Several months ago I was with a friend who told me that the shock and/or denial of having a child die could last for a year or more. “Not me.” I thought. I can get through this faster than that. In less than two weeks it will be a year since Shayna passed. Not a day goes by when she isn’t the first thing on my mind. Kayla is home for the summer, so I wake up and think of her being in her room and I realize Shayna is not in hers.
There’s something missing about Shayna’s passing. I’m in several groups with grieving parents. Almost all of their stories involve an accident or an illness, some explanation, some concrete event that makes the passing real. We don’t have that. We never got to say goodbye like you would with an illness. An accident has an explanation. Shayna just slipped away. One moment I was saying goodnight to her with no idea it would be the last words she would ever hear me say.
I’m not in denial anymore. I know that she’s not coming back. I can confidently say that phase is over. But the shock, the unreal feeling of it, I truly don’t think that will ever pass.
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