Go ahead and mention my loved one,
The one that died, you know.
Don't worry about hurting me further.
The depth of my pain doesn't show.
Don't worry about making me cry
I'm already crying inside.
Help me to heal by releasing
The tears that I try to hide.
I'm hurt when you just keep silent,
Pretending they didn't exist,
I'd rather you mention my loved one<
Knowing that they have been missed.
You asked me how I was doing
I say "pretty good" or "fine"
But healing is something ongoing
I feel it will take a lifetime.
by Elizabeth Dent.
The Early Morning Light
In the early morning light,
You see sadness of this day,
And hold memories of my angel....
How when my angel flew away.
No one can comprehend
the sadness this day brings....
No laughter can be heard;
Not even one bird sings.
For the angel of our life,
received wings made of gold;
Brought happiness to Heaven,
Left an emptiness here untold.
So in the early morning light,
I just try to find a way...
to see clearly why my angel....
Took golden wings & flew away!
Yes, in the early morning light,
I can still feel my angel's touch.
And will always remember that
my angel loves me so much!
Copyright 1999 Kaye Des'Ormeaux
Written for Bea Brunton
You say to me, "It's been a year,
when will your grieving end?"
"Why can't you be like you once were,
my smiling happy friend?"
If you really want an answer,
though, I wonder if you do,
I'll take you deep inside me,
where sadness dims the view.
First, my "friend" for your sake,
come close and take my hand,
And we will pray that what I share,
you won't have to understand.
The me you once knew is no more,
it died with my child,
A voice was stilled forever, yet,
the echo drives me wild.
You say you lost Aunt Bertha,
so you have known death too,
Aunt Bertha, however, was not your child,
and she was eighty, not twenty-two.
I barely survived those first months,
coping was a dreadful task,
I'd tell you I was fine,
while sobbing behind my mask.
If I talked about my precious child,
you turned away in fear,
You couldn't stand to see me cry,
nor would you share my tears.
I wanted to speak of him, please,
won't you say his name?
But, you pretend he never was,
so he died over and over again.
Oh, I see that you're uncomfortable,
you no longer want my hand,
so as it was before we talked, my "friend",
you don't want to understand!!!
Don't tell me that you understand
Don't tell me that you know,
Don't tell me that I will survive
Or how I will surely grow.
Don't tell me that this is just a test
That I am truly blessed
That I am chosen for this task
Apart from all the rest.
Don't come at me with answers
That can only come from me,
Don't tell me how my grief will pass,
That I will soon be free.
Don't stand in pious judgement
Of the bounds I must untie,
Don't tell me how to suffer
And don't tell me how to cry!
My life is filled with selfishness,
My pain is all I see,
But, I need you now,
I need your love, unconditionally
Accept me in my ups an downs,
I need someone to share
Just hold my hand and let me cry,
And say "My friend, I care."
Don't Tell Me
Please donít tell me you know how I feel,
Unless you have lost your child too,
Please donít tell me my broken heart will heal,
Because that is just not true,
Please donít tell me my son is in a better place,
Though it is true, I want him here with me,
Donít tell me someday Iíll hear his voice, see his face,
Beyond today I cannot see,
Donít tell me it is time to move on,
Because I cannot,
Donít tell me to face the fact he is gone,
Because denial is something I canít stop,
Donít tell me to be thankful for the time I had,
Because I wanted more,
Donít tell me when I am my old self you will be glad,
Iíll never be as I was before,
What you can tell me is you will be here for me,
That you will listen when I talk of my child,
You can share with me my precious memories,
You can even cry with me for a while,
And please donít hesitate to say his name,
Because it is something I long to hear,
Friend please realize that I can never be the same,
But if you stand by me, your friendship will be my treasure.
In memory of Shane
Some Mothers Don't Get A Perfect Ending
If you're looking for an answer this Mother's Day on why God reclaimed your child, I don't know. I only know that thousands of mothers out there today desperately need a answer as to why they were permitted to go through the elation of carrying a child and then lose it to miscarriage, accident, violence, disease or drugs.
Motherhood isn't just a series of contractions; it's a state of mind. From the moment we know life is inside us, we feel a responsability to protect and defend that human being. It's a promise we can't keep. We beat ourselves to death over that pledge. "If I had taken him to the doctor when he had a fever." "If I hadn't let him use the car that night."
"If I hadn't been so naive, I'd have noticed he was on drugs." The longer I live, the more convinced I become that surviving changes us. After the bitterness, the anger, the guilt and the despair are tempered by time, we look at life differently.
While I was writing my book I Want to Grow Hair. I Want to Grow Up. I Want to go to Boise, I talked with mothers who had lost a child to cancer. Every single one said that death gave their lives meaning and purpose. And who do you think prepared them for the rough, lonely road they had to travel? Their dying child. They pointed their mothers toward the future and told them to keep going. The children had already accepted what their mothers were fighting to reject.
The children in the bombed-out nursery in Oklahoma City have touched more lives than they will ever know. Workers who had probably given their kids a mechanical pat on the head without thinking that morning, were making calls home during the day to their children to say, "I love you."
This may seem like a strange Mother's Day column on a day when joy and life abound for the millions of mothers throughout the country. But it's also a day of appreciation and respect. I can think of no mothers who deserve it more than those who had to give a child back.
