Something I’ve recently noticed is when I am able to laugh, the simple form of laughter, comes with tears. The saying ” I laughed until I cried” has become my normal. Seems strange, I mean it happens and have experienced it before but now it’s basically everytime. First few times I chalked it up to just being emotional and so did my husband!! But the other day at my husbands expense our son and I had so much laughter as he awoke a nap and his bed head was out of this world crazy.. I laughed so hard while crying, I mean tears running down my face. My son and husband were definitely giving me the look as if to ask ” what is wrong with you?” Haha! Since that moment of the most intense laughter I have experienced in such a long time I have wondered about the ” laughing till we cry” saying.

Besides the medical reasoning for such a response to something funny I think in some cases as my own its just a flood of the two emotions we’ve held in for far too long. Its difficult for me to laugh. To find things worthy. Laughing to me since losing my son has been far and in between. I haven’t been allowing myself the necessary cry that I need on a regular bases to let out my feelings.. trying to look ok all the time has taken it toll on me. At that moment of full on laughter my emotions just released at the same time.. making it a laugh to remember, haha! My point being is although we are consumed by grief, sadness and heartache by the loss of our children/loved ones we all still deserve the feeling of laughter.. to find humor and joy. It feels like a betrayal of some sorts but its really not. In that moment of the hysterical site of my husband… if Kenny were here with us he would of been laughing so loud with his wonderful laugh with his brother and I. I think that was why my emotions mixed. Joy and sadness at once. A moment, a simple moment, and I wanted our son here to share it with us. Our family have had our fair share of comedy and laughter filled our home. It was nice to witness again. Laughter can be missed and needed in our lives to thrive.

I’m just a grieving Mother who is learning daily while on the journey to live without my child. Tip 1. Laugh when you can.

Angela Suttner

A new to me type of grief.

The last few weeks I have been experiencing a new-diffrent kind of grief, pain, heartache. I am not sure why the shift in my journey. The desperation, need, urgency to see my child has been extreme. Maintaining any kind of functioning life has been a failure, depression has set in. Every year since Kenny’s passing from the peak of holiday season through January has been a struggle for me and I usually have set backs but this year has been different. So much has happened and changed for our family in the past 6 months, enough to break even the healthiest of minds but I’ve been able to put it behind me and still keep moving forward, even if it’s at a snail’s pace.

KennyBugs birthday hit me so hard this year. My son is 21 years old now. A milestone for all. One that he didnt get to experience. This birthday I had to make myself focus on all Kenny’s 17 birthdays, to remember him little. The way he sang ” Happy Party” instead of ” Happy Birthday”… we would all laugh, it was so cute. He would sing it with such dance and happiness in his eyes. It hurt not to beable to give him his Birthday hug like the 17 years I had. He didnt get to request his Birthday dinner, go out and celebrate with friends.. non of that. His future, all he would of done and missed these past 3 years, its all so painful and so unfair. When I sit and imagine what Kenny would be doing today… I have to stop myself, it hurts to much.

So I guess that is where this new grief is coming from. Up until this point I’ve been grieving the Kenny he was. Now I am grieving the Kenny he would become. Should have become.

I suspect I will have several points through my remaining life of these types of shift, change in my grief. Makes sense: The milestones a parent looks forward to for their child does not end with their death. Your wish for them to experience all those things doesn’t go away.

Love, Angie, KennyBugs Momma!

Siblings. Losing their best friend! Trying to help my children when I can not even help myself has been a struggle…

The whole family suffers, grieves, lives with PTSD, we experience our own individual nightmares everyday because each of us mentally have blocked out certain parts but vividly remember other moments. We as a family were once close, on the same page… My husband and I were so proud how close our 4 boys were. Protectors, buddy’s, teachers… they loved each other so much. Of course they had brother fights.. what family doesn’t? But they were back to buddy’s in no time. 🙂

Fast forward to almost 2 1/2 years later and Kenny’s 3 brothers can not get along. It breaks my heart. I wish I could fix their hearts and be able to make sure they feel happiness.. I want them to remember and care for each other like they did before. I feel like Kenny was the glue that held so many of us together, now were all lost.

