momofJustin

Loss of an Adult Child

60,572 posts in this topic

Margo, I agree with Lou Ann. We do understand all too well the difficulties that lie ahead. I'm sure this trip away for your son will be a much needed break where he will be surrounded by his loving family. Our older son had just returned from living in Ireland when Jeff died. They moved to Calgary and as he is away from the memories of his home town he has never really come to terms with Jeff's death I feel. He has such a busy and active life with two young children that keep him on his toes. He has never actually "wanted" to come back home to visit since...although he has... but for very brief times. His way of avoiding what happened.

Susan, I love that picture. Everyone appears to be having such a great time. Aren't we lucky to have such wonderful memories. They sure can help to keep us together at our low points.

Gretchen...we have your back! Good luck tomorrow. I know it is a bittersweet day for you. Sending "HUGS" and warm wishes.

Dee, how goes the recovery for Jon? I hope he is feeling a bit better with each day. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that his pain is starting to settle down a bit.

Lesley, I thought of your picture last evening as we attended a barbecue with some friends. There were a few people that we had not met and who did not know the story about Jeff. The conversation turned to our health care and the changes that are occurring. For some reason someone mentioned suicide. My heart stopped for a brief moment. I was sitting in a part of the room that would have caused attention had I stood up and left. I said to myself that I had two options. Leave or listen. I sat quietly and listened to what they had to say. I realized that they did not have one iota of what they were talking about. It was quite sad actually. As I was having a good time until that point I decided to keep my mouth shut and not put them straight. Not because I did not have the nerve... but because I did not have the energy to explain... and they were not going to get it under any circumstances anyway. It was obvious by their comments how ignorant they were on the subject. I also believe that not all people who decide to take their lives are insane or out of it. Some are very lucid actually and have made a choice for whatever reason. Those reasons are often only known to them...as in the case of a woman I knew of who was given a very bad diagnosis and the future only looked to be filled with much severe agony. It was her choice to end her life at the point where she was going to be a huge burden to her family.  It is not my place to criticize her. And the general populace really needs to step up to the plate as far as trying to understand the severity of severe depression. It is a valid physical illness very much like any other illness. The idea that it is a sign of weakness has got to stop. That is just plain stupidity as far as I am concerned. People need to feel free to be able to step up and openly admit their depression without fear of stigmatization. There is help out there and we need to see that they are given relief the same as any other person in need of support. 

Thinking of everyone as your July 4th. approaches. Peace to All.

Kate

 

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On a slightly lighter note I thought I'd share some trivia facts about Canada as this is our special anniversary.

Roughly 30% of Canada's land mass is occupied by forest.

Canada has more lakes than the rest of the world combined.

Canada is home to caribou, wolverine and polar bears. Of the world's approximately 25,000 polar bears 60% live in Canada.

Basketball fans can thank Canadian James Naismith for inventing the game in 1891. 

Popular children's book Winnie The Pooh was based on a real life bear that was owned by a Vet who came from Winnipeg and served in the war.

 

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Thanks all for the thoughts, Matthew arrived safe and sound. Now I have to get through the next month without losing my marbles! :)

 

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Kate. You are so right , depression is like any other valid illness.  If my husband and I had of been suffering from any other illness other then severe depression, we would not have lost our jobs. We would have been given time off to get treatment.  The world has a long way to go in understanding mental illness.  Yeah for the Canada facts.  I have always wanted to go to Churchill and see the polar bears.  Have you ever gone? 

I was at a store in a mall today returning a shirt for my son. Since Kira died I don't go to malls anymore as the memories  are just too painful.  I also don't listen to music since Kira died. But I have no control over that in stores. So as the fella is processing my return a song came on from 6 years ago. I started to panic but the guy seemed to be taking so long. It was like time machine picked me up and there I was back to 2011. I used to do a lot of running back then. I pictured myself running that country block.  Picking Kira up that night before. That last picture of her holding the cat and then the tub scene. It was just all flashing back. The clerk was so slow and with every word of that song I just got more lost in my thoughts.  That was the first time I have heard that song since Kira was here.  Why is grief so cruel. It is like a bully who just has to poke you with a stick once in awhile just to make sure your are still suffering.  Don't worry God I wasn't starting to get happy again or anything was just helping Evan out by returning something to a store.  

