You never get over the loss of a child. As a parent watching my daughter grieve her baby girl I feel like I not only lost sweet Emberly my granddaughter, I lost MY daughter too. She will never be the same.
There is such a feeling of hopelessness when you can’t stop your child’s pain. Our children will always be just that, our children.
I will never stop wanting to comfort her, protect her, fight for her or advocate for her.
It can be exhausting, frustrating time consuming. It can wear on your own soul.
At times, I have struggled with my own depression. It is not the same as having major depressive disorder. I have periods of depression. I do not need medication, I am functional. But there have been days I felt like I could not get out of bed, felt lost and hopeless. Many nights I cried myself to sleep, silently…alone.
Emberly passed November 1, 2015. In January 2016, still deep into raw grief I was standing in the kitchen looking outside over the deck into our bare burning bushes. I felt empty, tears streaming down my face. I cried out to God. “Why!?” After a few minutes I begged Him for a sign. “Please Emberly if you are out there, if you can hear me, send grandma a sign!” Immediately there was nothing. No sign. I wept harder, and anger towards God welled up in me. The tears stopped as my anger grew.
I began to busy myself with dishes and chores around the house. This happens to be one of my coping mechanisms. Later, I glanced out the window again and there they were in the bushes. Cardinals, a male and a female. My heart leaped with joy. We never fed the birds, I had never noticed or so much as paid attention to birds. But these beauties stopped me in my tracks. There it was, a sign.
You don’t have to believe in the sign that gave me hope. It was for me. You can call me crazy, say it was a coincidence, it very well may be. But I took it as a sign, it was my moment with God and Emberly and that is what mattered that day.
I watched them bouncing through the bushes, grabbed my camera and took some pictures. I felt a little smile, a little hope. They didn’t stay long, but I wanted those cardinals to come back, and so the bird feeding began.
I began to research backyard bird feeding. Best location for placing feeders, what kind of food to attract a variety of birds, but most importantly the cardinals. I wanted them to feel safe and welcome in our backyard. Soon after the feeders went up, I was impatient watching the feeders hoping the birds would come. It took 5 or 6 days but they came. The cardinals came, the blue jay, housefinches, chickadees, titmouse, sparrows, goldfinch, juncos, woodpeckers, hummingbirds and even ducks!
I grabbed binoculars and my coffee and would sit by the window for hours. I continued to read about backyard feeding and spring of 2016 we broke ground for Emberly’s garden. My husband and stepson dug out a small pond that Easter and my therapy, my healing began.
As always thanks for reading , be gentle, be kind. Remember I’m just a mom. Please like, share and comment.