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Devianz

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About Devianz

  • Rank
    Subject in Flux

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  • Website URL
    : https://twitter.com/xDevianz

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Female
  • Location
    : Midwest US
  • Interests
    I throw clay so that I don't throw people!
  • Loss Type
    . My 20 year old son Nathan
  • Angel Date
    : 07-25-2016
  1. Loss of an Adult Child

    Hugs to you Dee. All events where a love one would have shined the brightest are difficult ones. Take it easy, and know she is there shining her light on all of you. It's music that gets me the most too, I have made a habit of carrying a hankerchief with me at all times now. I just fold it in my back pocket. It's the presence of autumn too, for me. It's a season of big changes and it's always a reminder of things like big piles of raked leaves, and long mother-son walks in the many forest preserves here in Lake County. Happy birthday to your son, and I am glad to hear that both your son and husband are mending well.
  2. Tal, It's going to be very difficult for a long time and you have to take it one hour at a time at first, then one day at a time. For me, time moved very slowly at first, as if I was trapped in amber while the rest of the world was moving around me. Other women often didn't know what to say to me, and because of the guilt I felt at the time... I mostly stayed silent. I'm glad you came here to share with us how you are feeling, and that you were able to speak to others about it. Go easy on yourself and take time with your grief, it's heavy and difficult to manage but you can get through. There are so many people around you and I am sure that your boys see the same beautiful mother they've always known, whether you are happy and laughing or crying. Much love to you, Margo
  3. Tal, I am so sorry for your loss. I am so sorry that you had to make that difficult decision, and sometimes things like that are out of our hands. Sometimes things are just out of our hands, and the guilt can be so overwhelming. When I was younger, I was very early in my second pregnancy when the doctors found a severe birth defect in my baby's heart. It was not fixable by surgery and it was very likely that she would die before she was born and would only live a short while if she even survived delivery. I made the decision to keep going with the pregnancy, despite the fact that I knew I was putting myself at risk as well from complications. I knew there was no hope and she was stillborn at 24 weeks. For a long time I beat myself up wondering if she was suffering or in pain before she passed. I blamed myself for not taking better care of myself, I blamed myself for being selfish. There is a lot of guilt no matter which path you choose, and you have to forgive yourself. We can only make the best decision we can in the moment, and have to learn to grieve. Children born that young have very little chance of survival and when they do, often have lifetime disabilities and other health issues. There is no way you could know what the outcome would have been and you also had pain and hormones coursing through your body to confuse things. As mothers, we are hard-wired to protect and that is probably why you feel such heavy grief, but give yourself a little compassion. You are not a monster, you did the best you could in that moment with all the tools you have been given in this life. Don't judge yourself by others expectations and standards, you have done what you could. You loved your child enough to not let them suffer through the very slim possibility of living a life that would have likely been difficult. Nothing I can say will ease your pain. The pain of losing a child is a very difficult grief to bear whether the child is 20 weeks old or 60 years old. Anyone who tries to tell you what you should have done, or tries to judge you has not walked in your shoes and shouldn't be trusted as a compassionate friend. They don't come from a place of knowing.
  4. The loss of my 5 year old girl to cancer

