Sunday, May 17, 2015

that person.

i've struggled with writing lately.
i feel like if i truly write what's on my heart and in my soul, i will be that person.
i will be that person who can't stop talking about sadness.
i will be that mother who lost her son and everyone knows she lost her son but she keeps talking about it anyway, even though talking about it will never bring him back.
i'll be that person who seems to only be dwelling on the hard things when she clearly has so much more to live for.
i'll be that person who drags everyone else down because she can't seem to figure out the balance of normalcy and happiness after death and despair.
i'll be that grieving mother who should be getting on with life by now, but for the life of her just can't seem to figure it out.
i'll be that person who seems bitter to the world but in her heart she's not.  she's really not, she's just broken and doesn't know how to fix herself.
i'll be that person.
i am that person.
i don't know who else to be.

so i'll write, and i'll write what i feel because that's always been my purpose for writing, to get things out of my head, no matter what they are.
lately they just happen to be hard things.
heavy things.
just sad stuff.

i miss my son.
isn't time supposed to ease the pain, or heal wounds or something magical like that?
i get what the phrase means, i do.
the pain is definitely less raw than it was 17 months ago.
my heart is less exposed than it was when i was holding my son as he took his last breath, or when i was watching him being buried in the ground.
time has allowed me to build up a wall, an armor, around my heart that helps me get through each day without actually dying.
so i get it, time helps in certain ways, it does.

but oh my heart, i just miss him.
there are times when i'm okay-ish.  when i'm busy and i don't let myself stop and think, i can be alright-ish.
i still have fun and laugh and find genuine moments of happy.
i am embracing (ok, maybe not embracing but really trying hard) at school and searching for a life path for myself, something that i can feel fulfilled and useful at, trying to find a purpose.
i am trying my hardest to feel happy and not fall apart.
but oh, i have to try so hard some days.
sometimes i feel like i'm just getting through the day by keeping my mind and body so busy that i won't possibly have time to acknowledge my reality.
i'm doing everything i can to play pretend and make believe so that at the end of the day i won't have to realize all over again that my beautiful boy is gone.
he died.
i didn't save him.
i just miss him.

so here i am, that person who keeps talking about the same grief, keeps pouring out the same feelings over and over because i just can't quite seem to let them go.
i'm trying.
it's not like i'm not feeling them.
i'm not avoiding my feelings completely.
i do tend to let them build until i break though.
but it's all i can do some days.
i don't know the "right way" to grieve, i'm sure that there isn't one.
this is just me, my way.
it may not be the best but hey, i'm still here.
sometimes it takes everything in me to understand why, but i'm here and i'm trying and that's all i've got.

i'm just a person who misses her son.
that's all.

happy Sunday to all of you.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

i am a mother.

i haven't written in weeks.
i have tried to sit down and write several times because my soul has so desperately needed it, but my mind wouldn't let me.
my mind has been a jumbled mess of stress, worry, fear and emotion lately.
finals had a lot to do with that.
i stressed so hard about my exams, studying nonstop, letting all the stress, emotion and worry build and build and build...............
and then it was over.
i took my last exam on wednesday night and then it was over.
thursday i thought i would feel a huge sense of relief, a freedom of sorts.............
and i did, in a way.
i felt relieved that i was done with math and there was nothing left to study.
i was relieved that i could finally just sit and not have school stress on the forefront of my mind.

but when school stress is gone i'm left alone with myself and my thoughts........oh my heart, i crumble.
when there's nothing left there to occupy my mind, i crumble.
when i think too much---when i actually let myself sit and think and feel---i crumble.