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Gretchen my dear.  I hope your were able find a bit of peace through all the agony today.  Today's almost over and you have made it thru again.  Take care  

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Gretchen, sending gentle thoughts today. These Angel days are tough to get through...hugs.

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Susan, what a great picture of John David...I remember seeing it but didn't realize the date of it...

Dee, sending lots of healing energy your way...both for hubby and for your son! It is best to take it slow with the back care...so it heals right...Thomas (my youngest) had a disc replacement this last October...it seemed to heal fairly well...

Lou Ann, those grief attacks are hard to take...it just rips the rug out from under a person...it has gotten where I can tune out some of the triggering events..but some are just overwhelming still....and physically exhausting...it is like running a marathon over and over...

Sherry, good to see your post on here...we are just getting through the strawberry picking season...our garden looks very sad this year...way too much rain...

Julian's Mom, thank you for sharing the beautiful picture of your son...this has been a very good "place" to share and have others who understand...hugs.

Lesley, perfect picture of what grief is like...

***********************

I think a few have mentioned on here about having trouble with going back to work...some days I think I am okay, and then some days I am just not. I have 2 jobs, both are flexible...but my mind loses track of details...sometimes I am in split mode...so I have to really plan ahead on what needs to get accomplished...this gets so frustrating but is my new reality.  

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Gretchen, so good to see you here, I get worried when a lot of time goes by...I am holding your hands and heart in mine as you face this sad anniversary. I am glad that you are planning to have the 3rd gathering, and the 4th. I know that Forest will be there, singing along with the music, dancing alongside you, holding you close in his deep Momma love. I hope that you hear from him today with the Angel Lady. I look forward to hearing about your time when you next write. Peace my Dear Lady.

Margo, I am thinking of your Son and feeling total calm as to his arriving and enjoying his time in Calgary, and returning safely to you in a month. I know how you feel, I know you don't want to pass your anxiety to him, allowing him his own expressions of grief, it is so hard. I have always, since I was a little girl, had a ton of anxiety, it got worse as adulthood became difficult with a rocky marriage, and all the issues fo raising kids after a divorce. It of course got worse when Erica was killed by a train...it was hard to know how to breathe and walk at the same time, from there, my anxiety has its own zipcode...I can no more make it go away than I could change what happened to my Girl, but I do work on finding ways to live with the anxiety. When I lose sight about how to do that or I need new ways to get through a time, then I have to find some new ways to work through it all.

Tomorrow marks what I call my holy-weeks. 14 years ago tomorrow Erica came over for dinner before going out with some of her oldest friends. She drove here from Kalamazoo, Michigan where she lived for 11 months with her Brother, Jonathan, and several new friends there. She loved living there, she was extremely happy. So she came over on the 3rd, and we enjoyed a nice dinner and then she went out with her buddies. She spent the night with her old friends and drove back to Kalamazoo the next day. On the 6th, she surprised visited me bringing 2 new friends with her. It was a magical day and I was aware of it at the time too. It just felt like the nicest most connected time for Erica and me. Before she left that day, she showed her friends the photos from her life, I had them all out on the floor  as I was actually putting them in piles in order to make both She and Jonathan a photo album for the following Christmas. It was just timing you know? She came over just when I was doing this, and she narrated each photo for her friends, I got to hear her take on everything in those photos. What a gift. Then outside in the yard, I asked the girls to stand together near the bee-balm. I took three photos, that was all the film left on the roll of 36. I walked them down the block and they carried on to Erica's Dad's house three blocks away. I felt so energized by that visit. In fact that evening I was talking to some friends  and saying how settled I felt in my heart with Erica having found her stride. That was the last time I saw her as HER! The next time I talked to her was on the phone on July 8th. I was taking a walk and called her...we laughed enjoyed our talk and said, " I love you" before hanging up. One half hour later her car was struck by an AMTRAK at a broken crossing. The call came about 40 minutes or so after Erica and I spoke, and it was not until we got to Kalamazoo, that i found out it was  a train that hit her car. The person on the phone said that she was in an accident and that we needed to get there. It was a 3 hour drive, rainy night. The person on the phone was the chaplain, which I also did not know until I got there. Erica lived for 6 days never awake...in fact I felt that her spirit was sitting on the bed-rail when I saw her. She was no longer in her body. All of her friends and family came to Kalamazoo, stayed for 5 days and saw her each day and bid her well on her final journey. They sang around her bed, they painted her toe nails pink, they told her everything that they wanted her to know, they went out...over 80 people, to get tattoos about Erica. By the way, the three photos I took of Eri and her friends are the only ones that came out from that roll of 36. It was as though life just prior to that day...no longer existed. 

