An Open Letter To Newly Bereaved Parents

Dear Newly Bereaved,

I remember standing where you are. The world feels different. A vast emptiness closes in around your heart as you wrangle with the idea that your child is no longer a part of this world. Your world, broken. The last image of them burning in your mind because there will be no more. Don’t focus too long on the idea that it’s over. It will crush your soul and pull the breath from your lungs. Forever has new meaning. Torture.

How do I keep going? I can’t imagine my life without them.

Life is so unfair. You will realize that statement never held meaning until now. I don’t want to do this! I hate this! There is so much anger! The situation feels impossible. There is not enough hate for the life you have been thrust into without a single say. Everything around you seems to be spiraling. As it turns out, control is only an illusion. We don’t have any.

The mere mention of a death will always have the ability to transport you back to this moment. It will always be raw. These images haunt you right now. They replay over and over as your brain tries to make sense of it all. There is no sense to be made.

A heart cannot begin to process this level of pain. Very few people will be able to support you through this kind of pain. Believe me when I say it is not you! It’s them. You will learn that unless someone has experienced deep loss like this, they cannot begin to understand what you now know. You may be surprised to find the best support comes from total strangers. The people you expected would always be there in your lowest moments seem to disappear or be unaware of what to do.

Know that you are not alone, though it will feel that way. Grief is a very solo journey. Every one will experience it differently. What you feel is normal! It’s important for you to know that. So please do not compare your grief to anyone else. You will question whether or not you are crazy. You are not. Just do whatever feels right to you in the moment.

The struggle to find yourself again is real. It’s been 18 months and I am no closer. Be patient and kind with yourself. So much of your experience will define you. This grief journey is all about you. Find people that can support you in the ways you need. There will be casualties. Accept it.

It sucks being a member of this club. None of us ever expected to join. While every parent thinks about what it may feel like to lose a child, no one ever believes it can really happen. Unfortunately, it does. The reality of it never sinks in. What you do need to remember is your child is still with you. They are standing on the sidelines supporting you, cheering you on. They know how difficult this journey is for you. Keep going!

Much love! XO

4 Comments on “An Open Letter To Newly Bereaved Parents”

  1. Well said, all true..Not enough hate for the life we have been thrust into without a say. But we must release the hate or be swallowed up. A very difficult thing to do, but vital to survival.

    1. So true! The anger and hate can drag us down. It takes time to learn how to balance it with living and finding joy again. XO

  2. AMAZING & PERFECT! I enjoy your blog, it is definitely helping me with the loss of our newborn son last Christmas Eve! I used to have so much control & balance in my life, work, home etc…now that im grieving, the depression and constant thinking of my son blocks out everything else and makes it hard for me to focus! IT”S SO HARD for me to focus on other things i HAVE to do in life right now when it used to be so easy! This blog is a complete inspiration to me and others! i enjoy reading everything you write about knowing, someone else knows what i am going thru!

    1. Thanks for reading! Focus was a huge issue for me the entire first year. Not that it has gone away, but I believe we are forever changed. Much love to you Megan. I will think of you guys each Christmas as we also mourn our son.

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