Sunday, July 17, 2011

Anytime, anyplace

It has been almost 15 months to the day since we lost Boe, and IT just happened. I openly sobbed in public over the absence of my Baby Boe. Not just silent subtle tears that most would not even notice; no, shoulders heaving, voice raised 3 octaves higher than usual crying.

It started off quietly, just crocodile tears rolling silently down my cheeks. I thought I might actually be able to stop it before it got out of hand and no one would be the wiser. WRONG!

I was standing in line at a little shop in Disneyland waiting to buy Mickey ears. Problem is, they were ears for Boe. His sister and brothers all have ears, and I decided Boe needed his own. I knew just what I wanted, Baby Blue ears with his name embroidered on the back.

I picked them off the shelf and found my place in line. As I thought about seeing his name on his ears, the tears started. I was reminded that he would never place them on his head and pull at the elastic, he would never outgrow them and need a new pair, there would never be the picture of my "3 Mouseketeers" in front of Sleeping Beauty's castle. These ears would remain empty, pristine, suspended in time.

I tried my best to put these feeling aside as I stepped up to the counter, and as I said, I almost managed to do it. But then, the cashier asked for the name I wanted on the hat and how it was spelled. My throat closed up, but somehow I managed to choke out B O E and then pay for the ears.

As I stepped away from the counter looking down at my wallet as I tried to jam my change back inside, I had no more fight in me. The tears took over and the sobbing began. As luck would have it, at that moment, my best friend who was with us, walked in to the store and asked me what was wrong. All I could do was hang my head further as I tried to find the words to tell her what was wrong.

I finally managed to explain that Boe deserved to wear his ears, he SHOULD BE THERE to wear the damn ears. She understood immediately and helped me calm down. Of course, people in the store were staring, but I soooooo did not care. I felt like Biff in the movie "Back to the Future"; I seriously considered looking right at those who were staring at me and shouting, "What are you lookin' at, Butthead?"

I fought this urge, wiped my tears, composed myself and walked to the counter to pick up Boe's hat. The cashier must have had a sense of what had transpired because she looked at me very sympathetically, place the ears very gently in a bag and told me she hoped I'd be able to enjoy the rest of my day.

I am sure that this will happen to me again on numerous occasions over the course of time that I have left in this life. Will I be more prepared? Will I be able to take control of my emotions more quickly? Probably not. That's the funny thing about grief, it does not wait for a "more appropriate" time or place. It rears its ugly head when it wants, where it wants, it does not hold back.

It is like the tide lapping at the shore or a beach goer's ankles. Sometimes it is peaceful, there, something simply to be tolerated but not bothersome. Then, in the blink of an eye, it surrounds you, engulfs you, pulls you under and leaves you gasping for air as you struggle to the surface.

No, there is no way to prepare for it, there is no way to escape it; it is only to be endured and hopefully, God willing, bring strength to those who must fight it.

1 comment:

  1. I feel the pain of your heavy heart. Please forgive me for intruding here. I came across this blog a few weeks ago and have wanted to help you in some way. I hope when you're finished reading this, that I have been successful.

    I ask you to think about this miracle pregnancy you're having now. REALLY think about it. It was completely unexpected and you were trying to prevent it, but it occurred. Why did it occur? How did it manage to happen?

    I know this is a very scary time for you and what I'm about to say may be hard to accept, but the same beautiful soul may be trying very, very hard to become a part of your family now.

    We do not know the reasons for what happened. Perhaps something just wasn't right. It could be any number of things. Try to have faith in divine timing. I know that's not easy.

    I understand your anger. I understand the hurt you felt when people said the wrong things or didn't say anything at all. There are no words to adequately express feelings when someone suffers a loss, especially that of a child. Some just feel very uncomfortable and avoid the situation all together. They did the best they knew how.

    Kirsten, I am so very sorry that you have had to go thru this but know that you are emerging stronger because of it and have learned so much in this experience. Others are learning from you. No matter how alone you feel in this, you are NOT alone.

    Let your emotions flow, as painful as they are. Release them when they surface, no matter how inconvenient the timing may be. There is no need to apologize to anyone for what you feel. There are grief counselors and professional therapists who can help you through this time (I know you know this). It is better to work through these emotions now than to suppress them only to re-emerge later.

    I am proud of you. You can do this. You can get through this. No matter what happens, YOU will be okay. I hope that you will be able to put your fears aside and embrace this pregnancy and this special time in your life. I hope you'll post some wonderful updates on your pregnancy and on life with your entire family. You have been BLESSED Kirsten, in so many ways.

    Much love to you.