When I say KennyBug was the glue that held us together, for an example: Kenny adored family time.. get togethers with family, he adored all of his family.. Grandparents, Aunts,Uncles, Cousins.. and you could always find him sitting with the adults 😉 He was such a joy!

We all sense his loss in our every day life, every day.. and every day makes it one more that we havent seen, heard or felt Kenny’s love… Kenny had a wonderful smile with his beautiful eyes.. a contagious laugh and he always made people feel good about themselves, loved.

Kenny was a treasure I wish the world would of gotten to know.. but with his story I feel like he is helping children speak out against bullying and we get some sense of peace knowing that.

Please in situations of loss, sudden or not, no matter what the manner… remember the siblings, they suffer their own kind of grief 😦

Sincerely! Angie, KennyBugs Momma!

Our Son Deserves So Much More!

The saying ” Gone but never forgotten” is just something people say, they do forget. Another common one ” You find out who your true friends are in your darkest hour” unfortunately, this one I have found to be true. And I am heartbroken.

I keep trying to justify why or how those who knew and loved Kenny could now turn their back on any kind of justice we could receive for him. I am just numb… I understand self preservation, being fearful of retaliation, protecting your child from potential bullying themselves if you speak but if noone speaks… then nothing changes and the chances of your child enduring bullying remain the exact same because nothing will change.

I feel like – what’s the point? Why have I put our family through this fight to make a change in schools for ALL of our children, spreading Awareness and Prevention as much as I can? Why? My heart gets ripped out everytime I have helped a parent who has a child being bullied ( which I love helping any way I can), or the stories of the children who keep dieing due to the cruelty that has infected our schools, the parents that I’ve met who walk along side of me who also have Angel’s due to bullying and so so much more that I have experienced for almost 2 1/2 years. I’ve been to Florida to spread Kenny’s story, I’ve been to the Capitol in Mo. to support Kenny’s Law (SB791), spoken with Senators, reporters, news media, we participate in the Out Of The Darkness walks held in Columbia, Mo. all in the hope of bringing the spot light on bullying/bullycide/workplace violence… EVERYONE DESERVES A SAFE LEARNING AND WORK PLACE! Some days its draining, hard, and I struggle to keep going, to keep fighting for Justice, for change, for better… children should not be afraid to go to school. PERIOD!

But after all I do, we do as a family, Kenny’s support group… all of us, nothing has changed.. it’s still the same story after story every day. The ones who were willing to speak for Kenny’s Justice 2 1/2 years ago, today choose not to speak for him any longer.

How will change happen…how will our children be safer without those who can speak out but choose not to?

Yes, I feel betrayed. Yes, I feel like my son deserved better from those who were his “friends”. Yes, I think cowarding down now is the biggest smack in the face and lastly I feel like I should just throw in the towel ( so to speak)! I feel like with the time that has passed our son, baby, wonderful young man, caring, loving Kenny has been forgotten by the people who stood up for him and now back down out of fear. I understand fear.. I understand it all too well, we live it everyday… all you had to do was tell the truth. That’s all!

Our nightmare started 12-21-2016, the day Kenny left us …. the pain, shock, utter emptiness that followed is indescribable. Our family will never ever be the same. Ever.

Sincerely a broken mother, Angela Kenny’s Momma and voice.

Was my question ” Why?” answered….

The question “why, why why?” Is always, always on my mind. Why didn’t Kenny come to me like he had always done before, why did he hide his pain from all who loved him deeply, why? Kenny was my child who even as a young child said ” he would never leave me” but he did and my heart and mind want to know what took him from me, and I’ve needed answers so badly. I know the facts, the horrible treatment Kenny endured, the constant cruelness, bullying… I also know that there is not one thing that we wouldn’t have done to help our son. I wish with all my heart and soul that he could of shared his pain with me, I would of gladly carried that for him. I would of fought harder, I would of done anything.

