I am ready to be done. I have prayed and cried and questioned and analyzed everything. I’ve chatted with the Medical Examiner and the doctors and everyone else in my life. We are where we are with Alex and I’m done. I’m not saying I want to collapse in a heap, completely spent, but I want to move on.
I want to move onto another chapter in my life. A chapter with hope, peace and love. More children, more diapers, more morning sickness. More blessings than sadness- more prayers- more laughter- fewer tears.
To clarify- I’m not crazy or desperate. I don’t have an irrational urgency to move on with things, but I have this calm peace within me that says, “it’s okay.” I haven’t cried in a week. I know that’s a weird way to gauge progress, but there are so few metrics I can use to measure if I’m “getting better.” I’m sorry to say there’s no emotional dashboard that tells me if things are better off now. Crying is if one of the few indications I have.
Someone congratulated me and asked me about my life as a “new mom” today. It was fine. No drama, no grief, no tears. Not even the brief sting as I explained his death. It was okay.
It’s not that I miss him less. It’s not that I love him less. It’s certainly not because I have forgotten. I just have this warm, pulsing feeling throughout my body that resonates and reverberates and tells me, “it’s okay.” My body relaxes, my heart expands and I exhale. It’s okay.
It’s like my mind, my heart and my soul are all finally aligned. I’ve given myself permission to let go of the grief and the guilt and the anguish. It’s time to start the next chapter in our family. I’m ready.
As I write all this, I feel callous saying, “I’m okay.” Less than 100 days into this and all of a sudden I’m a new person? I can’t explain it. Is it divine intervention that enables me to move forward? Is it the logical conclusion that there’s nothing left to fixate on? Is it just an impatient desire to “get it all over with?”
I don’t know. I know that happy feels better than sad. I know that my family brings me joy. I know that the plan created for our family isn’t done yet. I know His plan for me is better than my own. I accept that; more now than ever before.
It’s been over 90 days since he died. At one time I never thought we would get this far, but here we are. At this time Alex has been gone longer than he was here. That thought doesn’t depress me the way I thought it would before. It’s just a fact.
There are good things that have come from all this. There are blessings and joy interspersed with all the sadness. I’m not saying that everything is happy, but I can find the blessings in this.
My marriage is strong and sound. Ben and I have been together for 14+ years now. I’ve known him my entire adult life and he is my best friend on the planet. If we can survive the loss of a child, I know we can handle the rest of what life throws at us.
Benjamin brings pure, unabashed joy into our lives. There was a time when I thought that the death of Alex would overshadow the good times with Benjamin. Not so. Not even the sadness of losing Alex can cast a shadow over the exuberance Benjamin brings into our lives. Add Benjamin to anything we do, and it’s instant family time. Even a trip to the grocery store morphs into a fun outing with special memories.
My faith is stronger than ever. At first, I thought it was because I needed so desperately to cling to something positive. I now realize that I make a conscious effort to seek Him in everything I do. It’s not because I have to, it’s because I choose to. He gave me a wonderful gift in Alex. He weeps with me now as I mourn the loss of my sweet boy. He was there when Alex died. He’s there with Alex now and He’s with me now as I write this.
There is a peace with what has happened that I feel settle into my mind and my heart. The anxiety and uncertainty I felt before is giving way to a calm tranquility I have never known before. I can’t control my life, or my husband. I certainly can’t control my two year old child. That’s okay. I have blessings all around me and my cup still overflows.
I can fight and argue and wrestle with the reality I’ve been given, or I can accept the possibility of what will come. I’m still sad about Alex, but it’s like that sadness takes on a new form. Instead of this enemy that I fight day and night to shut out, I walk side by side with my grief. I accept its presence in my life and take comfort that the grief I feel is just evidence of the great love I have for Alex. I finally feel freed of the grief that has swallowed me whole.
I’m different now. I’m not the same person I was before I lost Alex. But I’m not that same broken mommy I was when he died. I’ve emerged as something else and it’s a far cry from perfect, but it’s okay. I’m not going to reject “okay” waiting for “perfect.” Life is too short.