They found me. I was hiding from all of the Thanksgiving merriment in the basement, napping on the couch in a dimly lit room. My daughter and her husband came bounding down the stairs saying they were looking for me. She grabbed my foot and shook it. “Are you awake, Mom?” she exclaimed. I grunted, “Now I am.” “Mom, we have something to tell you “ with pure excitement in her voice. I knew… She pulled out a University of Kentucky onsie and shared the exciting news. They were due to have a baby in July! I burst into tears and they both sat down and held me.
That was a year ago. As I look back, I think about the mixed emotions I was feeling at that moment. Why so many tears? I realize that grief is so complex. In one breath I couldn’t be more excited to be a grandmother, but the next breath, her daddy isn’t here to be a part of the incredible gift of grandparenthood.
I lost my husband in May, 2011 to suicide. Our worlds changed along with us. Nothing is the same. I had dreams on how my husband and I would experience the moment together when we would hear we were to be grandparents for the first time.
My grandson was born on July 2. What a joy he is to our family! He smiles everytime I tell him his KK is here and it melts my heart. I am proud of the parents they have become. The many milestones my husband has missed.
Last night, he wouldn’t go to sleep and continued to cry. I went to his room picked him up, held him tightly and rocked and rocked and rocked. He fell asleep quickly, but I needed to hold that little sweet bundle of joy and lean into a bit of grief.
The word joy kept coming to mind as I held him. There is much joy in the midst of our heartache missing our loved ones. My world is definitely different and nothing I saw coming. When I slow down, get quiet, and focus on all that I have that is good it helps heal. I have worked hard at capturing joy again and it has returned piece by piece.