Just One Mother's Grief

 "If tears could build a stairway

 and thoughts a memory lane
I'd walk right up to heaven
and bring you home again

No Farewell words were spoken

No time to say good-bye

You were gone before I knew it

And only God knows why.
My heart's still active in sadness

And secret tears still flow

What it meant to lose you

No one can ever know.

But now I know you want us

To mourn for you no more
To remember all the happy times
Life still has much in store.

Since you'll never be forgotten
I pledge to you today
A hallowed place within my heart
Is where you'll always stay."

7 years ago today I woke to a full house but an empty bleading heart.
As I lay wedged between my husband and my 5yr old son, I tried desperately to grasp the reality of it.

I lifted my head and the numbness set in as I gazed at his bed at the end of our room, empty. Then the silence hit me. The oxygen machine no longer hummed and there was no whir from the feeding pump.... He was gone!
The previous nights events drowned out all other thought, the closest word I can find to describe it is 'surreal'....
I got up, there was nothing to do. No equipment to check, no suctioning to be done, no child to comfort and hold. I had never been so lost.

We had been preparing for this day for almost 2 years. Jamie's diagnosis was Mitochondrial Syndrome, his prognosis was never anything other than terminal. Originally the neurologist had estimated 6 weeks, then it became 6 months, every day we had was a precious gift. A gift I felt I had missed out on.

My husband and I had switched rolls about a year before his dreadful diagnosis. I was the full time bread winner, 8 hours a day, 6 days a week and barely making ends meet. Throughout the months and years that followed I would selfishly regret that decision countless times, I was jealous, lamenting the time I had lost.
Most nights I would come home, a brief hello and straight to the shower as I'd be covered in hair (hairdresser), then to the kitchen to make dinner. By the time the evening tasks were complete, I was exhausted, often collapsing on the floor next to him, desperately wanting to spend time with him but too tired to keep my eyes open. I barely knew my own son.

The events leading up to his passing weighed heavily on my mind for quite some time after. I suppose it was the "bargoning' part of greif, or perhaps 'blame'? I scrutinised my actions and decisions, maybe if I'd done something different he'd still be here. I wanted to turn back the clock, I wanted to change the outcome.... I would convince myself on more than one occasion that it was my fault, somehow.... But, no matter how many scenarios my mind simulated, the outcome was always going to be the same, we were simply out of time. His suffering was over.

The loss of a child is different for each and every parent. The saying "Time heals all wounds" is yet to be proven to me.
I live, I enjoy life, I have been blessed with three beautiful, healthy children but not a day goes by that I don't feel the sting, the sorrow of missing that one little boy who taught me more about living in his 3 short years than any other.

 *This piece was never written to be shared. I have written some of my hardest truths and selfish regrets on this one page. 
If, after reading this, you want to hold your child a little tighter, a little longer, then it's been worth it.


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