My daughter(Lily Emma Olive Hall) died over year ago, shortly after my daughter died, my Nana (my paternal grandmother) passed away at the nice old age of ninety only weeks before my daughter then my Nona (my maternal grandmother) passed away at the nice old age of eighty-four, a few months after my daughter. So in the course of six months I experienced three very different deaths, you might say the year 2012 was a journey through grief for me, but I am not sure, I spent half of it in shock, most of it crying but oddly enough it’s not just those close to me deaths that caused my brains unraveling but at my husband’s work an employee was hit by a train and killed, another’s wife died from cancer so with death comes the realization that you too one day will die, how short and important life is, so what we, my husband and two sons experienced during the worst year of our life was also the most amazing year as a family. We did so many things together, shared so many precious moments, that we were encouraged to enjoy by the loss of our daughter/sister, grandmothers, friends. That I do not think we would have otherwise.
Last year I could not look at pictures of my beautiful, perfect on the outside baby girl because she was so broken on the inside and after her death so was I, so am I. Although I’d be lying if I said my heart was still shattered in pieces, because you do find strength miraculously to get up and carry on, even if in a zombie like fashion. I had to for my sons, for my husband, for myself although in those early months I wished desperately it had been me that died.
My sons wanted a sister so very bad I cannot even explain the months leading up to her birth, not to mention that children of the innocent, tender age of four and six do not deserve to learn about death, pain or loss.
My husband deserved his little girl. Seeing him and my boys experience the loss of my daughter, our daughter their sister was more painful at times than living with my own heartache. Maybe because like most mothers I felt responsible for her death, I also did not know what to say to anyone, I could not talk about the things I saw, the pain in her eyes, I could not mention her name, her beautiful name Lily without crying. “Why are you crying mommy?”, “Mommy misses your sister”. “Me too mommy, why did she have to die mommy”? I cannot answer that, she was not made right, she couldn’t breathe on her own, her heart did not work, but in the end something must have happened when she was growing inside me that didn’t work, I cannot explain it, why I feel responsible, why I couldn’t talk about her, why I hurt to look at her face. I just wanted to go back to that moment she lay on my chest, that moment she looked into my eyes and smiled, any moment but the ones that saw her suffering, that saw my boys all three of them too suffering. I have never wanted to run away more badly in my life. Run from the hospital, from my house, from my life. I actually did just that I ran physically and I cried while running, I called it ‘Sheri Therapy’. It did help too, the fresh air, the pain in my legs, the tears flowing. I could physically run away but never literally.
I’d always have those thoughts and images in my head. Here is the beginning of my journey, I wrote very sporadically, painfully and not nearly as much as I should have but enough to understand my journey. I hope knowing mine can help you with yours.