Child Loss

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Child Loss
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    #grievingmother #sonyasstorycdkl5 #normalizegrief #Grief #griefjourney #ChildLoss

    During our daughter's life when someone would outright state or even insinuate that their problems weren't equivalent to what our family was going through, I was always quick to stop them and let them know that it wasn't fair to compare. Everyone has their own challenges and threshold of what they can handle, and it isn't fair to assign weight to them. I always felt that comparing anything besides a comparable life was equivalent to comparing an apple with a pineapple. They share the category of fruit. Diminishing what someone else is experiencing doesn't make what challenges another person any heavier. They both are what they are to each of them.

    Being a parent of a child who died is a unique category. (Thankfully) There are fewer (but really too many) members of this group. I have found myself confused and not confident in the role of parenting after a child's loss. For the last 3 years, I have been confused as to what subcategory of life we have fallen into. Are we still a medically complex family? Are we a hockey family? Are we a typical family? Do we have the right to have accommodations made like they once were when we had a child who was medically complex and then dying? In what category do our surviving children fall? After all, children are resilient, right?!

    When the world returned to normal after Covid, so did we. As if we didn't experience the death of a family member. Unless you know us from before, or unless one of us mentions it after, you wouldn't know. We blend into life. The kids are in extracurricular activities, we travel, we spend our summers away, Sam and I both work, we smile, we laugh, and for all intents and purposes, we act as if we have the perfect family. Sometimes, but rarely our emotions are on our sleeves. Unless people want to travel the grief journey along with us, they too can pretend that our lives are normal. They can stay far enough away from the unimaginable pain they are thankfully able to avoid and tune into the part of our life that we outwardly display.

    Among fellow bereaved mothers, I mentioned my conflict with what is grief? and what is normal? I shared with others the everyday pain, the lack of energy, the lack of motivation, the anger, the frustration, the short tempers, the feeling of being a failure as a parent, the challenges with deciphering what is teen/child typical behavior and what is related to grief. I mentioned that I was torn on if the behaviors my children are exhibiting are typical or if it is grief. Is the grief a cop-out? Is it fair to place the onus on grief? I listed all of the struggles I have felt but didn't want to be told by someone who is not in a similar situation that "of course, it is grief, of course, you're experiencing all of those emotions, you lost a child"

    It was at the same moment that I was speaking my thoughts aloud that I started to process the entirety of the last 8 years. The actual significance of parenting a child who was medically complex and whom we knew we would one day bury as a child, but didn't know exactly when. I had a million flashbacks of a life that went by incredibly fast that simultaneously took 4 years 11 months and 23 days of her siblings' lives as well. I listened as a mother responded to me about how she wishes she could surround herself with my bubbliness every day because maybe it would help her feel motivated. I listened as she said she was processing everything I was saying. I listened with tears in my eyes as she said, "but Randi, a cop-out?! Honey, it is not a cop-out, it is your reality, it is your life"

    For the last hours since she said that sentence to me I have repeated it in my mind while thinking about all those times, I shrugged off the weight of all we have endured. I have thought about the words while thinking about the fact that 3 years ago our children's ages ranged from barely 2 years old to barely 10, none even old enough to sit in the front seat (and due to height, all were still in car seats or boosters). I think about how not only did we have to deal with Covid, but we also had to deal with the death of a significant family member. We buried a child and sibling who didn't go longer than a month of her life going into a hospital. A child who spent close to half of her life in-patient at a hospital. I have th#ought about it all on repeat. There is no comparison to anyone who has experienced a loss of any kind. There is no it is worse because of "XYZ", there is none of that. But, also, there is no coping out, and there is no cushioning the reality. The reality is that there is no denying that things are different for us and they are harder in many ways, there is just no way to sugar-coat that. There is no coping out because the struggles we have had to face as a family are not normal, they do warrant some extra attention and some extra accommodations, but most importantly, they mostly warrant giving ourselves a little more grace.

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    Just excited and wanna share...a little history lesson to boot.

    Only genealogy buffs such as myself will probably find this interesting. My great-great-great grandmother, after losing two children and never recovering while her husband was away fighting in the War Between the States, was sent to live out the rest of her life at the most well known mental hospital in North Carolina, Dorothea Dix Hospital. I have always identified with and felt a bond with her due to her mental anguish. Well the state archives of North Carolina was able to find her information in a patient admission and discharge log from 1868-1875! She was buried in an unmarked grave on the site and not much is known about her. Back then many family members would not come to receive the bodies of their family members who died at the hospital due to the stigma. I am honored to be able to celebrate the life of this beautiful woman who has been forgotten by history. #History #MentalHealth #Trauma #Grief #ChildLoss #mentalhospital

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    A game of snakes and ladders 🐍🪜🎲

