tHe haPPy grOUch

tHe haPPy grOUch

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Usually Sunday's are for blogging. Today could be Sunday, for all I know. The last ten days or so have all run together.

Nothing much changes from week to week as I blog. But so much has changed since I last wrote. Life has changed, forever.

This will be a very short version of the story, as it is too long and too painful to recount.

My son lost his younger stepbrother ten days ago. On the morning of Thursday, October 20th, while he was getting ready for school at home, he ended his own life. He was 13 years old. My boy was not at his dad's that morning. He was with me, and already in school when I got that terrifying call from his father. Go get him at school. Get to the hospital.
I can't write about the rest of that day, or these last several days. I've tried to type how this all happened. Tell our story. His story. I've written several lines and deleted them several times more. As much as writing is my outlet, I just can't do it.

He was more than just his stepbrother. He was his partner in crime, his bosom buddy, his best friend, his brother. He was the highlight of his days at his dad's house. They were always together, inseparable. Every week when my boy went to his dad's, they were practically joined at the hip. They grew up together through the years. They may not have been blood brothers, but they were soul and life brothers.

I can't describe the pain my son has been feeling ever since. I wouldn't even know how to try. There are simply no words for it. It is the kind of pain that you can't relate to, or understand, or even imagine. Watching my child experience this has been my worst nightmare come true. I am so angry at life for giving this to him. So angry. Our children are not supposed to have to endure this kind of pain. It is so heartbreaking. He will never be the same again. Neither will I. This kind of suffering should not exist.

He's holding up very well, considering the horror that is going on. The last few days I worry that he's holding up "too well"...  He's done his fair share of sobbing and crying and letting it all out. Now he seems to be internalizing. I think he has to compartmentalize it just so that he can get through each day (I know that's what I've been doing). He has been in school all week. He is hanging out a lot with his best friend. He is keeping busy. But he is in pain. It's just under the surface.
I don't push him to talk about it, but he does once in a while. I've suggested we go see our counselor, and he quickly shot it down. It's too soon. I hope in time he will agree to go.

Him and I have been working on a slideshow, a disc of music, and a video for the services. And as hard as it's been, we've relived a lot of fun memories through those projects. I know they've kept me busy, occupied. Feeling like I'm contributing something. Multiple trips to Walmart for blank DVDs, CDs, and cases, hours spent editing video clips and photos, music downloads, and burning dozens of copies of each for all of the family.

I've been so busy and so horrified for my son that I've hardly had time to do my own grieving for his brother. He was a silly boy.  Full of life and energy and charisma and love. I can't imagine him being gone from this world. His life had just begun, and he had so much more to do, to give.
And I grieve for his mother, and his stepfather (my boy's dad). My heart has broken for them. When I hold them I wish I could pull the pain from them.

My boy has been with me since it happened. Last night was the first night he spent at his dad's house. He just hasn't been ready to go back to that house yet. And we all understand that. As much as I want to shelter and protect him, I know his dad needs him, and his youngest brother needs him. I worried about him all night. I hardly slept (but that really isn't any different than any other night this last week and a half).  I talked to him on the phone last night. He seemed "ok". He was playing video games with his little brother and hanging out. They are surrounded by family and friends. I haven't heard back from him yet this morning. Although he's never been good about returning my texts, that turd. Perhaps he's still sleeping.

I've been trying to be strong for him. Although most times it seems he doesn't need it. I thought maybe he'd "need" me more through this, but he doesn't seem to. He needs this home, to decompress and be away from it all. But he doesn't need me to smother him. And so I'm trying not to. Well, not any more than usual.
He still complains that I touch him too much, hug him too much, say "I love you" too much (that hasn't changed). I've watched these last several days as he's held his dad, his stepmom, his grandparents, his friends... Yet he still shrugs me off when I put my hand on his back or my arm around his shoulder or go in for a hug.. I'm trying not to take it personally. I need all those things, though. But I'm trying to respect his space. Read him. Give him what he needs, and not what he doesn't need. Keep him fed. Keep him company. Just be.

I need all those things, though.
I've been alone through all of this. My boy has been here. My mom has been here. So has my daughter on occasion. Many of my friends have offered up their time. Everyone sending their thoughts and love to me.
But really, I'm alone.
Even the one person I thought would drop everything and come to me, to be my support, did not, has not. That has been a learning experience I will deal with, and write about, another time. What little energy I have is elsewhere right now.

I went back to work this week. I imagine I looked like a deer in headlights. A tired, worn out deer. On autopilot. I stayed after work last night for our annual Halloween party. I tried to wind down, socialize, have "fun". But I felt myself unraveling after a couple hours of it. I left in tears. I came home to my dog and my empty house. After a couple hours of staring blankly at the television, I finally cried myself to sleep.

Being alone has been a difficult thing to for me to deal with as it is. And as usual, I find myself saying- since when? Since when have I become this person who cannot tolerate her own company? Isn't solitude supposed to be empowering, enjoyable, or at the very least, tolerable??
This has been a test of my sanity. And to say it's barely hanging on by a thread is an understatement. Perhaps being alone in this terrible time will help me to learn to love my own company. Be more independent. To be stronger.
It sure doesn't feel that way right now.

Today is the funeral service.
Desperately hoping for peace and strength for my boy, his stepmother, his father, his younger brother, for everyone who loved that kid.
Especially for my boy.