Posted by: Jody Glynn Patrick | 07/29/2015

Mother to mother after a daughter’s death….

Katja

Katja

Lindsay

Lindsay

This was posted by Alison to help Hilary, a newly bereaved mother. Occasionally I will post some of the longer comments, and if you’d like to write a guest blog, just let me know, to express how you are feeling. This is YOUR site, and the comfort you give and receive is from all of us, not just me. So in that spirit, here is a comment posted by Alison. JGP

Dear Hilary, I ached for you and your family when I read your post. My precious daughter Lindsay (aged 26) was killed by her ex-boyfriend on April 5, 2013, just two weeks shy of her university graduation. He then took his own life. So much of what you have written are things that I have felt. How could I “lose” my soulmate, my most precious angel, my best friend like that? We had already been discussing his behaviour only three weeks before her murder, but had no idea how much his anger towards her for breaking off the relationship for good three months before had escalated.

For months, I refused to even use the word “lose”, because I feel as if I never “lost” my daughter; I talked to her or texted with her every single day and I never lost track of her or what she was up to. We were that close. Her brother has so much sadness, and I try hard not to let him feel “less than” she was to me, but it is so hard to hide my own sadness and tears from him. Tomorrow would be her 29th birthday. It is for some reason harder than the previous ones, because she would probably be in a new phase of her life now, perhaps getting married or having children, like your Katja about to start medical school. My daughter had applied for her Master of Social Work programme the year she was killed.

She still received her degree, having met all of the requirements except her final exams, but what a bitter pill to swallow to have to accept it on her behalf posthumously, when she had worked so very hard for that degree. I know what you mean about facing the loss of Katja directly. A car accident is such a tragic, sudden loss. I still cannot talk to people about Lindsay or what happened to her without breaking down in tears; I start to hyperventilate and to stutter,something I never did in my life before her death. I wish I could tell you that “it gets better” as some people try to tell us.

I have been told that over time, we simply learn to cope better or we stop spending time with the people who really don’t even attempt to understand or do any research on what support or love we may need, and instead say stupid things like “you have to get through this” or “you need to move forward”, when you or I may feel we never should have had to “get through” anything in the first place or when “moving forward” signifies to us that we are somehow expected to leave our child behind in the past. I have a great deal of difficulty putting on what I call my “social mask” to go out, preferring to stay at home.

The only people I find real comfort with are my son, her closest friends, my husband and all of the parents on this site who have lost their beloved, precious children. This site was one of the few places I could find anyone who could really understand. I am thinking of you today, Hilary, and all your family. (Lindsay’s story is on this site under “Our Children”.


Responses

  1. Alison and Hilary,
    Thank you so much for sharing a small part of your girls lives with us. They are lovely young women! Like every mom living in these depths, I am so deeply sorry for you both. Please keep sharing what you can, when you can. I appreciate the honesty and the comfort that comes from hearing another moms heart. It continues to encourage me, heal me and move me to know I am not alone.
    Alison, you said this birthday will be harder than the ones passed. I found the second so brutal and am braced for the next. I wish more people would realize that some things get harder instead of easier. Easier… A word that should never be used in our circumstances!
    May God bless you and hold you close.
    Julie

  2. As I read your story the tears just fell. Today marks one year since my Danny Amaral went to Heaven. He died here in his childhood home at the age of 33. His brother has a hard time without his best friend. Danny died of cancer. People just don’t get how broken my heart is. To watch my son die and feellike a failure because I couldn’t stop it!!! You and your family will be on my mind today.

  3. I have lost three daughters, Katy would have been 28 tomorrow. Stacey died 4 months ago and Becky died one year ago this month. My heart and soul hurt for you and I agree no one really understands until it happened to them. I get so angry when someone says, I know how you feel, I lost my mother, brother, or sister”. I will never understand why God took my daughters and each day wonder how I will go on. I still have two living daughters and find myself pulling away from them. I feel horrible panic and tears roll when I try to go to a family get together. Bless you and may your days some how get a little easier.

    • I have been keeping kind of a journal and wanted to share my thoughts. I hope some of it will help someone realize their feelings are very natural.

      Agony, pain, torment, anger, futility, grief, nothingness, panic, a void, tears, sobs, helplessness, sadness, tired. Despair.

      I feel these every day and I am not sure how to get through each day.

      Katy would be 28 years old tomorrow; was she going to be tall, what color was her hair, did she have a cleft in her chin, was her hair light or dark and what color were her eyes. I still remember how sweet and soft she felt and her soft, soft hair. Four months was not very long to have her, why only four months. She was so very sweet, what a happy, happy, little girl. Just say her name and she would squirm like a little puppy. She was here and she was gone.

      Becky, the pied piper of children. Oh, how she loved her daughters and I don’t believe there is word about how much she would have loved Preston. Her laugh, I miss her gravelly laugh and the quick sense of humor. I guess I will wonder every day what I could have done to maybe have made her life easier and will always regret that the last words I said to her wasn’t I love you.

      Stacey, so very beautiful and so very,very blond. I know she loved Samantha so very much and would have bragged and talked for hours about the wedding and oh my gosh, it would have been non stop about the baby. Again, every day wonder what I could have done to maybe have made her life easier and will always regret that the last words I said to her wasn’t I love you.

