"Grieving the loss of a child is a process, it begins the day your child passes and ends the day the parent joins them."

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Finding Our Way

Finally. Finally I sat down to write a post on this very neglected blog. I just have a hard time sitting here some days. I want to, but once I sit down...my mind just goes blank. So tonight, I decided to sit down and just do a post.

Recently we received a letter in the mail from our health insurance company. The letter is asking for "proof" of Carly's death. Can you believe they want proof?? How much more proof do they need? They know we attend counseling-they had to approve it. They needed to decide if we "qualified" for grief counseling services? Once I explained to the insurance company the reason we needed counseling all I heard was a gasp on the other end of the phone. And the gal I talked with, said something like..oh Mrs. George, Carly was only an 8 year old. Ummm, No kidding! Needless to say, we were approved for grief counseling. And that was the end of that.

Or so I thought..

Last week I opened a letter from the insurance company. The letter that wanted "proof" of Carly's death. Which sent an eerie feeling through me. The letter also stated that we had to provide a certified copy of Carly's death certificate..that's eerie enough in itself..along with a photo copy of her birth certificate and a copy of Paul's drivers license. The reason for the letter was explained in the last paragraph. It read something like this - We need to process the death benefit for your daughter, but first we need the necessary items listed above along with this form which needs to be completed by you. You just can't imagine the eerie feeling that came over me while reading that letter. Not sure why, maybe due to the shitty holidays that are coming at us full force. Maybe reading the requests for such items. And maybe because reality slapped me right square in the face, yet again.

As far as a death benefit, we had no idea we had any kind of death benefit for Carly. And really, why would we know that? Who thinks they will ever bury their child? We certainly never imagined it. Even through all of Carly's illnesses and near death situations that she faced in her 8 short years, we NEVER thought death would come to her so early in her life. Not when she was healthy the last 3+ years of her life. We fully expected that she would out live us. And so did her doctors. I often worried how she would go on without "mama" and "Paul" I often wondered if she would ever be able to understand death. I worried about how she would go on without us quite a bit actually. I worried about who would watch over her. Make sure she attended all her doctor appointments. Who would make sure she wasn't taken advantage of by all the ignorant people in the world. I knew she would be in the hands of her "Bubba" and "Sissy", but I worried about how she would go on without us. Paul and Carly and I, we were pretty close.

oops...my computer just had a glitch and somehow it published my post without me doing a thing! Sorry!!

So, tonight I sat down and filled out the dreaded paperwork that the insurance company requested. I made photo copies of Carly's birth certificate and Paul's license and I enclosed the ugly death certificate too. Tomorrow I will stick the envelope in the mail to make the insurance company happy.

As far as how we are doing,,well truthfully, we are just going through the motions of every day life. Life stinks around here these days. Especially with the holidays here. Not sure how to get through Christmas. This year is our very first year without a small child. I'm betting it's really going to be hard on all of us. We're just going to play it by ear. Whatever we can do, we will do. We did eventually get our tree decorated. Ashleigh and I did it last weekend. It only sat in the living room for a week with nothing on it! We went out and bought new decorations, mainly because no one could imagine going through our Christmas decorations that we have gone through each year. No one felt like stirring the pot and making a hard task even harder. We bought decorations that match the tree that we did for Carly's grave so our tree looks just like hers. We didn't put many decorations on ours tho., Ashleigh and I just did enough so it didn't look bare.

Thanks for all those who are participating in a candle for Carly. It was started by one of my facebook friends. She asked me if I would mind if she lit a candle for Carly on Christmas day. I told her it would be fine. Well, she started an event on facebook and the last time I checked, nearly 800 people were participating! I never imagined anything like this. Our girl still has a way of touching so many lives. Oddly enough, most of the people who are participating, never even met Carly, or us for that matter.

We will continue on as we have for nearly 8 months, finding our way through what has proved to be the most difficult time in our lives.


Stephanie said...

UGH, Joanie! As eloquently as I can possibly say it, That Sucks!

unfortunately insurance companies are not known for their human qualities or compassion.But the way this was handled was just harsh.

Thinking of you and your family this Christmas.

Kristen said...

I find my eyes tearing up. Life can be so cruel and unpredicting. Each day must be hard and then even made harder at the holiday times for you. I am remembering your post right before Thanksgiving and all the emptiness that you must have felt that day without cute little Carly's pointing at each family member waiting for you to call out their names. I am sure Christmas time is full of memories too, of little traditions that Carly brought to your family. The sting in your heart must be so huge, no words could ever express the depth of it.

And what the insurance lady said to you...about Carly only being 8 years old...that's horrible!! Mike and I were sitting here together this evening, and so I read your post out loud, sharing it with him. He nearly gasped at that statement. Unless we understood that wrong, it sounded like she felt counseling should not be so needed when the life was so young. Just horrible! I saw the protective bear emerge from within Mike in his reaction to it. He has a few words he would like to share with that insurance lady.

Always *hugs*

Tina said...

Oh gosh Joany I just can't imagine how hard this time of year must be for you, I know the last 8 moths have been so hard, but when one steps out and sees Christmas decorations all over the place and people getting ready to celebrate, well that is just awful and so very painful.
I hope with one day at a time this holiday season somehow passes, and I know January is going to be just as hard, but literally one breath at a time you will make it through. It's not going to be easy but we are all thinking of you, praying for your family, and hoping that somehow someday the pain in your heart eases just a tiny little bit, if that is at all ever possible.
Will be lighting my candle for Carly and keeping her close to my heart.

heather said...

Oh but we all feel like we know you and Carly. It doesn't matter that we may have never technically met. I think about you and your sweet little girl everyday. It's hard not to when I have a daughter her same age. So many people care about you and your family. I love that more than 800 of us are going to take a moment on Christmas to celebrate Carly's life. That's what sharing in this experience of life should be all about.

Becca said...

I know that Carly has reached *far* more than the 800 people participating in the event on FB. I think of you and of Carly often, and she will be in my heart on Christmas, too. ((hugs))

Unknown said...

well, I just reread my blog and I see that I made a typo...ShOcKeR!! I meant to hit "700" instead of "800" candles that will be lit for Carly on Christmas day. That's what I get for blogging with no lights on!

Lorene said...

Joanie, you don't know me but I wanted to tell you what an impact Carly and your loss of her has made on me. My daughter Sienna was born last yr. with DS. After reading about your loss and what joy Carly brought everyone my hubby and I became convinced to adopt a child though Reece's Rainbow. Reading your blog made us realize just how precious life it and how short it is. Thank you for sharing Carly with us. Please know that Carly played a small part in ensuring a child all the way across the world now has a family waiting for her.
I hope you can find comfort this Christmas.