|Anecdotes from Avi|
During the last anecdote we discussed our human inability to understand an emotion that we did not experience. We will now try to relate the emotion of a loss of a child with another experience.
Loss of a child
A bereaved parent, has in a way lost a part of herself/himself. Especially a senseless loss, like loss due to an overdose. This loss is wrapped with trauma, sorrow, self-pity, regrets, guilt and constantly going over in one’s mind “what if I said …”, “what if I did …”, “what if I understood …” and “only if my spouse did/understand/do …”.
The emotions, the pain, the trauma wrapped around a loss of a child are invisible to others mostly because most of us do not experience such a loss and obviously it leaves no external visible marks. We all know sadness, disappointment and heartbreak, they all pass away with time. These experiences of sadness, disappointment and heartbreak do not reflect on the emotions of a loss of a child.
For the sake of this discussion let’s liken the loss of a child to a dancer who spent years perfecting her dancing skills, worked hard at perfecting these skills and sacrificed practically everything else in life for these skills; then due to an accident, she lost her legs and now is confined to a wheelchair. The difference between the loss of a child and the dancer’s loss of legs is that the loss of legs is a visible condition while the loss of a child is an invisible condition.
A dancer who lost her legs now needs to learn to live her life without the use of her legs and without constantly working on her dream–dancing. Similarly, a parent who lost a child needs to learn to live without the child and without the work toward the future of that child and future grandchildren from the lost child. When the dancer says: “I don’t feel the same” people around her “understand”. When the dancer says: “I still cry over the loss of my legs and my inability to dance” even years after the accident, no one feels that she needs to be schooled about how she should feel, or that she needs to “move on”.
The memory of the lost child
The parent who lost a child wishes above all that the memory of the child will not be lost. A lady who lost her daughter wrote on Facebook: “If you mention my daughter’s name I may cry, but if you don’t I will be devastated.”
Next anecdote: We will conclude our discussion with dos and don’ts.
You are not invincible –Stew Birbrower
Together we march towards a destiny