No parent should ever have to bury their children. I can tell you first hand, it's the absolutely worst pain you can ever feel. Knowing he is in a better place and not suffering or being shot at every day is a good feeling, but that is always over-shadowed by the pain and sadness that comes from knowing I will never see him, touch him, help him, smell his smell, or ever see his children on this earth again. It's heartbreaking and at times it feels like it will actually kill me physically.
I struggled yesterday missing him terribly especially when sitting on the deck listening to the country music station and Allen Jackson's song "Wanted" started playing. I immediately started to cry. I couldn't hold them back even if I tried. I sent my sister a text and told her it was playing and she said "And I have my Mt. Dew t-shirt on!" (one of Chad's favorite t-shirts for those that may not know). Of course, I cried even harder after reading that.
Today I was just digging around online and found a video that my sister made that apparently if I knew it was out there I had forgotten. It was so sweet and while it made me cry (of course), it also reminded me that I am lucky to have the support system I do and to have a family that loved Chad so much. I know they miss him too and I know they feel like they lost a part of me too when he died (and they did), but knowing they are there for me helps me get out of bed every day. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CNtPZs2KPFg&feature=related
There are many days I don't want to get up, but I don't have a choice. I have to go on and still help take care of my family, but some days are so much harder than others and I suppose that will remain the case for the rest of my days on this earth.
So much has happened in our family since Chad left this earth and I know it would be so hard for him to see what some of us have had to go through. I was worried about that one day and I don't know how many other Gold Star parents (or any parent that lost a child) feel this way, but I wondered.... does he see us struggling, does he know the mistakes we make, does he see us upset? I finally had to ask a pastor friend, because I was so burdened by things he might be seeing down here (you know how people always say, oh he is looking down from heaven). Well, I never thought about it until this pastor friend told me that the answer to that question was no, because that would be hell. I had never thought about it like that before, but it made perfect sense when he verbalized that to me. I don't worry about him seeing things on this earth that might hurt him or upset him anymore. Now I just thank God for little things that give me a little imaginary hug when I need them most, like rainbows, orange butterflies, hearing Allen Jackson's song http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wa9w5VFfhao&ob=av2e, etc. That does give me a small amount of comfort when those little things happen and even more comfort knowing he can't actually see what is going on down here on earth.
I know certain things about Chad that others may or may not know and one thing I do know is he would never want his wife so live a sad and lonely life the rest of her life. He would want her to find love and happiness again and live a full life. I know he doesn't want to see his family going through so much grief or his friends struggling so much from missing him or feeling guilty that it was him and not them. I know Chad, he would never want that. He would not want any of us to have any regrets or to stay in a sad place. I just know that would never be his heart. Therefore, I do believe what my pastor friend said to me, because I know that would make Chad sad and he doesn't want us to be sad.
I hope that every parent that has had the unfortunate experience of losing a child believes that their child would never want them to stay in state of sadness or feel guilty. Those children love us and the way we would hope that our children would go on with their lives and find a way to be happy, that's what I believe they want from us. They understand we will be sad and miss them (they expect that), but they would never want us to stop living life and finding happiness when we can. That would make them feel so bad.
I hate not having my baby boy on this earth more than I ever thought I could, but it was God's plan to take him when he did and to spare the lives he spared. Some days are easier than others to see that, but I do know that Chad would never want his family, wife, and friends to live the rest of their lives like that. He would want us to all live, love, laugh, and be happy. I know this as his momma bear.
|My double rainbow|
|My orange butterfly... stayed by my side all afternoon while working in the yard :)|