Monday, October 3, 2011

The sight of a sock...

Yesterday I asked Wyatt to get himself a pair of socks . He came back, socks in hand and the pair he picked sent my mind spinning. A pair of black and gray socks. A pair of socks that were so similar to a pair I saw almost a year ago. The socks Austin was wearing the day he died. I will never forget that day, the moments before the phone call, the sound of his Aunt's voice, the moments after and the the hours and days that followed. They are somehow permanently ingrained in my mind. Visually at the forefront of my mind at the drop of a hat, or should I say the sight of a sock. I can't tell you how often I see those socks in my head. That was the part of him I stood by, staring in disbelief. Touching his toes, hoping he would jerk to kick me. If I could draw I am quite certain I could do a court room sketch of everything surrounding him. The people, the faces and the utter shock. I can't begin to imagine what his parents go through. As much as I try to be there and to understand a little, I pray I never know what they are feeling. We are at the grief season for Austin's family. These are the days that they spent together. This was his time of year. Playing outside, dressing as a farmer and visiting the farm and the zoo. This time last year was a wonderful time. This year it still seems to leave me asking, is this for real? There is not a moment that passes in my day that I do not think of him, his mom or his dad. Simple things like Wyatt doing something crazy, preschool, fall leaves, a John Deere tractor, a chuggington train, Curious george, a song, a smile, a little boy with big brown eyes and the umpteen little kids who seem to be named Austin! I think of his parents with every turn. Every time I hug my kids, every time I yell. Each night when I fight Anna to go to sleep, I think of Austin doing the same thing to his mom last year and I hold her a little longer. If I could do something to somehow ease their pain I would. I know I can't. Nothing will ease their pain. Time heals is a saying people like to repeat, but in a case like this there will never be enough time. It is so odd to me to think that after grouping Anna and Austin as friends, future husband and wife and always a pair, that Wyatt is now actually closer to Austin's age than Anna. He is forever 4. Life somehow has moved forward, leaving everyone who knew of him or about him changed. If only I could find a way to make this month more bearable for his family. I know what it is like to have that first year of grief. Dreading the anticipation of the days and then the hours where you know exactly what happened the year before and thinking of how you might have done things differently. Knowing you can't change them, but unable to control the thoughts that maybe you could of. I do not know how to make it better. If I could do anything I would! Praying for a little of the Peace that passes understanding is all I can do for now. I am also going to post a poem that I found on another blog. I sent it to Austin's parents and told them I felt as if they had written it.

Normal is having tears waiting behind every smile when you realize someone
important is missing from all the important events in your family's life.

... Normal for me is trying to decide what to take to the cemetery for Birthdays
Christmas,New Years, Valentine's Day,and Easter.

Normal is feeling like you know how to act and are more comfortable with a
funeral than a wedding or birthday party...yet feeling a stab of pain in your
heart when you smell the flowers and see the casket.

Normal is feeling like you can't sit another minute without getting up and
screaming, because you just don't like to sit through anything.

Normal is not sleeping very well because a thousand what if's & why didn't I's
go through your head constantly.

Normal is reliving that day continuously through your eyes and mind, holding
your head to make it go away.

Normal is having the TV on the minute I walk into the house to have noise,
because the silence is deafening.

Normal is staring at every child who looks like he is my child's age. And then
thinking of the age he would be now and not being able to imagine it. Then
wondering why it is even important to imagine it, because it will never happen.

Normal is every happy event in my life always being backed up with sadness
lurking close behind, because of the hole in my heart.

Normal is telling the story of your child's death as if it were an everyday,
commonplace activity, and then seeing the horror in someone's eyes at how awful
it sounds. And yet realizing it has become a part of my "normal".

Normal is each year coming up with the difficult task of how to honor your
child's memory and his birthday and survive these days. And trying to find the
balloon or flag that fit's the occasion. Happy Birthday? Not really.

Normal is my heart warming and yet sinking at the sight of something special my
child loved. Thinking how he would love it, but how he is not here to enjoy it.

Normal is having some people afraid to mention my child.

Normal is making sure that others remember him.

Normal is after the funeral is over everyone else goes on with their lives, but
we continue to grieve our loss forever.

Normal is weeks, months, and years after the initial shock, the grieving gets
worse sometimes, not better.

Normal is not listening to people compare anything in their life to this loss,
unless they too have lost a child. NOTHING. Even if your child is in the
remotest part of the earth away from you - it doesn't compare. Losing a parent
is horrible, but having to bury your own child is unnatural.

Normal is taking pills, and trying not to cry all day, because I know my mental
health depends on it.

Normal is realizing I do cry everyday.

Normal is disliking jokes about death or funerals, bodies being referred to as
cadavers, when you know they were once someone's loved one.

Normal is being impatient with everything and everyone, but someone stricken
with grief over the loss of your child.

Normal is a new friendship with another grieving mother, talking and crying
together over our children and our new lives.
Normal is not listening to people make excuses for God. "God may have done this
because..." I love God, I know that my child is in heaven, but hearing people
trying to think up excuses as to why healthy children were taken from this earth
is not appreciated and makes absolutely no sense to this grieving mother.

Normal is being too tired to care if you paid the bills, cleaned the house, did
laundry or if there is any food.

Normal is wondering this time whether you are going to say you have three
children or two, because you will never see this person again and it is not
worth explaining that my child is in heaven. And yet when you say you have two
children to avoid that problem, you feel horrible as if you have betrayed your

Normal is avoiding McDonald's and Burger King playgrounds because of small,
happy children that break your heart when you see them.

Normal is asking God why he took your child's life instead of yours and asking
if there even is a God.

Normal is knowing I will never get over this loss, in a day or a million years.

And last of all, Normal is hiding all the things that have become "normal" for
you to feel, so that everyone around you will think that you are "normal".†

Please say a little prayer for Austin and his family tonight and give your kids an extra kiss.

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