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Connected by our pain

On Friday, another family lost their son.

Not yet 20, this young man's life tragically ended in a car crash. His parents now thrown into this nightmare of losing their child. I wish I didn't know what it felt like. I wish they didn't either.

I know nothing about this family, their boy or their lives yet I suddenly feel connected to them through pain. Just as I did when I thought of all the moms from Humboldt.

It takes only a second for me to start crying when I think of that poor mother. I cry for the both of us. I cry because I know the depth of heartache she has been thrust into. And I am still learning. Learning how to cope with a never ending longing to see, feel, touch, kiss, hug or talk to your child. I am still learning how to manage the ongoing phases of grief in this non-linear process.

My heart bleeds for this mother, who like me, will have moments of peace and understanding and then moments of deep despair. I don't want anyone to have to feel this way. It is beyond sad that so many parents face this reality.

It's not fair.

Yet, there are amazing opportunities for growth in an experience of this magnitude. I am trying to embrace them and hold on to them to make sense of or find purpose in my loss. And if anything, it has proven to me the interconnectedness of us as human beings. There is something greater beyond our physical existence that connects us all...  just as I feel connected to this stranger, I can also still feel connected to my son.


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My focus and clarity gone
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We are now in the last days before Xavier died. He was alive this day last year. But on May 13 there is no living memory of him last year, aside from a couple hours of unconscious sleep before he took his last breath beside me. I held my breath with him waiting for the next and it didn’t come.

We had a great few days this week last year and he was full of laughs, full of life! We saw a glimpse of this again in ICU. Then he deteriorated. 

The zipper that keeps us all inside Earth started to split. His connection to this plane was ripping apart. When the zipper fully detached he was opened to eternity.

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 I don't know how many times I and other bloggers have likely used this opening. But as boring and cliche as those words are, there is hope within this opening line.


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But in the last month, I have experienced joy and the gifts my precious son left here for me. I would give anything and everything to have him here with me, but having accepted the reality that is just not possible, I now choose to focus on the positives this experience has brought to my life.

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