"Thank heaven there is tomorrow. Because there is tomorrow, all our yesterdays have meaning and all our dreams have hope."

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Guilt

Logical or as illogical as it may seem . . . there are things I have (and sometimes still) feel guilty about.
I remember the moment we were told that you weren't okay, and the guilt settled over me like a suffocating blanket. What did I do?
I remember leaving the hospital with an empty baby carrier.
I remember the first time I was angry with God.
I remember the first night I wasn't there to kiss you good night.
I remember the first meal I ate after you were born.
I remember the first night at home while you stayed in the hospital.
I remember pumping milk instead of feeding you like a normal mommy would.
I remember signing consents for your surgeries, procedures and blood transfusions.
I remember the first time I turned on the tv.
I remember the first time I laughed - and you weren't there.
I remember the first time I cried in front of you - I never wanted you to see me cry.
I remember the first night I came home so exhausted that I forget to call the nurse to check on you before I went to bed - I woke up at 3 am and called.
I remember the only day I didn't see you - I was on my way to SLC with Grandma Cindy to wait for your life fight arrival at PCMC.
I remember leaving the hospital to buy shoes so my feet wouldn't get so tired standing by your bed.
I remember the first prayer I uttered that I didn't beg for you to get better.
I remember the next prayer asking for understanding.
I remember praying with your daddy about what to do for you.
I remember holding you in my arms until you took your last breath.
And after . . .
I remember walking away from your new resting place.
I remember the first time I felt peace about your plan.
I remember the first time I talked about you without crying.
I remember the first time I laughed after you were gone - I never thought I would be able to laugh again.
I remember the first morning I woke up without that automatic pit in my stomach.
I remember the day I actually thought, "Maybe things are getting better."
I remember the day I realized that things would never be better.
I remember the day we found out that you would be a big brother.
I remember the first time I felt like I might be able to love another little boy the way I love you.


Guilt is such an interesting aspect of grief. I know it is normal - and I know that it is normal to feel guilty over things that I shouldn't. At the beginning of Gavin's life I woke up every single day drenched in sadness, fear and guilt. One of the most prominent thoughts I have had about grief is that there is no reasoning with it. It is illogical and individual. I know that it is illogical for me to feel guilty about leaving Gavin one afternoon at PCMC to buy comfortable shoes. But I do. It was time I could have spent with him.


I also know that with time guilt can subside and reasoning can take it's place. I tend to be really hard on myself and I am learning that there are certain aspects of life I cannot control. With that realization has come freedom and portions of happiness.


Grief is cyclical. For me, it comes in waves. Sometimes it is calm and sometimes it is like a hurricane. Sometimes I feel angry - sometimes I feel guilt - sometimes I feel sad. However, I have noticed that my anger is less often and the guilt is (for the most part) subsiding. I have to have faith that I was as good of a mother as I could be, given the circumstance. As for the sadness, it still can be overwhelming, but the days are getting better. The comfort of a loving Heavenly Father and the memories of Gavin bring me peace.

5 comments:

Malia said...

Thank you Lindsay. I needed this today. You always know just how to put things into words.

Heather and Billy said...

Lindsay- You have a beautiful gift with words. My story is nothing the same as yours but I know guilt and grief well. I have read every single one of your posts. We grew up in the same stake but I don't remember if we actually knew each other. But you are friends with many many of my friends. I love your blog and wanted you to know that there have been many days where it has made a difference. I love that you aren't afraid to share and speak the truth. It helped me to do the same (if you read my blog read the entry from July 'Nine years ago...'). Also, I hear you are seeing Dr. Wilkes. He is fabulous and I hope you are as in love with him as I was. =)

Kevin and Natali McKee said...

That is a cute picture of you and Gavin. I love his hair in the picture. Did you ever style it with Gel or anything? I am glad everything went well with the Basket. Were you able to see the people you gave it to?
What kind of Tic did your bother have? I just don't know if he is being weird or if there is more to it. Kevin thinks there is nothing wrong, but it isn't affecting Zack's life right now, so it is okay. They want to do genetics testing and pair up the Chromosomes. Do you know how long that usually takes? It sounds like quite the process. It makes me wonder if it is covered by insurance.

cassi said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts Lindsay. And I love that last pic on this post of you and Gavin- very cute.

alli may said...

i know i've already said this a million times... but guilt was seriously made by a woman!!! it's a mom thing that we all have and feel in different amounts for different reasons in life, but we do indeed all have it.