The hours following Landon’s passing have been very difficult to say the least. After a very hard night, I napped briefly Friday morning, then woke early to ensure I could be there if Karson came looking. I have no idea what the right way to parent a 10 year old through their second sibling loss is…in fact that was awful just to type. But I wanted to make sure he saw me up, coping, and ready for the day. Even if my eyes were swollen and red. We’ve cried together, and when he wants to go to Landon’s room we do. We’ve also laughed together, and I remind him grief isn’t a straight line, or a recipe. It just is, and he can experience it however he needs to. I’ve been so proud of him.
I’ve been in a fog. Maybe I’m physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually tired. But I’m also feeling like a fish out of water. I’ve dedicated so much of who I am and how I live to making sure the twins, and then Landon, were properly cared for. How they were doing and what they needed drove my thoughts, my actions, my pulse.
I’m the caretaker. I’m the face cleaner and the hand holder. I’m the medicine doser and the treatment giver. I’m the night watcher, and the day monitor. My body wakes me up in the night if there’s a beep a cough or a cry. I can’t sleep past 6:00 because my body says “there’s someone waiting on you to start their day off clean, warm, and loved”. At 8:00 am and 8:00 pm my internal clock alarms that it is time for medicine. All day long my internal instincts alarm – “watch, be ready, take good care”. When I walk the hall I look in his room to instinctively check on him. When I stand I almost utter “I’ll go check on La La”. Then I remember he isn’t there.
I am about to start a journey to figure out who I am now. But even as I learn more, I already know I am a grieving mom, but also still a mom. I am still a caretaker. I’m the face cleaner and the hand holder. I am a grief counselor and a comfort giver. I am a well-being watcher and a laugh monitor. I am simultaneously the creator of fun, the master of memories and the wiper of tears. So much about dealing with this grief is bigger than me, and may become my most important mothering yet. All day long my internal instincts alarm – “watch, be ready, take good care”. And I will do my best.