So my Aunt was worried about me on Sunday. We went to her place for a family dinner and apparently she filled my poor mother's head with all kinds of horrible things the next day. I was too quiet. Was there something wrong with me? Did I need some help? Was there more that someone should be doing?
Well of COURSE there's something wrong with me - my son died. I have a gigantic, irreparable hole in my heart and as a result I'm a whole new person dealing with a whole new reality that I never dreamed I'd be living. Of course I'm not the old me. I'll never, ever be the old me again. Ever.
But I'm okay.
I get up every morning, even the ones that come crashing in on me like a freight train, and I do what needs to be done. And there's lots to be done on any given day. I cook, clean, shop, do the laundry, garden, paint, read, write, work, watch TV, talk to my friends, call my Mom, spend time with my beloved and at the end of the day lay my tired head on my pillow, look at the picture of my beautiful boy that hangs on the wall between his tiny, perfect handprints and footprints and turn out the light.
I think that's pretty good for someone with a gigantic hole in her heart. If I do say so myself.
I'm certainly not ruling out looking for additional help if I need it, but right now I'm coping on my own and I think I'm doing okay. I've found joy again, even though it's more fleeting that it used to be, and I have hope for the future. I'm not joyful and hopeful 24 hours a day, but who is? Sure, I cry more than the average person and I know this aching sadness I have will stay with me until I die, but that's just the way life is for me now. It's who I am.
If you ask me if I'm sad, I'll say yes. But that doesn't mean I'm not happy. If you ask me if something's wrong, I'll say yes. But that doesn't mean that nothing's right. This is grief.
But I'm okay.