It’s been said that a parent should not have to bury a child but rather a child bury their parents. That couldn’t be further from the truth but sadly is not everyone’s reality. The death of a child is one of the most painful events that can ever be experienced by an adult.
Each year there are over 50,000 children that die in the US (U.S. National Center for Health Statistics, 2000). The community in which I belong for bereaved parents is much larger than we could fathom.
You will be affected, for life, both physically and mentally. Your faith will be tested but you have to try to take control rather than letting your pain of you loss take control of you.
You will become socially withdrawn from family and friends at first but you will find they are key in your healing. Everyone is affected differently and for me, I lost a ton of weight, while others may gain. You will find that you will become severely depressed and often times feeling completely hopeless.
My body went through so many changes. In addition to the weight loss, my hair began drying out and thinning because I wasn’t eating and getting the proper nutrients. I still have dark circles under my eyes which I contribute to all the sleepless nights. I once was this social butterfly that enjoyed life and being around friends and family. After losing Shae I was so broken that it pained me to be around anyone because it took so much energy, energy that I didn’t have to even say hello.
All of these changes were normal and to be expected but at some point you have to make the decision to pull yourself out of the funk and try to rebuild in this new life. It’s important to invest time into your remaining children and spouse and family. Engage in something rewarding to find new meaning in life.
Seeking help is not a sign of weakness, desperate times call for desperate measures. There is no time on the grieving process. It’s been 14 years since I lost my daughter and I will never be the same. I did however, make the choice years ago to take care of myself because I knew that I was the only one responsible in my healing.
Keep pushing, things will get better!!! I am living proof that there is life after…