Posts from the ‘Meghan’ Category

Three Months Later…

It’s about a week past the three-month mark of saying goodbye to my baby girl for the last time, and I feel like I am well and truly losing my mind.  I suppose this is normal; I don’t have much of a point of reference, so I can’t say for sure.  I am barely speaking to God right now, because I am so angry and hurt at what has happened to my daughter, to my life, to my family.  We are torn apart in so many ways, and I am not sure that there will ever be a way to fix what’s broken now.  It goes so much deeper and so much farther than just the loss of my beautiful girl…I find myself having to pray for God to forgive them, and for Him to forgive me for being unable to forgive them.  (Thanks, mom, for that advice…it really does help!)

People keep asking, “How are you?” and I feel like I am obliged to give the anticipated “I’m ok” answer, which is so far from being the truth that I may as well say that I’ve recently turned purple and sprouted a unicorn horn from my head.  Either way, it’s a bald-faced lie.  But let’s face it…most people don’t want to hear the truth.  I mean, really…who wants to ask “How are you?” and be told, “Well, I’m not doing so well.  I was driving to the store today and seriously considered driving my car into oncoming traffic, with the hope that I would die to escape this pain and be reunited with my baby.” Or, “Yeah, life really sucks right now.  I wake up praying for death, and I go to sleep praying for death.” Or even better yet, “I hate my life, I hate God, and I would do anything for one more moment with Meghan…just one…to tell her everything I feel and, well, let’s keep it real, to gain her assurance that she loved me as much as I loved her, and that nothing I could have done would have changed the outcome of this horrible, sick situation.”

Nobody wants to hear that.

But at this point in my “journey,” which is a word I am coming to hate, as it implies that it is going somewhere, when I know it will never really go anywhere but exactly where I am now…in pain and agony and despair…that is where I am. I guess over time the sharpness and clarity of the pain may recede…that is what I’m told, anyway…but right now, every breath is like glass in my lungs and there is this beating, screaming voice inside my head all the time.  I am angry not just for the years ahead that are now lost forever, but the years gone by that I missed, too.  And there is simply nothing in this world that I can do about either of these factors.  Not a single fucking thing.

I am told daily how “strong” I am, how admirable I am, how this, that, or the other person just “can’t imagine how you even get up every day.” My question for them is this:  do I actually have a choice?  I mean, is just lying in bed until I die an option?  Cuz if it is, maybe that’s what I should do.  Does that honor Meghan and her memory?  Maybe not, but if it would get me by her side quicker, I’m kind of all for it.

Her final memorial – read: gravestone – came in a little while back, and I posted a picture of it to my Facebook page.  There were all sorts of comments on how pretty it is, and how unique, and how appropriate to Meghan…and it is…but at the same time, I want to smash it with a sledgehammer.  It is the ugliest, most hideous thing I have ever seen.  It is an abomination.  It says my baby DIED at the tender age of 18, just days before her 19th birthday.  How disgusting is that?

Now, before you blow up the comments section, my Facebook inbox, or my phone with messages of concern, understand this:  I am not suicidal, per se.  I just don’t care if I die.  I am not scared of it anymore.  The thought of leaving this plane and going on to whatever is next no longer fills me with any sort of apprehension or fear, because wherever I am going is where my little girl is, and to be reunited with her is all that really matters to me at this point.

I know that a lot of people have gotten to a point where they feel that maybe I should be starting to “feel better.” I know my posts on Facebook have started to make people uncomfortable, and I’m sorry for that.  I have tried to avoid posting things like what I’ve written here, just out of consideration for my friends on FB.  I don’t want people worried that I’m going to “do something stupid.” I realize that I do have things to live for, but some days…honestly, MOST days lately…I have trouble remembering what those things are.  All I wanted for so many years was to have her fully and completely in my life…without middle-men, so to speak, telling me what I could/could not talk to her about, without worrying about phone calls being recorded, without demands of visits being supervised…and when it finally happened, she was snatched away from me again, this time from an even higher authority, and this time with no hope of return.

