Saturday is Max’s birthday. I can’t Let Go, and I can’t Say Goodbye. He was my gift to the world and my partner in arms and my higher power. I miss him so much.
The pain does not go away, the hole remains, with time I have learnt to live with the pain and try not to fall in the hole. This does not work all the time, after 3 years I still dissolve into a black pit at the smallest of triggers, like birthdays or days that were special to us. Without love there is no pain.
My thoughts are with you. I am reading Joyce Carol Oates’ A Widow’s Story…the grief is of a different nature, but it jumps forcefully off the page and is strangely cathartic, if you, like me, feel the need to drench yourself in grief to process it. There is an excerpt from it, when a friend tells her, “Suffer, Joyce; Ray was worth it.” These words of courage, acceptance, heartbreak and drowning ring with truth. Some things, some people, are worth it. I am, and will forever remain, so sorry that you must bear this.
Oh dear, I think I’ll be able to comment much more knowledgeably very soon, as I just learned last night that my father has committed suicide.
I am so sorry, MoonShine and Sister Wolf.
If you can’t say goodbye, then don’t. I can’t imagine how a mother *could* say goodbye. People who have not lived in greif have too high of expectations of those who do.
He can always be those things to you.
I’m a lurker reader, but I have come to admire both you and Max through reading here. And I am greatful that you have shared your greif and not just allowed for him not to be forgotten, but for others, strangers, (like me) to know a little bit of him as well.
You are both beautiful. Hang on to him as long as you need.
You cannot erase your pain because you cannot erase your love for him, that is impossible and h has not been gone very long, of course you are not ‘making progress’, it just hurts, that is all. Your scar tissue will become harder and tougher and stronger and it will become more normal to be here without him sometime in the future but it will never stop hurting. I hope one day we find out why.
I shall light a candle on Saturday for Max. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.
Heidi, I’m so sorry.
You don’t need to let go or say goodbye. You are in pain and we who love you and care about you are alongside you. I would do anything imaginable to help you navigate this sorrow. My love to you today and always. XXOO
PLease don’t feel that you need to say goodbye- Max will always be a cherished part of you. Being strong and moving forward doesn’t have to mean letting go.
Love and hugs from Australia xxxx
Sister, MoonShine and Heidi- I’m so sorry. Like Ann, I believe you don’t need to say goodbye or forget, but I hope with all my heart that someday you won’t be in so much pain any more.
Sister Wolf it is what it is. Your grief isn’t going to go away and you don’t have to say goodbye. It is his birthday – celebrate him. Make a cake, sing happy birthday, blow the candles out, cry, wail, smile and sob. Do whatever you need to do. Your emotions are not going to change, but after a while the intensity of the pain will lessen or it will ebb and flow. Some days will be good, some days will be bad. It is too soon for you to be concerned about making progress. Love and hugs xxx
Totally agree with Make Do Style. You do and feel whatever you need to at any given moment. No one wants or expects you to let go. Happy birthday to beautiful Max.
I wish I had better advice, but after 4 years, I still find it horrible to have to live without my sis, my best friend.
Sending you my love and support. I still think my best friend is going to come barreling into my work, bike on her shoulder, huge curly red hair bouncing, slamming a falafel wrap on the desk while screaming, “What’s Up Hooker!!” But the door stays closed. It hasn’t gotten any easier. The pain is just more concrete now.
I hate that so many of us have had people we love ripped away from us, but more than that, I hate that people we loved were in so much pain.
Dear, I’m so sorry. I wish I could be as creative and eloquent as the others here. And I send my best wishes and condolences to these other grievers.
I sometimes say to my mom, damn, we can’t ask grandma that question, and now we’ll never know the answer. I know it’s far from the same thing. My heart goes out to you.
Maybe this falls in the morbidly curious-none of your business department, but could you tell us about his accident? What happened, was he continuing to recover? Or not, if you don’t want to, nevermind.
There is no universal law of Making Progress. There is no set date for being able to Let Go or Say Goodbye. Grief is personal and everybody deals with theirs the way that suits them best. Over the last 20 years I’ve lost approximately 2 friends a year for drugs/alcohol/lifestyle. I’ve learned to hate my way of using the word “approximately.” Many of them have just become a nostalgic blur of names, faces and years, but I will miss some of them for as long as I live and painfully at that.
