I had a good day yesterday; a very peaceful day especially considering it was the 6th. I did honor my son’s transition by doing small things around the house and there was a serenity that was beautiful. I had soothing music playing up until the night, burned a special candle and incense for my son, I prepared a salad which is always his favorite, enjoyed the birds and trees and did my best to stay centered. I kept my thoughts on the fun things we shared and laughed out loud at some of our “funnies”. I will be bold and say; Jeremy enjoyed the very soothing and peaceful day with me; I smiled and he smiled with me.
I admit there were some tears that escaped, but those tears were pure love; unconditional love for my son. Again, it is a paradoxical journey.
I read from my “angel book” this morning and received a message that has brought the last few weeks and days into light. I, like you, am trying to find the new normal and learn how to integrate such a tragedy into my life to go forward. Not to endure only, but to live with my new normal.
I am reminded to be gentle with myself, to not be afraid to make mistakes and to remember the mistakes are mere steps to carry me further along my path, to not judge the size of the triumph or the type of victory it might be; each step, each movement large or small is a step toward my life purpose. This message lifted a burden off my shoulders because I have been hard on myself for being stuck again; for me this round was guilt for outliving my son.
I sometimes have to analyze what is going on with me and frankly I should stop much more often to check in with myself, my head, heart and soul. I will find myself full blown in anxiety and if I had been in the Now the anxiety would have never reared its head, however, and more importantly I would have caught the triggers beforehand.
This message to me and for me today is that there is no wrong way to grieve, I have to do it my way, if it takes longer than the other then so be it, if I get stuck I know I will learn from it, each step is mine and belongs only to me, no one absolutely no one can do this for me.
God love the hearts that think they are helping you when they tell you to get on with your life. What I know is this is my life today; tomorrow is a new day and I am reaching for it – that is progress for me, I am getting up in the mornings and have implemented my routine back into my life – that too is progress.
I am not stuck in Midnight and have learned not to go to Midnight and that is certainly progress. I am taking small outings with my four-legged babies and getting as close to nature as possible and being thankful for it; that is progress.
I say all that to say this is my way and what I do with my day is the best I can today and that can’t be wrong. I cannot force myself to do anything I am not ready for; yet tomorrow or five minutes from now I may very well be ready to take the world by storm again.
How you are grieving is your way; be gentle with yourself and take those baby steps when you need to and when you are ready take on the larger steps you will know. Don’t be discouraged when you have a relapse; it is important to cry and relieve some of the painful pressure that wails up inside you. It’s okay to do whatever it is you are doing to help you process what you are going through.
It is painful, confusing and complex; there are times you feel lonely and frightened; the guilt for a parent to survive their child is agony. These are all the things, and more, that we endure.
It is up to us when we are ready to process all these emotions and build that muscle of endurance.
Don’t look at someone else and measure your progress by theirs. The bottom line is that we all go through each of these phases just at different times and different ways.
The imprint that this has left on our hearts and souls will last a lifetime for us; it will also be the fabric of who we become.
I know who I want to be again, I know I want to fulfill my life’s purpose; I want to be an inspiration to my daughter and grands, I want to find the new normal not just for my children but for me. It is more important than ever that I take care of myself and live my new normal now. I want to complete my journey; I don’t want to just endure my path, I want to live it with a full heart and soul.
In love and understanding,
Proud Mom of Ssgt. Jeremy D. Smith USMC
03-09-85 – 04-06-11