On days like this

It’s midnight as I write this. That means that, in several more hours, it’s four years to the moment our son, Elias, died.

Apparently Facebook saw fit to remind me and rub salt in that wound by showing me a “memory” in the form of a picture of him. It just popped up in my feed last night. No, lie, I truly do wish for a slow, painful demise for whatever genius decided it would be a great idea to force you to relive pain in the form of memories on Facebook.

But, this is the day, with or without Facebook. It’s always difficult. Doesn’t really get much easier. You just sort of look for ways to get through it. That’s all you can do.

I’m hoping to soften the blow just a bit this time because several months ago, I bought tickets to Disney on Ice for the family. I guess it’s my way of trying to not have the next several days really suck. After all, Ceili Fey has a birthday on the sixth and Calvin’s is on the seventh. The past few birthdays have kind of sucked for her, especially. Hopefully this will be a great memory for all of the kids.

Here’s to memories, past and future.

On grieving

Here are some funny things about grief. There’s nothing “normal” about it. It’s frequently ugly, and never is it tied up with a pretty bow. No matter how badly you want it to be. That’s hard on both the one suffering from a loss as well as those who interact with that person because the ones interacting are frequently – though not always – made very uncomfortable by the grief-stricken person.

Grieving people do so differently. You probably won’t grieve the same way I do and vice versa. And, guess what? That’s okay, too. I’ll let you in on a little secret here and it’s that you only think you know how you’d grieve in another’s circumstance.

The death of a child catapults a parent or parents into a totally different world. Everything is the same, yet different.

As long as you’re not harming yourself or others, there’s no wrong way to grieve. None.

Happy sixth birthday, Elias

Elias - Dec 2011

 

To my son, on what should have been your sixth birthday,

Elias, I miss you so much, more than I can ever convey in words. We still have no idea why you left us so soon. I feel as though we’ve failed you by being unable to afford the tests for the old house. Unfortunately, $10,000 is a lot to come by.

I also feel like we’ve failed you by not having the stone put in place on your grave. It took so long to finally get it together, I realize. It’s just so hard and so final when you actually have to sign off on the paper that approves a grave marker. I had no idea how difficult such a thing could even be. By the time we finally got it together and signed that paper, we were in for such a rough winter that there was no way it could have been put in. For that I am sorry.

In just a few hours we’ll be going out to the cemetery to celebrate your short life and release balloons in your favorite colors and ponder what might have been. It’s just not right to have to have your birthday at a cemetery.

I wish we had never heard of Walker Farms. I wish we’d never moved to Whitestown. Maybe you’d still be alive and we’d be having birthday cake with you tonight.

Bow, we all love and miss you so much it hurts.

Autopsy results

I sat down and actually read the autopsy today. That’s some reading material that no mama should ever have to read. It’s just so not right. Or fair.

I knew the results before today. I had the coroner give me the paraphrased version of the results, including the cause of death (acute pneumonia due to RSV). I just hadn’t actually read it before… I couldn’t bring myself to. But today, today I am angry. I am angry because I believe that there is some sort of environmental cause for Elias’ death and I believe that the powers-that-be in the town of Whitestown know – or at the very least, suspect – something is wrong.

I just wish we knew why his cadmium and chromium levels were so high. There’s just no satisfactory explanation at all. Even more troubling is the fact that a nearby family tested positive for large doses of metals in their system. This should not be in a new housing addition. So what gives here? And why will no one help us find answers??