What am I supposed to do now?  Everybody has a book, or a therapist, or a … something … that I should try.  I don’t even want to leave my room, much less my house.  I did find a group called The Compassionate Friends that has a meeting once a month near me; they are a group specifically for people who have lost their children.  I spoke on the phone with the group’s leader night before last, and she came the closest to anyone I’ve spoken with in the last three months to truly *getting* it.  She told me that what I am feeling is normal, that this is the point in the process where I would be expected to be falling apart.  So, I will be attending the next meeting, along with my mom, my sister, and my niece.  Hopefully, I will find the beginnings of comfort, solace, and healing there.

I will keep you updated.  As always, thanks for reading, and feel free to address any comments/questions/concerns in the comments section of this blog.  Peace, friends.

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Questioning His Plan

I have so much in my life to be grateful for:  my family, a fabulous circle of friends who are always there for me, my health, a job that I enjoy (most of the time), and my faith.  Can one be grateful for faith?  I think so. I know that, without it, these past six and a half weeks would have been simply unbearable.  Without the certain knowledge that I WILL one day be reunited (again) with my sweet girl, I would go insane and just…give up.

It amazes me sometimes that faith is a two-way street; God has been faithful to me in some really amazing ways, and I will not ever forget that.  He gives back to me far, far more than I could ever give to Him; He is truly One of unconditional love and grace and mercy. That said, I do not presume to dictate to my Father in Heaven how to do His job; however, I do have to say that I am still questioning “why” He took Meghan so unexpectedly.  I have been told, over and over, that “it is God’s plan,” and I must confess that I grow weary of that response.  Obviously, it was God’s plan…that should not have to be stated.  But here’s the thing…the duck-billed platypus was also part of God’s plan and I think we can all agree that the platypus does not make a whole lot of sense, either. I mean, really…from Wikipedia, on the platypus:  it is an “egg-laying, venomous, duck-billed, beaver-tailed, otter-footed mammal.” I can’t be the only person who thinks that is odd, right?

My problem with people who just toss off the “God’s plan” response is that, even though it is a true statement, there is really no thought whatsoever in that “answer.”  It doesn’t comfort me, and it doesn’t encourage me.  I know old-school Christians (and probably some new-school ones, too) would say that we should not question God; my response to them is that God gave me a brain, intelligence to use it, and the proclivity toward understanding, so obviously, He expects me to ask questions, right?  So surely He would not say, “Yes, Angela, ask all the questions you like, just don’t question Me.”  Right?

I know that, as parents, we expect our children to do what we tell them to do, without question, so by that yardstick, yeah, maybe I shouldn’t question God.  But God is so much bigger, as a Parent, than we are in our little earthly roles.  For one…and this is a biggie, so hold on…while we can, and sometimes do, lose our children, God never loses His.  We are His from before our births until long after our deaths, into all eternity.  We can choose to separate ourselves from God, but He never truly leaves us.  And, as I was reminded earlier this week, we have to be honest with others and ourselves about where in our walk we are, so that God can meet us and minister to us in the place where we stand.  That is what He is best at.  Meeting us where we are and helping to heal us so that we can grow in Him.

So that is where I am right now…being grateful for what I do have, and trying to find a way to fit my new reality into the grid of my life’s experiences and just … keep living.  Meghan would have it no other way.

Reality Check

Every day, when I open my eyes, I have to adjust to this new reality.  It is the hardest thing about my day, without a doubt.  Even when the remainder of the day goes like yesterday went, with lots of random tears and fits of pique.  When I open my eyes and the knowledge reasserts itself – “Meghan is gone…” – I feel the same exact way that I felt in my car on I-85S that Thursday evening when I found out my baby was not of this world any longer.

It is like a physical, tangible thing, this pain.  It grabs me and shakes me to my core, it strips my heart bare, and it leaves my mind reeling.  Tears in the morning are basically the same thing as breathing, in this new reality.  I cry and moan and sometimes even wail, because the noise seems to help release some of the physical pain out of my head, and my heart.

