Thursday, December 9, 2010

Processing Grief - So hard, yet SO worth it!

It's been a challenging past few weeks for me and the kids.  We've been processing a lot of their grief together.  As great as it is to be able to do this with the kids, it is tiring and emotionally exhausting for all of us. 

It seems that their grief is not something that they can experience briefly then be able to quickly move on to other things.  Because a lot of their past and pain has been coming up a lot lately, we've had to tone things down a LOT. 

Outings have been very rare, and even our homeschooling routine has had to be flexible in order to allow the kids to feel what they're feeling and to process it.  We've been referring often to their life books and adding to them.

Because so much of their past is shared I often have several kids crying at once.  All of them need me to wrap my arms around them.  All of them need me to listen to their heart.  All of them are hurting.  Yet I am only one person.  At times, I feel so torn.  While I have 3 of the kids sitting on or near me, I leave one to cry on their own sometimes rolling around on the ground in fear that their grief will overcome them and become too much. 

Their rages and tantrums have escalated.  There are several more holes in the walls of their bedrooms.  Their behavior has regressed dramatically. 

Meanwhile, my sweet 19 month old baby needs her mama to comfort her while these rages go on.  She doesn't understand why all of her siblings are crying so much.  She doesn't understand why they are yelling, throwing things, breaking holes in walls.  She gets scared.  Last night, she got so scared she threw-up.  My heart aches for her, it aches for them.  Sometimes, I don't know what to do, who to help, how I can go on. 

It's been SO difficult! It's pulled at my every heartstring. I've cried wracking sobs nearly every moment I get alone to myself. I wonder if I'm up to the task. I wonder if I can ever be enough for them. I grieve that I cannot physically and sometimes emotionally meet the needs of all of them.  Sometimes I feel so worn out emotionally and physically from it all that I send them to their rooms for our daily quiet time knowing that they are not ready to leave my side.  Often their raging escalates during this transition.  Then, I hold my baby, rock her to sleep, and I cry some more.

Then something miraculous happens.  Today my son came out of quiet time with a hand written note for me.  it said:

"Mom ,
I love you mom so much mom.  I will never let you go mom 'cuz you are the best mom.  You help me so much mom.  I'll never let you go mom.  I love you so much!

That does a mama's heart good!  I'm crying even as I type this.  I know this is all worth it.  I know that I am witnessing miracles.  I know that I am so privileged to be able to do this.  And most importantly, I know that I am not doing it alone.  I know that our Lord is involved and His healing hands are touching the hearts of our family, including this mama's heart who often doesn't feel strong enough for the task that lies in front of me.


Tanner and Shasta said...

Hey doll! That note from your little boy melts my heart. You're amazing. Those kiddos are so lucky to have you. Be sure to let Janae know when you're in town next! We can do a girls lunch again. :)

Log and Annie Pearce said...

Hey Sis, this post really touched me. Everything you do does make a huge difference. You are an incredible mother heather! You are changing your childrens life with your love, patience, kindness. I love the note Kishawn gave to you. It is so true. The lord is watching over you and knows your heart. I love you sister more than anything you are working miracles and we can all see the change. Love you

Jillian and Crew said...

Hang in there...I know exactly the "torn" you are talking about.
Blessings to you all.