I wasn’t going to write anything today. Things are crazy at work right now. I’m still feeling like crap because of the bug that I caught. All I was planning on doing today was get on here long enough to leave a couple of comments and then I’d be done with the blog for the day.
Then this morning happened…
My wife, daughter, and I are still trying to come to terms with my mom passing away in July. While it broke the hearts of my wife and I, we’re older and are better prepared to handle our grief than our daughter is. For the first month after it happened, my daughter wouldn’t go to sleep without a baby blanket my mom bought her years ago and a flameless, battery powered candle that she had given Mom for her birthday a few weeks before she passed. Seeing her cuddling with those two items every night broke my heart again.
Eventually, she stopped sleeping with the candle in her bed. She began being able to talk about her grandma without crying. Then, we noticed that there were times when she would just be sitting there with a vacant look on her face. My wife and I could tell something was wrong, but whenever we asked her about it she’d say that she didn’t know what was bothering her.
A few weekends ago, my girls woke up before me and my wife saw that look on her face again. She asked our daughter what was wrong and this time there was an answer. This time she said that she was sad because she missed her grandma. My wife asked if that’s what was wrong all those other times too and she said it was. “Why didn’t you tell us that before?” my wife asked her.
“Because I didn’t want to make Daddy sad.”
When my wife told me that, my heart broke again.
We sat her down and explained that it was ok to talk about grandma whenever she wanted to. We told her that it was ok to miss grandma, to be sad about grandma not being here, and that I would be ok if she talked about her. She seemed to understand.
Then, last night, she woke my wife up in the middle of the night because of a dream she had. My wife got her to calm down and got her to go back to sleep. When she woke up for school, we asked her what the dream was about. She threw a quick glance my way before saying that she didn’t remember. I was still half asleep, so I didn’t think anything of it until after I dropped her off at school and my wife and I went into her room to gather all the dirty clothes.
There, on her bed, was Mom’s candle, and I knew exactly what her dream had been about.
She had done it again. She thought that talking about my mom would make me sad, so she didn’t do it. My daughter is only 7 and she had put someone else’s feelings, their wellbeing, above her own.
That’s something I would do.
That’s something Mom would have done.
… and it broke my heart again.