I can only imagine how my dad feels today, seeing everyone everywhere expressing their love for one another. I caught him talking to a picture of mom apologizing for not being able to get her flowers today because he got off work late, in that moment my heart broke for him. He’s the strong one, the leader, the protector seeing him in this vulnerable moments are rare. I know every day is a new challenge for him because she was his absolute best friend and love of his life, but today… man today I wish I could give him another moment with her.
I wish I could just sleep off all the pain. Trying to convey to the world that you’re okay gets extremely exhausting. It’s like no matter how much sleep I get, I’m still so tired. Almost as if I don’t really even get any rest, I mean I know I sleep but I don’t feel any relief and I don’t feel rested either. It’s like my mind continues to race til it literally can’t handle anymore and I just pass out for a couple of hours. My eyes stay shut and my mind goes dark but when I open my eyes everything comes right back… all the hurt and emptiness, all the words I wish I could have said, all the things I wish I could have done, all the memories of moments that I wish I could cherished a little more…
The past couple of days I’ve had a lot of time to reflect (actually to overthink, if I’m being honest), and it’s led me to realize I really dislike being alone with my thoughts. Grief is hard because you can’t really control it. Mostly I still feel empty, like I’m searching for a missing part of myself but I’m really not sure how to find the answer. I wish more than anything that I could have a one on one conversation with my mom about life, I need the love and encouragement that only a mom could give.
They say that grief is the last act of love we have to give to those we loved. For the past three months I’ve watched my dad, whom for my entire twenty-four years of existence, go from superhuman to a shell of a man grieving the loss of his one true love. All my life he’s been the man with the answers, the one anyone and everyone would go to for help of any kind. But since the loss of mom I’ve learned a different side of him, I’ve realized even Superman has vulnerability. I’ve never seen him express so much anger, hurt, heartache, pain, or sorrow in my entire life. He’s worked aimlessly trying to find peace in the chaos that’s left behind her, but day by day I can see how tired he’s becoming.
I really wish there were something I could do to ease his pain, something I could do to bring him just an ounce of peace… but I know the truth behind that is we all have our own grieving journeys to work through. I might have lost my mom, but he lost his best friend and love of his life… that kind of loss is immeasurable.
/ɡrēf /əˈtak/ verb.
When grieving we can be going along and everything seems to be okay, then out of nowhere grief hits you at full force. These are not set backs, they are part of the grieving experience.
Confession: I haven’t been able to post lately because I haven’t really felt like myself. It’s been a struggle trying to get a good nights sleep, most night I’m extremely restless. I spend my nights tossing and turning until I am finally able to pass out for a couple of hours. To top it all off I’ve also been having a recurring nightmare, the small details to the dream change here and there but for the most part it all ends the same. I’m never able to save mom. The dream is me reliving the last few days/week of her life, except in my dream it’s just me and her when it gets hard. I’m never able to help her alone, she’s weak, hurting, and crying… and I’m so helpless. Subconsciously I’m always wondering why on earth God only gave me twenty-four years with her, and in my dreams I try to work out what’s I could have done differently to be able to save her. But even those dreams have turned into nightmares because saving her was beyond anyone’s control… Which leads me back to this: the hardest concepts for me to grasp is having to live the rest of my life without her.
For the last year and a half we’ve been consumed in doctors appointments, nurse visits, chemotherapy, radiation, anything and everything that came with mom having cancer. Since she passed that busyness has been replaced with a silence that seems to be slowly consuming all of us. We’re stuck in that dark silent place, and it doesn’t seem like anyone knows what to do to get out of here.
Missing you is hard enough but man do I hate when the what if’s start to weigh in. It’s the things I didn’t do or better yet the things I’d wish I’d done better that make me wish so badly that I had the ability to reverse time. The list goes on and on, almost as if it grows with each passing moment. The though of what if I had one more moment with you, the things I’d do or say to make you realize how much you truly meant to me; because lord knows I never told you enough. Every night when before I close my eyes I pray that you’d be able to forgive me for all the what if’s I’ve turned into regrets. I wish more than anything I’d made more memories and took more photos, because what I have left of you isn’t enough.
