You’ve kept track of my every toss and turn through the sleepless nights, each tear entered in your ledger, each ache written in your book. Psalm 56:8, MSG
Perhaps this title gives you “word whiplash”, a double take as it were. That’s okay. The title looks a bit strange on paper to me too, but this post is about mothers losing their children to suicide which you may not have interest in. If you stop reading here, you won’t hurt my feelings. Since there is 1 suicide death every 66 minutes ~ actually 99 suicide deaths every 66 minutes around the globe, I think the topic is worthy of the time it takes to write and yours to read. Most of us know at least one family who has lost someone they love to suicide. Unless a mother precedes her child in death she will outlive her child, surviving the aftermath of terrible loss. I know this grief first hand so I hope you will give me a little wiggle room with my choice of words. They are intended to bless us both.
If you are not a mother, but you lost someone you loved to suicide, perhaps you are a sibling or a dad or a friend? I can speak around your pain and perhaps there are many similarities, but I cannot speak from personal experience to your grief. Each is unique. A mama’s grief is unique. It is this one I know and have known for 8 years. It’s not an easy journey as you may know. It is a tough assignment and certainly takes more than it gives, but there is gain in the giving back to help others along the same journey. This is what I do. In writing this blog, I drop back to link arms with you and we walk and share together. Hugs are exchanged. Tissues given. And in the sharing, our loads are lifted temporarily. I hope you have experienced this for no one need walk alone. There are many grief support groups out there and many as close as a click on your PC. If you aren’t familiar with grief sites on Facebook perhaps you will look for them. I was astounded to see the number of people, mostly women and mostly mothers so if you are a mother you will be in comfortable company of those who “get it”.
May I speak frankly? Suicide is a word fraught with drama. As I have written before, it is often used in circles where it does not belong, especially in the media as an attention-grabbing word, me thinks. From sportswriters to newscasters, they all use it and I have had to learn to accept it. What else can be done?
But what of those closer to us: family, friends, coworkers. Is there drama around suicide there too? I say “yes” because that is my experience. Funerals and weddings seem to bring out not only the best, but also the worst in human behavior. My memories of our memorial service are murky with the actions of others around me totally out of place and unacceptable, but I was powerless to stop it or change it at the time so I must live with the memories of it. But there is something I can do. I can speak openly in hopes that it will strike a resounding chord in some of you who will share it with others for maximum exposure.
I’d like to share my thoughts about funeral drama. Every family is different. Perhaps yours surrounded you and continue to support you in varies ways. Trust me it’s a blessing when they do. But some of us cannot think about the loss of our child without seeing the faces of those who tried to steal the day for their own purposes, therefore:
*I have given myself permission to move them out of my memory surrounding my child’s death.
*They are excluded from any thought I have about my child going forward.
*I choose to honor my child’s memory by keeping my grief pure with his name engraved on it. My tears have given me clarity over time. I will continue to shed tears as will you. I choose to think of them as pure as rain drops, glistening rainbow colors in the sunlight with prism-like beauty. His memory deserves care and I will give it most tenderly.
I know others miss him and grieve in their own way. Bless them! I am glad they honor my son too, but they are outside the circle of my heart. Within me is the heart of a mother designed by the Creator with huge tear ducts! We can cry at a whim. We fall asleep drenched in tears, do we not? Each breathing moment our minds struggle to think about anything or anyone else especially in the beginning when grief is raw and bleeding. If you desire to move certain faces out of your memory, then do it. No one else need know. No one else around you can understand your mama heart, can they?
There is only one who truly understands. It is He who created us mamas with an enormous capacity to love! It is God, our heavenly Father. He knows all things so I assume that He, alone, understand our pain. So I talk to Him about my son all the time. I have no words, but I ask Him to write through me. If you are touched deep in your heart at what is shared here, please consider that it is the touch from God’s own heart. Our loving God understands mama grief. He is a super snuggler so fear not as you approach. He welcomes us with open arms and we can stay on His lap as long as we like and return time and time again. He offers His handkerchief to dry our tears and murmurs encouraging words that our heart understands.
There will come a day when we will cry mama tears for the last time. He has promised to dry our eyes for perhaps the last time. There will be no reason for tears of sadness because there will be no more death! Until this amazing day, we have reason to hope and bright blue words just seems to fit these beautiful promises.
Stop your crying and wipe away your tears. Everything you have done for your children will not go unrewarded.
I will bring them back from death and from the land of the enemy. You will be a part of My royal family and I will always be your God.
I will wipe away all your tears and there will be no more death, or sadness or crying or pain. The former things are forever gone.
Jeremiah 31:16 & Revelation 21:2-4, paraphrased