Attending was hard. Plain and simple. My allergies were acting up because I forgot to take my medicine before I left, and the flowers were getting to me, but those breaks gave me time to take a walk outside and spend some time with Heather too.
They spent time explaining that suicide loss is really different from other losses and that it can be a long path to find our new normal. I guess that hits home, because while I miss my Mom terribly since she passed away in the beginning of October, the loss of Heather the end of October has been a debilitating loss. The whole in my heart is just huge and it aches like nothing has ached before. It also hurts that I can't call my Mom and talk to her about this.
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention has an excellent package that they put together for us and I would like to share one of those pages with you.
Just So You Know - A Message for My Friends
- I can't stop grieving just because you believe it is time for me to move on.
- I can't stop hurting just because you do not understand the piercing pain in my heart.
- I cannot stop my tears from flowing just because they make you uncomfortable.
- My heart is not suddenly mended just because you believe that I have grieved long enough.
- I will grieve the loss of my loved one for the rest of my life.
- There is not a "certain order" or a "normal" way to grieve. Grief is an individual process.
- I need you in my life, so please don't give up on me. Just let me go through this process and be there by my side.
- Sometimes, being there in silence is enough.
- Don't ask me if I'm okay. There is only one answer for that.
- I may eventually laugh but that doesn't mean I don't hurt.
- Remember that holidays, birthdays and anniversaries will always have an effect on me.
- Forgive me for not asking about you for awhile. It doesn't mean that I don't care.
- Whatever you do, please don't pretend that my loved one didn't exist.
- Understand that I will never be the person that I was before and that is okay.
Just so you know.