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

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

"An Ugly Pair of Shoes"

I am wearing a pair of shoes.
They are ugly shoes.
Uncomfortable Shoes.
I hate my shoes.
Each day I wear them, and each day I wish I had another pair.
Some days my shoes hurt so bad that I do not think I can take another step.
Yet, I continue to wear them.
I get funny looks wearing these shoes.
They are looks of sympathy.
I can tell in others eyes that they are glad they are my shoes and not theirs.
They never talk about my shoes.
To learn how awful my shoes are might make them uncomfortable.
To truly understand these shoes you must walk in them.
But, once you put them on, you can never take them off.
I now realize that I am not the only one who wears these shoes.
There are many pairs in the world.
Some women are like me and ache daily as they try and walk in them.
Some, have learned how to walk in them so they don't hurt quite as much.
Some, have worn the shoes so long that days will go by,
before they think of how much they hurt.
No woman deserves to wear these shoes.
Yet, because of the shoes I am a stronger woman.
These shoes have given me the strength to face anything.
They have made me who I am.
I will forever walk in the shoes of a woman who has lost a child.

~Author Unknown~

This one, is one of my favorite poems about being a bereaved parent. Although that sounds odd..saying I have a "favorite" poem regarding bereavement, but it's true, I have several that I like and several that I re-read to myself quite often. I don't really like the fact that I have favorite poems such as this one, which is clearly written by a grieving/bereaved parent..but that's my life now. I have to find some way to feel like I fit in someplace. Sadly, this is where I fit now. And I hate every single second of it.

The 23rd of each month stinks for us. And for some strange reason, our family has lost 4 family members on the 23rd day of the month. Two were Apr 23 and two on July 23..of different years. My aunt passed away last week, on none other than the 23rd of this month. My family all think we should just skip the 23rd of each month. Just erase it off our calendars..if only it were that easy. Carly was of course Apr 23, last year. 5 yrs before, on the exact day that we lost Carly, my cousin, Dawn's son and girlfriend were killed in an automobile accident. July 23, 2009 we lost one of my aunts and this year July 23, we lost another aunt.

Today, I went with my parents (Paul didn't go, he not ready for a funeral) to my aunts funeral. I went to the visitation on Monday night and boy was I nervous about going to that, but I did okay. However, I did not go up to the casket. I sat in the back of the room with my cousin. This is the first funeral home I've gone to since Carly's funeral; 15months ago. But today, well it was a totally different story. I thought I was going to get through it okay. I sat down, while my parents, brother and sister in-law went to see the family. I was alright. Even when the service started I was alright, but...when they played a song, I lost it. The song was, In The Garden, it was one of the 6 songs played at Carly's funeral. OMG, I wasn't sure I would be able to stop crying. I really was NOT expecting to have that kind of reaction. As the service went on, I got settled down and then the pastor said it was time for another song. I sat there thinking..I can get out of here, the door is only a few feet away from where we're setting. I wasn't sure what I would do, had another one of the songs played during Carly's funeral, came over the speakers. I wanted to bolt out the door before it started, but just couldn't make myself move. So, I sat there. Thankfully it was a song that I had never heard before.

There will never be a "right" time to go to a funeral. That stands true for everyone. But, it can not be avoided forever. I suppose I will always have that 'twinge' whenever I step foot in a funeral home. Not that I've ever liked going to a funeral, but it's just different now. I will likely cry over a similar service, song, prayer..etc. Although, I really should have thought about songs being played. I should have prepared myself a little more, but I was busy trying to convince myself that I could get through it. And you know what? I got through it. I managed. And I was able to give some comfort, if only just a little, along with some support to my cousins and my uncle, just like they did for us when we lost Carly.

As for my "ugly pair of shoes" they hurt like HELL....


Heather said...

I wish, that I could help you walk in your shoes, somehow Joany, I really do. I send you love and prayers filled with strength, hoping against hope, that those things alone, would ease this road you travel.

Love from California

Cindy said...

That's a powerful poem. Glad you were able to get through the funeral. Baby steps in those painful shoes....

melloss said...

I am So sorry to Hear about the Loss of you Sweet Carly! I had not been on my Twitter in over a year and then about 3 days ago I finally got back on and Saw She and Lost her Fight! I truly am So Very Sorry.I always loved the tweets you would have about her and she is So Beautiful!!I Know it is not the same but I lost a Daughhter when I was 5 months along due to a defect that is the oppest of Down Sysndrom. I was Devastaded and I never even got to hold her I can imagen the pain you are going through! Do not let any one tell you to get over it or make you feel bad that you are still grieving! You will always Grieve her Loss you will just get better at hiding it from people who don't understand and say hurtful things. When a piece of your heart dies you can never get it back there will Always be a Hole there where Carly use to be! I sat in my room and held her things all night a couple days ago and I cried all night and it has been 5 years On Oct 20th so when they say Time Heals All Wounds......Well that's A Load Of Crap! She is Your Baby No one will Ever have the right to Ask you if you are Over Her Death Yet even though they will because people are Rude and Crule or Really just don't understand how hard it is to Lose some one You Loved Sooooooo Much. Peace is Hard to Find in the Storm But I hope You Will Find at Least A Little as you Walk the Path You were Thrust into.

I cried when I came back on Twitter. I Was Excited to see what you all were up to and then I say a Post from this Blog and couldn't believe it! She was Winning Her Fight! Why The Hell Dose someone so Sweet so Caring. Someone who could Melt Your Heart just by your Tweets. I Always Loved the ones about Carly!!

I am Sorry for all the Hurtful things people are say about Down Syndrome...........I wish they would understand that Gene Defects Can't be Cured( I have 3 children with gene disorders and One myself Sonya My Daughter who died had a deletion on 21 and My boys and I have a extra piece of the middle of 8 so I know the looks and comments can be Cruel!)there Part of Who you are you can't just take Meds to Alter you genome! It is Not Possible to Cure Who You Are!

It will be a hard Long never ending Journey in your New Normal but I am sure that one day it will get better...........I just can't foresee that day for either one of us I do not think I could ever go a day with out thinking of her being reminded of her and crying for her.

I am Here if you ever need to talk.....Email is on my blogger profile. Keep on going! You have some Really Beautiful Amazing Children that need you! Melissa

Unknown said...

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