All posts filed under: Grief

Her New Favourite Colour is Yellow – Sibling Grief

Emma was only 4 when Georgie died and, most appropriately for her age, she took everything in her stride. She accepted without questioning that Georgie went to heaven. She played tea parties in the chapel where his little body rested for three days, undisturbed by the reality of his departure. After the funeral, she got back to her only-child life without any qualms, or so it appeared at the time. But as she grows up, her anger with the situation and her questions grow bigger and bigger too. Half-term was hell term for us. Alex worked long hours that week and instead of having a great week off, spending it relaxing and recharging our batteries, Emma and I spent it at each other’s throats. I haven’t been great myself for a number of weeks so having a screaming, unhappy child for whom nothing was quite right drove me to the brink of insanity several times that week. I did start to make sense of what was happening the week after, when I picked on the …

To the mother whose child was just given the all clear…

I rejoiced with you this week, when I read your good news. I rejoiced with you from the darkness of my bereaved parent existence, knowing that you will never get to know my reality. I rejoiced for your son and I breathed a sigh of relief, knowing the pain my son endured in the last two weeks of his life and that fact that yours was spared all that, and you the totally heart-wrenching feeling of helplessness of having to watch him die. But your social media update, which was picked up by so many churches, individuals and even by a local newspaper, made me very sad too. You see, your update, as hope giving as it is meant to be, (as I do suspect you see it now as your life “testimony” to the Church, a confirmation they so desperately seek of a God who can perform miracles), has totally left out several facts and a huge group of parents and believers who have fought “the good fight”, just like you, but never pulled …

Inside Out- A Bereaved Mother’s Review

Yesterday, we had one of those Sundays when we were too tired to get into the car and drive somewhere so we decided to go and watch the Inside Out movie instead. I had heard loads about it and read various reviews, especially by bereaved mothers who had found it brilliant and I was curious to watch it and form an opinion myself. The plot is deceptively simple: a little girl, a life changing move to the big city, the emotional turmoil that follows, all seen from inside out, through the prism of her emotions: Joy, Sadness, Disgust, Fear and Anger. But the movie is far from being simplistic in the message it tries to convey: emotions make us who we are and that by trying to repress one or another, we end up ruining our whole system of reference and risk to become emotionally dead, like the little girl does, for a short while. As bereaved parents, we watched the movie through the lens of our loss, of course. We heard things that made …

A Season For Change

I need to make some changes in my life and I need time to understand what they need to be. I have been waking up again at night, for the past week. Every SINGLE night! It is the sort of full wakefulness that gets me up at 3 a.m. and keeps my head busy for hours. It got me so desperate for head peace that I had to ask work for a redistribution of my working hours, so that I can have two days a week to rest and think and decide what the next stage of my life is supposed to be. Decision is pending and my sanity does seem to be pending on the decision, to a degree. It does feel like my grief has reached a new stage. Our wonderful social workers, from the Royal and the Hospice, both had warned me that grief changes and stages like this are completely natural. Ha, the natural of the completely unnatural process of grieving for your lost child… Shortly after I lost Georgie, I …

14 months and 20 days later

It has been 14 months and 20 days since my son died but it is only recently that I have realised that grief is going to be part of my life, of me, of who I am until I die. Yes, I did read the books, listened to the stories, talked to other bereaved parents but it has only recently become obvious to me that grief is never going to leave my life and that it is here to stay. For good. That I will have good days always followed, as a rule, by bad, really bad days. That I will get ill much more often than I even did before. That my mind will never be the same; that I have become a head sieve. I forget often and I need constant reminders of appointments and meetings. Loads and loads of patience and understanding too. That I will be sad. Often and deeply and sometimes furiously. That anger will be my closest companion. An existential anger that cannot be directed at any-one, as the …