    MiasMommy, I am so sorry for your loss, and know how hard it is to carry on with being strong for others and carrying on for your husband and children. It's difficult to have to grapple with your own grief and still have enough energy for others. Everyone grieves differently, and it makes relationships with someone you are close/intimate with even more difficult because there can be a lot of miscommunication and misinterpreted cues and body language. For my husband and I after I lost my 20 year old son, it was so difficult to ever find ourselves on the same page, we each expected the other to feel the same way that the other felt but we didn't talk about it so it was often wrong assumptions that kept us from talking. We grew very distant, and felt like we were both adrift on an ocean of our own sorrow. We continued this behaviour for longer than we should have until it felt so heavy we didn't even want to be in the same room together and ended up in a big argument. We yelled and we cried and we said things we'd been feeling for a long time, but we were both so afraid to hurt or burden the other. And then we went to therapy and that is helping so much. Everyone is so afraid to start talking, but once you do... you'll start to wonder why you hadn't done it years ago. It's important that you talk to each other, because you are both on different journeys and the path is laden with traps and forks that could take you further and further apart until you are both lost. I want you to know that it is okay to let it all out. It's okay to scream, cry and be angry and feel like it's all so very unfair. It's okay to share that pain with others and it's important that you understand that you have to give yourself a break, and that you can break. Don't hold yourself to expectations you can never reach or you'll end up bottling things up for later and have a whole shelf load of sadness and grief that will make you sick in the end. Sometimes just emotionally and mentally, but in a lot of cases physically as well. The loss of a child is possibly the hardest grief in life, and losing them when they are young is certainly heavier than most people can bear. It's an unending sorrow that you have to take one day at a time because there are little things that remind you of her at every turn. You expected a long life with a daughter you could share with and teach, someone who would look up to you and share a future with. You will have to expect there will be moments you will cry, at any given time. It could be a laugh you hear on the wind, or the bouncing curls of a child at the park and it will overwhelm you. It's okay and perfectly normal to feel overwhelmed. It's okay to ask others for help. It's okay to seek help for yourself, either in group therapy or individual therapy. The pain will never go away, you will always have it to bear. But you can find ways to cope and fill your life with supportive loving people who will be there for you. I found that some of the people I considered my friends couldn't handle what I was going through and didn't know how to connect. They don't want to think about what happened to your family and your child could happen to them, so they pull away. It's not their fault, they just don't have the tools in their arsenal to handle it. But you will find people who will step up as you go along, and find support in others if you just open up your mind to letting new people in. Your life will never be the same. You are not the same. It's so hard to pick up the pieces and try to fit them all back together, and it's instinct to do just that... but it never goes back to the way it was and you will end up frustrating yourself endlessly. Take each day one at a time, and keep the things that you loved from yourself and your life and rebuild around that, trying not to worry about getting back to "normal". There will never be the same normal as you had, everything is new in some way. I am so sorry that you lost Mia, and I know that her birthday is coming up and it will be a very difficult time for you. It's okay for you to not want to get out of bed that day. It's okay to take your time and do it in your own way, and to not live up to others expectations. No one has walked in the same shoes as you have, and their expectations come from a place of not knowing. It's not anyone's fault, it's just a matter of fact. Unfortunately for parents of a child who has died, we understand and we are here for you to talk to and share stories with. We love to hear stories of who Mia was and how she lived. We often share pictures and stories, and how we are coping with things as well. Our struggles, our failures and our triumphs. Come when you can and share what you want, we will not judge you and we get it. ~Margo P.S. This forum has been around for a very long time, and the majority of the people congregate in the "Loss of an Adult Child" forum, even those who lost a young child or baby. Feel free to join us there and tell us about Mia or just how you are feeling today. It's in this thread if you click on the link; http://forums.grieving.com/index.php?/topic/41-loss-of-an-adult-child/&page=2440
  5. Loss of an Adult Child

    Georgina, Sending you love and positive energy on this day and every day. Know that James is there with you in his heart and spirit and he channels that light through you to them. Let that light be a beacon and hold it in your heart for all to see. Much love to you, dear. Margo
  6. Loss of an Adult Child

    Dee, Prayers for your niece and her daughter. I hope they ride it out safely. The EDMR is going okay, it does help with the panic attacks though not with the anxiety. I think it's lessened the flashbacks somewhat but I don't think there is a magic pill. Wish there was just for ptsd, it's really frustrating and I want to be able to be around others without feeling the need to bolt or hide when that feeling of panic trickles into a waterfall. It's better now I think because of my surgery actually, that seemed to do more for me maybe than the EDMR. Perhaps it's the lack of the waxing and waning hormones but I certainly feel more stable and less wibbly wobbly all the time. I used to be a mixed bag and my mood could change in minutes, but now it seems so much more gradual. I thought at first it was because I was just too tired from recovering but I really think that perhaps with the lack of hormones, that my seratonin levels somehow evened out. Dianne, Hugs to you as well.
  7. Loss of an Adult Child

    Dee, Thank you for you lovely words. It sure is true that when you have a big trauma like you did with Erica and I did with Nathaniel, it opens up these huge chasms of pain and a lot of things kind of bubble up with it. Right away after Nathan's passing I started to see a therapist and have just recently started to talk about my past. I was angry and sad for a long time before Nathan's passing and refused to deal with it like your sister. Instead I found lots of people to "fix" thinking somehow if I didn't focus on what caused me such great pain, it would slowly disappear. it never does and in the end you start to feel so wafer thin that anything someone says or does to you is a wound that never heals. That's no way to live, and therapy has saved my life. I am working through the guilt and some days are better than others, but I'm building something new for sure. A world that I want to live in instead of the one I was raised in and it's making a huge difference. I grow each and every day, and it certainly helps. The pain doesn't go away, but we can learn to cope with it and create new things out of it. There are cloudy days though, and each day is a struggle to bring the right tools to do the job, and I still find myself falling into old potholes of trying to help others when I'm the one who really needs the steady hand up. I still find it most difficult to ask for help, and to forgive myself. I'm a work in progress for sure. The PTSD is the hardest part because it's a beast that I feel like I don't have control over sometimes. Having viewed the video of Nathan's murder, I have flashbacks in the most unexpected places and times. Even when I am sleeping. I am still doing the EMDR therapy and it is helping some with the visual triggers but some of the other triggers catch me off guard. I have my therapy and my art therapy that help a lot. For me, when I put on my headphones and I sit at the bench with 10 pounds of clay, the world and all it's troubles just disappear once the wheel starts turning.
  8. Loss of an Adult Child

