Having a Girl After Losing A Girl

I have been re-reading my posts from the beginning of my journey, I am quite surprised at how far I’ve come in my grief, almost full circle, I no longer feel the intensity of the pain that was. I am not consumed and although that does not mean she is not or forever a part of me, that her death has not changed me forever, it is just a different journey now.

I read this post by Franchesca Cox and it really helped me understand my feelings, my need to want to be happy and be okay with being happy, my need to want to let go of my grief, to love and live and appreciate what is in front of me.

Here is a bit….

” I just didn’t want to lose her anymore than I already had, if that makes any sense at all. I’ve done a lot of different things since losing her to keep her memory alive. Most of those things I’ve shared at one time or another on this blog, and on facebook. I think it became an obsession. But it was the kind of obsession that was born from fear. I became so afraid of losing her memory, that I felt like I needed to keep doing something. But it has never been enough. Not once. At the end of the day, she’s still dead. She is still the one I had to say goodbye to, and no matter how many journals I donated, or how many memory boxes were sent out, or how many candles I burned, God never changed his mind and let this all become one really cruel nightmare. It’s always our reality that we lost our first child. It never stops being real, or true, or infinitely devastating.”…..

 

“There is something about having a rainbow baby, and then there is something about having the same gender rainbow baby. Maybe not to all, but to some, yes. To me… most definitely. When Evelyn was born I hardly ever talked about it, and if I did I glazed over it because it was too painful to admit but I fell into depression. I fought for four months with what a lot of doctors might write off as postpartum depression but to me, I knew it went much, much deeper (not to undermine postpartum, because I realize that that can be a very real, and serious matter). Mine went three years back, into that room where I held my first daughter as she took her last breathe… and none of it was peaceful. It was all horrific. Death was as real as the buttons my fingertips are pounding on that day. And he stole her from me. Every time I held Evelyn, my heart was this impossible mix, like oil and water, of the purest joy and rawest grief. I had been here before, but never with a living girl. Something was different with Evelyn. And I hate myself that I could not separate grief and joy those months of her life.”…

I kept wondering when it would be enough. When would I stop letting death steal more of my life?”

“One night I can still remember the tears flowing… the breakthrough. I can’t even put it into words, but I knew that we’d be okay – her and I. That love that I was so afraid of giving her poured over her one night as I breastfed her, in months and months of held back tears. I watched her falling asleep, both of us soaked with tears, and love. All this bundle of joy. So much richness. So much sadness. So much possibility. But the change in my heart that took place that night, it’s led me here.”

To read the whole post follow the link below…

Having a Girl After Losing A Girl
http://www.franchescacox.com/2014/01/girl-losing-girl/

So this is my goodbye, Four years after losing my beautiful little girl, I need to focus on living right now. My future posts will be about helping to deal with grief still but not about my personal journey.

Thank you for reading and walking with me.

Namaste,

Sheri.

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6 thoughts on “Having a Girl After Losing A Girl

  1. Thank you for sharing your journey so far. Your words have helped me understand a small part of the heartache you all have gone through. Your courage and strength are inspiring. So very proud of you sweetheart.
    Love Mom

  2. Dear Sheri,
    I’ve only read two posts & I couldn’t even remember how I found your blog.. But then remembered I’d searched for “Thich Nhat Hahn grief”
    I am so sorry for your loss of Lily. xoxoxo
    (After a difficult divorce, I’ve been estranged from my oldest son – who’ll be 21 in August – for nearly four years. I know it is nothing like the death of a child… )
    My relationship with my now-18-year-old son is in a good & healing place.. And, quite shockingly, my new husband and I have been blessed with triplet baby boys who’ll be 9 months old tomorrow (6/16). There are at least 10 moms of my “Triplets born in 2015” group online who lost one of their triplets after birth (several weeks to several months old).
    Today was also the 4-year anniversary of a friend losing her 13-year-old son (youngest of her three boys).
    You may already be familiar with Kahlil Gibran’s poem “On Joy and Sorrow” ..? If not, I thought you might appreciate it. Sending you love & peace.
    ~Rachel

    On Joy and Sorrow
    Kahlil Gibran

    Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.
    And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears.
    And how else can it be?
    The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.
    Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter’s oven?
    And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?
    When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy.
    When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.

