I haven’t posted many blogs lately, mostly because I have not been true to what I had hoped to accomplish in my writing. In the beginning I wrote to help myself sort through my feelings, to put words to a pain that few people could understand. Then I found that others could relate to my words, and I began to share my experiences with the intention of letting those others know they weren’t alone in the intense, agonizing, and complex feelings that come with missing someone they loved. I wanted my writings to show a journey of healing, the upward steady climb of a steep hill. The goal: to reach the top, victorious over my inner struggles, fully happy, fully healed, fully alive.
For a while I could see it happening; I had moments of genuine, untainted joy, and I was glad that I could report some progress. I thought it might be good to possibly offer hope to the other parents who were in the earlier stages of their loss, that it might actually get a little easier to bare.
But then the season changed, the smell of fall in the air brought back so many memories that I could not stifle. I walk outside and am flooded with pictures in my mind of Naomi in her Halloween costume, or the sound of her infectious giggle when she fell into the leaf pile wrapped in her fathers arms. I had to pull the bounty of colorful spring flowers from Naomi’s gravesite and replant mums and fake pumpkins. The change was a reminder that time continues to march on without my daughter, and I backslid into depression.
Here is what you don’t ever (And I do mean ever) say to someone whose child died and is in a depressed state: “Don’t you think you should just finally accept it and move on?”
Hmmm, what exactly would that look like? I mean I know she’s gone, nothing I can do about that. I am out of bed, I am dressed, I am interacting with other humans in social ways, I am cooking for my family, I am working full time. There is nothing about the change that has come from losing Naomi that I am rebelling against, but it has left a hole in me that will not be filled, it causes fits of sadness, and occasional (private) out bursts of tears. I am yearning for even one more minute with my little girl. Please do not make me apologize for that just because my life, this life I did nothing to earn, makes you uncomfortable.
Pretending to be without this Naomi shaped sadness might make it easier on some, but it makes a hard situation nearly intolerable for me. It has been making me feel more isolated than I felt in the days just after I lost her. It also sends the message to my other daughters that they should internalize the raging waves of pain that come from missing their sister. It lies to the other moms who have lost children and think there is something wrong with them because they haven’t “recovered” from the blow of losing their own precious child. I cannot do it anymore.
I am sorry if I make you feel uncomfortable. I am sorry if you were hoping I would return to “normal” after these last 2 years, 3 months, 2 weeks and 2 days. But I am still hurting. Please don’t add to that by expecting more of me than I can give.
Here is what I ask of you:
Please let me talk about Naomi.
Please don’t be afraid to let me cry
Please don’t shy away from our friendship because I’m different– I need you more now than I did before.
Please don’t try to fix me. It’s something I have to do on my own.