In the still of the night I sit after a long shower, as hot as I could take it as if to wash all the sadness off of me, to ease the panic in my head and the pounding in my heart. The night hours are hardest for me.
I don’t sleep well at night. During the day I can sleep a little here and there but at night not often at all. The night brings out different emotions, thoughts and it is torture that has come to be like groundhog day. Over and over again I find myself up, alone, with to much on my mind. It’s the silence that allows me time to think. If I cry I dont have to hide it. I can look through pictures of Kenny and not worry about making anyone else sad. I can walk outside in the middle of the night and wish upon my sons named star ” Kennybugs” star and talk to him if I want to and not look insane. If I want to write, I can without distraction, night time is my friend and enemy. My family makes jokes about my room being my bat cave during the day.. kinda true. I dont “hide” there but it is my safe zone. It’s where I go when there is to much noise, to much staring back at me that needs to be done and where I go to recharge my thresh hold. Although I maintain some sort of normal on a daily bases. Clean on days that my body agrees, hang out on my porch when the weather is nice, take rides with my husband around the farm but mostly my bat cave is where you’ll find me. My children and husband all come in and surround the bed and we talk, catch up, do homework, laugh and tell jokes like any other family, just not around a dinner table, like most.
I dont have many friends but the ones I do have are great, supportive and always offer an ear, shoulder, and it means so much but I haven’t seen them in a long time. Months before Covid-19. I have met so many kind caring supporters through Kenny’s memorial FB page that I call friends and they are all such gifts in my life. I am so grateful. I am blessed with some amazing family, my inlaws are wonderful people/friends. We get together as often as we can but that hasn’t been possible for awhile. My circle is small but meaningful. I’m not a phone talk person, texting.. sometimes. I have become horribly great at not returning texts. Forgetful, avoidance, procrastination and selfishness keeps me bottled up to myself. And I’m quite a pro at it. But I appreciate each and every one of them whole heartedly.
I give out no false impressions that I handle my grief healthy or right. I dont pretend to be the best wife, mother or friend that I could be because I’m far from it. But what I do say is that I do try. I reach out to family and friends to just say Hi. I make a point to tell my youngest children several times a day that I love them so very much. My husband is so strong and takes on so much of a load to pick up my slack and to me he is irreplaceable… my rock and best friend… almost 22 years worth of living, growing up together, love, caring, raising 4 boys, struggling through life, coming so far from the two young kids we once were… we thought we had made our way through this world and there was nothing that could stand in our way. We had overcome so much. And then it all came to hault. Life as we knew it had ended. Our child died. It’s so hard to even write those words.
He died. He died. He died. In the early morning hours on Dec 21st, 2016. I have a hard time with the words ” died, dead, deceased” I use words like ” angel, passed way, left this world” they dont sound as final to me. I have learned these little mind games with myself to lessen the pain.
But the painful truth is our child died. We have had to learn how to be us. The wife and husband, momma and daddy, friend and family. We balance each other in the way we always have but in a much deeper form. When one of us is down and out the stronger one stands taller and carries the other until we get through the troubled waters. Only now those waters won’t reced and give us a break from the waves. They just keep beating us up against the rocks and with little time to heal before the next crash. My husband takes on the brunt and carries me way more than I do him. It’s not a difference between man and woman, mother or father, stronger or weaker.. it comes down to my husband doing what he sees needs to be done. I admire that so much about him. He grieves our son so much but he can do it and still maintain normal life. I wish I could do that. Maybe one day I will. I worry somedays that he will resent my inability to function normally.. I pray ( I am a praying lady) for strength daily. Not only so I can help myself but for my family. I know they miss me. The me I was. The mom I was. I miss her too. I dont know how to be her anymore when I am so broken and lost without all of my children. A mother needs all of her children.
I write this to help myself but to also let those going through something similar, struggles the same as I do.. the feelings, thoughts and depression… feeling alone, sadness and despair… the one thing that you are not is alone. You are not alone! I suspect sadly that many many have felt the way I do right now. I have found that it helps tremendously when I read about a parent who describes their grief and I can relate.. I know then that I am not alone or defective. There is no wrong or right way for us to grieve our children. It’s a journey that we all must take unwillingly… kicking, screaming and crying our way through it and it helps to share. I hope in some small way I have helped you. The sun will rise, the birds will sing and the world will be consumed with what’s new while we stay somewhere in the past existing in today’s world. But we are here. I will continue to tell my sons story and lash out against bullying and violence, I will keep moving forward the best I can for my son. As you will do for you and yours.
Love and hugs to all, Angela, KennyBugs Momma!
Thank you for this touching offering. It will move anyone with a heart straight to tears, and will surely validate others journeying through deep loss.
That your concern is for others, that they not feel alone in their grief struggle, testifies to your maternal kindness. You write so honestly and so beautifully, it’s like an open window onto your soul. So many people are with you, and are sending love and understanding to Kenny in Heaven. And prayer is marvelous, I’m so glad you have that.
Thank you so much Hendrica, that means so much!! So kind!