Archive | December 2014

Living with guilt after suicide

It’s year 3 and there are still no Christmas decorations. Robbie didnt take issue with it until last weekend. He announced that next year we will decorate. When I consider the idea of it I’m not sure which is more gut wrenching – seeing, experiencing, feeling memories that I haven’t faced yet or living with the guilt of celebrating any resemblance of a “normal” Christmas.

There are parts of my life that have continued forward. Actually I can say at this point most aspects have continued forward. Yes, with pain learning to coexist with joy, but still forward movement. But there are some things I am just not ready for – like Christmas decorations in my home. It wouldn’t even matter if they were all brand new. And fixing my car mirror hasn’t been an option either…

The day you died I drove like a maniac to get to you. I didn’t know you were already gone. When I “parked” my car I hit the neighbors mailbox with my passenger side mirror. I’m not sure you can call what I did “parking.” I’m pretty sure my feet hit the pavement before the car had stopped moving. That first winter Robbie would scrape the ice from the window for me so I wouldn’t have to be reminded of that day. I scrape it myself now but my breathing is heavy and self-talk is a necessity to get the task done. But I’m not ready to get it fixed. How could I? How could I just drop it off for a few hours, pay someone a few hundred bucks, then get back a new mirror – like nothing ever happened? That seems so wrong. I have no choice but to leave the mirror as it is. Why the hell do I feel that way? Because it connects me to you? Because I don’t deserve to have it repaired? It feels like my own personal scarlet letter. I’m not ashamed of you baby. I’ve not felt that way at all. I’m still prickly when someone even hints that they might be angry with you. I’m still mom and I’ll always protect you. My shame is my own. Why didn’t I know you were depressed? How could I have missed it? What kind of mom was I? I’m not God. I wasn’t a perfect mom. My human attempt at parenting was riddled with screw ups. But I didn’t have to be perfect. Christ paid the price for every single imperfection. I am living with this pain by the grace of God. And you are living in His presence by the grace of God. I miss you. I love you.

Lord Father God empower me to keep my eyes on You. I love You Lord.

For Such A Time As This

Hi honey. I think of you all the time but I don’t write as much as I used to. I don’t know why. Perhaps it’s the tears.

The LOSS team launched last month. It’s difficult to describe that experience. I hate that I’m there at a scene yet there’s nowhere else on earth I’d rather be. I hate that I’m qualified for this work yet I feel my life has more purpose and meaning than it ever has. The day you died… that indescribable horrible day… “For such a time as this.” I couldn’t get that bible scripture out of my mind. I’m still learning to live this new life. This life that in large part you choose for me. People say things like, “Drey would want you to be happy,” “Drey would want you to put up a Christmas tree” and so on. I frankly don’t give a shit what you would want, kiddo. Your choice not only set my life on a completely new trajectory but it also cut off any say you now get in how I move forward. The fact that you likely never intended for our family to be as devastated as we are is not something you have any say in. Your voice is gone. We’re left to pick up the pieces without you.

I start working part time on January 5th. I’ll be the Executive Director at Cornerstone of Hope Grief Counseling Center. I never imagined I’d be so passionate about something… I never imagined my passion and ministry would merge and they’d then become a career. Between LOSS and Cornerstone I’m quite busy doing something I love. Someone suggested that God calls on us to be good stewards with all our resources – and that includes our pain. For me being a good steward of this pain means having a voice for the bereaved when they can’t speak, only groan. It means helping them grieve in whatever way works for them. It means journeying together as we discover how to integrate this pain into our lives. This journey includes a lot of tears but it also includes learning to laugh again.

I think of you all the time. You may not have an audible voice in my daily decisions anymore but your final choice screamed loudly enough to last a lifetime.

So Merry Christmas, Drey. You are the love of my life whom I still delight in. And, well, you suck.