    Thank you Dianne, Lesley and Susan. Susan, Having lived in Houston for more than 6 years, my heart aches for friends who still live there and have lost so much. The devastation is so huge, but it is good to see so many people coming together and helping on another out. I am glad that you and your family are well and safe, it does my heart good. Lou Ann, I wish we lived closer so we could have a cup of tea together. I too had a very rough childhood, with both adoptive parents being nearly completely absent from my growing up. One was an alcoholic and one was a workaholic and they were co-dependant and distant from us and from each other. There was abuse that was verbal and physical often from our parents, and being the middle child and adopted I took the brunt of a lot of that. There was also abuse to me by a neighbor for several years starting when I was 11 and continuing for several years, unnoticed because we were all trapped in the bottom of a bottle. But also I had to parent my younger sister, as well as work a second job starting at 14 just to earn money to buy groceries because the allowance that was given to my mother was spent on alcohol instead of food to feed us. It wasn't until Nathan passed and I started to go to therapy that all of these things started to rear up and the anger came out swinging in my time of grief. Of all the childhood wounds that caused me to be both an extreme caregiver (Atlas) to everyone around me and making bad choices. That continued for most of my adult life so far and some of the results of those bad choices were visited on Nathan as well, and it made his life rougher than it should have. That guilt is very hard for me, and it makes me sad most days. I was a single mother for years, and Nathan's birth father was not in his life and took his own life about 6 months before Nathan was murdered. Nathan struggled with bi-polar disorder, and it made me swallow my own pains and put them on the back burner in order to try and help him, but it's never good because it was just unhealthy. Nathan's life was mostly unstable because I was mostly unstable for him, and there is nothing I can do about that now. It's very painful and every day I work through that. I still struggle sometimes with feeling like I am not enough. Some days I don't feel like getting out of bed, and some days I don't want to live at all. I understand the guilt and pain we all struggle with, and if you ever need to talk please know that I am here and that you are not alone.
  9. Loss of an Adult Child

    Kym, I am so sorry for your loss. It can be really overwhelming and I want you to know that it's okay to have a complete break down. I spent one day just screaming at the wall in grief and anger until I was red-eyed, horse in my throat and fell asleep. I was sure that I was going crazy and that there were no roads back from where I was but once it was out of me, there was this odd calm. It was like I had screamed the heavy fog away that made me feel alone. I started reaching out for others, even complete strangers (like on here) and they started to reach back. And while some people don't understand and will judge or just not know what to say to you, there are those people who know loss like no one should and they will be there for you. What you are feeling is normal, and I am glad you have come here to share your journey with us, I'm only sorry for the reasons that brought you here. I have found that it becomes easier to share your story as the days go by, and I don't pay attention to the people who judge and don't know what to say and I focus on the ones who do. They need my compassion as much as I need theirs. Maybe not in this moment, but someday. I was always a tomboy and never had any female friends growing up or even in my young adulthood, but after my 20 year old son Nathaniel was murdered, I found grace in the sisterhood of friends I've made. Some who've lost husbands, parents, children... they took my hand and showed me a grace that I didn't expect and that I am now close to. It's really easy to isolate yourself and feel like you are alone in your grief and it's almost always tempered with guilt and shame that comes with being a parent... but all of us have been there, and we know. Unfortunate as it is, we know. Let the others judge you, you will find the good people who have compassion and strength as a character the more you share. And the more you share, the less alone you will begin to feel. You are not burdening others, you are giving them the opportunity to become more compassionate people. Grief is a burden that when shared, becomes a little easier for you to carry. It never goes away, but the weight can be unbearable alone. It's often normal for the spouse/partner/ex of someone who has passed to swallow their own guilt and shame as well and hide it in an envelope of anger and blame. They don't want to see the role they have played in the lost ones life, or how they could have done things different and they will often blame others for the problem so they don't have to look at it themselves. I am sorry that you haven't been able to see your grandson, but I am glad to know that you aren't letting that stand. Mediation is a good pathway, and the courts will enforce anything that is decided in mediation and it's a good tool to use if anything sours. A party unwilling to abide by a mediation agreement is always seen as wrong by the courts, and you have rights to see the child absolutely. Don't give up the fight. It sounds like the child would be better knowing you for sure. It is hard for children in grief, and it will be good for him and for you to know his father his whole life not only because he can have happy memories but also as a tool to shape his existence. ~Margo All, I'm sorry I've been absent, with all my illness I was feeling very overwhelmed and not strong enough to do many things at once. The good news is that I have turned that corner of recovery and am feeling really great this week physically. It does wonders for my mental health too. There were about 3 weeks that I was averaging 2:45 hours of sleep per night, and it was making me so weak. I lost 18 pounds (not that I can't stand to lose them, mind) and sometimes a bit of my sanity. But I'm back and I actually sat at the wheel yesterday and threw some beautiful pots quickly, so I feel like I'm back on track. My hands and lower back are a bit sore but it's a comforting feeling of being productive in my happy place in the clay studio. Here are some latte cups (no handles yet, the clay is too wet) and some beer steins (also without handles) that I threw yesterday;
  10. Loss of an Adult Child

