Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Avoidance


In the past month I have twice avoided people with whom I did not want to discuss our loss. Just pretended that I didn't see either of them.

Today, as I was having lunch with two friends, a dad I knew from our children's many mutual Montessori years ~ in fact, we served together on the board of the school for a lengthy period of time ~ walked up to our table to say hello. He did not know about my own switch two years ago from teaching to seminary, and so I assumed that he also did not know about any of the other recent events in our lives. When he asked about the kids, I sucked in some air and said, "I guess you don't know about what's happened; we lost Chicago Son to suicide last September."

He assured me that he did know and had, in fact, either spoken or written to me last fall. And I acknowledged that I have very little memory of those first months.

That was the second time, I think, that I have had to say it out loud.

I don't even have to go outdoors for the nearly another 48 hours. I'm really glad about that.

10 comments:

Julia said...

very painful. like ripping a bandage off a wound I imagine. I'm sorry you had to do it.

Michelle said...

{{HUGS}}

Michele said...

it's so hard... no matter how much time goes by...

thinking of you...

karengberger said...

That's one of the reasons I stayed at home so much, & for so long after Katie's passing...it took all of my energy to deal with my own & my family's feelings. Facing other people's responses, dealing with their emotions, seeing the fear in their eyes, remembering people's names, whether I had heard from/spoken to someone...all of this was more than I could handle on a regular basis. What is interesting is that my husband found it helpful to go to work, but I couldn't have gone to an office & functioned there.
I think you are veryVERY brave & strong to do all of the things that you are doing. It's only now, nearly two years after Katie's passing, that I feel well enough to engage in socializing, and a meeting or two. I hope you will honor your true, inner voice and do only what you feel impelled to do. God bless you!

Gannet Girl said...

Karen, my husband found it helpful to go to work, too, a few weeks after our son died. I guess it's a good thing that someone did, but I couldn't possibly have.

I did too much this week. Church and a meeting and a lunch out. I am usually ok with one-on-one and I am ok in a classroom where I am basically anonymous, but anything that requires actual engagement with more than one other person is really, really exhausting.

And I foresee it getting much, much worse as the summer moves forward.

Karen and Joe said...

I am so glad I found you today. You speak my heart's language, and it's so hard to find someone who does. Thank you for writing. We just had our one year anniversary of our son's passing. I have found my quiet place on a barrier island...at least for a month. I am grief/life blogging at joemaui.blogspot.com.
Thank you friend.
Karen

Karen and Joe said...

Back again. I just read your story from September on the other blog. I am so sorry for your many grievous losses... for Chicago Son and everything else that went with him. That's all I can say...there are parts of me that just want to curse, but I'll spare you. I am so, so sorry. For you and for me and for all who know this terrible experience, and ask for God's continuing mercy for us all. Thanks for visiting me and validating me and seeing our beautiful son.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

(((((GG)))))

Mary Beth said...

(((GG)))

christine said...

Just a touch to you from me. think of you so often. the journey is less alone when i see others walking-or standing still, or lying down. just to know others know. you are dear.