I am strong

I'm having a really hard time.  I keep reliving my last moments in the hospital with Max.  My last moments with my son.  Kissing his little perfect face, tears streaming down my face, praying over his lifeless little body.  It will haunt me for all of the rest of my days.  FOREVER.  I miss him so much.  I miss his sweet smile, his long eyelashes, his big beautiful eyes.  I miss holding him.  I miss the way he smelled.  I wish I could breathe him in.  I cannot believe that this happened to him, to us.  I still cannot believe he is gone.  I still wish there was some way I could trade my life for his.

I got a phone call from the hepatologist the day after our appointment.  He dumped a whole load of new information on me that I am having a hard time absorbing.  It doesn't lead us any closer to any answers.  It doesn't help me to understand whether Mo will make it either.  It only serves to create that sick feeling in my stomach again, that awful flutter in my heart, that heavy, awful, oppressive feeling like I should have done something different that could have changed the outcome - that would have saved his life.  It also fills my calendar back up with more appointments with "specialists"...otherwise known as "people who don't care that my child died and are completely baffled by his death".

Lately I have been feeling really jealous.  REALLY jealous...of people who don't have dead children.  Of people who post photos of happy whole families on Facebook, and stress about the usual stressors in life (money, relationships, jobs).  I am jealous of people who get to kiss their kids (all of them) goodnight and good morning and all day long if they'd like to.  I just feel like it's SO unfair.  IT IS SO UNFAIR!!! I know it doesn't help me to think that way and so I try to push through.  Their lives are different than mine and that will just have to be ok eventually.  Will this ever feel ok?

I used to get so mad when people told me that I was strong.  They said it with such authority.  It felt like a politically correct way of telling me that they could never handle it, which I always read as a way of saying that that is why Maxie died and not their child (because I can handle it and they can't).  I can't handle it.  It is too big and too much and if I think about it too hard (which I could not stop myself from doing in the first year of my grief), it swallows me whole.  I can't handle it....but I am handling it.  Because I have no choice.  Sadly and fortunately, I've learned that I can do hard things.....like REALLY hard things.  I can do hard things that make all of the other stuff I ever thought was hard before this seem easy-breezy.  Hard things which sometimes get in the way of my feeling the empathy I once had for people who are experiencing the "normal" hard things.  It's not cool.  I want to feel more empathy.  I want to feel empathy rather than jealousy.

I keep remembering the things other bereaved parents have told me about finding their strength - because eventually you have to find your strength, you have no choice.  Finding your strength means digging deep.....SO deep and it is HARD to dig down that deep...I mean really, really hard.  There is nearly no room for those regular stressors.  Whenever you start to stress about those things, your own life kicks the perspective back into you and your reality check is your own damned self.  All of our strength is devoted to the hard task of living.  We are a strong bunch.... A REALLY STRONG BUNCH!  AND.........I AM A STRONG PERSON. A REALLY STRONG PERSON!!!!!

I didn't ask for this.  I would have never dreamed this would be my life.  But this is what I got and I am a thousand times stronger than I ever imagined possible.

.......even when I am breaking down, I am strong. 

1 comment

Anna said...

Dear Abby, keep saying that over and over and over again until you don't need to. You have dug much deeper than most of your peers. It is not fair that you and Ted have had to learn these survival skills, but you have them now. You are strong, you are an incredible mother and a good friend. Thinking of you and sending a big Aussie hug. xx