    Does anyone else feel like life is just a game of snake and ladders? Except your board is mainly all snakes and very few ladders and instead of going back a couple of places, you end up going right back to the beginning, having to start from scratch each time. Losing any remaining confidence, hope and chance of fairness in the process.
    You begin to dread playing the game (life) as you know you'll never win at it, only lose every time you roll those dice, and when you do land on a ladder you stop yourself getting excited or hopeful as you know it will amount to nothing and you will soon be back at that starting position once again and that, is soul crushing.
    Sorry to bring anyone down just needed to share and no whether anyone else shares this feeling...
    #ChildLoss #Fatigue #Depression #ADHD #BPD #GroundhogDay #Isolation

    35 reactions 9 comments
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    Everything I touch becomes sick with sadness, just like that Taylor swift song….but…

    An hour ago I felt so horrible for yelling the word, “enough” to my 5 year old that I felt like I was unworthy of being their mother. I felt like they’d be better off without me. I felt like a worthless piece of shit and like I was becoming my biggest fear, just like my mother. I felt like I would make them feel unloved like my brother and mother told me I made them feel. I feel like I make people feel unlovable because I’m just so fucked up. Everything I touch becomes sick with sadness, just like that Taylor swift song. But he loved me anyways. He noticed. He once again picked me up off the floor from the curled up ball of tears that I lay in and saved me again. I being ashamed of my sobbing tears that sound like the sadness of someone that died, went to shower. The shower a familiar place of safe solitude… or so I thought. It was in that shower I was reminded of my miscarriage, rewatching the dried blood wash down the drain after getting home from the hospital. And then reminded of the teenage girl that use to sit on the floor of our iron stained shower and sob about being abandoned, raped, and sexually assaulted. The lost girl who was alone, unlovable, and unworthy. It was there I felt my lowest lows, water barreling down so hard that it became numbing, feeling so alone that I then contemplated suicide too. He came to check on me just as I was reliving these memories. I was snapped back. He asked me if I was okay. I asked him to shower with me. I just needed to feel him next to me. We hugged for so long my skin became pruny and I had to make the water hotter. Nothing sexual, just pure unconditional love. His arms wrapped around me reminded me I was safe, I was loved, I was lovable and worthy. I am so grateful for him that I’m absolutely terrified of losing him, my therapist calls it catastrophic anxiety. Just like that I went from feeling so unworthy that I felt like a burden to instead feeling a purpose for continuing to fight. He reminds me to keep fighting no matter what. So I’m reminding you to keep fighting no matter what. #MentalHealth #Anxiety #PTSD #ChildLoss #SexualTrauma #Suicide #Childhoodtrauma #keepfighting

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    Life can be short, life can be fragile and fleeting, yet life is a blessing, and those whose lives are taken from us leave us memories that cannot die

    I just heard some difficult news. A dear friend who I know has been struggling fighting serious health problems just told me they have a limited time left to live. It has reminded me how precious life is, how beautiful life is, how short lives can be, how fleeting our good health can be and how unfair life can be. As loved ones become ill and their health diminishes those of us close to them can feel helpless and just wish there was something we could do to lessen their pain, to alleviate their suffering, to concoct some sort of magic potion, a panacea to bring them back to good health and lengthen their lives back to that we once thought they had left.

    But there is often nothing we can say that will help as much as we would like, despite our wanting to make a difference there is nothing we can do to change things and turn fate around, nothing we can offer to help alleviate their pain and suffering and nothing we can offer their family and friends to help cushion the blow.

    As I heard the news of my friend’s declining health I was deeply saddened. They are young and can appear so vibrant and healthy, so strong and spirited …but I have known the truth, known their days were numbered…however I thought they had years to live, instead they just told me it is months, even weeks or days.

    I just want to give them a big, deep, comforting, loving hug … but alas, life has them hours away. Life that is so fleeting for them has us separated by space that a hug can’t travel. It's just a virtual hug that I can offer. It’s a lot, but sadly I feel like it’s not enough.

    I can only send my love and support through words. Yet I know this can make a difference. I know from first hand experience that thoughts and prayers can travel through a phone call, cyberspace and through intention and belief…but it doesn’t feel like it’s enough. It just doesn’t seem fair. It seems like there is a void that cannot be filled.

    So I will keep them in my thoughts and prayers. Those words can seem hollow and often insignificant because they are shared so often that they don’t seem to mean enough anymore… but I will think about them a lot, I will pray for them, I will send my blessings that they don’t suffer, that they are not in pain, that they can enjoy every moment left in their life, that their joy and spirit will give them strength to live their remaining life to its fullest as much as they can.

    I will deeply mourn the loss of this friend, I will mourn the loss of a young life cut short, I will mourn someone I will not be able to hug… but I also know that they would want me to celebrate their life, celebrate the joy and exuberance they lived that life with, celebrate all the ways they touched others and made a difference in our lives. I will celebrate them, celebrate life … even if it can be short. I will celebrate their spirit and the memories that cannot be taken away. That part of their life is left with us all …forever!