    Guilt is the worst part of being a parent of a child who died. I don't think any of us hasn't asked the question, "What if I had done this differently?" and there are no great answers because we can't go back and change the past. It's important to remember that you are human, and that you are enough. You loved them enough, you did the best that you could under the circumstances, you were enough. And then forgive yourself. No matter how small or how great, you have to learn to love yourself again and know that you are a human being, with all our foibles and flaws and that we can only do our best in that moment and that it was out of our hands. I think that in many ways, the death of a child is such a deep and painful heartbreak and that it takes time for us to learn to love ourselves and others without that fear of loss. That fear holds us back a bit and changes us. It changes us, and all of the relationships around us. We have to learn to create new foundations and new pathways not to get back to where we were, but to create the world we would want to live in. Sometimes it means letting go of relationships that are unhelpful for us. Sometimes it means finding new friendships and relationships to help us heal, All you can ask of yourself is to do your best in that moment. Be as kind to yourself as you are to others. Talk to yourself like you would talk to your best friend, lifting them up and being there for you. Day by day, you'll be able to let go of some of the negative thoughts and emotions and replace them with love and light again. It takes time, there is no set timeline or path. Just forgive yourself. Thank you all for your kind thoughts and wishes on Nathan's birthday, it really meant a lot to me. I woke up that morning hearing the Goldfinches (Wild Canaries) in the yard, and stood at the kitchen sink watching the brothers play ball in the yard, even though I was the only one awake. I felt him surrounding me that day, and standing beside me as I made his favourite meal, just as I had every year on his birthday for 20 years. We were together as a family and sent up a toast in his honor, and I fought tears all day. I still miss him so much and it felt a little heavier knowing that the womb that carried him into the world was also now gone. It felt odd in a way, I can't explain it. Today we found out that my Mom has stage 4 lung cancer. She had a spot removed back in January, and they thought they had gotten it all, but it metasticized to her adrenal gland and possibly other places, they are putting together a cancer board team for her that will meet next Tuesday and decide a diagnosis and treatment approach. She's 82, so we'll have to wait and see but along with my health issues, we're in for another year of pain. Please send prayers for my mother Judith, as she is a believer and in need of a little extra something.
  11. Loss of an Adult Child

    Happy 22nd Birthday Nathaniel Ryan, where ever you are. You were so loved. Beloved Son (on your 16th birthday) If I could start all over again, I would remember to draw iridescent moonbeams for you. To fill the night sky all of the stars with the tip of my pen and write your name on each one. I would draw to life the trees, like arms to always wave hello so you would always feel noticed I'd never forget that things like love, are fragile and need to be carefully tended I am a thousand words of sorry, and a hundred sentences of regret. These are what I have left to write, and you will be in each and every one. I will keep writing until you look up at me, and your tears no longer blot the page. Maybe then you will know that I have loved you as much as I am able. Margo S. August 16, 2009
  12. Loss of an Adult Child

    Thought I'd try to get on and at least let you guys know I'm ok. They took out... a lot of things. Turns out that I had been riddled with not only adhesions but adenomyoma and leimyoma throughout the walls of my uterus and they did have to do some intervention with other organs as well. The pathology was mostly good, but there were a few malignancies, but they believe they got it all. I have a PET scan on Monday to make sure, and then we'll come up with a treatment plan if any is needed at all. They think they caught everything early enough. My advice to others is that if you are feeling physical pain along side your emotional and mental pain, go see a doctor. I should have gone in right away and instead I suffered a year with pain and bleeding that could have been helped. I believed it was from the stress, and indeed stress can cause great illness. It's better to go and get it taken care of so that at least you don't have to be fighting the pain on all fronts. My love to you all. Thanks so much for your prayers and well wishes. Hugs
  13. Loss of an Adult Child

