Thursday, January 12, 2017

Empty

For the first few days/weeks after Olivia's untimely death, I was still numb.  In fact, I could almost set my mind to believing that she was just at summer camp (she's never even gone to summer camp before).  This was  only"temporary".    But NO, it wasn't.  She was not coming home.

Sitting down at our dining table  for dinner but now i was just the three of u.  Looking at her empty chair made it all too real.   Walking past her bedroom on a daily basis, knowing that she wasn't going to lay her head down on her pillow ever again......  I started to realize that this was not temporary.  It was, in fact, permanent...........  This was our forever.

I'm sure that every mom who has lost a child handles the empty room differently.    I turned to listening to audible books about death and read that one mother kept her child's room exactly the same.  Almost like a shrine.  In fact, one mother describes that she even left a dried up piece of bubble gum that her child stuck on the dresser drawers.  

I can relate. 

 Some parents chose to close the door because the site of the empty room was too painful.  

Again, I can relate.  

In my case, I went through phases.  I couldn't keep her room as a shrine because my mother-in-law stayed with us for a few days after Olivia's death and she slept in her bed.  The shrine was already null and void.  

Hundreds of sympathy cards were piling up in our home.   What do you do with all of these cards?  Which, by the way, I still have them AND still haven't read all of them.  I started storing them in Olivia's room.  Additionally, while preparing for Olivia's funeral service we rummaged through all of her beautiful artwork and priceless writings that she had saved under her bed and in her desk drawers.  

The guidance counselor from her school kindly delivered Olivia's artwork and other school items and work that she left behind.  We also received wonderful tributes to Olivia from her friends and classmates.  Those all went straight to her room.  

Her room was no longer empty.  It was filled with the reminders of our loss.

Oddly enough, Erick and I felt comfort spending time her her room even if it was for a few moments.  We felt connected to our sweet Olivia.

 Then there were the moments of use walking past her room with the open door that would bring me to my knees.......  

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