Posts tagged “Loss of a Spouse

How do I comfort my friend?

Since we received word last Wednesday morning that there had been an “accident”, we knew in our hearts what that meant. In a couple of my recent posts I have talked about my friend’s wife and how she has lost her way and took her life.

My husband and I have had many discussions over recent days. What can we do? What should we do? Yesterday, after the funeral I gave our friend a hug. I said the following words. “We are emotionally pathetic. We still do not have it together. But, that matters not. We are always no more than a phone call away. You want to talk.. Not talk. Need out of your house and want to visit ours, you want someone to come in and we just watch a movie. What have you. Call…”

Although our situations are completely different. They are in many ways the exact same. He will experience the huge sense of loss, the bewilderment, the unanswered questions, the feeling of why me, why us, why???? He will feel guilt, love, hatred, anger. He will be living the layers of grief.

Society has its own version of how and what. It is almost like they have an hourglass and in T-minus 3 months they turn the glass. When that first grain of sand begins to fall the opposite direction then we are no longer supposed to grieve. I am in my second year of grief. Soon will be beginning my third. Having read and spoken to many Parents over the past couple of years in different spots in their grief. First day, first week, First year, First decade, 20 years. As I knew on the day I laid my son to rest. This is my life’s journey. Grief is ever-present. You see the book you read him each night as you walk thru a book store. Your mother calls to tell you about neighbour so and so who is in early labour and has been rushed to the nearest hospital with an NICU. You walk thru the local Wal-Mart and see someone from your prenatal class. In September, we will have first day of school and you look at everyone’s first day pictures and are so excited for them. But deep inside you cry. You will never have one of those pictures on your camera. You hold it in all day until you reach your car and cry on your drive home from work.

Please do not think our life is ever sorrowful. It is not, we do have joy. We were blessed with a beautiful son. Soon, we will celebrate what would have been 2nd birthday. No, he is not here with us but all births are something to be celebrated. We will always do so in our home. All little boys love dirt and tractors etc. I have decided that this year we will have a construction cake with Oreo cookie crumbs to represent the “dirt”. We will also decorate his grave with balloons. Stay tuned in a few weeks for the picture. I sure hope I am up for the challenge and can make it look good!

Maybe I have answered my question. We continue to live as we do. We get up each morning and go to work, we pay the bills, and buy groceries. We have cake on birthday’s and light a candle on his grave on Christmas Eve. By doing each of these things we show our friend that our loved ones are important, they are a part of us, they are our hearts. We show our friend it is ok to grieve it is ok to feel. It is ok to love what you have lost.


The “Club”

What is a club? A club is something you want to join. A place you gather with people who have like interests. Sometimes you become part of a club not by choice. 21 months ago my Husband and I became members of a Club. This was not our choice and fortunately/unfortunately there are many people in this club far and wide. The price to join this Club was our son’s life. Today friends have joined new… Clubs of their own. Please know that this was never their choice nor is the membership refundable. We may never understand what it is like to belong to someone else’s “Club” and speaking as a member of my “Club” I do hope you never do. As that would mean you have walked in our shoes.

Today my friend joined the club of a Single Father, Loss of a spouse, Loss of a family member to Suicide, among others. His children are now, Children who have lost their mother, Children of a single Father, etc…

Please remember as you go about your daily life, you just do not know what Clubs everyone belongs to. Or what burdens they carry.


TGIF

Amen to that. Every week has it ups and downs.

This week a family friend is needing good thoughts and prayers. His wife lost her way and took her own life. Leaving many family, friends and 4 beautiful children.

Each and every one of us have our on path. Our destiny as it were. Today each of those four children have to say goodbye to their Mommy. Many, many years too early.

I have seen much in my years on this earth and I really am quite young yet. To name a few. I watched 3 family members battle kidney failure and were on dialysis. My husbands Grandfather fell and broke his neck at 86 years of age and spent his last 5 months in the hospital. My Great-Grandmother found out she had cancer at 98 years of age. She lasted 2 months. My uncle who lived 4 years with ALS. And our son. Each of these people hold a very special place in my life.

All life has value. No matter how short or long as it were. One cannot measure a person’s value by the number of days, weeks, years or decades they are on this earth. Unfortunately, for some, it is after someone is gone that they realize what that value is.

My cousin, was a severe diabetic and diagnosed at 19 years of age. She lost her sight and went into full renal failure before the age of 30. She passed away at 32 years of age. She taught Sunday school, was a Girl Guide Leader for 15 years and work at the school board office. I know in my heart the reason she never married was because she knew deep down she would never walk this earth long enough to raise any children she may have and she could not risk that. She let go the love of her life so that he may have the chance at a family.

My aunt, her mother. Developed diabetes in her 50s. She went into renal failure at 62 years of age. She had battled colon cancer in her 50s. She was my Mothers eldest sister and really like a second mother. There were 15 years age difference. It was like losing my Grandmother a second time. She looked after my Mom for most the first year of life and her early years. My Grandmother was very sick after she was born. She gave of herself completely.

My Grandfather was a character. At 15 years of age he went to work to pay the bills. His father was ill and could no longer look after the family farm. His two older brothers had died. One most likely of Sids. It was the 1920s. The second was struck by a car riding his bicycle at 12 years of age. That left my Grandfather and 5 sisters. He worked to feed the family. He had 3 heart attacks, and kidney disease. He was in full renal failure at the age of 66. At 73 years of age and having just had part of is leg amputated due to circulation he passed away. Peacefully at 9:40 on Sunday morning. 20 minutes early for church. He had been a Deacon for 55 Years. He was a school janitor, taught Sunday School, and taught Awana. Dozens of children in this area were able to go to Summer Camp as my Grandparents donated anonymously every year to ensure those children that could not would have that chance.

And our son. You know that story. From the first time I could touch him. From my hospital bed, as the wheeled me thru the NICU after I left recovery. Those moments change everything.

I tell you these stories so that you may know the value of each life. They live on. Each of these people had a hand in molding who I am today. I thank them for that and love them all so very much.

TGIF! Remember you have value. You add it to those around you each day.