147 Days

The days go by and one just seems to run into the other; I miss him so much.

The last few days have been okay, my anxiety is really bad again; so that means tears and getting annoyed very easily.  When the phone rings at work it annoys me so much and those are the times that I just want to be at home where I don’t have to deal with anything.

I got to have breakfast with Derek’s best friend and his bf yesterday; it was nice.  Bryan probably knows Derek better than anyone on this planet, including me, and I can talk to him about Derek and he understands.  I wish I could spend more time with him but he lives in Jersey so I don’t get to see him much at all.

I quit going to therapy last month; I think that when you go to therapy you should feel better when you leave there, I feel worse when I leave so I stopped going.

I spent part of Memorial Day weekend with Christian; we have so much fun together!  He’s such a good boy and he reminds me so much of Derek, he’s fearless and adventurous just like Derek was.  We talk about Derek and he says “my Daddy is in Heaven”, I always tell him yes he is and he’s watching over you all of the time and protecting you.  It makes me sad that he won’t remember the things that they did together, he’s just too young.  There aren’t a lot of pictures of the two of them together either; I wonder if he’ll ask why someday.

I wish that I would have made the trip to Philly, even once, to visit Derek and have him show me around “his” town.  We would have had a great time.  I wish I would have stayed on the phone with him longer the last time we talked.  He was supposed to call me back later that day; I wish he would have.

I wish that Derek hadn’t of had such a hard life, that he didn’t live with such a troubled soul.  There are so many things that I wish for him and none of those wishes will ever come true for him.

When he was clean he had so much to offer the world, I wish he would have been able to do great things but most of all I wish that my Son had been HAPPY every single day.

Dreams

I longed for the day when Derek would visit me in my dreams so I could hear his voice, his laughter, see that amazing smile and feel one of those awesome hugs that he used to give me.

He has visited me twice, once a couple of weeks ago and it was not a good dream at all.  I’m not sure why I had this dream because it was very painful.  I had gotten to Derek before he died and I was holding him in my arms crying and begging him not to leave me.  But it didn’t work, he said I have to go Mom and the Angels took him to Heaven.  I woke up sobbing.

Maybe this dream was Derek’s way of letting me know that he is in Heaven and he is okay.

Last night he came to me in my dreams but I can’t remember all of it; there was a car that he bought me and we were either running from someone or looking for someone, I can’t be sure.  But he was there, in my dreams and that makes me happy and sad at the same time.

I guess I’m hoping for a sign from Derek, in my dreams, that everything that I’m doing for him is the right thing.  The non-profit, in his name, my involvement in the addiction/recovery community and everything else that I do for him.

I’ve always loved dreams and I’m happy that I’m dreaming again so that I can see Derek.  I miss him so much

Wooden Boxes

Derek was a tree climber and a very good one at that!  He loved learning about trees and how they grew and why they grew a certain way.

Because of this he loved wooden boxes and collected them.  I find myself always looking for wooden boxes when I’m out shopping.  I want to buy them…all of them.  I’m not sure what I’m going to do with all of these wooden boxes but I want them all.

This past weekend I was at TJ Maxx and I found the coolest wooden box and on the top is a huge tree.   Derek would have loved this box.  It’s beautiful and when I bought it I thought it would be a cool memory box for his youngest Son, Christian, but I don’t know that I can part with it.

Christian isn’t going to remember his Daddy so I’m making a memory box for him with pictures and things that were Derek’s and some day I’ll tell him the story of his Dad and how much he loved him.  We talk about him all the time when Christian is over, but that’s all he’s going to have is the stories that we tell him.  Maybe I’ll give him a big wooden box filled with smaller wooden boxes…lol

At Derek’s funeral, I gave his oldest Son, Alexander, one of Derek’s wooden boxes with things of Derek’s in it; he treasures that box because he does remember his Dad.  I know he misses him and it breaks my heart that, at the end, Derek wasn’t the Dad that he wanted to be to his boys.  Alexander does have good memories of his Dad though, he went to Philly for a week and hung out with Derek and Sam and I hope that he never forgets the time that he spend with his Dad.

So, if you ever come across a wooden box, remember my Son….that’s what I do

 

134 Days

It’s been 134 days since Derek was taken from me and it feels like it was just yesterday.

Most of the time I feel guilty if I laugh or feel happy, because he’s not here to do that and please don’t ask me to come to a party, bbq or any kind of social event because I’m just not ready for that; being around a lot of people makes me very anxious these days.  I have to go to my Aunt’s this weekend to help go through my Grandma’s things and I’m dreading it because there will be a lot of people there and they’re going to ask questions and give their opinions and I know they mean well but I can’t cope with that right now.

Last Friday, as I was getting ready to leave work for the weekend, I looked at a picture of Derek that I have on my desk and I just started crying, for no apparent reason other than I miss him so much.  I cried all the way home and most of the night, he came to me in a dream that night but it wasn’t a good dream and I woke up sobbing.  Saturday was more of the same; I know that I’m isolating but I don’t want to be out in public where I can just burst into tears at any given minute.  I want to be at home so I can cry and talk to my Son and be mad at God.