      I prayed so hard every night for both of them. I asked God to please put his arms around them; let them feel a hug or some peace. I used to ask God to please protect Katy, it was like I felt something.

      I don’t know how to explain what I am feeling right now but really need to ask you both (that is hard to type, I should be able to say “you guys” and mean all five of you).

      I can’t explain what happen when we are together but there is a point it seem to become surreal; like I am not there. I can see and hear you guys but I am just watching. Some of the things that some of you say really piss me off and other things break my heart.
      I become very cognizant of Becky and Stacey not being here when I see Lindsay and Emily and Preston, Samantha and Andrea. I know because they would have contributed all the funny stuff or crapp you guys say but mostly because they should be here; Preston would have adored Becky and Stacey would have bragged non stop about Samantha and would have had all kinds of advice.

      You two can’t relate and I never,never, never, want you to comprehend the devasting, horrible pain that hits me. It just comes out of nowhere. The tears just seem to roll; with no sobbing or fore warning. It just comes. All I have had is you girls and 3/5ths of you are gone. I truly feel there should have been something I could have done. I helped pay Becky’s rent but the last thing I said was I can’t send you any more money. I know now I would have sent my last dime if she could have lived one day more.

      The last communication I had with Becky was a call from someone she had called and the man said she had told them she was afraid the might die. I huffed up and told him it was the same old story. She knew and I ignored.

      The day before Stacey died I gave Samantha all the cards and notes Stacey had sent me for mother’s day, Christmas, and etc. The last time I talked to her I was rude to her and hung up because of her lanquage. I never said I love you. What if I said, “ Stacey call me tomorrow and maybe I will come by.

      I just don’t know how to do this, this time. I love all you guys but I just feel like a farce and my feeling are all ove the place.

      I don’t know how to do this; the days are long and I just want each of them to go by. I think maybe I will sew but I can’t, I think about getting a job but Ican’t.

      I will never be the same again. A huge part of my soul has been ripped open and taken away. You girls were all I ever really had. My parents were good people but I wasn’t that close to them. I guess I miss Sandy more than anything, I could always just be me.

      I visit some grief sites quite often trying to find some solace and the sadness some days from the posts are too overwhelming. The one common demonator is that the grief doesn’t go away. It can become manageable but it is always there.

      It is reassuring to read about others feeling the horrible panic, unexpected tears, and the horrible pain. Let’s me know in some way these feelings are normal (that can’t be that right word because nothing about this is normal).

      I don’t know how to “feel” like I used to; my feelings are tempered by fear. I still feel like I am living outside myself;watching life go on. If there is a God he is on my go to hell list. I feel so stupid for all the years I preached about being nice, about being cognizant of the little things we have; know what,that is a joke.

  4. Al of your comments are so terribly sad and painful….and so true. Alison, I noticed the beautiful picture of your beautiful Lindsay before I put my darling Katja’s picture up. Your situation is quite similar to mine. I had a beautiful bird sculpture created (Katja’s nickname was ‘Birdy’, she was always my little bird) and many of her friends and my children and I placed it in the admission hall of the medical school in Liverpool, so she will have her place there. Yes, it was a good thing to do, but so much pain, so gut wrenching to go back there when the last time had been when she had her interview and we were together….nervous….stressy.
    Birthdays….awful. How can they be so young, and not be here? I don’t understand it. Katja will be 21 on the 16th Setember. How can you die before you are 21? It’s like a big part of my brain cant comprehend it. Am I stupid?? Am I delusional? I feel the pain of her loss every second, not being able to hug her, touch her, talk to her, share her life.
    I look at my other children and feel incredible sadness for them, for the support, friendship and love that they will never have with their big sister. My 13 year old daughter in particular, so needs Katja. We all do.
    I so understand about not being able to go out, talk to people, socialize. All I want to do is be in bed, in her room. Everything is a huge effort, it’s impossible to be in any social setting, any ‘happy’ setting. But I have to sometimes and it hurts more. I don’t hate others but……how can they still be here when SHE is not? I barely cope with the needs of the children and worry about that. It isn’t getting any easier, it feels like the fog is getting thicker, denser. I want you back Katja, I would do anything to kiss you again, to stroke your beautiful hair, to call you Birdy, to cook your favourite pasta, to see you cuddle your chihuahuas and to have you get stressy with me.
    I’m so incredibly sorry for all of you. xxx

  5. Our Jason would have turned 33 on July 29th. It’s been 13 years, but this birthday was really hard for me. No matter how many years it’s been, our hearts long for our children. We will miss them and love them forever. The death of a child changes us forever. My heart goes out to all parents who have lost children. The loss is so huge and incomprehensible.

  6. I am searching for advice on how to help my husband through a similar situation. His 24 year old daughter, my step-daughter, was murdered a year and three months ago. Her murder is still unsolved. He refuses to seek counseling of any sort as he does not want to rid himself of his anger over the situation. As her father, he partially blames himself for not being able to protect her. My heart aches for him. Can someone please offer advice or reading suggestions. He has a 17 year old daughter as well. We need to know how to help him through this.
    My heart goes out to all of you. We have all been forever changed by our losses.
    Thank you in advance.


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