If your intuition tells you that something you’ve seen, heard, or sensed is a sign from Heaven then you should trust that your instinct is right.
When you’re missing someone you start looking for signs to show they’re missing you too. Some of the more common signs from loved ones in heaven are sudden blast of cold with no obvious source, waking up in the middle of the night sensing someone in the room with you, hearing your name repeatedly, capturing orbs in your photo, lingering birds, butteries, or dragonflies, feathers, a robin, finding dimes or pennies, displaced objects in your personal space, familiar scents, dreams, flickering light, numbers, and so much more.
For years my parents shared the same phone line, the reason being they spent all their time doing things together so they really only needed one cellphone; and if they weren’t together one of them would be at home so for the longest time we still had a landline. When my mom finally decided she wanted her own phone line, my dad took over the original phone number they had. ***Keep this in mind for the second part of my story
He’s brought it up a few times within the last month and a half but every single time he changes his mind right after, but yesterday was a different story. Yesterday my dad officially decidied he was ready to turn off my mom’s phone service, but of course I didn’t want him to have to be the one to utter those words that are still so hard to say so I told him I would handle it. I called and spoke to AT&T to tell them we no longer needed that phone line and would like to go ahead and cancel it, and then she asked the question that I was dreading the most “why are you wanting to close this line?” I think I took three or four deep breaths to be able to say it and I’m sure my voice was shaky when I did, but I was actually able to say it out loud “my mom passed away.”
Every day for the past couple of weeks my dad has gone to work and come home for lunch around 12 o’clock; 1 o’clock on the dot being the latest that he’d start heading home. And every single meal he’s had since she passed, he sets out a plate for her too. This afternoon we were running a couple of minutes behind our usual schedule, it was about 1:06 when dad’s phone rang but he wasn’t too worried about picking it up since he was driving; instead he said he’d return the call whenever we got home. Just as any other day, dad came into he house and set his things on the dining room table then went to change into something more comfortable. When he came out of the room, I noticed he had a smile plastered onto his face (something I shared previously that he isn’t doing much these days) while looking down into his phone. He looked up at me, smiled, and said she had called him. I didn’t even have to ask him who “she” was because immediately I had goosebumps. It wasn’t her own phone number that had called him, rather it was his own phone number that called. For years my mom would call my dad to see where he was if he were even a minute late from getting home for mealtime. Today our angel even called from heaven to let us know she was waiting for us at home.
If you’re reading this right now, I hope you see the most beautiful sign from Heaven.
One of the hardest parts of grieving the loss of my mom is watching my dad grieve too. I’ve actually never ever seen my dad cry so hard or so much in my life, because he’s always been the happy one. My mom was the silly one and my dad was the happy one because he had her by his side. They were married for 45 years and never spent more than a few days apart from each other. It’s heart breaking watching him be so lost and lonely without her. I can’t even begin to comprehend what he must be going though, I’m having a hard enough time grieving her loss as her daughter… imagine losing the love of your life. They say no marriage is perfect, but man was my parent’s marriage pretty damn close. I’ve never seen two people more in love with each other. Seeing him without her is painful, he rarely smiles or laughs anymore… he barely even wants to talk or be around any of us, but I can’t blame him because I know he’s trying his best.
Right after she passed I remember him saying to us he wasn’t going to be able to do this, he wouldn’t be able to live without her. She was his everything and now he was alone, he couldn’t imagine waking up every single day and having to relive the sad reality that she was really gone.
Yesterday he turned on the television for the first time since she passed and was watching a show they use to watch together, I could see how much it hurt him to have to continue doing things without her. He sat curled up on the couch, trying so hard to focus on anything other than her memory. For once he even stayed up passed 8 o’clock and I even caught him fighting off a smile here and there.