Friday, January 17, 2014

Careful... I might bite!

After the last of family had left after Tyler's funeral, the house was quiet. The  phone wasn't constantly ringing, we had nothing pressing to get to, people weren't bumping into each other on my sidewalk.  We shut the door and sat there, and it was scary.  We had had this little bubble surrounding us the past week, taking care of our needs and keeping us busy.  I had plenty of people to cry to, plenty of people caring for us and now it was so quiet.  We had meals in the freezer to get us through busy days or just days that I couldn't get it together, but it was so lonely the weeks following.

I was in an internal war with myself, and I over analyze things.  Our situation was such that I absolutely could not fall apart.  I had 4 confused and angry children.  I already felt like I was on the brink of no return mentally, and I was so afraid that if I gave in, I might never ever return.  I couldn't try to escape reality and in return I was angry with those in my life that chose to.  I felt like it wasn't fair that I had to feel it all and take care of it all.  Why didn't anybody else step up and let me float for awhile when it was obvious I was not going to be able to swim much longer without some emotional rescue?!

I felt so strange.  I was embarrassed to be the center of attention and I was so defensive that I didn't cry openly much.  I'm pretty sure people were a little confused when I would console them instead of the other way around.  
I went to the grocery store for my post funeral debut, and I wasn't fully prepared for that trip.  I know I had expectations that nobody could know or meet, and I got home, exhausted.  Everywhere I turned, there was someone giving their condolences or asking me questions, and after I was able to move to the next section, I would see someone else. Sometimes people asked me about everything BUT the huge meteor that hit my home, and I would think, "Just say it already.  How do you not know that I have a dead kid?  How can you possibly think that I truly care about anything else?  Please stop making small talk and just ask me."    After that, I saw someone that I considered a friend notice me and she hurried to duck down an aisle.  That really hurt.  I completely understand that people don't know how to behave in situations like this.  Obviously, I didn't even stay consistent with what I wanted.  

  If anyone were to judge me on what I displayed openly, they might think that I was unfeeling or that I had rebounded quickly.  
I said that I was afraid of not coming back, and that's the truth.  Was I going to be a happy person?  Would my kids grow up to say that when their brother died, so did their parents?  Would I abandon everything I had struggled for within myself because of grief?  Would my marriage and family survive if we both gave in to our guilt and sadness?  How I wanted to fall and sob out loud these things that ate away at my mental well being and my heart when people asked me how I was doing!  
It didn't take long at all to feel completely squeezed out of my place.  Nobody intentionally did it, but as we were planning the funeral, it was honestly the first time that I felt I had no place in the "family" section.  It was as if I was nothing more than a nanny who was no longer needed, after doing all the grunt work and investing so much into raising a human being.  I felt like all eyes were on me, wondering how I felt like I deserved the right to ache over this loss when I didn't share any blood with him. As if raising him for 15 years didn't mean a thing. 
 I felt so...irrelevant.