No More Training Wheels

Left to right: myself, my mother (Ruth) and my sister (Amanda)

Left to right: myself, my mother (Ruth) and my sister (Amanda)

I gave birth to my son on March 16, 2014. Seventeen days later my mother died on April 2, 2014. She was 53 years old. She did not get to meet her sole grandchild in person.

The first thing that struck me was the thought that as I am still becoming a mother, I lost my mother. It’s like swimming in the deep end of the pool without water wings. Aren’t we supposed to have the safety net of calling our parents for advice? And now I don’t have that. Her wisdom and knowledge of child rearing is utterly lost to me. To me and to my sister.

Right now? Right now, I’m still in the anger stage of the grief process. That’s not true. I alternate between anger and depression. But that’s normal. Even if I wasn’t on the hormonal rollercoaster of new parenthood, it would be normal to feel that way. It’s hard to look on the bright side right now. When I take a picture of Gibson, I think, “I should send this one to my mom.” But I can’t. And that hurts. The remembered knowledge of her being gone hurts anew every time.

Thankfully, I still have other amazing people in my life. My mother-in-law was the first person I called after hearing the news. I still have a wealth of love and information about being a mother there. When I just don’t know what to do for Gibson, when we have to make a difficult decision about his health, when he has his pride wounded at school or his heart broken by a love interest- we can still call my mother-in-law for sage advice. That’s comforting.

And there’s the rest of my family. They can’t replace my mother’s loss. But they’ve all always filled different roles for me. They’ll fill those same roles for Gibson. My sister, father, step-father, grandfather, grandmother, uncle, aunt, etc. They’ll all be there for me in my new role as parent.

What it boils down to is… my mother is gone. Forever. And it’s going to take time for me to come to terms with that. I wish she could have met her grandson. I wish I could have told her I loved her one more time. But that one more time would never be enough. I’d always want one more “one more time.” We can’t have that. My mother’s time was up just as her grandson’s time began.

I can’t end this post for some odd reason. I want to wax lyrical about her laugh and smile. I want to tell you all the little sayings she had. I want to remember everything good about her. And I could fill pages and pages with all of that. With a three-week-old on my hands, there’s no time. In fact, he’s starting to fuss now.

Instead, let me just share a song she loved. One she told us all she wanted played at her funeral. And so it will be.

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22 thoughts on “No More Training Wheels

  1. I had no idea. I am so sorry. I can’t imagine what you are going through dealing with such a range of emotions in such a short period of time. Please feel free to add me to your list of moms for advice, to lend an ear or a shoulder.

      • Big <> coming your way. Losing a parent is never easy. I lost my dad from a heart attack when I was 17. For what it’s worth, I dream about him from time to time and feel that is his way of checking in on me and vice versa. Take comfort in knowing that your mom lives on through you, your sister and now Gibson. Rely on your friends and family for support. We are here for you. ❤

  2. You are one of my best friends. I absolutely hate that you are having to go through this pain and anger of loss. There are no words of comfort, because nothing can help make it better. Hold onto those amazing words that she shared with you, her laugh, etc and share them with Gibson as he’s getting older. He’ll know her by all you share with him. I’m here if you need to talk!

  3. I’m so, so, so, so sorry for your loss. I had no idea. A friend of mine lost her mother suddenly in January and it is a deep pain to be sure. Her brother and his gf/wife were pregnant with the first grandchild on that side. My friend already had two children who met their grandmother. Her brother and his wife will never know the feeling of calling up his mother for advice or their child meeting her grandmother. I know that is little comfort but you are not alone. I have seen many people I know in the past year lose a parent or deal with ailing parents. I hope the pain will ease over time and that you continue to get the support from your loved ones who remain. *hugs* and condolences.

  4. Kristin – I am so sorry to hear about your mother. She was very young which is even more sad. I know she will always be with you, though, as you say the things to Gibson that she said to you (and swore you would never). It may sound trite, but she really will still live through you, your sister and your families as you remember her and keep her in your heart always.

  5. Kristin, I was also hoping and praying that she would recover. That I guess, was not the plan. I have been praying for you and your sister and wondering what you must be going through just having your son and losing your Mom. I watched my niece go through that with my sister and I can’t even imagine the ups and downs you must be experiencing. I am so glad you are talking about it and not pushing what you feel down…. it is so dangerous to not share these emotions. You are a courageous and strong woman and it seems that you are an amazing mother already ❤ Continuing to keep you in prayer every day, every time I think of Ruth (which is a lot!) every time I think of those she left behind, especially her two precious daughters whom I know she loved so much! God bless you Kristin and your sister Amanda too. My heart is with you.

    • I hope you’re right about being a good mom. I am trying to stay open about it specifically to avoid serious depression. Bottling things up didn’t serve me well in the past. Thank you for your kind words.

  6. I am heartbroken for you! You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers. Death is never easy to face, add the hormones and wow. I lost someone on Christmas eve at 25 weeks pregnant. Super rough. Don’t be afraid to seekprofessional help if you need it, grief can be a very dark and trying thing.

  7. Pingback: I Admit It | Hungry For Motherhood

    • Thank you. I do occasionally. Yesterday, found a care package she sent for Gibs before she got sick. I think I’ll be keeping the box she wrote our address on for awhile.

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