Monday, May 25, 2009
Has something bad ever happened to you, and you feel guilty, like it's all your fault? Then you realize that it's, indeed, not your fault, but then years down the road, you suddenly feel that same guilt come sweeping back over you? The feeling of you should have done more, or what if I did it this way instead...or what if I only...
Sometimes those feelings never go away. Sometimes, no matter what you do, they never never go away and they always rear back into your life at the wrong moments. And you know what's worse? There is nothing anyone can say or do to make you feel better. Friends and family can say "It's not your fault" or "You did everything you could, it's time to live your life now". That sucks. Don't say that to someone who suffered a loss.
I'm recently back into contact with my late husband's son. He was a little rough around the edges when I first met him. Temper tantrums, didn't know what to do with his anger, or how to show it. Didn't know that there were boundaries and limits. But as he grew before my eyes, he grew into a wonderful kid. A kid that was loved by everyone that knew him and then instantly by people he just met. I swear we could be out shopping, and everyone would stop to say hi to him and hug him. I think this is one of the reasons we got along so well. He was a MAJOR people person.
Anyhow. I had to go from talking to a 13 year old in a 13 year old's language, to talking to an 18 year old. An adult for cripes sake!! I don't know what his likes and dislikes are anymore, I missed out on 5 years of this person's life. I swore to myself that I wouldn't lose contact with him. That I needed him in my life because he was such a big part of my life. My first mothering experience (even though he's NOT my biological kid). I wanted to go to his graduation, I wanted him to be a big brother to any kids I may have had (if he wanted to, of course). I wanted to make sure that if he could, he would go do stuff with us. Like camping, or swimming, boating, things like that. And I lost 5 years. That realization hit hard after I hung up the phone with him today, after talking to him for 20+ minutes.
Then? There came that guilt. Flooding back. Instantly. What could I have done different to make sure his father stayed alive to see him grow into this adult. Why did I do it. Why couldn't I keep him alive. I should have..I could have..why didn't I....