Because, yes, I am mad at God, for taking my Son; I used to pray to God every night to help Derek see the way, to help him use the tools that he had to get clean and stay that way and to keep him safe.  Instead God took him from me so yea I’m pissed as hell at God.

I just want to stop feeling this way, to stop being anxious & depressed and crying every day but I know that that’s probably not going to happen; you see THIS is my new normal.  Nothing will ever fill this hole in my heart.

 

“Calm Down Mom”

My 1st Mother’s Day without Derek and it was a doozy!  I am usually pretty good at keeping my grief hidden at work, around friends and family and in public.  I save my grieving for at night and on the weekends when I’m at home.

On Friday, after work, I was on my way to Muskegon to pick up Gavin and Tatum for craft night.  Can I just say that I HATE driving in Muskegon!  Everyone drives so slow for no apparent reason and it drives me crazy because I always drive 10 over the speed limit!  So I’m in a hurry and everyone is driving 25 in a 45 and I’m pissed!  I’m yelling at the people and I said Why the f@#% are we driving so slow!!!  Clear as day I hear Derek’s voice in my head and he said “Calm Down Mom”, that was it but it was him.  I said OK Son.  It was so nice to hear his voice

Saturday, I was at my daughter’s celebrating my grandson’s 11th birthday, I didn’t want to be there but there was no way that I wasn’t going to celebrate his special day with him.  However, it brought back a lot of memories of when Derek was clean and he would have been there celebrating too.  He would have been running around the backyard with his niece and nephews and they would have been squealing and laughing, they loved playing with their Uncle Derek.  For awhile I just sat at the bonfire, remembering and crying silently.

Sunday, Mother’s Day, my Girls came over and brought gifts, very nice gifts that I love, but I was missing my Son so much.  I know that I wasn’t very good company; they would have done anything that I wanted on Mother’s Day but I just wanted to be alone, so they left.  I spent the day remembering my beautiful Son and I cried and cried all day.

The grieving process is so painful but I know that if I need a day to remember Derek and cry I need to take that day, it’s all part of the process.

I don’t want to do this but I wasn’t given a choice

When Derek died I was in shock for weeks, I was numb and in a fog.  Sometimes I think that that’s where I am still.

I think about Derek every second of every day and the tears come way to easily.  When I think about his last days it makes me so sad because he was struggling so much and in so much pain, emotionally.  I wished that I could take it all away from him but I knew that I couldn’t, only he could do that.

I write letters to him and the pages are tear stained, I tell him how much I love him and I pray that he knew that when he was alive.  I tell him how his boys are and how I will make sure that they know how much he loved them.

It’s not natural for a Mother to bury a child and there are times when I am angry with God that he took my beautiful Son from me!  Why couldn’t he have just given him another chance to get it right?  He wanted to so badly, he wanted to be an awesome Dad to his boys, he wanted to marry Sam and have a family with her.  He wanted it all but the drugs wouldn’t allow him to reach those goals.

I take meds so that I can sleep, otherwise I would be awake all night thinking about him and missing him, I take meds to keep the anxiety at bay; they don’t always help, I take meds for the depression that I suffer from, that is so much worse than it was before.

This is my new normal and I’m told that this is all part of the grieving process and it will last as long as it lasts. And although I didn’t chose this I know that I have to allow myself to go through this process so that I will be here for my daughters and my grandkids.

The Stages of Grief

They say there are 5 stages of grief:  denial, anger, bargaining, depression & acceptance.  I found another article that says there are 7 stages of grief:  shock & denial, pain & guilt, anger & bargaining, depression, reflection & loneliness, the upward turn, reconstruction & working through & finally acceptance & hope.

I’ve had people in my life die; my ex-husband, my Mom, my Dad, my Grandma and I knew of the stages of grief but I don’t think I ever really grieved for any of them.  Or maybe I didn’t recognize that what I was feeling was grief.

But when Derek died, I knew that I had to allow myself to grieve or I would be in big trouble later in life.

One thing that I have learned about grief in the last 115 days is that these stages aren’t in any kind of chronological order.  Also, once you go through one of the stages that doesn’t mean that you are done with that stage and you just move onto the next one.  You can go through stages many times; they just hit you.

I go to grief counseling, my Doctor talks to me about grief and has put me on many medications to help me cope with daily life.  I have learned that anxiety is a part of grief, I never knew that.

If there is any advice that I could give you when dealing with the loss of a child it would be this:

Let yourself grieve!  Give yourself all of the time that you need!  Cry when you need to, don’t keep it in.  Something that has helped me is to write letters to Derek, maybe this would help you too.  Find a grief group, go to grief counseling, talk to your Doctor, talk to your Pastor, you need to talk about it!

Sending you love & light

Theresa