It's a boy! We have a new grandson, and all are doing fine.
Amazingly enough, I did fine that day of his birth. Like anyone awaiting the birth of a child, I was excited, nervous, and every other emotion you could think of as I awaited the news of his arrival. When the time finally came and I was allowed in, there he was, a perfect little miracle. I did not cry, I was just so happy to see that mom and baby were all doing well, and all had gone well.
Of course there was a lot of bustle as there always is after the birth of a child, as nurses and doctors continually check on mom and baby. The pediatrician came in at one point, examined the baby, and told the parents that he had 'stork bites' or 'angel kisses.' These are red marks that go away in time and his were over both eyelids. Immediately I heard angel kisses and thought to myself, Auntie Rachel sent him off with a kiss. My daughter told me it was not only Rachel, but his late uncle Richard, on his dad's side which would explain the two marks.
Rachel was very much a part of that day, and I was not the only one who sensed her presence. I felt that she had more than likely met her new nephew way before we did. Comforting, to say the least! And even though it has been a busy few days, it has been wonderful in so many ways. Life is amazing, and even though it refuses to play by the rules, it is wonderful just the same.
Grief remains a constant part of my life, sometimes it remains silent and we go about our day, and at other times it can be intense, catching us off guard, it all depends on what is happening. We find ourselves 'reinvesting in our life.' Reinvesting, what do you mean reinvesting? We begin to let go and allow the deceased go on with their new life, as we gradually find acceptance and move into our life without the deceased. We allow ourselves to love others again, not to replace our loved one, but to share the love we are capable of giving.
When we begin to reinvest in our lives, we find ourselves going back to work, or as was the case with me, new employment in a totally different line of work. Others take on new hobbies, especially if they have lost a spouse, and there were certain activities they enjoyed together. Still others, find that they now feel that they can share their experience with others, hoping to help them in their journey. There are so many ways in which bereaved individuals can begin to reinvest in their lives, while still honoring the memory of their loved one.
As we begin the process of reinvesting, we find that memories are much less painful, and bring comfort and a smile. We no longer worry about forgetting our loved one, but more so remembering the beauty, love and gift of their life. Some set up a special place in memory of their deceased, for my husband and I, it is Rachel's memory garden and a special chest that holds mementos of the love, care and thoughts of others during our darkest days. For others, it's a special area in their home, it can be whatever works best for you and your needs.
It's not to say that this forward movement, does not sometime elicit pangs of guilt. As we find ourselves becoming more fully immersed in life, we often feel guilt creeping in. Even 5 years later, I still feel a sense of guilt, as if maybe my memories are slipping away, or I am forgetting. This is okay, and we allow ourselves the feeling, but remind ourselves of that we will always have the memories, because of the love. And as a mom, I have so, so many wonderful and beautiful memories of Rachel to last me a lifetime and then some.
Regardless of where we have been, we know that there is always forward motion, always change, always a newness awaiting discovery. As we begin the new chapters in our lives, we learn to welcome them, to accept that another page has been turned, and that we are constantly writing and re-writing our lives. We learn to live anew, we learn to love again, and we become stronger because of where we've been.
My life has taken turns that I least expected since Rachel's death. I am working in a totally different field; I have gone back to school, and will be completing my certification this coming December. With this certificate I will be able to act as a grief facilitator, helping ease others through their bereavement and grief journey. I am able to comfort others who are grieving and somehow lighten their load, when possible, because I have now experienced a significant loss, and understand the pain. I now have two beautiful grandchildren, proof that love blooms all around us, in both expected and unexpected places. So much has happened, so much has changed.
My life is a constant whirl of motion, taking me in new directions, allowing me to grow, to become renewed each and every day. We are asked to continually invest in ourselves, and occasionally to 'reinvest' in who we are becoming. Grief is difficult, but when we allow ourselves the space, when we go through it, rather than circumvent it, we allow ourselves to be 'reborn.' And though we may come out kicking and screaming, we do come out, we do make it, we are fine, and we are given new chances to make life all the more worthwhile, for not only ourselves, but for those around us as well. So that each and every day is a 'birth day,' a new beginning, and a chance to cash in on our investment.
Blessings! and until we meet again.