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Monthly Archives: May 2014

There are times when I wonder what people think of us bereaved parents who are far enough along the grieving journey that we can be grateful, smile and mean it, or spread positivity to anyone nearby.

I am certain some think “how is that possible”?

From my perspective, it becomes a choice. Once you emerge from the numbing shock that serves as a buffer, allowing you to survive the first few weeks or months, you then contend with the fresh hell that is sharp grief, utter anguish; a deep dark pit of sorrow, guilt, rage and misery. For most, this will be where they exist for years.

The world spins and life goes on around you, leaving you to wonder how ‘they’ can carry on when your precious child has been ripped away. Some will languish in despair and die of a broken heart, others will self medicate to the point of checking out completely, others will continue to go through the motions while inside they are dead. And still others will scratch, claw and fight their way to the light, clutching at whatever source of stability, compassion or hope they manage to come across.

It is a daily struggle that appears insurmountable. Chipping away bit by bit, two steps forward, one step back, you eventually gain traction. One day you might notice yourself smiling as a memory of your dearly departed comes to you, or a song makes your heart feel momentarily lighter, when it previously sunk like a stone. And in time, choosing to honor your child and live as you know they would want you to, the sharp stabbing becomes more of an ache and a longing less intense. There are still days, as there always will be, that are painful and difficult; when all you want to do is cry or sleep. 

And yet, it can be that years down the road you find joy and delight are once again possible. I am grateful that I was able to draw upon my connection with Zev and use it to propel me forward, through oceans of heartache and rivers of bloody anger. *

Many say things like “you’re so strong”… While I won’t argue that there is absolutely strength to be mustered if you choose the path of reclaiming your life after your child has died, I will say that, even more so, it takes immense amounts of vulnerability. Allowing yourself to be vulnerable in the face of such a loss is tremendously difficult. We are hard wired to protect ourselves from hurt. But in order to experience life’s great joys, we must be willing to risk the possibility of being crushed again by pain and sorrow. To rise from a place of suffering to a place of wholeheartedness IS possible; it takes courage and a willingness to be open, to be vulnerable.

* I am also immensely grateful for the support I received from my family and friends, and the fellow bereaved parents I met along the way; all necessary components that contributed to me being where I am today.