    #MentalHealth #Depression #Anxiety #Disability #ChronicIllness #ChronicPain #Selflove #Selfcare #PTSD #COVID19 #Migraine #Headache #BipolarDisorder #Bipolar2Disorder #Bipolar1Disorder #BipolarDepression #Addiction #AddictionRecovery #HIVAIDS #longtermsurvivor #RareDisease #ObsessiveCompulsiveDisorder #ADHD #Fibromyalgia #Cancer #IfYouFeelHopeless #Hope #relief #Joy #happy #TheMighty #MightyTogether #MightyMinute #mentalhealthwarrior #Grief #LossOfAParent #LossOfAChild #ChildLoss #Death #Mourning #sad #worry #Fear

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    #ChildLoss @ChildLoss #Lovelost @LoveLost #LostLove @LostLove

    #ChildLoss @ChildLoss #Grief @Grief #LostLove @LostLove #TraumatizingExperiences @TraumatizingExperiences

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    Struggling these past few days, but I'm never alone with my furry brood. Ronnie the dog and Eric the cat having snuggles with me

    #MightyPets #ChildLoss #Autism #ADHD #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #BipolarDisorder #ChronicPain

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    Mufasa knows...

    This is my handsome dog, Mufasa! He sits next to me when he's needing some love. However, when my anxiety fires up, he knows I need some love. 💜 #MightyPets #ChildLoss #SuicideLoss #Depression #traumatic grief

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    Today would have been my son's 31 first Birthday

    31 years ago at this moment I was in the birthing room getting ready to see my first baby. I can visualize every moment like it was yesterday. I wasn't supposed to be able to have children, the doctor had told me. Every child is a miracle but for me and my husband it was a miracle. We didn't know if we were having a baby boy or a baby girl so we had picked out the names for the baby that I dreamed of being a mom since I was a child. We chose the following names, Jacob Michael or Sarah Ann. At 2:08pm I gave birth to a 5.8oz baby boy! He was Full-term and I had gaind almost 40 lbs. He was so tiny that we had to buy premature baby clothes. Eventually he gained weight and grew into the extra large feet he was born with! 😄 I can't believe my baby is no longer here. It will be 3 years on Thanksgiving when he made the decision to end his life. I wish he knew he took a part of other's lives with him. I had decided that tonight I would go out and celebrate his life. Bought now I can barely breathe and want to hide in my bed from the world. I need lots of prayers and love right now. Happy birthday my "Honey Roasted Peanut" until we meet again remember I love you and miss you even when I'm asleep. #SuicideLossSurvivors #sucide #Heartbroken
    #prayers #ChildLoss #AfterSuicideLoss

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    “I lost a baby. I was 14 when I didn’t give my first boyfriend consent….

    I lost a baby. I was 14 when I didn’t give my first boyfriend consent. I was 10 when my cousin started repeatedly molesting me. I lost a friend to alcohol poisoning and was with him the night he died, this person would’ve been my brother in law. My mother was an alcoholic and has been verbally abusive, narcissistic, and victimizing herself my entire life. She told me she should’ve aborted me and that I’m the reason we marriage with my father didn’t work. My dad was never emotionally present, he didn’t know how to be. I practically raised myself. My ex boyfriend was controlling and verbally abusive and tore down every ounce of confidence or self esteem that I had left. I gained weight, I hated myself. I struggled with post partum depression after my son was born due to a traumatic birth. My anxiety was extreme after this. I was terrified of dropping him, I was terrified of connecting with him. I loved him but couldn’t touch him. My daughter, my sweet rainbow baby is physically delayed. She can’t walk, but she sure is making progress, we’ve been in physical therapy for the last 6 months, but it’s hard reading other parents posts about the milestones their child the same age have reached. She only ever wants me and is always fussy. Are these things supposed to make me stronger? It doesn’t feel that way. It feels like weights that constantly hold my ankles under water just enough for my nose to breathe, but I’m slowly drowning because I can’t hold them up anymore. After I lost my baby I was in a depressive psychosis and almost pulled the trigger, but I wanted to live I just didn’t know how. My husband saved me. He doesn’t deserve such a mess of a human and I’m trying so hard to not mess up my children, to not let my depression take ahold and make it so I don’t get out of bed, to not let my anxiety keep me from them having an amazing childhood and taking them places and doing things. Gosh, I’m falling apart today. So I’m trying to focus on things that help. Yesterday it was organizing and avoiding snapping at my children and honestly avoid them overstimulating me with laying all over me, instead having them help me. My five year old sure felt special helping mom. Today I’m still on the couch, but their bellies are full because I got up to feed them, brush their teeth, give them their gummy vitamins, and they’re watching their favorite movie. Looking for strength, looking for courage, trying to find that happy version of me that can still barely see above water. It’s days like today that I wish my husband would take the day off and just hold me while I cry. Until then I decided to share my story here and a share a glimpse of what I’m feeling because getting it out somehow is better than not at all. Thanks for listening/reading. #MentalHealth #Anxiety #Depression #ChildLoss #Miscarriage #SexualAssault #Surviving