As my fingers tap out the words, my heart shatters in a million pieces. “Why” scrolls through my head like a billboard. But, unfortunately, no real answers are forthcoming. Has the world stopped? Has time stood still? Are the weeks still going? How has a whole month slipped past without my knowledge? Yet here I am with one child missing. I have five children, but……. my mind doesn’t want to say the words.
My son is no longer here, Ummm my son is…. dead. I choke on those words trying, trying so hard not to burst into tears. This hurt reaches deep into my soul and tears a hole into the fabric of my being, is the best way I can describe death.
My firstborn, the little person who called me mama first, is no longer breathing or walking. No, his life ended on a dark September night. He was 27, tall, handsome, healthy in body. His suffering was mental illness. He was excited about a family vacation, a fishing kayak he purchased, the fishing trips he took, on and on, I could ramble. Now silence is all I have left of him, silent, smiling photos, silent eyes smiling, squinting, hurting eyes but always silence. The memories play out in my head, an echo of the past.
I have some videos; they seem to add to the echo for a short moment, then it’s gone. Because as soon as my eyes open, I know you’ve moved higher.
Death is the place where lasts become a reality, the last time I saw you, the last time I spoke with you, the very last time I hugged you, and you hugged me back. I leaned over your still body and hugged you as my tears soaked into the blue plaid shirt you wore so well—this place of sadness, my heart, torn in pieces. My mind asked a hundred times why… why. There it is again, only silence.
Tues morning, September 21, will forever be seared into my brain. I was having coffee at the coffee shop, my phone rang, and I answered. My husband said I had to come home. My mind is confused because he was supposed to be heading out of town. The ten-minute drive seemed like ten hours. I gripped the steering wheel as my gut started feeling sick. I knew. I didn’t know how but I just knew you were gone. Sitting on the couch waiting for my husband to come home with so many thoughts racing through my mind was an eternity in itself.
The words “he died” were two words that wrecked my world. Searing blinding pain ripped my soul, and it vibrated out into my spirit. Paralyzed by grief and disbelief, this is my reality now. It was forcing me to go on with life without you. I was floating in a place where time and space don’t exist; I had no clue what day it was.
The days that followed remain somewhat of a blur as we planned the funeral. The funeral came and went. It’s now weeks, and time keeps marching.
We are all fragile in our human existence. In a moment, our lives can change. Love big, tell the ones you care for how much they mean to you and hug often because we never know when we will say our last goodbyes.