Monday, January 11, 2010

New Year's Resolutions

NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS FOR BEREAVED PARENTS

I Resolve:

That I will grieve as much and for as long as I feel like grieving, and that I will not let others put a time table on my grief.

That I will grieve in whatever way I feel like grieving, and I will ignore those who try to tell me what I should or should not be feeling and how I should or should not be behaving.

That I will cry whenever and wherever I feel like crying, and that I will not hold back my tears just because someone else feels I should be "brave" or "getting better" or "healing by now."

That I will talk about my child as often as I want to, and that I will not let others turn me off just because they can't deal with their own feelings.

That I will not expect family and friends to know how I feel, understanding that one who has not lost a child cannot possibly know how I feel.

That I will not blame myself for my child's death, and I will constantly remind myself that I did the best job of parenting I could possibly have done. But when feelings of guilt are overwhelming, I will remind myself that this is a normal part of the grief process and it will pass.

That I will not be afraid or ashamed to seek professional help if I feel it is necessary.

That I will commune with my child at least once a day in whatever way feels comfortable and natural to me, and that I won't feel compelled to explain this communion to others or to justify or even discuss it with them.

I will keep the truth in my heart--the truth that my child is always with me in spirit.

That I will try to eat, sleep, and exercise every day in order to give my body strength it will need to help me cope with my grief.

To know that I am not losing my mind and I will remind myself that loss of memory, feelings of disorientation, lack of energy, and a sense of vulnerability are all a normal part of the grief process.

To know that I will heal, even though it will take a long time.

To let myself heal and not feel guilty about not feeling better sooner.

To remind myself that the grief process is circuitous--that is, I will not make steady upward progress. And when I find myself slipping back into the old moods of despair and depression, I will tell myself that "slipping backward" is also a normal part of the mourning process, and that these moods, too, will pass.

To try to be happy about something for some part of every day, knowing that at first, I may have to force myself to think cheerful thoughts so eventually they can become a habit.

That I will reach out at times and try to help someone else, knowing that helping others will help me to get over my depression.

That even though my child is dead, I will opt for life, knowing that is what my child would want me to do.

~From the Brooksville/Spring Hill FL. TCF Newsletter

21 comments:

Kim said...

To you Nichole & Brad, I resolve to:
- grieve with you for as long as you need me
- cry with you when you need me to
- talk about Noah when you want to
- provide you with physical nourishment when I can
- encourage you as best I know how
- share in your ups and downs
- commit to a strong, deep, Christ-centered friendship with you during this very difficult time
- love you unconditionally
- pray for you and your family

Kathy's corner said...

Those are powerful words. We love all of you. Love mom and dad

Linda (khalana) said...

All I can say is Amen.

Lexi said...

I know that I have never met you before but I have been blessed by you and your family. You ARE an amazing parent! Noah had a wonderful like full of love and laughter. Even when he was lying in a hospital bed, he had a smile on his face! Noah will forever be in my heart and probably in the hearts of anyone who met him or have read this blog.

Anonymous said...

Those words are very helpful for those who truly can't understand the pain of losing a child. It gives all of us greater understanding..

Alison (twinmum) said...

As Linda said, Amen. May you always feel the hand of the Lord guiding your way, and may you always know the support of your family and friends as we lift you up in prayer.

Alison

Amber said...

Nicole, praying for you today. Noah was such an amazing little boy and you are so blessed to be his Mommy.

Jules and Danny said...

What an insightful letter! I pray that it allows others to support you in the journey of grief that will be unique to only you and that it allows you to continue your journey of healing.
You are continually in my prayers.

Jolene said...

Perfectly said...no one can possibly understand your journey of grief. No one should dare to put you on a timetable of expectations for that journey. My hope is that you feel supported. I still pray for you and I think of you every day when I check your blog.

Love, Jolene

teresia benedicta&johanna anna said...

wow.
i hope that god will strengthen you all the year, with all the resolution, changes and times that come....

leslie

Anonymous said...

Right on Nichole. I'll continue to pray for you and yours as you continue to grieve your precious son. You are such an inspiration to me. Love Auntie Hilda

Anonymous said...

I want not agree on it. I assume precise post. Specially the designation attracted me to read the whole story.

Kathy's corner said...

Not sure I quite get the last comment.

Ramona said...

Wow. That was tough to even read...let alone imagine walking through. Resolving to let yourself have the room to grieve, the honesty with yourself and others and to in turn care for yourself. I will pray that God will give you strength to do these resolutions as the year goes on.
Nichole, I've seen God's fingerprints through this whole journey and I'm certain He's not done touching your life or using your story to touch others. I so often wish that I could change things for you, but realize that if I did, you would have missed out on so much of Noah, the real Noah that you know. I'll continue to pray for healing and that in the timing it takes, that God will carry you through the fog that shapes and shades your days.

Ramona

Anonymous said...

Beautifully said Nichole. Praying for you all daily.

Hugs from Charlotte, NC!!

~Rissa

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Linda (khalana) said...

Nichole,
I unfortunately just saw your message on the dis boards and wrote you one back. Sooo sorry I didn't discover it until now!

Maroo said...

Hey Nichole and family! I just wanted you guys to know that I am thinking about you guys.

:)

I hope your new year is going well. You are loved and not forgotten.

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Anonymous said...

Hi Nichole,

I'm just stopping by to let you know that I'm thinking about you. I pray all is well. May God continue to bless you all.

Love you all!

~Rissa

Anonymous said...

Nichole,

This is one of the best readings I've seen from a TCF letter. That's perfect - and a good reminder to those of us who receive those letters that it's still ok for all of us to do all of those things too. Thanks for putting that on there. You've helped me appreciate my memories and spot in my journey as well.

Anita