    Kate, Here is the song you wanted posted. I've also posted a version by the band Disturbed, it's a remake and it's so beautiful and appeals to our younger generations too;
  14. Loss of an Adult Child

    Thank you everyone for your prayers and thoughts. You all are such special people and I cherish the day I stumbled into this place and found such a great group. You all have been a great source of comfort, stories and sharing moments. Nathan's angel day was beautiful, and many trees got planted and many stories told. We stopped by the place where he was killed and placed hundreds of carnations in the holes of the cage right outside the gas station and it looked like a blanket of flowers with a picture of him in the center. The owner is such a kind man, and he liked Nathan so much. We spent the evening with just our two best friends around the fire pit, trying to play Nathan's guitar (I'm not very good yet and many laughs were had about that). It was a very hard day, and I cried a lot. So much that my head hurt but it was also a good day to know that I am not alone in my missing Nathaniel. The next day felt very empty again, so it felt very up and down. Perhaps next year we will do something much more low key. With his birthday coming up so closely, I need to get this surgery over with and get my youngest son's room put together so he comes home to less chaos. I get to see him in a week, and I can't wait. I wish I had more video of Nathan, I only have pictures, but I have thousands. I love looking at pictures of him and remembering the good life he had while he was here on earth. It means a lot to me that he was happy, and healthy. I have a few videos, one of him dancing and a few of him playing guitar. I cherish those. Our family isn't really the "video" type, but everyone always has a camera.
  15. Loss of an Adult Child

    Susan, Thank you so much for your kind words. What I like about putting him out there is that we are going to be with a group of people, friends and a few family, who are going to be planting over 30 trees tomorrow as an effort to put some trees back in an area that had an invasive species (Buckthorn) burned away about a year ago. Once I walk away from the planted tree with Nathan's ashes under them, I'll forget which one was his but know that it is one of them. Providing shade and shelter to the wildlife in the area for many generations to come. It won't matter which one, just that everyone came together to give life to the earth after tearing away the weeds and trees that kill the area habitat. It will be nice to know it's there. Cleaning the water with it's roots and the air with it's leaves. It's peaceful and it will get me out of the house and involve me in busy work so that I am not wallowing or dwelling in the dark corners. We plan on spending the evening at the beach weather permitting, it was one of his favourite places to play guitar and we live about a mile away. Hopefully some of our family and friends join us there as well. It will be nice to watch the sunset. For those with PTSD, it is such a hard part of the whole grieving process when it's there. I had to watch the video of my son being murdered, and it's something I am traumatized with to this day. Even sometimes when I close my eyes briefly. And sometimes it is little things that set it off, a bit in a movie... a word from someone. The other night I burst into tears during dinner because a commercial came on in the other room about milestones you'll want to remember in your child's life as they grow to have children of their own. It adds a layer to the sorrow that feels like our wounds get flayed all over again and become raw and bleeding again. I've been being treated with this therapy called EMDR or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing and I am about 5 treatments in of an 8 session treatment phase and it's working okay but the problem for me is that I am going to be re-exposed to the trauma during the trial phase of the man who murdered my son and possibly exposed to more. Most medical plans don't cover it (like everything else mental-health related if you live in the US) and there is always a stigma to any mental health treatment even in todays world. As for the increase in suicides among the young, it's so many things. It's a multifaceted problem that people don't want to look at. It is the marginalization of youth in both the media and stereotypes, it's the bleak outlook in the world post 911, it's the sociopathy of social media and overexposure of violence and despair on TV. It's a lack of good role models over the inundation of role models who are unrealistic and unattainable (Kardashians, Disney princesses, media that only covers models and actresses who expose themselves for vanity sake, a music industry that loves it's drugs and scandals) as well as a lack of morals and values in general that kids are exposed to. It's the quick gratification of electronic devices and "reality TV" versus the reality of the world outside their 7 inch screens. It's so many things, and it's also the cruelty of other children who take examples from people who are in power and even in some cases, run our country. We, as older adults, MUST recognize that children growing up now do have it extremely rough in a more exposed way than we ever had it in our day. We have to reach out our hand to comfort and try to understand instead of condemning them, or calling them "weak" for having depression, mental health issues or worse... vilifying the other children who have walked the path into darkness and not recovered. I know for me as a parent who knows what it's like to lose a child, it is important for me to reach out to other parents when I see a child exhibiting behaviour that can lead them into despair or even put them in danger. I don't worry anymore about how that parent sees me, or if they think I'm meddling. We SHOULD meddle even if it saves just one child. It takes a community to raise a child...
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