In a heart-breaking tun of events, we lost Ruby Reed’s grandmother Helen yesterday.  While I am stunned and shaken by the hole she has left, Debra is shattered at facing a future without her mother.

There is no replacement for a mother.  Grief is a sorry, flimsy substitute.

The details are grim and remind me of my own, my wife’s, my parents’, my child’s mortality.  An unexpected weekend stroke followed by a few days of teetering on the edge of hopeful and then tipping suddenly into the worst possible outcome.  By Thursday the doctors confirmed, Debra’s mother had left us in all but body.  In turn, she had hollowed out shells in all of her family and friends.  The gap she leaves is impossible to fill.

She will no longer be late for dinner.  I will not have to worry that she will leave an empty glass in the fridge so that I don’t wash it.  Visits won’t be put off or changed at the last minute and my wife and I won’t have to continually bicker about them as a consequence.  There will be no more big Christmases and, while I would have said that was a relief, instead it feels sharp and cruel.  How terribly unfair.  If I have cried a bucket for the loss of this woman, a person who loved her daughter and granddaughter past what I thought was ever possible, Debra has sunk in an ocean of tears.  This is RR’s third funeral in her short two years of life, losing two great grandmothers and a beloved grandmother.  Unfair doesn’t begin to cover it.

Think of us.  If you’re the praying kind, pray for us.  Let go of her for us as we cannot ourselves.  Most of all, shower each other and your daughters and your sons with a bit of light in Helen’s honor as she loved nothing more than people, particularly children.  Although all of our hearts have a vacancy, knowing that you are lighting up your own hearts for your loved ones gives us a world of comfort.

11 Responses

  1. I am so sorry for your loss, and RR’s loss, and most especially Debra’s loss. I just lit a candle in Helen’s honor. It’s red, and smells a bit Christmas-y; I hope she would approve. I also think I’ll make a point to make sure Critter and my parents get a chance to “teleconference” (as they call it) this weekend.

    Here is a thing I have found true for myself about loss: what hurts the most is the loss of the parts of ourselves we have given to the one we loved and lost. The parts of themselves that they gave to us remain. Maybe that’s a little comforting to you; it’s been of some comfort to me. In any case, I wish you all love, and peace.

    Please let me know if there’s anything we can do.

  2. I’m so very sorry for your families loss. You will all be in my thoughts and prayers.

  3. I’m very sorry for your loss. I too lost my mother suddenly and far too early to a brain aneurysm. Like you, we rode a wave of tentative hope to devastation.

    The hole she left remains, 16 years later. But a friend then told me words I have never forgotten because they were the truest thing anyone told me then. And that is that it never hurts less, but it does hurt less often.

    My thoughts are with you and your family.

  4. We are lighting a candle in her honor, and as a symbol of love and strength for all who loved her. Sending peace and comfort. xoxo

  5. What a beautiful tribute & request. Of course we will hold each other & your family in the light today.

  6. So very sorry for your loss, I am keeping you, D & RR in my thought today! {{{hugs}}}

  7. So sorry for your loss. It must have come as such a shock. I’ll be thinking of your family, and will hold my own extra-close today.

  8. My heart breaks for you, RR and Debra. I am so sorry for this loss. Losing a loved one is always hard, and even more so when it is unexpected. My thoughts are with you and the rest of the family.

  9. So so sorry to hear about this. Sending lots of love and good vibes your way!!!

  10. Condolences, blog friend.

  11. I’m so, so sorry to hear this. You are all in my thoughts.

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