Saturday, September 28, 2013

Has it really been 2 weeks?

It's been two weeks since Mitchell passed away.  I have so many emotions and thoughts running through my head constantly I'm hoping by writing this down my brain can slow down for a few moments and give me some rest.  I can see my kids two other kids are changing and learning slowly as they are dealing with completely new parents.  Ones who are around more often, can spend more time with them... have such low energy they move like robots, cry so often they don't even notice half the time.

YESTERDAY.  Jake had the day off so we drove the kids to school together.  Late.  Reesa ran off to class so we walked Jansen to his class where the door was locked and the lights were off.  Another kindergarten class was walking by and the teacher told me there was an assembly and Jansen could go with her class.  So we waited to the end of the line and started walking with Jansen to the cafeteria.  Just then Reesa rounds the corner crying because obviously no one was in her class room either and she was scared. So Jake went over to her and explained there was an assembly.  I watch him take her hand and tell her he would help her find her class and away they went.  I just started crying.  I was sad Mitchell wasn't going to this assembly.  I was sad to see all these kids and know one of mine wasn't here anymore.  I was sad because the pain in my heart seemed unbearable.  Jansen of course is talking a mile a minute to all the kids in the other class while comfortably holding my hand.  He announces, "My mom is crying because she is sad that Mitchell died."  I chuckled to myself because in the previous years if I EVER cried around Jansen he would get very upset and tell me to stop crying. He has always had a very hard time seeing my emotions and being ok with them.  I was also a tiny bit amazed that Jansen had caught onto the reason for my countless tears.

Our kids were being recognized for our schools fundraiser so Jake and I stayed in the back to watch and just cried.  Several teachers came up to us including one of Mitchell's and hugged us.  Everyone is so nice.  We feel so loved to have others sharing this painful time with us, and offering support.  We snuck out as soon as we could and drove to Fresno to buy Jansen a dresser.  At the store we pointlessly walked around. Zombies.  Jake said, "so this is what it's like to exist now."  We came to the mattress section and sat down.  Probably for 45 minutes.  It was so hard to focus and try to get anything done.  It really does feel like "the blind leading the blind." How do you motivate someone else when you have nothing?  Then you finally get 2 ounces of energy to stand up, only to realize your spouse doesn't have 2 ounces to move so you sit back down.

Well we finally found the one dresser my mom had picked out 2 days before Mitchell passed away and told me to bring Jake back to see it.  Of course Jake looked at it, and said "let's get it.  Can you load it in our car?"  And we were done.  We went to Cheesecake Factory for lunch because I wanted cheesecake.  There we took turns crying in between the waitress coming and going.  It seemed like we should explain to everyone we saw we were so WEIRD because we had just lost our son.  We hardly talked, as friendly as we could be to strangers, which wasn't much.  But I was glad we were 40 minutes from home where we probably wouldn't see these people ever again.  Jake and I talked about our relationship and how hard the coming years were going to be as we were both entirely different people.  It was hard to provide the comfort to each other that in the past came so naturally as usually only one of us needed comfort and the other could provide it.  Now we are both broken, hurting and depressed. I love Jake.  He is an amazing father, husband, and person.  It's hard to see him hurting so much, but of course he is hurting.  How could he not be?  We have lost part of our meaning in life, our identify, our precious son!!!  It was so nice to have a day with Jake where we didn't have a HUGE list of things to accomplish to get done.  We even talked about how if Mitchell was alive we probably would have left him with the nanny and come to Fresno without him because he hates that drive so much...

Yep that's right.  He hired a nanny!  She worked one day before Mitchell passed away!   What timing.  We signed a year contract, so we have a nanny to help us take care of our two easiest kids.  I feel like a joke. I spent Holly's entire first day showing her how to care for Mitchell and how to meet his needs.  Her job description has drastically changed.  I guess Heavenly Father knew we needed someone to take care of us, not Mitchell. For the first week Holly fed me almost every meal.  I probably wouldn't have eaten otherwise because nothing but desserts sound good.  Holly has been great.  She is very unassuming and easy going.  She can take our kids and distract them when it gets too much for me or Jake, or if we just need sometime to cry.  Our kids love her!  She cleans our house and does the laundry and all the things I haven't even thought much about.  I'll start a load forget about it, and come back to it being done and put away.  Magic!!!  I am so grateful for her.  Honestly it would be SO HARD without her.

