Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Flowers Forever

It's hard...

It's hard to go to the cemetery to visit Harrison sometimes.  I'm sad and embarrassed to say I may go a month or so without visiting him.  

Just typing that sentence breaks my heart for him. It's not right. 

Why is it so hard? Some days I understand my sadness and I forgive myself. But other days I cannot.  

Before the death of my son, I would think a mother would visit her child as often as possible.  I would have told people "I'd go all the time."  Being in love with my children as much as I am, it would of just seemed natural.  But that thinking is wrong, so wrong.

Just the drive to the cemetery is gut wrenching. That is not even including the thought of buying flowers knowing the purpose of the purchase.  Some days I just want to cry and tell the cashier why I have to buy them.  I want to release the pain and grief.  

I arrive and get my "cemetery bag" out: granite polish, garden shears and cleaning cloth.  I can't have my baby's headstone dirty...it's all I can do for him. Put water in the container, cut the stems of the flowers.  Busy work to keep from thinking about the reason why I'm there.

And then it hits me: Oh my God, my baby is dead.  I lay down on him, usually crying as hard as you can imagine.  On a couple of occasions, people have come over to check on me due to my crying.  I cry, and I play our favorite songs, songs that make me think of him.  

I apologize for not coming earlier. I repeatedly tell him I love him and how unfair it is and that I miss him.  I ask him to come home.  

But the hardest part, which I would never of imagined, is leaving him there. That's the hardest part.

I made him a promise yesterday when I saw him: he will have flowers forever from now on.  I will never not go to visit him.  He will never be alone again.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Sticky, Gooey Love

I never thought I'd be where I am right now.  Who does?  Life surprises us, jilts us, keeps us on our toes, and every other saying you could think of.  So I never thought I'd be here.  Where is here? Now what?

Here I am, 43, a mother of 4, mother in law and step grandmother. It is amazing how life goes; how life proceeds.  What did I think life would be? Where did I think I would be?  I am full of questions.

I am a mom, which I find to be the greatest gift, job and learning experience I could ever ask for.  Four beautiful children, each one different in their own ways. It reminds me of the end of The Breakfast Club, how one's a jock, one's a prom queen, and so on.  How could I even put in one word my thought about each child.

I know I have one I would simply refer to as "the gentleman." I stand in awe when it comes to his passion, compassion and coolness.  Relaxed and gentle just at the right times. When you hold your infant for the first few weeks, and wonder all the things your child will do and be...flash forward to today, over 20 years later.  And he is better than I wondered, imagined, hoped for in life.  And handsome, so handsome, but smart and witty as well.

My "wise, old soul."  Ah, just his presence felt majestic to me.  He could command a room simply by walking into it.  The gift of wisdom and the ability to converse with anyone about anything I admire in life.  Never afraid of speaking his mind and his truths.  And within, a compassionate, understanding soul which will never leave my heart.  To big to go under the radar.

The beautiful "queen bee."  Such a joyous time learning the ways of raising and loving a daughter.  The beauty in her eyes, her smile, can melt any heart in a matter of moments.  Such poise and grace seen from simply sitting and sharing a cup of tea, to the times when she is standing for battle on the field.  Her kindness makes her beauty all the more evident.  The beauty cannot be denied, and it is enhanced by her love for those who matter most.

My biggest surprise and "California princess" never ceases to amaze me in life. Those gorgeous, hazel eyes with hints of brown, looking into my heart to find the perfect words to say.  The fireball she is explodes wisdom and curiosity. But just as easily, calms to provide a soothing hug, overflowing with love. She never fails to amaze me with her smarts and kindness.  And her keen attention to detail for loving us.

I never expected to be here, 43, mother still madly in love with her children.  I felt selfish and self absorbed in my younger years.  And now I would give my everything, my all, just to see them smile.  Just to see their eyes light up. To hear a laughter from love so sweet, it feels sticky and gooey.  

That's what being a mother means to me.  A constant surrounding of dripping, fluffy, sticky, gooey love between me and my angels.  Love never ending, with arms strong and large enough to hug us all, even during out hardest times.  Our strength and love are challenged. But our love seems to always prevail!

Monday, May 1, 2017

Getting Over It

Everyone grieves in different stages, at different times.  Some longer than others.  But I am growing weary of those who want me to be completely done with my grief.  I cannot. I will not.  And I won't allow anyone bully me around it, either.

Think about what you are asking me to do when you say, "Get over it!"  Or "Enough already!"  How could one ever request a mother to get over the loss of a child?  Get over putting a child they've carried for 9 months into the ground? Get over never touching, seeing, holding, hugging their flesh and blood?  Get over the most horrid nightmare a parent has?  How does one ask that of a mother?

I cannot get over it.  My grief will live for as long as I am alive. It's not about getting over it as much as it is about learning to live life with it.  I'll be the first to admit it is the most difficult thing I've done...am doing. I am not a role model of how to deal with the loss of a child and I don't claim to be.  But I am not the worst person either.  I am tired of being judged and bullied for my grief and depression.  I assure you all I am doing the best I can.

I find strength in love. Love from my children and family.  And there is still so much work to do.  I haven't accepted the fact my loving son is not with me.  It kills me to this day.  It is a thought that never leaves me...ever

I ask for a bit of understanding as a tear rolls down my face, or when you hear a sniffle.  Just a hug or two, or maybe a "It's ok to cry."  Not made to feel I am a horrible person because I do cry in public or have horrible grieving days.  I am human and a mom.  A mom on a terrible journey. I am learning I am not alone. But if you are a by-stander, please have a little sympathy.