It’s Monday. Nobody likes Mondays. For Frack, it’s the last Monday in the last house he will ever share with his brother. Last night was ugly. This morning wasn’t much better. For a young man who often chooses to grieve in private, life without his brother is sometimes too much to take. I wish I could explain what it feels like to hold your 15-year old son on the stairs and try to comfort him through this inexplicable loss. There were no words as we sat there in the dark. There were no words this morning as he stared out the window on the drive to school, trying to hold himself together enough to get through the school day. There will be no words when I leave here in about 15 minutes to recover him from school because he just couldn’t do it. We have similar feelings. The torment our family lives with is something only we can understand. But Gavin…he misses Noah on a whole other level, in a way that even I can’t put into words. How do you parent that?
From the moment Frack was born, he’s had Frick to guide him. Until now, since this horrific accident, he’s had his brother when everything else was constantly changing. They are 23 months apart to the day. They shared a stroller, and a bedroom, and 15 years of bro code. When I think about what it must be like for Gavin to all-of-the-sudden be left alone in this world, it literally takes my breath away. For me, the silence in this house is deafening. No more fighting. No more laughing. No more banter. I cannot fathom the silence in Gav’s heart without his brother. I cannot. imagine. I cannot imagine what it’s like to have your lifelong friend, the person who is supposed to be there as loves come and go, as parents pass on, just ripped from you in such a horrible way. I cannot imagine what it is like to watch your best friend slip away from you and feel completely powerless to stop it. And when it’s over, when your best friend is just gone, I cannot imagine what it is like to live in the shadow of the enormous hole he’s left behind. How do I parent that?
I want to help him. I want God to take away his pain. I would give anything not to have to watch my surviving child suffer such a horrible experience–to take away his pain. I want to be strong for him. I want to parent him. I want to be the mom that can make it okay for him. NOTHING about this is okay. My baby is so lost without him. It kills me that I can’t make it better.
I can’t fix this for him. I can’t fix it for any of us and it devestating.
A friend of mine who walks this same journey with me said she had someone tell her that they need to “move on.” I’m thankful no one has said that to me yet. Because how? How do you move on from this? There is no recovering from this. You don’t. You just live with it. Gavin has to live with this. We have to parent THIS. Every day for the rest of our lives. There’s no moving on, just moving forward, one shitty step at a time.
I am absolutely heartbroken today and I don’t often ask for prayer from people, but please, it might help.
God, give me strength to parent my surviving child. Help me find the words or the actions that will relieve his suffering, even for one second. Please give him some relief today. Take away the awful images in his head. Replace them with the love Noah feels for his brother. Heal his heart, just for a minute. Help him find some relief. Amen.