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Saturday, September 23, 2006

A Little Help For Our Friends and for Us

Bereaved Parents Wish List
Compiled by Diane Collins, TCF, Bay Area

1. I wish my baby hadn't died. I wish I had him back.
2. I wish you wouldn't be afraid to speak my baby's name. My baby lived and was very important to me. I need to hear that he was important to you also.
3. If I cry and get emotional when you talk about my baby, I wish you knew it isn't because you have hurt me. My baby's death is the cause of my tears. You have talked about my baby, and you have allowed me to share my grief. I thank you for both.
4. Being a bereaved parent is not contagious, so I wish you wouldn't shy away from me. I need you now more than ever.
5. I need diversions, so I do want to hear about you; but I also want you to hear about me. I might be sad and I might cry, but I wish you would let me talk about my baby, my favorite topic of the day.
6. I know you think of and pray for me often. I also know that my baby's death pains you too. I wish you would let me know those things through a phone call, a card or note, or a real big hug. 7. I wish you wouldn't expect my grief to be over in six months. These first months are traumatic for me, but I wish you could understand that my grief will never be over. I will suffer the death of my baby until the day I die.
8. I am working very hard on my recovery, but I wish you could understand that I will never fully recover. I will always miss my baby, and I will always grieve that he is dead.
9. I wish you wouldn't expect me "not to think about it" or to "be happy." Neither will happen for a very long time, so don't frustrate yourself.
10. I don't want to have a "pity party," but I do wish you would let me grieve. I must hurt before I can heal.
11. I wish you understood how my life has shattered. I know it is miserable for you to be around me when I am feeling miserable. Please be as patient with me as I am with you.
12. When I say, "I'm doing okay, " I wish you could understand that I don't "feel" okay and that I struggle daily.
13. I wish you knew that all of the grief reactions I'm having are very normal. Depression, anger, frustration, hopelessness, and overwhelming sadness are all to be expected. So, please excuse me when I'm quiet and withdrawn or irritable and cranky.
14. Your advise to "take one day at a time" is excellent advice. However, a day is too much and too fast for me right now. I wish you could understand that I'm doing good to handle an hour at a time.
15. Please excuse me if I seem rude, certainly it is not my intent. Sometimes the world around me goes too fast and I need to get off. When I walk away, I wish you would let me find a quiet place to spend time alone.
16. I wish you understood that grief changes people. When my baby died, a big part of me died with him. I am not the same person I was before my baby died, and will never be that person again.
17. I wish very much that you could understand-understand my loss and my grief, my silence and my tears, my void and my pain. BUT, I pray that you will never understand.


Jerry said...

You're Welcome, and thank you for accepting my token gesture.

I am sorry I coudldn't do more.

I am sorry I had to do anything at all.

Eric, Athena, Matrim, and Aviendha said...

It's good to see a new post from you, Athena and I miss you both!
We wish we could at least fast forward time for you to a point where the pain isn't so prevelent.

(The hard part about writing at this point is not knowing what to say to really communicate the level of our sorrow at your loss, our love for you, and support for you.)

One thing I wanted to tell you is that I really like the name Jack Kendrick Johnson. I think it's a strong name with a good ring to it. Using your maiden name for his middle name worked out well.

I'll try and work on getting some new posts up so I can contribute to the diversions. Honestly the wind was taken from my sails when I first read about Jack and I haven't been motivated to make any posts besides the family stuff at our Mannimals blog... But I'll buckle down and get some new stuff going.

Also make sure and let us know if there is ANYTHING else we can do to help. We love you both.

p.s. If you don't already have plans and are able to get away for Thanksgiving, you are MORE than welcome to come share a feast with us!! We sent an open invitation to friends and family (if you noticed your myspace bulletin) but I don't think anyone can make it. We're going to make an awesome spread though, so join us if you'd like. :)

juli109 said...

Thank you for this. It is difficult to understand the rammifications of such a complicated matter. Thanks for always saying what you mean and meaning what you say. I love little Jack although I did not have a chance to meet him. I love him because he is yours forever.

Donate for My Kindness Project to Honor Jack!