I know that it will not always be this bad.  I know that “time will heal” and all the other clichés that people say to try to console me.  I know they are well-intentioned, but telling me that “Meghan lives on in my heart,” does not really lighten the load right now.  I mean…don’t get me wrong…it’s comforting, of course.  But I have not quite made it past the “I really just want her HERE in front of me, not so much in my heart,” phase just yet.  Right now, I take every day as it comes and try to concentrate on making it to the next one.

I do know that I have the best possible support system of family and friends that a person could ever ask for.  I don’t want to start naming names, because I would have to name everybody then, but I think those who know they’ve gone above and beyond know who they are.  I have definitely discovered who my truest friends are through this.

I also lost a longtime friend and my dad in the process.  I think they will each get their own post.  Not today, though.

I still have not dreamed of my beautiful girl…I really want to, but my subconscious just won’t go there; not that I remember, anyway.  Today, I woke myself up crying from a dream, but I don’t remember the dream at all.  It could have been about her, I guess, but I don’t know.  I am keenly jealous of people who casually say, “Oh, I dreamed of Meghan last night…,” even as I am happy for them, that they can see her and spend time with her, even if only in Dreamland. I believe she will one day come to my dreams.  I have to believe that.  If I didn’t, I might go a little crazy.

I also find it just insane the number of things, people, and places that call her to my mind.  She’s everywhere, all the time.  It’s unreal.  Just driving down the main drag through town, looking at restaurants we ate in together, the T-Mobile store where we got her first phone and added her line to my plan, gas stations we stopped at together, for goodness’ sake…everywhere.

I am going back to work in just a couple of weeks.  My employer has been amazing about giving me this time off; I could not have asked for better, where they are concerned.  After over four years of working there, they are like an extension of my family and they have really conducted themselves as such.  It makes me proud to work for a company that genuinely cares for its people.  I am nervous about going back, but I know it’s necessary.

Also, I came down with a cold Monday night, so I don’t feel well at all.  Nothing better than dealing with grief while battling congestion, headache, a rattling cough, and achy joints.  I was chatting with a friend of mine of Facebook the other night when I couldn’t sleep and she reminded me that God doesn’t give us more than we can handle and my family and I can be comfortable in the knowledge that, on the other side of the grief, we will be proud of the fact that God thinks we are strong people.

If that’s true, then God obviously thinks I am a complete bad-ass.

 

Dark Days

Apparently, I haven’t posted since November.  I just read that last post and, remembering how happy I was to have my Meghan with me for the holidays, it just about broke my heart, even as it soared with the happiness I felt in those not-so-long past days.  All of you who read here probably know already by now, but Meghan – my beautiful little girl – passed away at the age of 18…just a few weeks from her 19th birthday…on April 5th, 2012.

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**Disclaimer:  I am in a pretty dark place right now, but I know that writing will help.  Please be aware from this point forward that I am not going to filter myself.  I will not try to deliberately hurt or offend anyone, but I am hurt and offended and I am going to use this blog to help heal myself.  It is but one tool out of many, but if you see something here that causes you to be angry with me, do not comment hateful things.  Just go away.  This is really for me, it just happens to be a public blog.  /disclaimer

I’ve been advised that it would be helpful for me to write letters to those who have hurt me, or those with whom I am upset.  I would rather have conversation and two-way communication with them, but I don’t think it would be very productive.  I am going to write the letters, either way, but whether or not they are sent to their respective recipients…who knows?

I know there are stages of grief, and I suppose I have surpassed and overcome the initial one – denial – but anger, bargaining, and depression whirl ’round and ’round in my head.  I make deals all day long, to no avail.  I am always angry; at myself, at others, at my idiocy in the past, at others’ idiocy in the past, at God for taking my baby so soon…the list goes on and on.  And the depression…it is crushing at times.  I try to mask it, for the sake of those who care for me, but at times, it just doesn’t seem like there’s any point in going on.  That is not a suicidal thought, per se.  I have this theory regarding suicide, and it really is not an option.  If there’s any chance that would prevent me from seeing Meghan again, then I am definitely not doing that.