Last night Jake took Reesa to the ward's daddy daughter campout.  I got to have a date with Jansen, and my poor 7 month pregnant body was in no condition to leave our house.  In my attempt to be fun we had cold cereal for dinner, made popcorn and put on a movie.  Jansen told me "Don't forget the soda!"  So I let him have soda too.  I cried through most of the movie, while Jansen snuggled me.  When it was over I told him he could sleep in my bed.  He was ecstatic!  No fighting bedtime tonight.  As I tucked him in I couldn't stop crying.  It was that deep painful cry where you think your life is going to end.  It hurt so deeply and I was trying as hard as I could to suppress the tears, making them so much more painful.  I just wanted Jake to hold me and cry with me.  It was our first night apart since Mitchell left and I was aching for both of them.  Jansen wanted me to lay by him until he fell asleep, but due to the massive amount of pain I was experiencing I knew I needed to spare him. I got up to leave, and darling Jansen jumped out of bed, ran to my nightstand grabbed a box of tissues and put them next to me and said, "mom, now you don't need to walk anywhere to get some tissues!"  I was so touched.  Here was my 6 year old son telling me I would rather have you sit here and cry then leave me.  Jansen, who I told you in the past lost his temper over seeing my tears... was now asking me to stay.  I laid down next to him and tried to cry silently until he was fast asleep.

The best way to describe my tears is dramatic.  I have cried lots in my life.  I thought I knew what hurt was.  I kept thinking last night... when I was younger, I cried thinking my life would end, when I broke up with high school and college boyfriends.  That crying was very tense as it consumed my whole body.   I have matured so much since those years... But here I was again only this time I can't see how I'll ever recover.

We chose this life. We knew it would be painful.  We knew we would have to pass through sorrow in order to love and be loved.  We knew before Earth life that Mitchell would not stay with us long, but did we understand how much it would hurt to lose him unexpectedly, before we wanted?  Did we understand it would change us forever?  I have imagined losing a child, but because it wasn't real I did not feel this kind of pain...


  1. There are simply no words. You just amaze me with the bravery you have to simply keep going each day. To get out of bed, put on shoes, and even pop a bag of flippin popcorn!
    True bravery and courage.
    And that Jansen! What an absolute sweet, perceptive, caring son. I love your family deeply. We pray for you guys constantly, especially now during this extremely difficult time. Love you!

  2. my heart is so heavy for you. I am glad that you have the nanny to help and that like you said, perhaps Heavenly Father knew you would need her. Oh Kellie, I'm so sorry for your pain and for Jake. I am so sorry that you are without Mitchell. You are so loved!

  3. Reading this makes me ache for you. I know I don't understand, and nothing will make it better, but even in your grief, you express your feelings and experiences in such a touching way. We have been praying for you. I'm so glad there is someone there to help you and take care of you. And what a blessing to have Jansen adapt to your situation and just want to be with you, no matter what. We'll keep the prayers coming. xo

  4. Oh this breaks my heart. I'm so sorry, Kel. Still praying for you and your little family.

  5. I'm so sorry for your suffering. We are praying for you and love you all!

  6. Oh Kellie, it is so sad to think of you suffering so much. It reminds me of a book I read about a man who knew he was dying and he would walk around and look at people and think, "how could they care about curtains when I am dying?" (Death of Ivan ILych by Leo Tolstoy, I recommend it to you at some point). It must be so hard to keep going on with regular things when you are hurting so much inside. Another book I love is Grief observed. CS Lewis talks about his feelings when his wife dies. If you don't have it, I'll mail it to you. let me know.

    What a blessing to have a nanny! What a sweet woman. I am so glad she is there. The Lord is aware of you and will continue to bless you in so many ways. You are loved by so many and you are an inspiration to me. Love you! And thanks for your note on my Calvin blog.

  7. Kelly, you are such an amazing mother. Jake is such an amazing father. Michel was such a lucky boy to have such great parents while on this earth. Your strength is amazing and it's very apparent to me what special kids you have been blessed with. I love you guys and wish I could do something to ease your pain.

  8. I have read this post 3 times, and, every time I read it the tears just stream down my face. I can't even begin to imagine what you are going through. I think that you two are amazing, and I believe that Mitchell was as lucky to have you as you were to have him. I'm so glad that you have so many people around you to help and support you! I wish we lived closer so we could be those people too. Love you guys!

  9. Thinking of you today. Hugs from San Diego.

  10. I love you Kellie. I'm so glad you have that Nanny, it seems like a tender mercy that she came just when you would need her so. I wish I could hug you!