A dear friend of mine shared an article with me recently about the concept of time when faced with the inevitability of death. Tragically the author had been diagnosed with cancer and died just a few weeks after the article was printed.
Beautifully written and poignant, it struck a chord on how Chris and I view time since we lost Eddie.
Time is the strangest concept in grief. Time used to mean so many things: planning our future or reminicising about our past, time away to have a break, time to ourselves, time for other people, time for a change, give it time, haven’t got the time. And so on…
Time, in its essence, indefinitely moves us forward. As we approach Eddie’s first anniversary, society and some religions dictate that the year of grieving is over. It’s time to get on with our lives.
We feel far away from these societal expectations and still find ourselves navigating through the murky waters of grief. We have lost our first and only child. Not only are we grieving Eddie, we are also grieving our lost identities. We were once parents. We are parents. And we try to channel our need to continue to parent Eddie into everything we do and keep his spirit burning brightly.
Life ebbs and flows with time, punctuated by the very highs and the very lows. We have been shown how, without warning, life can take the cruellest of turns. Such is the severity of the loss of a child that it is almost impossible to believe that life will indeed take a turn for the better. We cling to hope but this lifts and falters from one day to the next.
Time, for us, is a dichotomy. It moves us forward but we are stuck in transition. In no man’s land. As time moves on, it has become our friend and also our enemy. Yes, we have more coping mechanisms but it has not lessened our pain or our longing for our darling boy. And what we want most from time is an impossibility. You can’t fast forward, or press pause, and you can’t rewind.