Lessons

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I am learning about my relationships.  Some of it is stuff I wish I never knew.  Some of it is stuff I never thought I would find.  I am learning who I can call and cry to, who will just listen and tell me that they are so sorry that I am in so much pain, who will just tell me that they love me and that they love Maxie.  Some of these people are longtime friends and some of them are family.  Some of them are people who I never knew I could trust and love in this capacity.  They have saved my life.  I am forever grateful.

I am also learning who I can count on to be there for me in a more logistical sense.  They are willing to run errands for me or help me get other stuff done.  Often times, these two sets of people are not the same (but sometimes they are...these people are saints).  The errand people can't be there for me emotionally. They just can't handle my pain (neither can I but I have no choice).  They are helping in the way that they can.  Unfortunately, sometimes I put some of these people into the previous category, where they really don't belong.  They act uncomfortable or get mad or even annoyed at me for expressing my despair (even when they have asked me how I am doing or how I am feeling).  They are doing the best they can.  I am going to try to shield them from my real emotions.  When they ask how I'm doing, I will do my best to not really tell them.  They don't really want to know.  They are asking because they want to hear everything is better, so I will let them think it is.  I appreciate their willingness to help me out and I need to learn to leave it at that.  It makes me feel worse to argue with them about how much I miss Max or how misunderstood I feel.  It makes me feel embarrassed when my cries are met with blank stares.  It makes them feel bad too.  It isn't worth it.

Lastly, there are people who haven't tried at all.  For a while, I mourned those residual losses.  It made me sad that I lost friends on top of losing Max.  I am not sad about those losses anymore.  I look around now and I am so happy with the friends that are left standing.  They mean more to me than I ever knew friendships could.  I don't really want the old friends back anymore and that feels really liberating honestly.  I don't have the energy to try and re-establish those connections anyway.  I am learning that grief comes with many many lessons and that they aren't learned overnight.  Everyone has their strengths and weaknesses, including me.  One of my greatest weakness is in wanting to share everything I feel and in wanting everyone to understand me.  It just isn't possible.  I set myself up for so much disappointment this way.  The world doesn't revolve around our family.  The people closest to us have their own lives...they aren't always thinking about our loss (even when it is, in some way, their loss too).  I know that.  I think if I can try to remember better when to keep my mouth shut and when I am actually safe, I will save myself (and others) a whole lot of heartache.  I'm sure I'll be letting you know how that goes.

3 comments:

Jayden's Mommy said...

Many lessons in such a short time. In a time when the shadow of pain never goes away. I have as well learn to identify these different groups of people. It makes me sad that so many don't understand but I know they try to help in what they can. Thinking of you. Kira

greg said...

Maxie's loss WAS a loss for all of the people who know and love you guys. We should have known the Ted & Abby who raised him and the Ted & Abby whose life he filled with joy and "old Abby" who didn't have to deal with never-ending pain of his loss. And we should have watched him grow up. It's not fair.


But I am glad you are at peace with how his loss has affected your circle of friends. You've got enough grief in your life.
Miss you Abs.

Tanya said...

Abby, so often I have conversations with you in my mind....I often think I should have some of them more directly, but like many, I don't want to intrude. But please know that many of us who don't respond openly are often feeling so very deeply for you and Ted and your ongoing pain. If I could share anything it would be that the pain is NOT supposed to go away.....It will just eventually have a place in your heart surrounded by the deep love and connection you will always have for Maxie. Why wish for it to go away? People who are waiting for that to happen do not understand the deep and ever-lasting connection of a mother and child. And that's okay.... Our hearts expand to carry it all.....

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