12:01 a.m. April 12, 2016. 4 minutes until my son passed away 8 years ago.
I wrote a blog last night with the heaviest heart. That writing lightened my heart and my mind enough that I am doing ok today and tonight.
I have thought about how I relive everything and what came to mind yesterday was that my little boy wouldn’t want me to relive those tragic moments. As much as it hurts me to remember it probably breaks my son’s heart to have to watch me feel so awful.
So tonight as it approaches the time of my little love’s passing I will honour my son by talking about how much he means to me.
My Kenneth. When he was born it was all very whirlwind but I caught a very good look of him and he was beautiful. He had the sweetest little nose and I said that’s MY nose. He had the sweetest little face. So perfect. So beautiful. He had such long limbs. Like his Daddy. He had such beautiful light coloured hair. His hands were amazing. Our hand holding was so special. He was so perfect.
8 years ago. My son.
I had many hopes and dreams for my little boy. The love I had and continue to have for him is so great. It is what gets me through the darkest hours. He was so brave and he had such a fight for life. It will always inspire me when I’m at the lowest points.
I wish he was here. Desperately wish. I know he’s in good hands with my Mom and Anthony’s Dad. With my Nana and Anthony’s Nana.
I am so exhausted by the grief this week. I really wanted to end another year’s anniversary of Kenneth’s passing on a note that focused on the love I have for my son. I could write about him forever. Every aspect but I feel like now that 12:05 a.m. has come and gone I can finally rest without such anxiety. Tomorrow we will find a special place for some yellow roses.
Missing my little boy. Loving my little boy. Remembering my little boy.
my son … always and forever.
April 10th. I have a pit in my stomach as I am writing this. This was a topic I thought about in the last few days. Reliving.
We all relive memories. Days. Special occasions. Tragic events.
It’s going to happen. It’s nearly impossible to suppress. Good or bad.
I can recount every single moment of my wedding day. With fondness. I love reliving that time of my life. That’s what we do. Who doesn’t want to remember the brilliant fantastic beautiful moments of life?
Then there’s the bad.
As I said, it’s inevitable. Something so tragic as the loss of a child in my case is something I can’t forget. I can’t NOT relive. I hate thinking about the worst times but they are there. They don’t leave.
So around this time 8 years ago we walked out of the hospital and we were encouraged. We felt lighter in our steps. We drove home with cautious smiles in our faces. We thought we had a chance. We thought our son had a really good chance of making it.
April 11th. Walked into the hospital and it all was much different from when we left. A tragic critical urgent day. I don’t even want to go into details any more about it. I can feel the anxiety starting and will just leave it at that.
April 12th. Officially at 12:05 a.m. my son passed away. Cue my anxiety now turning into bawling.
I just really feel I needed to put it into words.
My little boy. My God I miss him. I love him with my whole heart. My heart is so much more broken this time of year than any other part of the year.
reliving … no thank you.
Bereaved Parent Support – family of 4
I want to start by saying I can’t believe how long I let time go before writing a new blog. As I’ve said before, my therapy played a big role in scaling it back but also I find it a struggle at times to talk about my grief without feeling I could be judged. Perhaps that sounds bizarre but with having our daughter it is a balance for me. I don’t want to sound like I’m not grateful that we have another child and I also don’t want my daughter to read these ever when she’s older and think that I wasn’t happy. I am happy. It’s just a struggle to have one living child and one that is not.
Now that it has been said … here we are. 5 days until Christmas. It’s hitting me. I don’t need a reminder that my son isn’t here. Daily I know this. Christmas is an extra “special” kind of grieving. The fact is, we are a family of 4. Nothing can take that away. The struggle (this might be the word of the blog) is how to make sure our son is remembered and our daughter isn’t cast to the side because of it. I don’t want her to grow up thinking that I am always sad at this time of year. I am and I’m not. Struggle.
So we do things in memory of our son and we do them as a family so that with being a family of 4 it is tradition and it’s important and we find a gentle peace with it. Some things change and some traditions stay each year.
This year for our daughter’s Christmas pictures she held a stocking with a “K” on it. It happened to be the first stocking I picked up from the props and knew this would be how I could get both of my children in a special picture. At home, we put up 2 stockings. One for my son and one for my daughter. We have a beautiful ornament with my son’s stocking. We’ll fill it with a special “K” chocolate initial. We all have one for our individual initials. Our mini tree we have up this year has all of our 4 initials on it. Instead of one star at the top, we have 4 mini ones. Last night we went and looked at homes with Christmas light displays. One in particular we made a point of going to. It gives donations to the NICU at our local hospital. Our son wasn’t in that hospital but all NICUs are special to us. We had our little girl put the donation in the box. It took everything inside of me not to bawl my eyes out. I managed to keep it together. After that we went to the mall so my daughter could look, yes look at Santa. Once that was done we went to The Bay where each year we buy the Christmas teddy bear for that year for our son. In his memory. For us. A special gift just for him.
On Christmas Eve we will start a new tradition. There is a tile in memory of our beloved little boy at the hospital he was born at. This year the 3 of us will go and visit it. It will be the 2nd time our daughter will see it. The first time she “saw” it we were leaving the hospital with her after she was born (6 years after her brother was born). They were both born in the same hospital. I’m a little anxious for this event. I think and I hope it will be ok. I will just have to see. It’s very important for my husband that we do this and I think it’s important we do it as a family.
Christmas Day we start the morning by putting yellow roses for our son and red roses for my Mom and my husband’s Dad in the ocean. This tradition is an important one. We started it the 2nd year after losing our son and it brought us much peace for the day. It didn’t cure the grief but it made it easier for us for that particular day.
