Today, it is 12 years since my child, my daughter, my Leah died.
I am going to take this day to share 10 things we should all know about being around parents after the death of a child.
- Don’t tell me how lucky I am to have other children. This does not change the fact that one of my babies has died.
- Don’t say you know how I feel, unless you have lost a child.
- Don’t tell me my child is in a better place. No matter how strong your religious beliefs, would you prefer your child to be in “ heaven” or at home with you?
- Don’t say I will get over this. You never get over loosing a child. You learn to go on. And this is with you every day for the rest of your life. Don’t ask what I need. Just show up, and help. Nobody who has just lost a child is going to ask for help.
- Talk about my child. Our worst fear when a child dies is that they will be forgotten. Don’t be afraid that talking about my daughter will upset me. Not talking about her makes me cry.
- Don’t look away when I say I have 3 children. I will always have 3 children.12/11/14
- Loosing a child can destroy the strongest families. If my husband and I cant hold each other up right now, help one of us. Help us together or alone, so our family has a chance of making it through this
- Be there for my other children. They have lost their sister. They are seeing their parents in a way that is frightening to small children. Take them out, tell them I love them. Tell them I will be more like my old self eventually.
- If you call me on the first anniversary of her death, please, call me each year. This is a day that will never be easy for me
- Don’t tell me you want me to be happy. Don’t ask me to smile. I will find my way, with your love and support, to a new normal. Be patient with me.
Marilyn Oswald says
As I sit here watching Lenore’s video, with tears streaming down my eyes, sobbing, this could have been me. I have been spinning my wheels for almost 8 years trying to get someone to listen to me. Everyone says “oh well, its just one of those things that no one can explain.” When his surgeon saw us for the first time, she said, If he doesn’t ever regain consciousness, its the way God wants it.” For eight years my son has been dead. Eight horrific years.
Not a day goes by that I don’t try to think of something I can do to prove that his breathing decreased and he just floated away. Everyone thinks i’m crazy. “Its time to let it go,” they say, or “you have to get on with life.”
I get so angry at those people.
I don’t know how to do what Leah’s mom has done. I don’t know how to make my voice heard. I’m drowning.
Marilyn Oswald, mother of The Amazing Steven Oswald, gentle, intelligent, funny, and deceased at 23.
I am so very sorry it has taken me until today October 14 2015 to see this heartbreaking comment.
If you come back to the site and see this, please email me. The contact information is above.
Put personal Re: Leah in the subject line. ( I get a lot of spam )
Again, I am so sorry and I would like to speak with you.