Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Everday Life - Altered

This is a quote written by a fellow babylost mommy. I saw it on facebook and was given permission to share with all of you. Just makes you think.

"At the end of the day when I crawl into bed and all the lights go out, my thoughts can finally rise to the surface.
Yes, I'm a little bruised, slightly broken, and permanently scarred,
but I'm still here aren't I?
I'm still fighting,
I'm still waking up everyday to go through it all over again.
At times this life may be hard as hell,
but it's still a gift and I'm going to live every moment of it."
Written by: Michelle Moist

This quote (as many have) really spoke to me. Our lives are forever changed. We forever have grief in our hearts, loss in our souls. We forever struggle with the fact that what we have experienced is permanent. There is no changing it. There is no getting our babies back.

I think this permanency was one of the many things that devoured my mind in the early days of losing Nicholas. I was completely devastated that our life as we knew it was drastically altered. That nothing would ever be the same again. Not only was I grieving my youngest son, I was grieving the loss of a beautiful, peaceful and content life with my family.

Family days would be different. Family pictures would be different. The holidays would be much different. My heart would eternally be different. The hearts of my husband and my living sons... would be different.

This has been one of the hardest things to accept throughout this lifelong journey of remembering Nicholas.

We have gone from deep, deep despair and sadness to feeling a sense of strength for enduring such heartache. We have gone from utter hopelessness to hopefullness in bringing a new baby home to our family. We have gone from missing our baby boy so intently in the ravages of new grief to remembering him, talking about him and including him in our family every chance we get.

I must admit that there are some days, some moments when the tidal wave of grief hits me again. That the permanency that is the loss of Nicholas breaks down my "strong" barrier. Just this past weekend, I had a day. A bad day. I cannont pinpoint what brought the wailing from my chest again, but it was there... and it was unstoppable for some time. It was the first time in a long time where I longed so desperately to hold Nicholas again. To have him safe inside me. To feel his soft skin on mine. I held his blanket that day, to my chest and imagined him wrapped in it again. In my mind I could feel him. It was real again. All too painfully real.

Of course, there is stress. Everyday life stress which just seems to multiply by 1000 when your heart is already heavy with grief. Will it always be that way? Will all of life's stresses ware us down that much quicker and easier because of the weight we will forever carry? I hope not.

My husband and I have, together, been somewhat unbreakable throughout this horribly difficult time. We have stuck it out together. We have cried together, held each other. We vow to keep Nicholas' memory alive, together.

But I don't think we actually grieve together.... which is natural, I guess. Lately it's been hard. Harder to express to each other how the other is feeling. Harder to try to guage each other... enough to help anyway.

There are work pressures, there are family and friend pressures. There are holiday pressures and new baby pressures. All pressures that are to be expected. Some that are completely uncalled for, but there, nonetheless.

I am sad. Sad that we have been forced to face some of these pressures. Stress that is unnecessary. Stress that could have been avoided. In some instances we have been placed in an impossible position - to honour our baby boy's memory with grace and dignity or to dust the whole experience and his existence under the rug in the name of family.

In some cases, family just seems to be a word. As far as I'm concerned you must earn the title. You must show you care. You must put down your own inhibitions and reach out in order to show love and support. In some cases, we have not seen this. We have been disappointed and disheartened. We have longed for acceptance, for some level of understanding and empathy. For whatever reason, it's just not there. And we are not prepared to pretend like it is.

We are not prepared to pretend like it's okay not to acknowledge Nicholas. Not for anyone. He is always a part of our life. A part of our family. The hardest thing for me to understand is that he is a part of our extended family too. They have suffered a great loss. I am the first to admit that, but one must show that he matters. One must show that our feelings matter when they are communicated. If this doesn't happen, we are forced to become defensive. A survival mechanism. A mechanism for surviving the death of our son.

The only thing we can do, as parents, for Nicholas now is to honour his memory, lovingly. When his memory is not honoured it stings and it stings very, very badly.

We will fight for him. We will love him. And we will honour his beautiful, short life until we meet again.


JamieW said...

This post is beautiful and really touched me.

Jill said...

Oh Lea, what a beautiful post. I have tears in my eyes as it touches my heart so deeply. That is a lovely quote by Michelle and I thank you for sharing it.

Bree said...

And you do such a beautiful job of keeping Nicholas' memory alive.

I love what Michelle wrote. It is so true. I however feel like I pretty much avoid all of those normal things one does in everyday life. I don't really socialize with anyone anymore, and I can't deal with conflict. I go to work 2 days a week with my happy face on. The other five days I'm sitting on the couch in my pjs. I guess I'll have to get back to reality someday, but not just yet.

margaret said...

I too love what Michelle wrote. I can feel so much of my life in this post also Lea. I find it hard to accept that our family members have also suffered a loss because they don't often show it. It's hard to believe sometimes that Calvin's loss affects more than just Shane and I. Sometimes though, I'll catch a glimpse of someone else in the family's grief for my son and although it's not as strong or profound as my own grief, it's a reminder that they too have lost a wonderful gift. I think that it will eventually fall to the parents to make our children's lives are remembered, no one else feels the void as much as we do. Sad but true. I know that as long as I live, Calvin will be very much a part of our family whether he's in heaven or not, just as Nicholas will always be part of yours. And too bad if it makes other people uncomfortable. They should try walking in our shoes as far as being uncomfortable goes....Hugging you

Fireflyforever said...

I am so sorry that members of your extended family have placed you in this position - I am often astonished when I read babylost blogs about how those who ought to be our stalwarts through this fail spectacularly.

Of course you will fight for him - you are his mummy and you are an amazing one.

Kristy said...

I hate this new life, I hate that what I had pictured twice is now destroyed. I hate that dreams won't happen now with E and L, and may never happen again with a new little baby. It sucks. Is not right. Siiigh...

You have done a beautiful job keeping Nicholas' spirit alive, and I have no doubt will continue that forever.


Nan & Mike said...

Im so happy you have your hubby, your rock. It is so important to have that one person you can count on. This is a beautiful post, thank you for sharing. I am thinking of you xxoo Love, Nan

Michelle said...

Beautiful post. It encompasses many of my thoughts and feelings, especially this week. Those "tidal wave of grief" moments are so hard.

Thank you for sharing this post. You are doing a wonderful job of honouring your beautiful son, Nicholas.

Caroline said...

What a beautiful post and it so touched my heart. Yes it changes so many things. I had 3 children and then lost 2 to miscarriage then just had a daughter this yr. I stop and think so much what would things be like if everyone was here and pictures and so on.
Thanx for sharing this.
Take care and {{HUGS}}

Franchesca said...

The permanency really hit me hard too. It is just plain hard. Some days it sinks in more than others, but I think I am starting to see that this is going to be life... forever. But like Kristy said, you are doing a beautiful job at keeping Nicholas' memory alive.


Kelli said...

What a wonderful quote. I can imagine that she has described it perfectly.

Bluebird said...

Beautiful post, honey, and one to which I relate very much. It's all just so bizare. . .


Beth said...

beautiful.. so many have said it already, but i had to say it too. so beautiful.

Unknown said...

I love the quote a lot. I'm broken but I'm still here so I'm gonna keep living. I know that's what she'd want.

I've talked with moms years ahead of me in this journey, specifically a blog friend who is 12 yrs out and my aunt who is 19 yrs. Their words have helped. I know it won't go away and there will still be hard moments that come along but they've given me hope that I'll be ok.

Karen said...

That quote you shared is beautiful. I'm so identifying with what you wrote: "Not only was I grieving my youngest son, I was grieving the loss of a beautiful, peaceful and content life with my family." (((Hugs)))

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