My beliefs are not the typical “Christian” beliefs; I imagine if you read my blog enough, over time, you will see where my viewpoint often leads me astray from being able to really even call myself a Christian, based on the “mission statements” and “belief systems” outlined on most church websites.  That being said, though, I am very much a child of God and a follower of Jesus Christ.  I say all that to say this:  I do believe that reincarnation happens…I’m not sure what the criteria are, or whether there is free will and choice involved, or if it is something that we all go through in order to gain some sort of enlightenment.  I know that I have met people – my 8-year-old niece for example – who I think of as “old souls,” and then there are pure innocents like Meghan, whom I believe to have been a brand-new soul.  As for myself?  I think I must have been a really successful person in another life, with all of the material things one could want.  I obviously didn’t appreciate them or take care of them enough, because this go around, my experience seems to be all about loss.  This is not a statement of self-pity.  I have lost so much in my 30-coughcough years.

My question for you is this:  Do you think you’ve been here before?  Does that completely go against your personal system of belief?  If you do think you’ve lived before, what do you think your life lesson is now, and why?

Random Musings

It was pointed out to me the other day that I have not posted in a while (like, since September!), so I am here today to share a few random things with you today.  Nothing earth-shattering or life-changing…just some things that are going on in my little corner of the world right now.

First, let me just say Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope your turkey day was just as much fun as mine was.  We had a somewhat low-key holiday this year, but it was still the best Thanksgiving I think we’ve ever had.  Meghan woke up here with us, enjoyed the day with us, and went to bed in her bed, in the room right next to mine that evening!  This sounds really simple and silly to you, if you don’t know our story, but let me tell you…this was the first Thanksgiving she has spent with us in over ten  years.  It was truly special to have her here, and as an added bonus, Meghan’s sweetheart of a boyfriend, Deni, joined us for the meal, too!

I mean really...how cute is this?

The final Thanksgiving Day blessing came in the form of my baby brother.  We thought that he wasn’t going to be able to make it by, but about ten minutes before we sat down to eat, he called to say he was on his way!  It made mom so happy, and I got to beat him at Mario Kart after dinner, so it worked out really well.  😉

Second, the school semester is almost over!  I will be so glad to see the end of this history course — it has not been the most fun I’ve ever had.  Oh, and speaking of school, I got an invitation to join Phi Theta Kappa, which is an honor society for two-year colleges.  I am pretty proud of myself for this; I don’t know for sure what the real benefits are yet, but it’s nice to have my 4.0 GPA acknowledged.

Let’s see…what else?  Meghan and I go tomorrow for the results of her ambulatory EEG…please keep us in your prayers that we get a great report!

And finally, I made an awesome discovery tonight for aunties and uncles everywhere.  It is a website called Savvy Auntie and it is a social networking site that celebrates the special bond between aunts and uncles and their nieces and nephews.  I knew as soon as I saw it that I would have to join.  I love being an Auntie!  Look me up there, if you decide to join…I am AuntieAngie.

That’s about it for now, boys and girls.  Thanks, as always, for reading…until next time!

Good Day

Nothing extraordinary happened today, but it was a very good day.

I had both Meghan and my niece Lizzy here with me today.  I got up this morning, made breakfast for the girls, and then we went grocery shopping.

We came home…the girls helped unload groceries, and then I put them away.  Afterward, they cleaned up the breakfast dishes and then did their own things for a little while.

A little later, Meghan got on my laptop to re-do her half-length diagnostic test for the GED – she’s been working hard for the last three weeks, and I wanted to see what, if any, progress was being made.

Out of five sections – Reading, Writing, Social Studies, Science, and Math – she dramatically improved her initial scores in three of them.  One stayed exactly the same, and one dropped a few points.

For a child that has struggled so very much in all aspects of academia, this is pretty impressive, after only three weeks!  I am so proud of her, for all the hard work she’s done.  It hasn’t all been easy and it won’t all be easy, but she is trying.

I am watching her grow stronger and stronger every day and it makes me so happy.  We still have a long way to go, and not everything is peachy-perfect, by any stretch, but we are getting there.

Today was a good day.

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