This is how we are keeping the memory of our son alive. This is how we stay a family of 4 at this time of year. We may add some more as the countdown continues …
family of 4 – forever and always
one instead of two
This has been weighing on my heart and mind for a long time. Maybe even before I got pregnant with my daughter after losing our beloved son. You don’t have to be a bereaved parent in the sense of losing a child to feel this but this is the case for me. I should have 2 living children and we have one. We have our daughter living and we have our son that has passed on. It’s hard. I have many thoughts and emotions on this topic. I don’t know if I will write them all down. I don’t even know if I can remember everything I think about it.
The GUILT. I feel guilty that I have put my daughter in a position of being born to grieve. Grief is so awful and so confusing. The guilt is so tremendous. I think how selfish was I to put this on her. One day put it on her because she doesn’t get it yet. Thankfully. The part two of the guilt is she most likely will not have a living sibling. THIS rips my heart in pieces thinking about it. I would desperately want to give her a living sibling but I’m getting way too old to get pregnant. It would have to be via IVF which is horribly costly and I’ve also been told that I shouldn’t get pregnant again as it will be too high of a risk to not only the baby but to me as well.
I had always wanted 4 children. I wanted a big family. It is so hard to live in a society where everyone has 2 or more children. It seems everyone has a sibling but my little girl. It took so long to conceive both of my children via fertility treatments and I have always felt like I was playing catch-up with the rest of the world. It was hard not having one living child and feeling like a complete alien in the world of families. Again, the game of catch-up. I do know some other families that go through this and I know I’m not alone but I feel alone. It’s another branch of grieving.
So I’m unloading these thoughts. Need to release them and deal with them. I’m not sure how yet.
one instead of two … thankful and blessed to have a 2nd chance at motherhood but heartbroken it has turned out this way.
And here it is again. April 11.
I dread April 11 every year. Even though Kenneth passed away on April 12, it’s the horrible day of the 11th that brings it all back.
I have not been too bad all week. I’ve felt anxious about this weekend. I was on edge more than usual but I was holding up ok. Last night it came crashing down. Our daughter was fussing with going to sleep so I went and held her in our chair in her room. As she drank from her bottle my tears started to come down fast. No noise just a lot of tears. She started to giggle. A lot. My tears dried up and I started to giggle with her. I could feel my little boy there with us. Making his sister laugh and trying to ease his Mommy’s pain. I felt really close to both of my children last night and felt like all 3 of us were there together.
So far today I’m ok but I know at some point it will hit me. I can’t put off thinking about it all day. No matter what it will creep into my thoughts. I thought about this yesterday of how the re-living and remembering happens every year. We never forget monumental events in our lives. The lead up to them and the actual event itself.
How could I not? This day 7 years ago was so traumatic.
I left the hospital where Kenneth was on April 10, 2008 and we had hope. Big hope. He was given a new medication and it was working really well. We walked into the hospital early in the morning of April 11, 2008 and the hope faded a little. As the doctors made their rounds the hope lessened more and fear was replacing it.
He went to terribly critical and we sat vigil all day and all night just praying that everything would be ok and that Kenneth would make it through.
At 12:05 a.m. on April 12, 2008 our entire world came crashing down and we lost our beloved son.
April 11 … a day always remembered. a day to get through. Missing my little boy so much.
Yes you read that right, the title is lasagna!
7 years ago Kenneth was alive and well on Easter Sunday in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit).
It was whirlwind around our home. Our life was chaotic to say the least.
I still remember that Easter Sunday. Vividly. One of the things I remember the most is the complete generosity of a woman I never met and still haven’t met. A beautiful Mother to one of my husband’s friends. The last thing we thought about or cared about on Easter Sunday in 2008 was having dinner but this Mother ensured we ate. I can’t recall when my husband met his friend to pick up our dinner but I will always remember we had the most delicious home-made lasagna on Easter Sunday 2008. It nourished our bodies and our minds. It gave us a chance to sit down at home before heading back up to the hospital. It gave us a chance to have a dinner on Easter. It gave us a chance to just collect our thoughts; decompress. It re-charged us and I remember going up to the hospital after dinner and we had a beautiful night with our little boy.
What it did was start a new tradition that will forever include our little boy. Every Easter Sunday we have lasagna now. In some shape or form we have a lasagna. I don’t just think of my little boy but I think of the woman who helped us start the tradition. My heart fills up thinking of how one person made such a difference and she probably doesn’t know how special and important that was to us then and is still so special to us now.
lasagna … who would have thought?
this time of year
Ah. It’s been a while. As I mentioned in my last blog(s) I’m not sure how much I want to write in a public forum anymore due to my daughter being able to have access to it all one day.
I do know that I don’t have a journal handy and I don’t want to scribble this on a random piece of paper. Getting it out should help. I hope.
This time of year is tough. As much as I try not to re-live the events of 7 years ago it still lingers and creeps into my brain.
March 12 today. Kenneth’s birthday is March 18. Feeling it hard this year. I wish that it wasn’t a date that gave me so much hurt and anxiety. A child’s birthday should be looked forward to. I feel guilty for writing that but I don’t look forward to having my heart hurt so much and my brain overloaded with traumatic events.
I want to think of my son’s birthday as one of the greatest days of my life but truthfully it was terrifying. It was beautiful and wonderful because I had my son but it was such a scary lead up and the day itself was so traumatic. Not how the birth of your child should be.
So this is what’s weighing on my mind. It’s hard to balance the love with the trauma. My love for my son always will win over everything else. It’s trying to push things away and put things into perspective. It’s bizarre to me that I am planning a birthday without the birthday boy. Nothing we do can be the right thing. 7 years later I still cannot wrap my head around all of this. A Mother of 2 but only one at home. Physically at home.
It’s a tough time. Hoping getting this out helps.
this time of year …