which brings me to today---Mother's Day.
it's the best and the worst day all wrapped up into one.
i am a mother.
it's the best thing i've ever done and the most whole person i'll ever be.
but half of what makes me a mother is missing, is gone.
i don't feel like a whole mother anymore.
it's such a conflicting feeling.
i know he's still mine, i know i'm still his mother.......but he's not with me anymore, not really.
people always say to me, "he's still with you".  i know what they mean.  i get it, i really do.  i understand that he'll always be "with" me.......but when i'm alone at night, sitting by my son's little makeshift bed that's still in the middle of the living room floor.......when i'm sitting there with my arms so empty just wishing i could just hold him again and it sends a chill throughout my entire body, a chill so cold i don't think i can ever be warmed........when i'm in his room going through drawers and drawers of his clothes, desperately trying to catch a hint of his sweet smell........when i'm still dreaming so vividly about my beautiful boy, and in those dreams i just want to save him........i'm trying so hard to save him and then i wake up.........
in those moments i'm so painfully aware that he's not with me.  
not really.
not the way a child should be with his mother.
not the way he belongs, in my arms.
he's still mine but he's gone.
he's my son but he's gone.

so this thursday, when i sat and tried to find relief, every sad feeling, all the emptiness i had been trying to cover up with busyness and school stuff came flooding in instead.
oh, i don't know how to describe to you the feeling of it, the weight of it all......all i can say is that it hurts.  it's a heavy hurt, a hurt that sits on my chest and clenches my throat to the point where i know there's no way i can survive this.
it's a panicky, gut-wrenching feeling to realize over and over again that my son is gone and that the rest of my life will be lived without him.
i sit on the floor and cry until there are no more tears because there are no more breaths left in me and i am certain that i cannot do it.
i cannot make it the whole rest of my life without him, and with this pain.
it's all too much.
i can't do it.
i don't want to.
i can't!!

oh, but then i look into my sweet girl's eyes and i see you, and i see her, and i know that somehow i have to keep going.........somehow i will keep going.
not for me or for you, sweet boy.
but for her.

she needs me.
she loves me.
she misses you.
oh we both miss you, Connie.
she is a beautiful reason to keep trying and to keep searching for hope and strength.
she makes it all worthwhile, just like you did, my beautiful boy.
she is every bit as beautiful as you in her own very special way and i know that i was blessed with you both for reasons i come to appreciate more and more as i fight to understand my place in this life.

i cannot do this alone.
some days i don't know if i can do it at all.
some days i question whether i even want to.
it's hard and it hurts so much more than i can bear.
but there's always a reason to keep trying.
i'm reminded every time she calls me mom or tells me she loves me.
even when she is mad at me or rolls her pretty little eyes when she thinks i'm not looking, that reason is still there.
she needs me.
i need her.

i'm a mother, but i don't feel whole.
i'm trying my best to move forward in a world that i don't quite understand, without my life's true soul mate.
i love my children.
they will always be my favorite part of me.

i know there are many different definitions of what constitutes a mother.
mothers come in all shapes and forms and every situation is unique and special.
happy Mother's Day to all of you.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

i'm okay....ish.

people ask me all the time, "How are you doing?"
"How's it going?"
"Are you doing okay?"

i never really know how to answer.
I'm alright-ish.
I'm hanging in there... ish.
I'm okay-ish.

i always add the ish.
i don't feel fully alright or okay.
the ish explains the rest.
i don't know that i'll ever feel okay.  i don't even know what that means anymore.

i need to give up trying to reach that feeling of "okay" and nurture where i'm at right now.
i'm not okay.
but i am alright with that.
i'm here.
and i'm still trying.
my son is gone and that's never going to be okay.
it's just something i'm learning to accept and live with.
that's the hard part.

finding joy along the way certainly helps.
my sweet girl bringing me a surprise bouquet of flowers from the yard "just cause they're pretty and she loves me" helps.
having a dad (my person) who i can call no matter what time day or night helps.
having friends who love me for me, despite all my messy parts helps.
experiencing small victories at school and overcoming personal challenges and struggles in the midst of fear and worry helps.
closing my eyes and remembering my beautiful boy's sweet noises and how he felt cradled in my lap helps.
oh my heart it helps.

 i miss him.
lately the ache seems to be magnified.
i'm not okay without my beautiful boy.
but i am trying.
i am still living, and loving.
i'm grateful for the love and support i feel from people in my life, near and far.
i am so very grateful for that.
no ish.

happy Sunday to you.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

my heart.


