Thursday, August 13, 2009

Life After Losing a Child

I've been thinking a lot about my friend Michelle. About a year ago, she lost her four-year-old boy to DIPG (a rare brain tumor). Michelle and I weren't terribly close--she came into my life as my realtor--and I only met her son once. But her story affected me profoundly.

I have children, one 9 and one 2. That's probably why I feel so affected. It's why crappy movies on Lifetime can bring women to tears--it's way too easy to imagine how your whole world would crumble to dust if the light brought by your children were extinguished. I've been following Michelle's journey through her grief on caringbridge and on facebook. I keep wishing for something I can do to ease her pain, even knowing that, were that grief my own, there's nothing anyone could do.

Without you,
my child,
there's no joy in a yellow punch buggy
glistening in the sun,
no wonder
in a green moth
clinging to our screen door,
or dark clouds
drifting across a full moon.
Without you,
a squirrel eating a nut on our deck
can burst through the patched-up dam
of my heart
and drown me anew
in tears.

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