Friday, July 3, 2015



What happens in six months? Seasons come and seasons go; we move our clocks ahead or we let time fall back; a child dies; grief takes hold.

GRIEF–I’ve been thinking about its hold all week long. Six months, our half marathon. I’ve never gone this long without seeing you. I’ve relived the day of the accident like it was Groundhog Day, forcing myself to try and remember. Not the actual impact–there is no reason to go there; the aftermath, when I met Grief. Didn’t actually meet Grief. It came as an uninvited guest, a squatter that slithered into my body; entered through my ear actually when Jason had to make that fateful call. “Mom there’s been an accident. Matty is dead.” NO NO NO NO NO NO NO!!!!!!!!!! I felt my body crumble to the floor. A foreign body entered my system at that moment. Slowly with determination it flowed through my veins and spread out to my tendons, muscles and bones. It travelled to every organ leaving its imprint and settled in my heart. It broke my heart. A Mother’s heart cannot contain that much grief. Grief is like a virus that remains dormant, latency is what it is called. At any moment it can rear its ugly head. It enjoys cold, rainy, gray days. When it arises, it covers me like a cloak and stalks my every waking minute.  It makes a pronounced appearance at your monthly anniversary dates and all of the special FIRSTS that make up the celebration of you.

I’ve learned that there is no good that comes from battling with Grief. I stand firm, I hold my ground. I take a deep breath. Grief no longer frightens me. I have met the enemy and have looked into its eyes. It is stealthy in its approach, yearning to feed on my pain. My strength comes not from fighting but in my faith and patience knowing that it will retreat. So Grief, wash over me–I will not surrender. I’ll wait you out in silent reflection, mindless television and a good read. Six months, 182.62 days and I am studying Grief. I’m learning how to live with the squatter. I’m learning to sit with the uncomfortableness.

I’ve also learned to identify the physical symptoms of trauma.  My mind is like Teflon some days, my legs go in different directions and my feet trip each other. I’ve stopped sticking out my tongue checking to see if it is straight assuring myself that I am not having a stroke.

I’ve learned that I can have moments of joy that will fill the space that Happiness held when you were on this physical plane. It’s not the same but for now I have my memories of Happiness.

I’ve learned that the amount of love and support we’ve received from family, friends, acquaintances and our online community is humbling. . . and they have not all been properly thanked. Caroline was simply amazing in helping to organize your Viewing and Memorial Service along with an assist from Kristen. Friends and neighbors that delivered food, flowers, and donations to the Education and Memorial Fund established in your name were aplenty. Hugs when you need them, phone calls when you least expect them.  Gifts from the heart to help heal our broken hearts. Nicki from daycare gave me the most beautiful picture of Bear Bear in remembrance of Father’s Day. She is a connected stranger, someone I did not formally meet till I went to thank her. She was thinking of how difficult the day would be and gave me a treasure. Inspirational words appear as comments and private messages of hope and encouragement. Gifts from the heart!

I’ve learned that a friend that sits through tears in a public place is like a blanket of comfort. I was having breakfast this week with two gals that are dear to my heart. Ed Sheeran’s ‘Thinking Out Loud’ song started to play in the dining room of a local eatery and you know I melt down like butter over an open flame when I hear yours and Nikki’s song. She left her side of the booth, came and sat with me and held my hand throughout the song. I’ve learned that I will probably always have moments but I do not have to hide these moments. I am supported in however long it takes in this process of grieving.

I’ve learned how to be a better friend. I’ve learned that I can provide comfort with words and actions to those Mothers in the same position as myself or for those grieving in general.

I’ve learned that you have to breathe fully when dancing with Grief. Andrew Weil’s 4-7-8 breath exercise is a true healer.

I’ve learned that Moms and Dads grieve differently but how to comfort and console when needed.

I’ve learned that I will always have two sons. One alive, living locally and the other who has moved to Heaven.

I’ve learned that Signs from you keep us connected. I’ve overcome the fear that I will miss your Signs. I’ve learned to open my heart and wait . . . wait . . . wait.

I have learned that the question “How are you doing” drives me flipshitty crazy. I want to scream “my son died; how do you think I’m doing?” I remember that the words are nothing more than a greeting from the grocery store cashier or words of concern from those connected with our tragedy. There has to be another opener . . . Good day to you (from the cashier). I’ve been thinking of you; I’m so happy I ran into you, I remembered a special story about Matt (from family and friends). I’ve learned that some folks are just uncomfortable with death and don’t understand that a hug, a smile and silence serves as a fine greeting.

I’ve learned that I love hearing your name–constantly! I love when people remember you and talk about you. Words keep your flame alive.

I’ve learned that I will always love you . . . present tense, not past as love never dies.

It may be raining on the inside for me as I reflect on your six month anniversary day. Yet, I feel so close to you when I write you letters. That’s a ray of sunshine, isn’t it?

Remembering you . . .

Six months today
You went away
Embarked on a journey
Like no other.

Your Spirit soared
To your new Home
Life’s mission
For you here is over.

Left behind
With your love and memories
Finding our way
Through the
Grief and sorrow.

Tears flow
Laughter prevails
Gratefulness fills our hearts
You are never far away.

Rest in Peace my Love.

Love you so much – forever.




  1. So eloquently stated!Lonnie's 9 month anniversary is this month... Hugs to you!

  2. Thank you Jean. Hugs--they are so necessary. My heartfelt condolences in your loss of Lonnie. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers this month. The anniversaries have a way of keeping us off balance for a bit. Hugs right back at you!


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