In the face of adversity we are not permitted to ask, "Why me?". You can ask, but you won't get an answer. Maybe you are the instrument who is left behind to perpetuate the life that was lost and appreciate the time you had with it.
The late Gilda Radner summed it up pretty well. "I wanted a perfect ending. Now I've learned the hard way that some poems don't rhyme and some stories don't have a clear beginning, middle and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what is going to happen next. Delicious ambiguity."
By Erma Bombeck
We're Alike, You and I
We're alike, you and I.
We've never met. Our faces would be those of strangers if we met, we
would barely perceive the other's presence if we passed on our walk
through the mists. We're unknown to each other until the terrible words
have been spoken:
"MY CHILD DIED"
We're alike, you and I.
We measure time in seconds and eternity's. We try to go forward to
yesterday. Tomorrows are for whole people, and we are incomplete
now_the tears, after a time, turn inward to become invisible to all save
you and me. Our souls are rumpled from wrestling with demons and doubts
and unanswerable prayers.
"GIVE ME BACK MY CHILD"
We're alike, you and I.
The tears that run down your face are my tears and the wound in your
souls is my pain, too. We need time, but time is our enemy, for it
carries us farther and farther from our lost child. And we cry out:
We're alike, you and I.
And we need each other. Don't turn away, but give me your hand and for
a time we can cease to be stranger's and become what we truly are, a
family closer than blood, united by a bond that was forced upon us---but
a bond that can make us stronger, still wounded, to be sure but stronger
for our sorrows are shared.
"WE NEED NOT WALK ALONE."
By Judy Dickey, TCF, Greenwood, Indiana
Not for our loved ones,
who are at peace at last.
For the emptiness where our loved one used to be.
For a touch from them,
for a word from them.
We Remember Them
In the times we shared laughter,
tears and joy.
We Remember Them
In the flowers,
in the trees.
We Remember Them
In all things of nature that our Creator has given us.
In knowing they are at peace.
In the footsteps they have made in our lives.
In knowing that they are remembered in our hearts.
Wherever we work,
Wherever we live,
and Wherever we play,
We Will Remember Them.
(Adapted from a poem by the Norma Reitz Family)
The Mention Of Her Name
"The mention of my child's name
May bring tears to my eyes,
But it never fails to bring
Music to my ears.
If you are really my friend,
Let me hear the beautiful music
of her name.
It soothes my broken heart
And sings to my soul."
When Forgiveness Is A Sin
From The Wall Street Journal
The bodies of the three teen-age girls shot dead last December by a fellow student at Heath High School in West Paducah, Ky., were not yet cold before some of their schoolmates hung a sign announcing, "We forgive you, Mike!" They were referring to Michael Carneal, 14, the killer.
This immediate and automatic forgiveness is not surprising. Over the past generation, many Christians have adopted the idea that they should forgive everyone who commits evil against anyone, no matter how great and cruel and whether or not the evildoer repents.
The number of examples is almost as large as the number of heinous crimes. Last August, for instance, the preacher at a Martha's Vineyard church service attended by the vacationing President Clinton announced that the duty of all Christians was to forgive Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma City bomber who murdered 168 Americans. "Can each of you look at a picture of Timothy McVeigh and forgive him?" the Rev. John Miller asked. "I have, and I invite you to do the same."
Though I am a Jew, I believe that a vibrant Christianity is essential if America's moral decline is to be reversed. And despite theological differences, Christianity and Judaism have served as the bedrock of American civilization. And I am appalled and frightened by this feel-good doctrine of automatic forgiveness.
This doctrine advances the amoral notion that no matter how much you hurt others, millions of your fellow citizens will forgive you. It destroys Christianity's central moral tenets about forgiveness. Even by God, forgiveness is contingent on the sinner repenting, and it can be given only by the one sinned against.
"And if your brother sins against you, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him," reads Luke 17:3-4. "And if seven times of the the day he sins against you, and seven times of the day turns to you saying, I repent, you shall forgive him."
These days one often hears that "It is the Christian's duty to forgive, just as Jesus forgave those who crucified him." Of course, Jesus asked God to forgive those who crucified him. But Jesus never asked God to forgive those who had crucified thousands of other innocent people. Presumable he recognized that no one has the moral right to forgive evil done to others.
You and I have no right, religiously or morally, to forgive Timothy McVeigh or Michael Carneal; only those they sinned against have that right. If we are automatically forgiven no matter what we do, why repent? In fact, if we forgive everybody for all the evil they do, God and his forgiveness are unneccessary. We have substituted ourselves for God.
I host a talk-radio show, and when confronted with such arguments, some callers offered another defense: "The students were not forgiving Carneal for murdering the three students. They were forgiving him for the pain he caused them." Such self-centered thinking masquerading as a religious ideal is a good example of the moral disarray in much of religious life.
Some people have a more sophisticated defense of the forgive-everyone-everything doctrine: doing so is psychologically
healthy. It brings "closure." This is therapy masquerading as idealism: "I forgive you because I want to feel better."
Until West Paducah, I believed that Christians will lead America's moral renaissance. Though I still believe that, the day those students, with the support of their school administration, hung out that sign I became less sanguine.
Still Trying to cope....!
Pamela S. Rowse, R.N.
Grandmother - Kierra Ashlie Danielle Harrison