Saturday, February 8, 2014

A "Hi" from a distance will have to do.

Last weekend, as the pinewood derby was wrapping up, an elderly woman approached me. We had just come off the stage from accepting the award. She held my hand, looked into my eyes and she shared that long ago she too lost a son. I'm going to take a guess that this sweet woman was possibly beyond 80 years old. She walked precariously with a cane and spoke quietly to me. She told me she was looking for my son that day, my boy in the wheelchair. She didn't know he had died until they began to speak about him. Her son was 17 years old when his life was cut short by a motorcycle accident. As she explained I could see the pain in her eyes to this day. We shared the pain of losing our sons, even though it was by very different circumstances. She looked into my eyes with tears resting on the brim of her own, and confided in me that this is not something that she or I will ever heal from. Her heart was broken at the loss of her child still, it was evident. She spoke from experience. I appreciated her talking to me about her son. I just wonder, after so many years passed, how often she or her family talks of him and says his name out loud in conversation.

Losing a child has changed me. How I view things, what I feel is important and what really is not, is all different now. Wyatt changed our life when he was born and he changed our life again when he died. It's as if the moment Wyatt took his last breath our life was split into two different time periods. There is the "before Wyatt died" and there is the "after Wyatt died."

Some days I really just need a "time out." To push the pause button for a few hours while I gather my thoughts and process them into something I can understand. But, unfortunately for me, time will never stand still and neither will grief. There is no pause button and certainly there is not an easy button like the Staples store advertises in its commercials.

If only! 

Instead time feels to zip by me at warp speed some weeks. As if I'm left spinning in circles as it passes by me so quickly. I try to focus and look around, but can only see the swirly images of life around me. Like a dense fog or an unfocused picture where you can vaguely make out the scene but are unable to focus on any of the details.

Though, on the other hand there are moments of time that also feels as if it slows to a snail's pace. Keeping me in one place. As if I'm stuck to the ground and left wondering if I will ever be able to move freely again.

I have a confession to make, I long for the day I will go to Heaven. To be with my son and relieve my soul from the constant ache. I feel torn between wanting to be there and needing to stay here. I don't mean that in a way that you should worry about my safety. I promise, I'm ok. I realize that this may sound crazy to some of you. In fact, I think it may to a lot of you. But it's the truth. And I'm fairly certain that if I'm feeling this way then I'm probably not alone and there are likely others feeling the same. 

I recently returned to and walked into the hospital for the first time without Wyatt. Before the girls and I sat in the waiting area together, I answered all the secretaries questions as if it was our first time ever being there. She had no idea. It was only a minute or two after we had checked in that one of the nurses came out of the doorway to call the next patient's name, "Wyatt...?" Instinctively I looked up. I glanced around to see who responded to the name, while blinking back my tears that were eager to fall. We were eventually called back to the room and did what we were there to do and returned to the waiting area again. As we sat back down it happened again, this time it was just across the room coming from a different area, "Wyatt...?" The girls and I looked at each other and around the room, as I whispered out loud, "Really?!" At that point I couldn't help but think of the countless times we sat in this same waiting room before, waiting with Wyatt, and never once has his name been called for a child other than himself. What are the odds? Just before we were given the okay to leave another name was called, this time it was Bryan. Maggie just laughed. 

On our way home we drove by the cemetery, the surrounding trees were sparkling as the sun shone through the thick coating of ice on the branches. Our area had both a significant snow storm and an ice storm this week. There are large branches down and the entrance to the cemetery was not cleared of the deep ice covered snow. But I stopped just in front of the entrance and the girls opened the door and stood up on the frame of our car trying to look past all the other stones in the cemetery to see Wyatt's spot. Jilly suggested we park the car (in the middle of the road) and walk into him, but I countered that suggestion with the intentions of coming back in a day or two when maybe the snow would have melted some. A "Hi" from a distance would have to do.

A "Hi" from a distance will always have to do for now.
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1 comment:

  1. Your confession is not strange. There are others who - most definitely - feel the same.

    Until the Day,