Healing is a journey and not a destination. It takes time – a long time – a life time. I don’t believe we can be truly healed until we see our children again, but we can go on. We can live our life in God given peace and joy. We can find ways to help and heal the,world in the name and memory of our child – which will bring us help and healing as well.
The one constant that I have heard from every parent no matter how they are dealing with the loss of their child – no matter how strong their faith is – the missing. I miss my son. I miss my daughter. Just missing them is the piece that is simply the hardest. The gut grenching grief subsides – but the missing never ends – for love is eternal – it transcends this world. And that is the point exactly, we are still in this world. Our children would want us to live a life of purpose until we are reunited. So how do you start the process of healing even if your child’s death was a very long time ago but you know in your heart of hearts that you never allowed yourself to feel the pain to the very core of you so a healing has never taken place?
You might find attending a monthly meeting of The Compassionate Friends will give you a time and place to grieve with other parents and to share memories of your child. The Compassionate Friends, Inc. is a self-help organization offering friendship and understanding to all bereaved parents, grandparents and siblings. They currently have 630 Chapters in all fifty States plus Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico. You can locate a Chapter near you through their website. There is no charge to join this organization. If you are further along in your grief, you might want to consider starting a chapter, if there is none close to your home.
COMPASSIONATE FRIENDS CREDO
We need not walk alone. We are The Compassionate Friends. We reach out to each other with understanding and hope. Our children have died at all ages and from many causes but our love for our children unites us. Your pain becomes my pain as your hope becomes my hope. We come together from all walks of life and many different circumstances. We are a unique family because we represent many races and creeds. We are young and we are old. Some of us are far along in our grief but others still feel a grief so fresh and so intensely painful, that we feel hopeless and see no hope. Some of us have found our faith to be a source of strength; some of us are struggling to find answers. Some of us are angry, filled with guilt, or in deep depression; other radiate an inner peace. But whatever the pain we bring to this gathering of The Compassionate Friends, it is a pain we will share just as we share with each other our love for our children. We are seeking and struggling to build a future for ourselves, but we are committed to building that future together, as we reach out to each other in love and share the anger as well as the peace; share the faith as well as the doubts and help each other to grieve as well as to grow.
I also have recently have found about an organization called GriefShare. Their website is GriefShare.com. They are a Christian support group where you can find help and healing for the hurt of losing a loved one – a spouse, child, parent, relative or friend. The core of this program is a video seminar featuring top experts on grief and recovery subjects. The videos are produced in an interesting to watch television magazine format featuring expert interviews, real-life case studies, reenactments and on-location video. After viewing the video, the group will spend time discussing that week’s video and talk about what they are going through. Thousands of churches through the country offer this program. The website has all the information about ordering the materials you need to become a volunteer or leader of a GriefShare group as well as the location of the nearest group.
Many incredible organizations and charities have been started and established in honor of a deceased child. MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Drivers) was founded by a mother whose child died because a drunk driver made a deadly decision to get behind the wheel of an automobile instead of calling for a cab. Establishing an organization or charity as a legacy for your son or daughter might be something you feel called to do.
Many Scholarship Funds which allow students, who might not otherwise be financially able to attend college and pursue their dreams, have been established in memory of deceased children. Establishing such a scholarship program as a legacy for your son or daughter, might be something you feel called to do.
If your child died from a drug overdose, you might want to consider becoming involved in an organization that helps young people beat their addictions. If your child died of cancer, you might want to start a walk or golf tournament to raise money for one of the many established cancer charities. If your child was passionate about animals, you may want to raise money for a local shelter. If you lost an infant or had a miscarriage, you may want to volunteer to rock babies at the local Children’s Hospital.
You might want to plant a Tree, Garden or Flower Bed as a permanent growing memorial to your child. Or write their life story for future generations to read.
Pray for God’s divine plan for your future. Pray for God to give you a reason to get out of bed in the morning. Pray for God to show you a way to create a project to honor your child’s time on this earth. Pray for God to bring life to the rest of the days of your life. Pray for God to restore joy to your household and help you love and be there for the children who are still here with you