i need to write to get out of my head.
i wish i could take a break from my mind sometimes.
a good long vacation from my thoughts.
that would be nice.

or if my feelings could just steer clear of my heart for a while, that would also be fantastic.
i've been learning about the human heart in my Anatomy class.  i've held the real thing in my very hands in various labs.  i've studied all its parts and how it works and what keeps it going.
nowhere in any of my studies has it explained to me how or why the hell my heart can HURT so much when it's inside my body, doing all the things it's supposed to be doing.

blood is still pumping and flowing through all the right chambers.
my heart is still contracting and relaxing when it needs to.
it's still receiving and sending blood throughout my body......
but how can it be doing all this when THERE'S A GIANT HOLE IN IT????
 and if there's not an actual hole in it, then why does it HURT so badly??
i just don't understand.
where does the ache come from?
what causes me to forget how to breathe?
why am i able to handle it sometimes, and then be completely leveled by the pain at other times?
last night i was leveled.
there are some nights where it just becomes too BIG, the ache.
i'm trying so hard.
i don't want to be sad all the time.
i'm not.
i promise you, i'm not.
i'm not depressed, it just hurts.
i'm still happy, it just hurts.
i laugh.  i smile.  i have fun!
it just hurts. 
i don't understand my heart.
how it can love so deeply and feel so broken at the same time.
how can it hold SO MUCH goodness, yet be so empty?
why does it continue to wish for things that cannot be?

i just don't understand.

i'll keep trying.
i'm certain of that.

happy Sunday to all of you.
thanks for listening to my heart.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

this week i broke.

i haven't written for a while.
i've been wanting to write but every time i sit down to pour out my heart, my head seems to get in the way.
i have so much going on in both my heart and my head.....letting it out is the tricky part.
it's tricky because i'm not sure what it really is.
a jumbled mess of feelings---


i let it all build up and this week it kind of exploded on me.
i've been holding it in for awhile now with no release.
i think i've been avoiding my feelings, no---i'm sure i have.
if i keep myself busy and distracted enough, i don't have time to focus on the hard stuff.  i know it's there but i don't let myself be still long enough to really feel it.
pretty sure this is typical avoidance.

this week i broke.
studying for a math test set me off.
i had to be still, i was studying and needed my mind to concentrate.
forcing myself to be still and focus on the problems before me also opened the gates for everything else to come rushing through.
and boy did it ever!
i hadn't cried so hard in a while, i felt that familiar panic start to rise up and breathing became impossible.
i did what i usually do when the fear becomes too big and i don't know if i can make it---
i called my dad.
 my person.
he helps to remind me that i'm okay, i'm still here, i don't need to be perfect.  the pressure i put upon myself about school and everything else is something i'm doing, and i need to ease up.
somehow i need to find a balance for myself.
i've been searching for ways to do that for nearly my whole life.
more than anything, i struggle with myself.
i always have.
it's something i'm trying to figure out and understand.
it makes me miss my son so incredibly much.
i felt most comfortable with myself and who i am when i was caring for my beautiful boy.
i accepted myself more then because my son and i were so intertwined that to hate anything about myself would be like hating something about him.
and i just loved him.
i loved everything i did for him.
i miss him.
 i miss me with him.
i'm searching for acceptance.
sometimes i think i find bits and pieces.  i'm trying to save those in hopes that one day i'll be able to piece them together to form something real and strong and unbreakable.
i'm hoping.
i'm searching.
i'm trying.
i'm always trying.
happy Sunday to you.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

things that matter

oh, it's Sunday.
i haven't written for a couple weeks..
i need to write.

school has been really busy.  i've been putting my all into studying, trying to learn and grow.  i find myself so interested in the things i'm working with, especially in my Anatomy class and Lab.  every week i go and it feels like i can't get enough knowledge---i'm trying to find ways to cram it all in and yet i still find myself wanting more.

i had a moment in my Anatomy Lab where i was standing by myself in the back of the room, holding a human brain, staring at the parts of this brain that were supposedly shrinking the most on my sweet boy.....i stood there and stared and stared and had such a strong wave of feelings come over me that i had to hurry and leave the room because i felt myself about to completely lose it.
i couldn't breathe and i had to get out before i fell to pieces in front of a room full of students.
i left, found a stall in the bathroom and tried to remember how to breathe.