I struggle with horrible anxiety/panic attacks and depression since we lost Kenny and I struggle daily. Grief is heavy, relentless and so lonely. In some ways I am doing better, in others I still fail miserably. Energy is something I struggle with.. I use sleep as my escape from the reality of not having my son. In sleep you can dream, I can hope to dream of Kenny and see my son. I’m sure it won’t make sense to most but it’s my way. Today 2/4/19 I took a nap like I usually do when I am alone. But instead of waking up just as lost as I was before I slept I woke up with my face and pillow soaked in tears. The instant I opened my eyes I knew in my heart and mind that my Kenny was trying to answer my nagging Why’s that eat at my soul.

In my dream, which felt like I lived in forever, I was me, the adult me and I was being criticized, laughed at, misunderstood, called names, yelled at and I didn’t know why….. Some people I knew some I didn’t, I was going through scenario after painful scenario trying to ask all these people why? What did I do? Please stop? I finally, overwhelmed sit down up against a wall and with my head in my hands all I could do was cry. It was suddenly quiet, I looked up and I was alone, every one had vanished, my tears dried up and I found my way out of the unknown to me building I was in. When I walked outside it was bright and beautiful and all I saw were smiles, happy people of all ages, I had a feeling of peace. Like somehow these people made the cruel people go away. As the crowd of people started to part all the while looking back as if to make a path for someone, I could see the outline of my son but it was so so very bright, I was struggling to keep my eyes on him ( like starring at the sun) but as he got closer and closer and my heart was about to implode from pure joy I WOKE UP!

I sat in a daze for quite some time trying to remember every detail of my dream when I finally realized the learning experience that I needed so badly was to feel all those terrifying feelings that Kenny had had for me to understand that my son did not leave me, his Momma, what he left behind was the pain that wouldn’t stop because of the cruelty that exists in this world. The bullying that would never stop, the judgement that those people placed on him due to his disabilities, the not understanding what he did to deserve it, all of that was gone once he found his way to the light. Our sweet Kenny found peace and joy his own way. For a split second I got to feel what that felt like and I now have some peace within myself for my son is not a lone.

Dreams are just that dreams, meant to tell us something, or about our fears, they manifest what we need to see when we need it.. my opinion anyways; I believe in my heart I was ready to understand my son in those last moments of his life.

A beautiful soul who reached the end of his job here on earth, to show those of us who love him deeply and unconditionally, what pure kindness should be (even when very little was bestowed upon him) and to make kindness spread.

We love and miss you KennyBug so very much every single day.. your story will never end, you will always be in the hearts of many and we will spread your kindness, always!

Love always, Angie, Kennys Momma!

Lost between Happy and Guilt!

With grief comes guilt, survivors guilt. Before losing my son I wasn’t sure what that meant.. it means every time I smile I feel guilt, every time I feel a bit of happiness I have emmense guilt.. to have family moments without Kenny, we have guilt. It’s just not fair that he is not here with us like he should be, like we wish with all our might that he was here with us to share new moments with… Instead we have to learn to be a family minus 1. And it sucks!

Nothing in this world will ever make our family whole again, nothing. We are forever a family just doing our best to live day by day without a piece of us. Our hearts and minds may never heal. Our hearts are broken and our minds are tortured by memories of the night we lost our 6th piece of our family, Kenny! The loss of your child, your brother, in this manner is beyond comprehension. There are no answers, only questions and unsolved stories. We are forever left with ????????? Why were people so mean to him, why? Why? Why? With noone to step forward to explain it to us. It hardens the heart, anger is always near and can take hold very easily. It’s a constant fight to let time and patience deliver the Justice Kenny so deeply deserves.

See our Kenny was always a survivor, always happy, always willing to go the extra mile for someone else…. But he was too strong for everyone else and not for himself. As his Mother I would gladly, in a heartbeat take his place, my best friend, my miracle baby, just so he could do all the wonderful things in this world that I know he would have.. but I can’t. I wasn’t given a chance. His pain was to much to bare and my precious baby wouldn’t let me help him carry that pain.

For those mean spirited people who say ” he took the easy way out” cause me so much pain and anger. My son was in turmoil till the very end and easy it was not. He had to choose between living a life of torture verses being with family and for once in his young life he chose himself. To be at peace. And I am bawling while I type these words because God help me I wish I could of stopped it and saved my son. That’s all I wish.