    Some of you say, “Joy is greater than sorrow,” and others say, “Nay, sorrow is the greater.”
    But I say unto you, they are inseparable.
    Together they come, and when one sits, alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.

    Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.
    Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.
    When the treasure-keeper lifts you to weigh his gold and his silver, needs must your joy or your sorrow rise or fall.

    • Rachel,
      Thank you from the bottom if my heart, for sharing your struggles and ‘Joy and Sorrow’ yes I have read it but not in a while and much appreciate Khalil’s take. I love his saying about birds of sorrow, I cant fully remember but will post when I find it. My only other fear regarding loosing my children physically is loosing them in time emotionally as you say you have with tour 21 year old, it must be so hard knowing they’re out there and you cant connect or wishing it could be how it used to, I know I already wish I could cuddle my boys like I did when they were little, so much to miss, but so much to hope for. Congratulations on triplets WOW! You must be so tired. I admire you taking time to read and write. Would love to say more but its time for school. Thanks again for you comment.❤

      • Hi Sherri,
        Yes.. When my older boys were preteens, teens, I also had a fear that I wasn’t going to handle that natural separation/eventual empty-nest time very well & actually did a lot of reading about it beforehand… (I look back on that now & it was almost like a self-fulfilling prophecy :(I was so close to both of my boys… And I was the one who wanted the divorce .. It was in no way mutual. I made LOTS of mistakes .. Those combined with the anger/bitterness of my ex & the way he lumped the boys in with his own pain & sorrow (encouraged them to take the stance that I had abandoned “all of them” when that was the last thing I intended… It turned into a perfect storm of broken relationships. I also ended up in a very abusive relationship during the divorce process which obviously didn’t help matters, only made things worse.
        I am so immensely grateful to be rebuilding the relationship with my 18 yr old. He just graduated from high school two weeks ago & is traveling around Europe with his best friend right now. He loves spending time with the “Little Bros.” 🙂
        I continue to try to keep my heart as open as I possibly can.. And hope/trust that Isiah will come back into my life (he’s also estranged from most of my family, with the exception of my youngest brother who sees him now & then). It’s easily my biggest heartbreak .. And trying to accept the “right” amount of responsibility for my part in the damaged relationship has been a huge challenge. I believe in the power of forgiveness (my ex believes, as our 18 yr old put it, “forgiveness is bulls***” 😦
        I’d like to make amends to him at some point but I know that now is not the time.
        I’ve rambled on long enough! Thank you for listening!! I hope you and your whole family are doing well. How old is Evelyn now? And your sons?

  3. Thanks Rachel, I appreciate your honesty as well as hearing your lessons learned. So many things we must learn along the way. I am happy you are re connecting with your 18 year old, it must be so hard for them as teenagers to deal with all the extras. It sounds like you’ve done all you can in being open to them and honest and loving unfortunately we always feel like we make / made the wrong choices and we’ll never really know. Thanks so much for opening up to me I feel like I can learn from your words and I so appreciate that. My boys are my everything, Hope is now 3 elenor is her middle name.😊 I am wary of them entering their teenage years but will take it as it comes. Take care. Thanks again.

    • Oops! Not sure where I got Evelyn from 😛
      Hope is a beautiful name for, I’m sure, a beautiful girl. I don’t know if you’ve read anything by Elizabeth Lesser (founder of the Omega Institute) but “Broken Open” is one of my favorite books.. She talks a lot about her evolving relationships with her two sons (and stepson).
      In scanning through some of your posts, I found your list of most-recommended books on grieving & loss and saw a few of my favorites in there… Buddhist writings/teachings are what have resonated most deeply/truly with me (although I have yet to establish a very regular meditation practice. I do strive for mindfulness and present-moment living to the best of my ability 🙂
      I’ve also experienced the deaths of many loved ones (several “too-young”)… I had a coworker/friend who was in her early 40s when she attended her very first funeral/memorial and it was for her boyfriend’s grandfather and her experience was so foreign to me, to have lived over four decades and not lost a friend or relative.
      Thank *you* for sharing your heart/mind so openly… Wishing you the best! xoxoxo

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