You don't know me but allow me to introduce myself. My name is Pamela and I joined that crappy club no one asks to join five years ago - the one where your child dies.
I do know that if there is a DNA or fingerprint changing event, it is the death of your child. It just can't make "sense" because it doesn't make SENSE!
Allow me give you a few tips from other mamas like me...
- You need to get in a routine. Routines give you control. Control gives you comfort. You are now like a newborn baby. You wouldn't let a child stay up late on the weekends.... You MUST adopt a schedule of going to bed and getting up. Every day.
- Grief is mentally and physically painful. Those first few weeks... You can't feel your fingertips. It was our Loving God's touch on your body to help numb you a bit through the initial trauma. After those first few days or weeks.... The pain that will flood your body surprised me. THAT'S another story no one told me about!! Girl! You are gonna ache and hurt so much! You have been holding your body soooo tight and now you HURT! Plus, this stress is unlike anything you've ever experienced before. It's 24/7. Any little health problem that you have brewing under the surface is gonna pop on up and let itself be known. If you haven't scheduled yourself for a physical with you doctor, you need to.
- If you aren't taking an antidepressant, maybe now is the time. It may not be forever but this could be a tool that helps your brain better cope. You aren't crazy. But you feel like it. At least
I did - and most of the mamas I know felt that way in the beginning. Discuss this with your physician. With the older antidepressants, the brain would numb and it delayed the brains healing and reconciliation to the horrible truth that you now live. NOW the antidepressants are much better and by seeing your physician, they can be a tool that HELPS you.
- Speaking of that, how much are you sleeping? Your brain NEEDS sleep in order to think and process this tragedy. Tell your doctor. He or she can prescribe something to help you rest. Sleep deprivation isn't gonna help you, my friend.
- Grief is EXHAUSTING! Conserve your energy for things that are important to YOU!! You will know what these things are.... Rest your body physically. Don't feel guilty for just SITTING DOWN!! But you will have to get back UP... You can't just sit down and give up...
- Eat! You MUST have nutrition because your body is under tremendous STRESS!! Nutrition is the building blocks to help our body heal and our brain to think and process this tragedy. Are you weighing yourself?!? Protein is important. I ate almonds and peanut butter is good as well. Plus almonds didn't upset my tummy quite so badly. Maybe those supplemental shakes.... Remember.... Your grief alone can make you sick.
- Drink lots of water. Tears are dehydrating. Dehydration promotes illness. Girlie--- you gotta protect YOU now!
- Know that grief is natural. I'm NOT saying that it was natural or normal for that baby (regardless of your baby's age) to die!! But grieving your child IS.... He or she was ripped from you. Like your arm was ripped from your body. Every thought and pore will ooze of that your sweetie that has left this earth. That's natural. I have this perspective--- Think about this for a moment. How incredibly sad would it be to have your child die and then take about a week or two to "grieve" then go back to life as it was!! They didn't just DISAPPEAR!! They were here!! Existed and LIVED!! Each child deserves to be grieved!! Give them the full meal deal of grieving.... But take care of YOU!! It would be so easy to lay down and give up, now wouldn't it? All of us felt that way. But you can't give up-- it isn't your time yet. Your family NEEDS you. They are suffering too and can't take another loss.
I'm sending you lots of information at one time so I'll wrap it up for
- Get in a routine and a schedule.
- Stay in that routine for consistency.
- Aching is normal and you are gonna feel like CRAP! This is normal. Go
- see your doctor for a checkup.
- Discuss an antidepressant with your physician.
- Discuss your sleeping patterns with your physician.
- Eat and maintain nutrition.
- Drink lots of water
- Grief is natural. Don't feel guilty-- but take care of YOUR body.
I can't promise you anything except for the following-- you can hang onto these words. Where you are now, you will not always be. This, my new mama friend, I can promise. It will not always feel this painfully horrifically bad.
When my Logan was ripped from me, I wanted to die. I didn't think I could possibly live through the pain. I can tell you NOW...There is peace and contentment on the other side of the darkness. You could never have told me that five years ago. I love my living children deeply but the pain was so very very much more than I ever had any idea that it could possibly be. The pain gets better
Just keep putting those little tootsies on the floor EVERY single day. Every single day... In a routine.
It is helpful for me to hear from you occasionally - "I'm listening". And I can rattle on all day... and it sparks my writing too!
One more thing that it's important to remember. Heaven is a REAL place. Not Santa Claus land or where the Tooth Fairy lives. It's a REAL place. That's where your child is--- healed and safe with our loving God. It's just this crap you are left with as you try to redefine normal.
Again-- I'm SOOOO sorry that you lost your child. I can't say that enough. My eyes tear when I type that part. Feel free to contact me.... firstname.lastname@example.org