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Monthly Archives: October 2010

Following Zev’s death much of what I believed and how I viewed the world fell away. Upon emerging from the shock, I began to slowly rebuild my life, my belief system, my moral compass. My perspectives, choices and actions have changed as a result.

I often wonder if any of what we do here matters… all the energy and love I poured into Zev — what of it? Was it all for nothing now that she no longer inhabits her body? What is the point of doing good deeds, or of making a ‘difference’? This is very callous and jaded I know, and yet it is how I think sometimes.

One of my Aunts sent this (excerpt below) to me today and upon reading it I burst into tears. What wonderfully powerful words of truth and wisdom. Words to be taken to heart and acted upon. I think this is a great attitude to have and something I needed to hear and be reminded of. I hope you take something positive from it as well.

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
Be successful anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness may make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.

What you spend years creating, others may destroy overnight.
Create anyway.

Give the world the best you have and it will never be enough.
Give the best you have anyway.

In the final analysis, it is between you and God.
It was never between you and them anyway.

-Mother Theresa

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I am feeling a bit judgmental and beastly today as I am sure this post will show; but please know that this rant is meant to be constructive (for myself and my readers), not harmful or mean-spirited.

Please use care when choosing what to say to a bereaved parent. Tread lightly, speak gently, and even though (most of) you cannot even begin to understand, know that it is a thousand-fold worse than any pain you have ever experienced. Do not pretend to know what is best for a grieving friend. And do not fancy yourself so wise as to know which words will and will not hurt. Offer your love and assistance, share in tears and remembering — that is more than enough.

When I hear friends who have also suffered the death of a child tell me some of what strangers and ‘friends’ have uttered, it makes me ill. I too have heard many of the same things and do my best to ignore them. Yet, some still spin around in my head. So, today I will share them in an effort to purge and to hopefully help others in the process.

Words I have heard that are not comforting, useful or helpful, and which can instead be extremely hurtful:

‘She is at peace and happy now.’ – She was also happy and peaceful while alive, so all this does is make me angry.

‘God wanted her with him.’ – Oh, I see. And did he tell you this? Keep your religious fairy tales to yourself please.

‘I am sorry.’ – Really? What for? I am a fan of sincerity and honesty, not regurgitation of platitudes for the sole benefit of the person speaking them.

‘Find God if you want to be with her again.’ – This to me is the worst of the worst. We all have different beliefs so why do you feel that it is okay for you to force yours upon me, especially when I am so fragile and in such intense agony?!

My gratitude to all of you out there who read my ‘Songs & Sorrow’. May you know great peace, love, joy and gratitude in your life.