She lives on. Our Children live on in the lives and hearts of everyone that they love and care for. Our memories need to be allowed, need to be relished, need to be let free to the skies and heavens and let the energy of them shine on. Thanks for listening, this is my annual spill of my heart. I am sure that there will be more.

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Kate and Laurie, thanks for your good thoughts for Jonathan and John. They are both fiding their way. Jon is dealing with a good deal of pain, but he is getting better. John is fiding that sometimes he does too much during a day and feels crappy in the evening. Oh if I could only make it all okay with my love alone.

Kate, love the Canada facts...had no idea that 60% of polar bears lived in Canada. I would guess you are right Kate, folks not understanding what it is to be to the point of suicide... thathtere are many facets to depression and to suicide. Prayers.

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Laurie, I will post it. Thanks.

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Erica is on the far left, Sarah in the middle, and Heather on the right. It was odd,Eri and Sarah looked sad in the photo, they hung out so much in Kalamazoo, that folks called them each: Sarica. The photo has a cloudy appearance or foggy, all three did and this was the best of the three.

Laurie, I forgot that your Son had back surgery. My Son's surgery involved a fusion, and spacers. I just pray that he can heal all the way, so glad that your Son has done well with his healing.

Lesley, I love the picture of grief as iceberg. Isn't that the truth.

Susan, such a nice photo of you and John David and your Grandboy. Is that Hunter?

EriLast.jpg

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HAPPY 4TH OF JULY

To all my American friends!!

:D while I know this day will bring back memories of years past, I hope you can all create new happy memories with your families.  

Dee thank you for sharing some of your Ericas story. It really is important to keep those memories alive as painful as they may be.  Erica sounds just as beautiful on the inside as she was on the out.  And loved by so many.  I look forward to hearing more about her and you  as her Angel date gets closer.  I know this will be a difficult month for you but remember we are all here for you.  I hope John and Jonathan are both recovering well.  

 

 

 

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A peaceful July 4th to all you Americans. As parents I believe we are all becoming independent from our grief day by day.

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IMG_20170509_115405.thumb.jpg.0a37f9e9efe485025e24075b26969f60.jpg 

Therefore I will tell it every chance I get!

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Lou Ann...you phrased it beautifully. I agree completely.

Happy 4th, of July! So much to be grateful for. Enjoy the day.

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Not being doing well for a few weeks. Went to my psychiatrist and he has increased my medication and made sure my mental support worker who is on sick leave is being immediately replaced. I am sharing because I think it is important for us all to recognize when we are not doing well and ensuring our own self care by asking for more help.It may be temporary, caused by an angelversary or birthday but if it lasts longer than a few weeks or you notice a slow decline in mood it is best for everyone if you get some help and not put yourself on the back burner, because we owe it to ourselves to get better and we are very important to others. Thanks

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Lesley, I am so glad that you recognized the need to reach out for additional support. We need to take the initiative regarding our own welfare. It is a bumpy road for sure that we walk. Have you had a chance to do much gardening the past few weeks? Our weather has been a mix of both sun and cloud. The temps are actually quite pleasant and not too hot. 

