Child Loss Coping with Loss Coping with suicide Grief Hope and Healing Memories and Stories Parents Who Have Lost a Child to Suicide Reflections after Suicide Loss

I Want to Believe: Remembering and Healing After the Loss of My Son

Autumn Joy

I Want to Believe–

Hope Means Hold On,

Pain Ends

I Want to Believe-

–that with enough love and laughter, books and reading, friends and family, children grow up to be happy

–the stage is set early for dreams to come true: Skies dazzle in brilliant blue, clouds drift idly, stretches of pastures and woodlands lend serenity

-all families stick together–even when dads leave, even when the crazy-making stories start

–that being a child means becoming a teenager; that becoming a teenager means becoming a young adult; that becoming a young adult means launching a world of one’s own–ad infinitum to infinity and beyond

I Remember You

I Remember–

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and laughing at “Who’s Line is it Anyway?”

Power Rangers. Your blue and white, diamond-checkered costume, replete with Power Ranger sword, jumping from the top stair and my catching you just in time

Froggie and Small Pig, Henry and Mudge, the Rugrats and Charlie Brown, school classroom parties with Halloween costumes and all that candy (chocolate always was your favorite)

Sitting in the car and crying after I took you to kindergarten for the first time (I had to let go–I still don’t want to let go)

And I Remember-

Friday night football games watching you play alto saxophone in marching band

Making 5-layer Mexican Dip from scratch, the food processor whirring with avocados you halved

I remember pepperoni pizzas (times many for all your friends), and new sneakers (Nikes) for puppy dog feet.

I remember academic scholarships and high school graduation robes and the gully in the pit of my stomach when I had to take you to college.

I remember butterscotch sundaes after band concerts and stage fright at your first piano recital.

I remember when you told me you hadn’t felt happy in at least 7 years. You were only 18.

I remember when you told me you hadn’t felt happy in at least 7 years-

You were only 18

I Want to Believe-

that pain in childhood can be eased and healed with love

I’d Like to Believe-

that the Easter Bunny always delivers chocolate cream eggs filled with peanut butter

I’d like to believe that what’s broken in teenagers can be fixed by growing up.

I’d like to believe that what’s broken in teenagers can be fixed by growing up

If I Could Have

If I could have stopped the trajectory Dylan was on, would my life be different now? I’d certainly like to think so. Such a beautiful start, forever ruptured by where, in reaching for stars, my son fell from sky.

And now? Now it is I who hurl forward on this trajectory set in motion 9 years, 4 months, and 3 days ago. Eclipsed. Lacking permanence of sun. Shadows cast fallen amidst sliver of sky.

And in a world spinning madly, I cling to this one still, small hope-that I will see you again.

When I get to see you again

I will hold on

I will clutch you

I will never let you go

“Once Upon a Blue-Sky Moon”

In reaching for stars, my son fell from sky

Once Upon a Blue-Sky Moon

And once upon a blue-sky moon,
We sailed our ships in your bedroom,
With stars for light, we fled the dark
But the lightening flashed, 
And the sky grew dark.

You tucked away your childhood dreams
On wings that soared beyond infinity,
Your love in me and me in you,
But out of reach, beyond what I could do.

I launched your dreams
You took great flight
On wings alone you soared too high
But you found ways to onward flee
To galaxies beyond my means.

I watched you drift through hazy sky
And chalked it up to a teenage angst,
But oh my son, if I’d only known
I’d have reached right in to your dark night’s soul--

 I would have held on
 I would have clutched you
 I would have never let you go
 But you Told me 
“Mom I love you”
 Oh my child if I’d only known.

So I kissed you and I held you,
And I said goodbye,
Not knowing, blue-star moon,
I would lose you that night.

You lived, you breathed, alive in pain
Through storm-dark nights and cloudy haze
But I didn’t know what I couldn’t see
The damage done beyond my means.

My sky is dark, my nights deep blue
My winter’s come, my star’s with you,
Without you here I cannot fly
My wings you clipped 
When you took your life.

And I live on and onward flee
Towards you my son and to infinity,
Where dreams come true and you live on,
And we fly again around planets and sun

With stars that glow against the moon,
Your love in me and me in you.

I will hold you, 
You will clutch me
We will never let go,
And you’ll tell me, 
“Mom, I love you”
And tears from earth will overflow,
And I’ll know then, blue sky-moon,
To never ever let you go.

© Beth Brown, 2021 
 All rights reserved

I Will See You Again

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