live again

I set up a get together with other local bereaved moms.. It was a great experience for me and I hope for them also. I was there with a table full of woman who all wish we didn’t have a seat.. We came to the table for different reasons.. sons and daughters.. cancer and accidents and a multitude of other medical causes .. we all took our seats at this table at different times.

I took my seat more recently than some.. but earlier than others. So I feel like I had a unique view.. one of what the future may hold.. and one of what my past did. And I realized I have been … well there really is no word for it.. Just like there is no word for a parent that has lost a child I think there is no word for a parent that is .. well that is experiencing the time passing from child loss.

So what does that look like. .

Well I guess it started and I didn’t know it. But I can look back and see it now.

The time is passed and I have continued to change..

I think the best example is working out. I went to CrossFit every day without fail. It started off going to the 4:30 afternoon class and then eventually I started going in at 8:30  in the morning. But now I go to the 5:30 AM class, or wake up before the kids and work out at home.  I realized recently thinking about it how much time that frees up in my day .. getting it all done before my day used to even begin.

That means I am choosing to make my day longer. I am choosing to have more waking breathes each day. That is growth and that is change.. .

they do love my gym.
they do love my gym.

Because before, for those first two years without her one of the things I never realized I gained from going to class daily was time.

It was an hour and a half to two hours spent occupied and busy.

That much closer to the night to sleep, that much closer to one less day I have to spend without her.

One day closer to her again.

I still end each day with that feeling. That bittersweet satisfaction that I survived yet another one without her and that I am one day closer to her. But I guess the growth and change comes in not trying to fast forward through my life constantly.

When she was a baby I would love to hold her.. and just stare at her.. I just loved to be close to her..
When she was a baby I would love to hold her.. and just stare at her.. I loved to be close to her..I was finally a mommy. 
That never really changed..
That never really changed..

I did that though. I tried so hard to fast forward.. to just get through and survive each day.. Those 2 years were stolen from me. From us.

It’s just another loss that comes along with losing a child. A big one. Years that I just held on through versus really experiencing. I realize that now as I’m looking around at home that was busy and full of kids and moments today..

I am trying to forgive myself for that. Trying to understand that this is progress.. And the needle is slowly moving forward. Not the way I thought it would be.. but its something. And its a good thing.. I can’t change the past.. and the truth is I can’t always even change the present.. But I can embrace the positive.

I can try to keep moving forward.. 2 steps forward… 1 or 2 or more steps back .. but forward..

Tonight I sit here and take a moment and grieve this loss as well. Of those 2 years that I survived .. sometimes just barely.. With babies still so young.. Years I struggle to remember.

But I am also grateful. Grateful that I had the opportunity to have a safe place to push through that time. And that I still have little ones to embrace this time with. I know not everybody has been gifted those things.

I am glad I take so many pictures. Because without it I feel the majority of those two years would be lost to the fog of grief.
I am glad I take so many pictures. Because without it I feel the majority of these two years would be lost to the fog of grief.

Here is the only way I can think to explain it.. It’s like when you stub your toe.. it hurts so bad at first, a constant throb. But then it starts to not be a constant, you still know its there but it doesn’t take up your entire mind. …  And thats nice but all it takes is the slightest knock and it reopens. And you are back to a fresh wound.

Obviously there are times still .. some times a day .. sometimes a week maybe even longer that I feel that way again, but it’s not constant. My finger is not glued to the fast forward button ..

I hope those of you that have lost children or our suffering your own kind of grief I hope this gives you some hope for the future… Because things can … they will change. And you will survive. You might not always want to.. but you will. And one day you will look back and see your growth.

And suddenly you will realize you are doing more than just surviving.. you are starting to live again.

i told you i would try

i promised you i would take care of them

i am

i will.

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…until there is a cure..

13 Responses to “live again”

  1. Good day…..
    I have been reading your blog for a long time, and it is so heartening to read this…..that you are finally not living such deep pain each day, that you are able to enjoy some time in each day. I cannot imagine your pain, or of others who have lost children, but I worried about you for a long time. I feel I am able to put some of that worry to rest…..you are growing, changing, and moving. Take good care…..

  2. You and Jennifer are still teaching us. Still, I’m sorry you have a seat at that table Lib. I’m glad you’re here and glad for this post !

  3. It’s especially hard during the holiday season as I’ve been fighting for five years to try and find “joy” in the holidays. I think I’m close, but I’m definitely not there yet. It really is all a blur, and I hate that I haven’t been as engaged as I want to be, as I used to be….sigh….

  4. Still here reading every post and fluttering every year to fight for these children. The pictures of you and Jennifer are priceless and show so much love- cancer can not take that away. LOVE4JLK always…..

  5. Hi,

    I was driving behind you today, in the PLEASANT Hill Area, and I noticed your license plate frame and sticker. I’m very inquisitive and decide to Google remember JLK. I already had ano idea of what I would discover
    Your posts are riveting and I can’t stop reading. There is nothing I can say to you and your family that will make your pain go away, if there was, I would tell you all day. Thank you for sharing your story and your love for your family with the world. And thank you for letting me get to know your beautiful and corageous daughter. May you find solace with every day that passes..happy holidays

  6. I actually have been going through something similar recently. I lost my mom suddenly in September 2013…I have had a very difficult time with grief since then. I had every day on a fast forward button, just wishing I could sleep all day to pass the time. I felt such immense guilt because I am a mom, and my young daughter (now age 6) deserved ALL of me, not just part of me…which I know is what I have been giving her. She doesn’t remember what I was like “back before Nonna died”…she only knows the mommy with the fake smile, hoping that people don’t see through my invisable wall of happiness…hoping that she doesn’t see each day being a struggle for me. Different pain from yours, but so similar in the outcome.

    Lately, I find myself doing “more”. Not just merely putting my day on “fast forward”. 3 years later, I can finally find reasons to smile. The other day, I realized the smile on my face was real, not fake. I still hurt, but I’m finally starting to live again. Part of me is thrilled, or at least “satisfied”. The other part of me is afraid that by losing some of my most intense grief, I am losing a part of my mom again. I’m trying hard to look past that and see that this new change in me is a positive thing…and I guess it truly is…why is grief so damn difficult?

    Oddly enough, I’ve found striking similarities in both of our paths of grief, although the grief itself is vastly different, yet similar: you lost your young daughter, and I lost my mother…both a “break” in the mother/child bond, and both very painful in different ways, although your pain must be infinitely more intense than mine as you mourn a future denied. As I’ve read your blog through the years, you have been able to articulate so much of the pain that I haven’t had the words for. You exposing your path with grief has actually helped me to understand my own grief on a better level…including now. I didn’t realize that I was starting to “live again” until I read this blog…but I see it now. I see a dim light at the end of the tunnel, whereas I saw no light before.

    Thank you for writing. I know it must be therapeutic for you, and apparently it is for me as well.

    Sending all of my love and support to you and your family. I hold Jennifer in my heart and think of her often. I will forever fight for the cure that she, and you, were denied.

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