I want to write,
Have nothing to say.
I want to sleep,
It’s the end of the day.
I want it to stop,
My mind ‘s started to fray.
All of this hurt
I can’t stand it this way.
I want to go back,
Wish I could replay.
I want time again,
I have so much to say.
I want to hold you,
Why couldn’t you stay.
My heart’s really heavy,
Let me heal, that’s all I pray.
Melanie Scott 2012
I would like to introduce Jana. Jana is our first guest blog post. Jana is an inspiration, I am often in tears reading some of the stories shared at Band Back Together. It is a safe, solid place of hope – completely reflecting those strengths from it’s creator.
“But it’s been over a year. You shouldn’t be so sad anymore.”
Is there anything harder to hear when you’ve lost a child than that? Well, probably, but not many other things.
The biggest misconception about grief is that there’s a beginning and an end to it. We all know there’s a beginning. It the “event.” It’s the miscarriage, stillbirth, sudden death of your infant. It’s the accident that takes the life of your toddler. It’s the childhood cancer that robs your child of a future.
But when does grieving end?
My answer is simply this: it doesn’t. It changes.
Eight years out from the loss of my 24 day old son, Charlie, I can tell you that grieving never ends. It only changes.
Shortly after my son died, a friend told me that grieving was like having a rock in your shoe that you can’t remove.
At first, that rock cuts you and makes your foot bleed. It hurts with every step you take. After a while, you figure out how to wiggle the rock into the side of your shoe so it doesn’t cut you and hurt with every single step.
Time goes by. The rock occasionally gets back under your foot and cuts you. It makes you bleed and hurts like crazy. But then you wiggle it away faster and it’s less painful again.
Grief is like that rock. It’s never going away. You simply learn to live with it and walk tall in your daily life, honoring and remembering your child.
By honoring and remembering your child, you are loving them. Yes, I think grieving equals loving.
Some may say that my talking about Charlie and being sad that he’s not here is unhealthy and that I’ve been grieving too long. Eight years is too long? I know a few women who are over 70 who still tear up when their child who died is mentioned.
Talking about Charlie and continuing to allow myself to be sad at times is an extension of my LOVE for him.
I love my living child with all my being and I love my angel baby with all my being. If he were here, I would do things because of him. Even though he’s not here, I still do those things. Each time I find myself doing something because of him or talking about him, I find myself falling more in love with him. I’m sad. But it’s a feeling of love.
By holding the hand of a newly grieving mother, I’m loving Charlie.
When I reach out to someone on Twitter who has just experienced a miscarriage or loss, I do it because I am honoring Charlie and remembering him.
When I ask pregnant women if they’ve been tested for Group B Strep (it’s standard protocol in the US to test between 35-37 weeks). I do this because I would do anything to keep someone else from having to love their child without being able to hold them in their arms.
The outreach I do with Band Back Together, I do in memory of Charlie. I do it because I love him and I love to help others.
It’s my hope that as the length of time grows from the last touch of your child’s hand to the present, your love for him or her can grow. Grief is rough. It’s hard and tough to get through.
But if you remember that by grieving your child, you’re loving them, maybe it’ll be a little bit easier.