Ostrich

Leo,

Today I drove your dad to work. Because of his surgery, he isn’t allowed to drive himself anywhere for the week. On my way home, I thought about visiting you at the cemetery but decided against it. I instantly felt guilty so I took the rest of the drive home thinking about why I didn’t want to go visit you. I wish I could say it is because I’ve healed and moved on as so many well-wishers say I will do in time. The truth is, I was putting my head in the sand…I had an Ostrich moment, if you will.

You are simultaneously one of the most beautiful and utterly painful parts of my life. On days like today I realize that I don’t have the energy to face our reality. I don’t have it in me to visit the spot where I laid your sweet beautiful body to rest. I don’t have it in me to draw up even more memories of the life we had, the life we could have had, the life we should have had.

I talk about you without crying and people tell me how strong I am. I laugh silently to myself. I go on living each day, trusting, hoping, praying, that your sisters get to outlive your dad and me and people tell me how happy it makes them to see me moving on. I silently die a little more inside. They say I’m one of the strongest and most composed people they’ve met, but you and I both know that’s not true.

I’m a total mess. I’m not strong because I was born this way, I’m strong because God gifts me the strength to live on without you. I’m composed because I can only cry so many tears before I’ve dehydrated myself. I talk about you because you and I are one, we always will be. Just as I tell stories of your sisters, I will always tell your story. You are not nor will you ever be forgotten or become a memory lost in my grief. I speak proudly of you, my son who left us too soon.

It’s days like today when I realize how far I’m keeping God from my heart. I let my fear of facing reality dictate my actions. I didn’t visit you because I thought I didn’t have the strength to face this reality today. If I let God lead my way, there would be no fear. He has and will continue to give me the strength and composure to accept that you are gone. Not a single moment passes that I don’t have you on my mind and in my heart. No matter if I visit you at the cemetery or not, or if I doubt the strength God gives me, I carry you with me, in my heart, forever.

I love you and I miss you,
Mom

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5 thoughts on “Ostrich

  1. Hi Angela, unfortunately I can relate to your post. This in/out of reality is torture on our minds. I keep myself just busy enough to where I don’t have to deal with my sons death but then feel guilty for doing that. We lost our son, Matthew, on May 13, 2014, he was one day shy of turning 4 months old. We have 2 other children as well (7 and 4). We are beyond heart broken and feel like we are just going through the motions each day.

  2. Donnie,
    I’m so sorry about your loss. My heart and prayers are with you and your family. There are days, more in the first 6 months following Leo’s passing, that I felt blessed to even function. It’s nearly 1-1/2 years for us, but one reflection that I was able to see, right at the one year mark, was how amazing our daughters had been during our deepest grief. They were so patient, understanding, and forgiving of our numbness. I hope the guilt isn’t too damaging for you…all we can do is our best…and sometimes all we have to give is about 30%. Blessings to you and sweet Matthew.
    -Angela

    • Thank you. I have days where it seems like he died yesterday and others where it feels like he died years ago. I think it’s just my brain only allowing me to deal with the grief in little increments. The emotions are exhausting. My thoughts are prayers are with you and your family as well.

  3. I haven’t visited Anneliese’s grave since the first week of June, right before our SIDS walk. It’s just so emotionally draining.

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