to hold something up. Who hasn’t etched their name on one or two? Who hasn’t received a stone from a child as a token of a valuable find?

I remember my brother’s grave-stone being placed. His picture was on it. As a young girl, I wasn’t really sure what I was feeling. The “first” big loss in our family…how to handle it? My voice had been muffled already, so I didn’t dare put my two-cents in the matter. Besides, his wife was making all the decisions in a way that spoke louder than words.

Now, it was me, making decisions…fast, furious, with no time to think; with every part of my being desiring to be far, far away from this place. BUT, the burial needed to take place AND the proper “embellishments” had to be ordered. The “cash-register” ringing, ringing, ringing. Every little detail had a price. Goodness, how taxing to an already heinous journey. In the fog of it all, one makes the best decisions attempting to not listen to the sales-pitches and the playing of ones emotions.

Nobody told me that a flat stone would be open to tractor tracks and scrapes. Nobody told me that it would be covered in dirt and mud, more often than I can to think. Nobody told me that the passing of time would make it sink deeper and deeper. NOBODY told me that the sight of this would make my heart hurt, if it were possible, even more than it already hurt.

Somewhere along the way, I decided that Angie’s flat grave-stone had to change. My already taxed emotions just couldn’t handle digging it out, one more time. We looked into a different kind of stone. “Well, of course we can change it – AT A PRICE!” was the response.

Yesterday, her new above-ground-stone was placed! AND this one has a picture on it.

Things that I never thought would be part of my life, are. Things that I would have never thought would bother me, do. Things that I never thought would make it a little easier, exist.