It has just been one of those weeks. A week of many tears, anger, mood swings, frustration, irritation, questioning my faith, snapping at my husband and daughter, more tears, some fun with friends, some apologizing to my husband and daughter, joy from visiting with my other daughter and granddaughters, fun with the hubby, eating too much, praying too little, and all the other roller-coaster stuff that comes with trying to live a normal life in the midst of grieving a tragic loss.
It started with a tearful Monday morning, followed by a tearful trip to the counselor where my husband shared the tearful way his Monday had begun. He typically watches the news while he eats breakfast in the mornings before he leaves for work. This Monday morning, while watching the morning news, a commercial advertising an aviation-themed watch came on, and my hunny’s first thought was, “I bet Izzy would like that. I’d love to get that for him for Christmas.” He didn’t share this with me earlier in the day because he knew it would make me cry. So he shared it at the counselor’s office, and of course I cried. The loss of hopes and dreams for our son’s future is just beginning to set in. We can’t ever buy him a Christmas present again; not one he will open, anyway. We’re never again going to see the look of eager anticipation as I hand him his gift on Christmas morning; we won’t hear the exhalation of his breath when he opens and sees what it is; we won’t hear that sweet “thank you” accompanied by a warm hug ever again. It is gut-wrenchingly heartbreaking.
For no apparent (other than the constant obvious) reason, I cried every day this week. When I feel like I did this past week I don’t sleep well, which only exacerbates the lack of control. Wednesday morning was the hardest, but Dan got home in the early afternoon, and since we both had been sleeping poorly, we decided a nap would be beneficial. It was, until I was startled awake by a dream. I was in a dark park-like area in my dream. It wasn’t completely dark, as I could see the outline of trees and a concrete patio area in the middle of the trees. I couldn’t see anyone with me, but I was aware of some of my family members there. We were searching for someone. I remember thinking, “Oh, yeah. We are searching for our son who has been missing for a year and a half.” I called out, “Where are you? Where are you? Where are you……….Leanne?” I awoke with a start, heart pounding, gasping for air. Why was I searching for and calling out for myself? That is actually a rhetorical question. I have not known myself since our son died 22 months ago. I recently read another mom’s post in an on-line support group for bereaved parents, discussing this very thought. She said she hopes someday to resume being at least some semblance of who she used to be before her child died.
After crying all day Wednesday, before and after the dream, I had coffee with some dear friends on Thursday and life returned to “normal” – the new normal. Crying has been reduced to the normal of once or twice a day, depending on what I’m watching or doing………..or smelling or seeing or driving by or cleaning or reading! The new normal. Maybe I’ll get used to the new me someday, too. In the meantime, I will continue to trust in Him with all my heart.
“There is no one like the God of Jeshurun, who rides on the heavens to help you and on the clouds in his majesty. The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.” Deuteronomy 33:26-27