Dee, reaching across the miles and sending a warm "HUG" as you recall those last few days of Eri's life. Thank you for sharing those very moving and personal last few days...we all understand how hard it is to relive them in our mind.

Gretchen, how did the tournament go? Let us know when you can how you are doing. 

Diane...hope you are ok.

Sandy, how are you? How is Kelly?

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Lesley, sending gentle thoughts your way. I agree that one should self-care. I still have Lorazapam as a back up medication. I had to switch doctors early on to keep this prescription which now, I only use once in a while. Are your parents able to help you with emotional support? My mom (and dad) have been there as my sister. Also, just going outside for a bit...and making sure you are touching the soil with your bare feet...it helps for reconnecting as I felt like I was on an alien planet afterwards... and just finding a sunny spot to relax in (vitamin D)...that is what my mom does when she gets depressed. She also has had 2 child losses, my adult sister, Julie in 2003, and an infant son as well. Hugs.

Dee, thanks for sharing that last picture of your daughter. I asked Christina to look at it too. It almost seems to me that the cloudy overlay has a pink cast to it. Or maybe it just appears that way...and her bandana looks pink. I was thinking about that because of the pink cloud outburst you said happened right after she left to go "home".  You have had a lot on your shoulders the last few months, with hubbie and now your son. Try to get some health smoothies in and maybe some D vitamins. 

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Thank you Becky for sharing Jared's picture! 

Beautiful Lion

 

beautiful-lion.jpg

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Lesley.  Is there anything in particular that triggered your sadness.  Sometimes like when I heard a song from six years ago the other day, it put me right back to that time with all it sites and sounds and colours.  I really felt I was in a time machine and could not stop it til that song was over.  Those are the ones you dont see coming.  I have to get my medication tweaked up a few times and continue to find the right mix of antidepressants and sleeping pills.  Hopefully that's all you need is some tweaking in your meds.  I hope you like your doctor that can mean a lot to feel you are understood.  Thank you so much for sharing and letting us know we don't have to always feel 100 % . Is the weather dreary there again? Have you had a chance to get out in your garden and enjoy your Tommy flowers  ? Please lean on us as much as you need.  You always have such kind and wise words and I feel inadequate to help you back.  But I am wishing you peace and much healing to lift you up and find your place again. Please keep us posted as to how you are doing. I hope you can feel my hugs all the way to England. Take care my friend.  

 

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Laurie....you are right on.....walking barefoot...in the grass...dirt....digging in the dirt...weeding...just being in Mother Nature has healing...and the sun can give us 'power'....not the highly charged power but it does us good to get that vitamin D flowing. When we hit those low spots we head for the couch or bed...grief is so exhausting....I find (for me) the longer I sit or lay....my energy seems to evaporate from my body. The first 3 years the 'shock suit' fit so tight...thinking was foggy...like living in a heavy mist that weighted my body and mind down. We are so unique...and each of us will have a unique grief experience/journey...and each will have a unique grief reaction in emotional and physical issues. 

Divianz...many on this site have had to struggle with the court systems flowing like a frozen river. You will now have the surgery you so need. Years ago..I had to have a hysterectomy...but...my Dr...(I have only gone to women Dr.s since I was 16) told me 3 years before I needed the surgery. I...for some unknown reason...thought my body would heal itself. No...it didn't ...then after the surgery...I scolded myself for putting myself through 3 years of misery. A Doctor can do the surgery needed....but the patient must...be responsible for their recovery. A Dr. can only do so much. My Dr. told me IF I followed all the recovery rules I would have a successful recovery..my tummy would be as flat as it had always been....and all my organs would be in place. Women that don't follow the orders can have many issues...so...put yourself first after surgery. Your son will benefit in so many ways with being away and with family. It will be a healthy break for him and he will be stronger because of the visit. Kids are very resilient but faced with the death of an older brother...it can really turn their world upside down...for years. I feel sad for the siblings whose parents use them as grief counselors....for they do not have the power or intelligence to give the parent any answers or know how to deal/heal the parent's grief.

