When Richard, oldest son, was here for the Richmond Film Festival early in March, we got some time to spend together. (His film Cottonmouth got in the festival.)
One day I took him and his roommate out to lunch. While we sat there eating, Richard said, “Hey Mom, do you want to go to the screenings with us this afternoon?” I said,”Yes I can. No plans!”
Whatever plans I had, poof, they were gone. Fortunately I had taken the day off and cannot even remember what my plans might have been.
In the car before we got to Bow Tie Theatre for the afternoon short film screenings, we were singing in the car. I totally believe in car singing and car dancing. Within safety guidelines of course.
Before we went into the theatre we decided to make a selfie video. My back up singers were not so familiar with the tune despite an entire 2 minutes of intense practice!
I have to snatch moments of joy wherever I can. I have to learn to live with the grief and the loss. I have to redefine myself and figure out my purpose.
For many years that purpose was to usher my children, my youngest especially since he struggled, into adulthood. With that rug unexpectedly snatched from under me after his suicide, finding a new path and purpose has been brutally difficult. It’s like I’ve been dropped in a desert with no compass.
The life moments are the hardest–seeing his friends graduate, get married etc. While I am happy for these families, I can’t help but reflect that I won’t have these moments with my youngest child. And I won’t ever buy “he’s in a better place” because the better place is with his family.
That’s what forces me to find joy in anything I can. To give back whenever I can. Because that hole in my heart hurts and I need to find out ways to fill it.