I have lost a stepson and so on and so forth, but I could never imagine how it feels to lose someone of your own flesh and blood. When people die and other people suffer I become tongue-tied. If I knew a magic sentence I’d say it but, sadly, I don’t.
One of my favourite platitudes says: “if you are going through hell, keep going.” I could take it furhter and say: “his next birthday will [something]” but I won’t because I have no idea about his next birthday. I’ll just say: “keep going.”
*yeah, I misspelled “furhter” because I can.
Getting up every morning is progress, Sister. There is no yardstick.
Happy birthday to your beloved Max!
Your readers are wise. My thoughts are with you.
One bit of advice: it’s okay to distract yourself from the grief.
Joanne and Heidi
I am crying for you both.
I feel your pain.
I am in tears SW, stay strong love
I am so sorry. I wish I could take the pain away, but I know I cant.
Take your time and do what you need to do, don’t feel pressured by expectations.
There are people you don’t know and haven’t heard from that hold you and Max in their thoughts and prayers.
I’m so sorry SW, Heidi and everyone here who lost family and friends. Maybe it will help at least a little bit to know that you are not alone.
Your grief is yours. There is no right or wrong. You loved him. You were his mother. These are not things that other people can dictate to you about. Only you know what is right for you. I do not believe there is right or wrong with feelings. They just are. Do what is right for you. Distract yourself or not. Distration does not mean you loved him less, it just means you can only handle so much pain. Celebrate his birthday, make him a cake, or go to HI and pretend it never happened for a few days. Whatever feels right to you. There is no right or wrong, they are your feelings and you.
Sending love and good thoughts to you and Max.
I have no words except that I wish I could help you heal. xoxo.
“i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)”
loving you, Sis.
Happy Birthday Max and much love to you Sister Wolf xx
I had a dream about you last night Sister:
It was the near future and you were living on a pier, your young son had just passed away and you laid him to rest by the water. A loose tooth in your mouth finally came free and you felt relieved. There was a race of cyborg humans that were not accepted by society and you made it your mission to offer them comfort by helping them find places to live.
What does it mean?
I read your blog too much probably.
Liz is right. There is no measure of progress when you are dealing with the death of a child. What you do everyday is amazing.
Today, for you SW, I’ll do something in honor of Max.
Sending love your way. I can’t even imagine.
I do have to say that I really love Max’s music. What a voice!
I read your blog, I very rarely comment, but I wanted to let you know my heart is with you. Although I’ver never experienced what you have, so I can’t relate from that perspective, I can see your love for Max in what you’ve written. My mom is in her last weeks, and I see no life after her departure except being here for my kitty. After my kitty goes, nothing matters. I realize I am stranger to you, and I don’t know what else I can say other than thank you and I send you a big hug
It hasn’t been any time at all, Sister Wolf, not really. I can’t imagine anyone NOT feeling how you feel. I think you’re doing exactly what you should be doing. I love it when you write about Max, and you. It’s the realest, most honest thing I’ve ever read.
That song, Omelette, is almost unbearably endearing. Wishing you peace.
Thinking of you and Max today. Sending love and light.xx
Sending buckets of love and strength to you, birthdays, anniversaries and holidays are the worst days to get through.
This is a poem of love and of grief and of the relationship between child and parent. It’s not some perfect, one-size-fits-all work, but I think this work does what the best art does–it, through, words and images, give shape to the things we already know somewhere in our brain. If there is any catharsis, it is only in art for me. Here is Anthony Hecht’s poem, “Adam.” May it give you a moment of respite.
So sorry. Wish there were something I could say that would help.
Sending you a virtual hug on this difficult weekend. I hope you find some measure of comfort from our posts to you. Max is forever safe in your heart.
I am so sorry. Why should you move on and forget your boy, though? Just find a way to love and honor and not harm yourself (any more than the amount of grief that he deserved has and will).
Moonshine is right, birthdays and special occasions are the times when it feels like someone’s twisting a knife in your heart. Be strong Sister Wolf. I’m thinking of you.
I just lost my grandma who I was very close to and the funeral was this weekend and it is really hard. 🙁
I know that it doesn’t even compare to losing a child, I can’t even begin to imagine. Sending you good wishes & love even though you don’t even know who I am. Best wishes.
I am so deeply sorry.
some days progress is managing to stay still.
and not go backward.
I’d send you anywhere out of this world if I could.
Breaks my heart. Don’t let go. Don’t say goodbye. x
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