Dee....Jon will need to concentrate on his recovery period. Daniel may be facing back surgery in the near future and I dread it but it may be the only avenue for relief from back pain/issues. You have had a full schedule of health issues with your husband and son....but happy they are on the mend...and so glad you are there to help with those adorable children. I am so glad you shared your story of Eri....and look at that photo...she is just brimming with summer fun...carefree with friends...as it should be. Thankful for photos. Yes...that is Hunter Bear in that photo...this is him now in the photo I am sending...he is at the Grand Canyon.

ScreenShot1164.jpg

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Such a handsome photo of Hunter Bear...he is a deep well of love, a lot like John David. Thanks Susan, I have sweet memories and need to indulge in them at this time each year. I hope that Daniel won't have to go through the surgery Susan, but if he is in daily pain, then I guess it offers that hope of feeling more able and fit. 

I agree Laurie, the pink cast to the photo is another sign of Erica and she was wearing a pink bandana.

Thanks for the hugs Kat, they are being felt and greatly appreciated.

Tommy's Mom, I am sorry that you are feeling more anxious and low. We are never prepared to feel these ways...take heart if you can knowing that you have felt better than you do now, and you will again. I have found in the past and still this many years later, that often times when I sink down low, there are things I have to figure out, some kind of discovery that is needed before I can rise up again. I hope that you find a nugget of gold and are able to rise up again soon. But you will. I am grateful too, for my close relationship with my sisters, it is in those relationships and those with my nieces and nephews, folks that knew Erica for all her life, that help me out the most. I see her in them and it makes me so glad to have that. I am glad that you reached out for extra assistance, it is the most important thing...taking care of one's spirit and self. How else do we honor our Kiddos?

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Hello   to   all   INDIGOS.

LouAnn-----I, so, understand your unhappy time at the mall.  Places

where our dear children used to go can be a painful experience to go through.

I, too, went to a mall that David used to go to a lot. I went alone, and not too

sure just why I did.  (Sometimes I think I just "tested" myself to see how I was doing

on this lousy journey.)  It was fairly soon after he died.  I was there for a short time.....

and like you.....music was playing, I saw the music store and all the other stores

he would go to.  Just so very painful, and tears were brimming.....I had to leave

there, and have never gone back.  It's understandable that you were so upset.

Grief is like an octopus sometimes it just grips our hearts, and can't let go.

Peace & comfort to you, friend.

Dee------I agree.....ERi's spirit was there with you in her hospital room, but not

in her body......she had already gone to her heavenly home....the pink clouds were

one of her loving signs to you.  Nice that all the family & her friends could say

goodbye....although heart-wrenching, to be sure, for everyone.

I felt the same way about David's spirit......gone to his heavenly home.  His voice/spirit told it

to  his sister Rebecca after he died, and before the funeral......he said   "all I know is that I

was sitting in traffic one minute, and the next minute I was in heaven".  She told me about

this, and I have kept it close all these years.   ERi's little pink spirit was with you that day,

and will always be with you. Thinking of you in the days leading up to ERi's Angel Day   Peace.

 

Lesley----I'm sorry that you are in a dark place, but I think you are wise to reach out for

the help you need.  Often we think that no one could possibly help, but find out that

there is help and understanding from professionals.  Sending prayers.

 

Laurie-----Nice that you have your own strawberries.  We have black raspberries...they are

about done for the season now.  Our garden is doing well......we've had rain, but not too

much, so the plants are really coming along well.  We have onions, & lettuce now. Tomatoes

will be coming ripe in a few weeks.

 

Susan------thanks for your pic of your Hunter Bear at grand Canyon.  He is a handsome young man.

 

WISHING PEACE   AND   COMFORT   TO  ALL  INDIGOS.

Davey&Lisasmom,    Sherry   

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