Clichés. Inspirational Quotes. Ancient Proverbs. Words of Wisdom. When life gets hard, those around us are quick to use these little sayings to comfort us. But what are we to do when these words just do not hold true? It can be frustrating, hearing again and again that, one day, I’ll be over it. One day, I’ll be better. Just give it time, and I won’t miss my son anymore. It’s going to be okay. Sometimes the clichés come out of people’s mouths almost uncontrollably, as they stumble through their discomfort to find something to say. Now and then, you’ll find people who resort to these things because they don’t care enough to navigate what this loss means for us. But a lot of the time, people really do mean well. They really do want to be helpful, but just do not know how. They want to believe what they’re saying is true.
It is impossible to explain the pain of child loss to someone who has not lived it. How can others have empathy for an unimaginable pain? They can sympathize and feel sadness for us, but they cannot put themselves in our shoes. It’s indescribable. Losing Lincoln has made me forget everything that I thought I knew about grief. I had to forget what I knew about pain and suffering. And forget what I knew about heartbreak. Nothing compares to this. Time will not heal this wound. This too shall not pass. I can not let it go, or leave the past behind me. Lincoln is not in my past alone. He was supposed to be my future. Losing him, was having a chunk of my heart torn away from my body. It left lasting marks. There are things about me that will never be the same. Some might not understand this. How could my life change when I never brought him home? Some might say that I never knew him. But I loved him from the very moment that I knew he was there. I grew to know him. He had personality, and we shared memories. In my mind, I formed an idea of where my life was heading. I dreamed of his future. It seemed so certain, but that future is gone.
I have spent the last 11 months trying to figure out who I am without him. It is an ongoing process. I am getting to know myself again; and those closest to me are patiently trying to keep up. They are watching as I navigate through anxiety attacks and waves of grief. They are holding my hand as I fight depression and desperately hang onto every memory. And they understand that losing him does not take away my love. It does not erase our bond. We have something special, Lincoln and I. It is a love that defies earthly expectations. It is a love that shapes me and motivates me. And this love, shall not pass.