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We’ve been busy these last few weeks. That tends to happen when you have 3 kids. Life happens and some things get away from you.
We’ve been getting through the end of public school and preparing for the beginning of homeschooling as well as our summer vacation.
It’s been a marathon of making sure the kids get to enjoy those last few days the most they can. We had two in public school. There was planning and supplying stuff for end of year parties and kindergarten graduation. My son who was in Kindergarten had told his teachers about how we were planning to homeschool. It came up and they were both very supportive about it all. I made sure they know it had nothing to do with them. There was also time spent trying to make sure the kids gave information to their friends to contact them this summer. And just making sure all their stuff came home. I still have to pay $2 to the lunch room.
I felt a lot of mom guilt over it all. Am I doing the right thing? Will they hate me for it? Will it be worth it?
During that last week that my children were in school, a mom from one of my groups had the unthinkable happen to her family. She lost her only son at 20 months old to an accident.
I’ve never met her or her son. I’ve never lost a child that I had the privilege to meet, to hold, or to kiss. I know the pain and grief of miscarriage. I am the only one who possesses an image in my head of our first loss from the final ultrasound.
It’s a pain you learn to live with, but it never really leaves. Holding your rainbow helps, but I cannot imagine the pain this mother must be enduring. I was also very open about my losses, the pain, the grief, and finally my healing. I think it truly helped me. The families that came out and shared their stories. I wasn’t alone.
I may not know this woman or her particular type of grief, but I have read every post she has made about her son and this loss. I have cried everyday for the joy he brought her and the pain she is feeling. It brought back some of those old feelings of anxiety and grief. I’ve thought about my lost little ones as well.
Her loss has deeply affected me in a way I didn’t see coming. I read her posts everyday detailing a past event, something he learned, or just some day they had in their lives. I don’t know if it’s because my youngest, Owen, is only a few months younger that her son was or if it’s the past anxiety and loss I’ve felt myself, but I’ve been surprised at my strong reaction to people I do not know.
I’ve started focusing more on the present. It’s not easy. Sometimes you want to just dive into your phone and get lost. Then I remember them. I remember accidents can happen to anyone. It could be us. I’m making a bigger effort than I have before to live in the now and enjoy every minute.
That last week of school felt so long. I didn’t realize until I picked them up the last day that I was holding my breath. As soon as we were home that day I felt a peace that I haven’t felt in a long time.
I’ve been nervous about homeschooling. Newbies seem to all be afraid they are going to screw up, but how could being able to spend that time with my children while they are here and young be bad? It won’t be easy, but it’s all taken on the added positive quality of just time with them.
I told her that it may not be much comfort now, but that her son and what happened has changed our family and our priorities and that he may be gone, but his joy and her love for him is affecting other families in a major way. And maybe in that way he lives on.
Hold your kids. Call your parents. See someone you care about and haven’t seen in awhile. Do that thing you’re afraid to do. Live the life you’ve dreamed of. Love like it’s the last day that you can. We never know what could happen in our lives and we like to live like the bad things only happen to other people.
What event outside you has had a lasting impact on how you live your life?