Their Shadow Follows Us
A friend of our lost their son to suicide recently. In one of their Facebook posts they had in image of a woman sitting by the water with this saying, "...grief is not easy. It's a confusing mess full of ups and downs. It doesn't follow a pattern, and it's definitely not the same for everyone. Most importantly, grief doesn't go away over time."
I can agree with the statement above except for the last line. Grief can and does go away, IF we are talking about the overwhelming sadness that is a part of the grief journey. The jumbled emotions that stampede the lives of parents and surviving siblings after the death of a child can be overpowering. And in the early months and even years after the death it can seem like the grief will never end, never go away. But it can, and it does.
I think the image above is what the person who wrote the comments above means. When people see Judy and my shadow since Mickey died they simply see Judy and me in that shadow. But Judy and I still see a third shadow being cast by the sunshine. That shadow is of a little girl who died when she was 13 years old, and she'll always be a part of our lives. THAT shadow will never go away over time. It will be 30 years ago this October 13 that Mickey died, and her shadow still follows us wherever we go. Other people just can't see it like we can.
I'm sharing this today to give hope to those who are in the early days of your grief journey. Yes, the journey is hard. There's no way around it. No way over it. You have to go ON the journey. But there is joy ahead once again. Their is laughter, their is hope, there is purpose again.
For those of you who have not lost a child we simply ask that you realize that when you see us there is a shadow that you cannot see. A shadow that carries so many memories, smiles, tears and love. This shadow follows us everywhere we go. We wouldn't have it any other way.
If you have a friend or loved one who has lost a child reach out to them today with a word of encouragement. Keep it short. Just let them know you remember and you see the shadow from time to time too. God bless, Pat & Judy