In the past few weeks, I have had a host of good news personally and professionally. My daughter applied and got into the school of her choice starting in 7th grade. My son just found out he got into his first choice for college and is going to be running for a D1 track team. My book hit the best-seller list before we have even started to promote it, and I received an award from the McLean Community Center for Volunteer of the Year.
My sleepless nights began after all this stuff happened. I have always been a good sleeper, and early on found that the more stress I felt, the more my body needed sleep. My mom’s fall has brought on some new complications, but it’s nothing I haven’t had to manage through before.
When my husband comes home he asks what I was doing up at 5:30 a.m. when he left for the gym. “I don’t know.” I know something is bothering me but I haven’t been able to figure it out.
As I’m driving to a meeting it hits me. I can’t share any of the happy news with my parents. My parents were such a part of my children’s lives growing up since they came over weekly for dinner. They knew them well and we could celebrate all the wins — big and small. I’ve told mom about these life events when I visit and she smiles, but it’s not the type of response she would have given had I shared this news with her years ago. I also feel the sting of my dad’s death. He would have been so proud to know that my son went to Nationals for track as well as will be running in college, like he did.
My Pastor recently talked about how children grieve differently. One of the things she mentioned was that often the kids focus on “She won’t be here for graduation” or “He won’t be here to see me walk down the aisle.” It never hit me until today that even adult children feel this way about our losses.
My only joy comes in knowing that at least my dad is smiling down on our good fortune. Sadly, it will be sooner than I probably am ready to have my mom in that same place. Resigned.