I’ve wanted to participate in Right Where I am Project intended to chronicle where I am in my grief. But with the fog that I was in during may, I didn’t think I would be able too. The last couple of days, though, I’ve been feeling more of a “calling” to just build up the strength and do it. And so I will...
It’s been 7 months, 3 weeks and 6 days (it will be 8 months on Sunday) since I lost my son. Almost 8 months since SIDS/death ripped him away from me and from my husband, and left us a forever incomplete family. How do I feel today? Angry, broken (scratch that – shattered), sadder than I have ever been in my life. His absence left a crater in our lives, a void that will never be filled. From the time I wake up every morning, I am reminded every second of the day that he is no longer with us.
What has changed? Well, I am better able to assimilate with “the others” (those that have never experienced a loss so profound). I have moments where I feel like I can hide the big “BLM” that is engraved on my forehead. And I feel like, for the most part, I have re-learned how to function as this new person, this sadder person. I can go shopping for groceries with no problems (most of the time). I can go out to eat with friends. I can make superficial conversation with the cashier at the store. I can comment on a silly post on FB. I’m even starting to form opinions on things that have absolutely nothing to do with my little family or Julius. Some of the energy that was previously taken up by deeply grieving my son is being “freed” up. Or maybe I’m just learning how to be more efficient with it – learning how to multi-task, I guess.
The other thing that has changed, which is probably the most drastic change in these 8 months, is that my heart and soul are crossing the bridge of complete and utter resentment to the land of thankfulness. Now this doesn't mean that I’m not still angered that my son is gone, that I've accepted this new reality. It doesn't mean that I’m done missing him with every fiber of my being, that I’m over the fact that I will never get to brush his curly hair, or change him, or kiss those chubby cheeks of his. Or that I wouldn’t still give my very life to bring him back.
It just means that my heart is spending more time being so very thankful for the fact that I got to know him and spend time with him at all. I’m so thankful for those 40 weeks I got to carry him and see him grow from the outside. I’m so thankful for those 4.5 months I got to watch him grow into a little person with a big personality. I’m thankful for the privilege of calling Julius my son, of loving him with all the love I never knew I had. I’m thankful for getting to see him smile, for getting to hear his laugh. I’m thankful for him. And if someone asked me right now if I would do it all over again knowing that our time would be cut so very short. I would say without any doubt or hesitation “YES.”
And that's where I am, right now...
Be the change, a case for unity
4 weeks ago