“Mom, Ryan’s dead”

What is time?

Time is a funny thing, not funny like ha, ha funny, but strange. As a child I thought time moved so slow. Christmas and birthdays took forever and last day of school took forever and day! Now I am 60 and I find time moving at lightning speed.

They say time heals all wounds. I don’t think so. Not the internal wounds left after the death of a child. No, the wounds of wondering what else could I have done to help him. Did I love him to death? Parents of an addicted child will understand that statement. The “coulda, shoulda, woulda” is actually painful. The regrets can be awful. I try not to stay there. It is just too hard.  Everyone says, “you did all you could do”…or, “it was his choice”. Was it? Did I really do all that I could do….

We need time to grieve, don’t let anyone push you along or tell you that you “should” be over it. I will never be over it. I have learned to deal with it, but I will never be “over” it. Ryan’s ashes are buried on our family farm, under our big oak tree. My raised garden beds surround him. So, growing season I am out there pulling weeds, talking to Ryan, like a crazy woman. Crying and sweating up a storm. It is not pretty, my friend! By now, my husband knows not to interrupt me, or approach me for that matter. How do you get over the death of a part of your heart? I still cry every single day. It has been two years and I still expect him to come bouncing up the stairs to my front door (yes, bouncing!).

You see, Ryan was a “Tigger”. Joe, his brother is a Christopher Robin. Kind, sensitive, smart and sweet…I see people in relation to Winnie the Pooh. You, know how some people are “Eyore”, kinda moping around and some are Winnie the Pooh. Just into everything in sight.  Ryan was “Tigger”.  If Ryan was in the room YOU KNEW IT. Bounce, Bounce, Bounce…..

Both my son’s mean everything to me. I miss Ryan beyond words. I would trade my life if he could have his life back. Whole and healthy. I would take his addiction if I could.  I know that is pointless and futile, but it is true. It really, truly is. I sometimes pray for God to take me, just so I can be with him again. I hate to admit it, but death looked like a friend on a few nights.

So, take all the time you need. People who try to push us along are just tired of seeing us in pain. I get that. I pray they never bury a child, I really do. They just don’t get it.

Try to remember the good times and not the bad. Work on projects that give the death meaning.  Tell their story. Alot, really it may help someone. Volunteer at an addiction center, write your Representative regarding addiction treatment availability or lack thereof….Focus on moving forward. It is what our loved ones would want us to do, right? I know Ryan would. I can hear him in my head…”it’s not your fault mom, really!” I know he loved me, I know he expected to wake up the next morning. I know that with all my heart. He would never hurt us that way.

So, friend, take care of yourself in this process, it is a hard row to hoe as we say in the south….along with…”bless your heart!”

Love,

Just a Mom