the feelings i was having, they were so forceful and strong and looking back i've been able to pinpoint what those feelings were.
  1.    i just missed my son!  the ache is always there, but sometimes there are moments where it feels like it's hitting me all over again.  it feels like he was just here, or that he's just in the other room and i need to get to him, he needs me to come get him!  and then like a ton of bricks hitting me right in the stomach, i remember.  i remember that he's not here and that's why i'm standing in this lab, and not at home with him instead.
  2.   i wanted answers!!  i stood there holding this brain, staring at the exact structures and parts that were failing my son and it's like i wanted them to speak to me!  i had the insane notion that if i stood there long enough, if i somehow stared at it long enough or looked at it from the right angle, it would give me the answers i'm so desperately seeking.  like the diagnosis would just become miraculously clear as i was holding it.   i stood for such a long time staring......... searching.......... waiting......................
  3.   when i realized what i was doing----standing with a brain in my hands, waiting for it to speak to me----i felt such an overwhelming sense of absurdity and frustration that i couldn't handle it any longer.  tears started coming and i knew if i let them flow they wouldn't stop.  so i left.  i got out.  i stood in a bathroom stall, clenching and unclenching my fists and tried to remember how to breathe.
i want to find answers.
i don't know what that means, really.
i want my life, my life moving forward, to mean something.
i didn't find answers for my beautiful boy, i don't know that i ever will.
that's a hard truth to deal with.
but i want to keep trying.
i want to keep searching..... and who knows, maybe somewhere in that search i'll find answers for some other family, some other mother who's HOPE is still there, who's faith has not been shattered by question after unanswered question.  maybe i can give light to someone stumbling in the dark, provide a beacon for just one person who feels lost in the abyss.
maybe i won't find any answers, maybe the answers i'm seeking don't even exist.........
but it's the trying, the searching, the purpose that i need.
i need to be doing things that matter.
i want to do things that matter.
i want to matter.
i'm trying.
oh my heart, am i trying.

happy Sunday to you.


Sunday, March 1, 2015

real happy.

happy Sunday.

i've been thinking about "happiness" lately.
what is it?
what does it really mean?
do i feel it?
or more importantly why don't i allow myself to feel it?

someone asked me this week if i was afraid to be happy---if i felt guilt for being happy.
yes, i think.
it really made me think about things, about myself and my life and my struggles within.
i'm not sure why i place restrictions or conditions on the good feelings i have and give free reign to the ones that seek to do harm, the ones i should be cautious of.
i feel like i've always been this way.
but why?
i'm not really sure.
i'm still trying to figure stuff out---a work in progress, always.
i just know that i have been truly happy.
i have felt true joy and happiness.
i still do feel it.
 i'm just learning different ways to recognize, appreciate and let it in.
my son made me happy.
oh my heart, did he make me happy!

taking care of his every need gave me such a wonderful sense of purpose and belonging and i'll never be able to replace that feeling.
i feel happiest when i'm doing something worthwhile.
i miss taking care of my beautiful boy more than i can ever describe.  my purpose in life has been shifted, and i don't know exactly what it is or how to nurture the change.
i'm working on it.
my sweet girl makes me happy.
she is such a happy child, a resilient little girl that brings so much light to my life.
she makes me giggle.
i watch her and know that the feeling i have inside is pure happiness.
i feel happy, still.
i just feel other things along with it, i've realized.
i let guilt creep in alongside the happy.
i'm trying to figure out why i do that, why my feelings work that way.
i'm working on a lot of things.
happiness is more than a feeling.
happiness, for me, is so many other things.
love, peace, security, comfort, safety, silliness, laughter, easiness......these are all wrapped up in happiness. 
i'm striving to let myself feel these things more freely, without limitations or restrictions, without consequences.
i'm trying harder to just be......and be okay with it.
i'm always trying.
happy Sunday to you.
real happy.