I did a blog on my experience regarding losing a child less than a month after losing Jude. I thought I would reflect back on that blog and discuss how our grief progressed.
1. I don't really have the wind knocked out of me anymore when someone asks me how many children I have. I have learned to be honest and I say I have two children a daughter Emily and a son Jude that's in heaven.
2. I still feel a bit lost and disconnected and I am sure that will continue for some time.
3. I don't really feel like I am going crazy anymore. I guess that's because I fully grasp that this is a sad situation and I understand it's okay to feel lonely, overwhelming sadness, or desperation.
4. I wasn't sleeping well after Jude died but I have begun to sleep again. However I wake up on cue around 3:15 like I used to when I would get up and check on him.
5. I still feel panicked in public situations and somethings I do still feel like yelling but more over I tend to really observe my surroundings more. I really look at people and wonder what is going on their lives.
6. I had mentioned that people make comparisons regarding their losses. I don't really get that anymore but I do understand that if I do it's because people have a natural reaction to want to identify to the situation and help remedy the problem. I just understand there is no remedy.
7. Staying busy is still a very good resolution for times I feel very sad. With the new home we are constantly busy and rarely sit down at night until 9pm.
8. Listening to people complain about trivial things still gets on my nerves but now I have a voice to speak up about it. I politely point out that life could be so much worse. I also have very little tolerance with anyone that lashes out against me right now and I almost find that unforgivable I don't care what the situation is.
9. I had mentioned before that looking around our house makes me realize nothing will ever be the same. However now we have moved so of course it's really different. My doctor told me that child loss is like losing a limb. Eventually you begin to learn to laugh and move on with life but that life will never be the same as it was before.
10. I mentioned that normal is questioning where we go when we die. I still think that's normal but I also believe that's where faith comes in. If we believe that we live good lives then we will be reunited with our loved ones. However a part of me also believe that you get back what you put into the world and if you don't put enough good in you just may be coming back to repeat it all over again.
11. I still have grief fog......bad. I can forget phone numbers that I just wrote down, I misplace things, I forget what Emily's told me constantly, and I walk away from my desk only to stop and wonder where I was going. If anything this is one situation that's gotten worse versus better.
12. I loved my therapist that I mentioned cried with me but I moved on to a certified grief counselor. I don't see him often but when I do he helps.
13. I am no longer annoyed at every single thing and I can get out of bed but I still have little patience for drama.
14. I still rotate through the stages of grief quickly but it's slowed down some.
15. I still have panic attacks thinking about holidays approaching but it's only been 4 months. Jude's birthday is coming up so I did take some measures to insure my emotional stability and those around me. I am taking the day off work on his actual birthday 9/2. My boss was very understanding and I had the hours left. I also set up an event at our new home on 8/27. Friends and family will be coming to see the new home and paint rocks in Jude's memory for our surrounding gardens.
16. I still realize there is no reasoning surrounding the loss of a child or a child being sick. Knowing he is in heaven doesn't help, knowing he is out of pain doesn't help, knowing I will see him again doesn't help. However the very fact I did have him was a blessing.
17. I still cannot do hospital settings or funerals and that may be a long time issue.
18. I realize people grieve differently even more. I tend to be very vocal about how I am feeling. I hide my tears frequently but I do speak up if I am having a bad day. Emily is more quiet and you wouldn't even know she was grieving until you ask her a question or notice something she did. Yesterday I walked past her hanging calendar in her room and written on 9/2 was "Jude's Birthday!!!" Mike is still grieving but he has a very take charge attitude now of the situation. He says he made a promise to Jude and each day he lives his life is another step closer to seeing him again.
19. Being the member of various support forums I still see new members starting to join. I can see the shock in their posts and the anguish in the heartache and I feel so terrible for them. However it's like kindred spirits working through this turmoil together.
20. You still just learn to cope and others around you learn to cope. You keep moving forward the best you can with those that truly love you around you. You realize others lives go back to normal as the Facebook profiles change back to normal pictures and life begin to march on. So you decide to keep up or fall to the side. I know Jude would want us to keep up. I know everyone around us is grieving for Jude too and we love you for loving him.
21. I also learned that fighting with insurance doesn't end when your child passes. es.
I guess I will keep updating these as the year goes by. Jude's headstone should be in soon and I am anxious to see it. The cemetery feels so empty right now so I have been waiting to go see him again when the stone arrives. We still miss his nurses dearly and are looking forward to the event at our house to get to see them. Sweet Allen texts me every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday on cue when he would normally arrive, "morning glory." What a fabulous man he is. Charlotte send me a text this week of a photo from Jude's grave while she was visiting. Candice is still on my Facebook and we laugh at each others posts sometimes. I miss you guys! Love to you.