**Disclaimer: I hope this one isn’t taken the wrong way by anyone who reads it. I write so people can get a glimpse of what it’s like to live with a child missing, but I hope that those who have not been through it never have to understand what it feels like. I don’t want anyone to feel bad because you don’t get it. I hope you can stay blissfully unaware**

Today was an interesting day. My wonderful husband did our taxes yesterday (Thank you wonderful husband!!) but there was a tiny error so he got an e mail saying it was rejected. This led him to call me this morning to ask for our boys information, which led me to look in our important papers file. I found the information that I needed. I also found this:


And the Police report from that day (which I didn’t take a picture of), and funeral home papers, and also this:


From a Mothers day card when he was small. I love the GIANT comma, and the fact that even though he wrote that around age 4 or 5 his handwriting was so distinctly his, and similar to how it was at age 15.

After that morning of finding those grief triggers I went out with my youngest to do some grocery shopping. I hate grocery shopping. I hated it before. I hate it on my best days. I really hate it on days when grief is already triggered. I felt like I wasn’t myself, moving around in a cloud. I felt unrecognizable. I saw another mom from the heart world, talking to someone, and I knew today I just couldn’t stop and chat. It would have put me over the edge. Then I had to go to another store to get the rest of the groceries. I sat in the parking lot for a few minutes, almost too exhausted to go in. Because grief does that sometimes. So we sat, and I gathered myself and we went in. The rest of the day was rather unproductive, I just couldn’t focus on much of anything.

In the evening I went out with a couple of friends and this is where the luxury part comes in. As we were finishing a group of firefighters came in. Immediately I wondered if any of them were on that call on April 8, 2016. If any of them tried to save my boy. Then they got a call and immediately left. After a few minutes they left the fire station (the restaurant was right next door) in their trucks with lights and sirens. And I realized that most people have this wonderful luxury. They don’t have to associate the death of a child with firetrucks. Most people don’t even bat an eye in a situation like that. And that is a luxury.

There are lots of different things this applies to. When I’m irritated that my husband is home late-that’s a luxury- because someone else has had to bury theirs and would do anything to have the luxury that I have. Even when Gabe was growing up I saw it in the world of having a child with a serious health issue- I would have loved to have the luxury of a first ER visit being something minor rather than a diagnosis of a complex heart defect. Having a healthy child is a luxury.  I’m having trouble thinking of other examples right now in my grief brain fog, but I’m sure those reading know what I mean. The thing about this is we don’t realize that they are luxuries until that luxury is gone. I didn’t look at firefighters or firetrucks that way until my child was gone. And now I can’t see them and not think about that day.

If you don’t understand what I’m talking about, or this is the first time you have thought of these things- be thankful and appreciate that luxury.

Today had some rough spots. Tomorrow is a new day.


***Gabe would have turned 18 on March 20. I didn’t blog that day, as we tried to keep busy. I feel kind of guilty for not writing something on his birthday. Being a grieving mom is hard.***

Author: griefmom

I am a single mom to 3 wonderful boys- 2 on earth and one in heaven. I work for a local hospital helping people learn how to be healthier and access resources. I'm Catholic and have faith that I will one day see my son in heaven. This blog is about my journey- as I figure out who I am in the face of an unimaginable loss. Life is difficult but beauty can be found after the struggles.

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