The Blame Game

My Sleeping Angel x

My Sleeping Angel x

Each day it seems to get slightly easier to function, but emotionally harder to cope with. As the Sun rises every morning the same thoughts go through my head. How can it be possible to feel worse than I do right now? One thing for sure is that tomorrow will have that edge.

It feels like two parallel worlds, the logical one and the emotional one. The logical one functions okay, the emotional one doesn’t.

Each day I think it’s a particularly bad day. I can’t think straight, my thoughts are muddled and I seem to be jumping from one awful thought to the next. I don’t know why, but what I do know is that I feel total despair, the hardest thing is knowing that the one thing that could make me feel better, I am never going to have. There is no hope for tomorrow, only more of the darkness. The physical obstacles that plagued me several months ago are easy to overcome most days but with less time spent on the effort to get out of bed, the effort to get in the shower or the effort to go to work, I have more time to contemplate William’s death.

The logical aspect of my mind tells me it’s not my fault, in my very black and white mind, which is no longer so black and white, I replay the last few months of William’s life over and over again. The appointments, the cough, the vomiting, but most of all the last few days of his life. William was poorly at nursery, so I called and arranged an emergency appointment. They told us to give him calpol, nurofen and to keep up his fluids, I did that. When I thought there was no improvement, I again called for help and guidance, I followed the help and guidance. Later, I was reassured it was probably a “viral infection, likely to get better without treatment” I asked about every detail, I questioned his every answer. I was reassured I was doing the right thing. How was I supposed to know it wasn’t the right thing.  Cue emotional mind….

I do nothing but question and compare myself to another mother, would another mother have made a different judgement? Would another mother have taken their child to A&E? Would another mother have noticed something that I didn’t? I should have done this, I should have done that. I should have said this, I should have said that. The self-destroying questions are never-ending. Cue logical mind…..

I know for a fact that all of those questions are based on hindsight, the unbearable foe. The truth is if I received reassurance from different health professionals. I am not a doctor, I could never have known what was occurring in William’s body. When he was poorly, I did the right thing and took him to the doctors to be examined. I was extremely thorough in my explanations and I followed all the guidance and advice I was given. I took William to the doctors numerous times and gave them ample opportunity to diagnose his cough prior to even contracting pneumonia and sepsis. I trusted their diagnosis. Cue emotional mind….

Regardless of anything, he was my little boy, I love him more than anyone, I know him more than anyone, and I would have and still would do anything I could to bring him back, but only mothers can know, and only bereaved mothers can truly know the overwhelming burden of blame.

 

 

 

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The process of processing grief

To the world you were one person but to
one person you were the world.

Could have, would have, should have are the start of every single sentence that goes through my head or more to the point every single time I question myself. It is something that I cannot help but do.  As a parent it is natural to want to assume responsibility, although in this instance I did everything that I could, it is easier to question yourself than others. There are so many questions that need to be asked, so many what if’s, but realistically none of the answers will satisfy my mind’s hunger for answers.

Everyday my mind is processing thoughts, processing grief, life at the moment seems impossible, undesirable, and without meaning. I have never in my life been so analytical, my brain whirring at 100 miles an hour trying to make sense of everything. Trying desperately to balance my feet on the path of survival. The other day when looking at the birds from the window, I found myself oblivious to my surroundings, the next thing I knew I was getting changed to get into bed. Where had I been? What had I done? I didn’t know. I sat quietly trying hard to reflect back to what I was thinking about before, but I didn’t know. There was nothing specific that triggered this ‘zoning out’ and I could not remember what, if anything, I was thinking about during those few hours.

Up until recent days and you will have had an insight from my previous post that I have been totally consumed by despair, like a fog that completely envelops me, where thoughts of taking my life have been prevalent. Grief manifests in many ways and I like to believe that when I ‘zoned out’, rather than be consumed by despair, my mind was switching off and processing the darkest of thoughts and keeping itself safe. The mind is one of life’s most wonderful gifts so complex, but so fragile, so delicate and in some cases, dangerous. It is something that in my case, with grief, there is inevitably an absence of a medical diagnosis, medication can aid sleep, aid the symptoms of anxiety and depression but it cannot take the pain away. It cannot take away the desperation of needing William, the disbelief that he is really gone. It cannot stop my mind fighting for answers, contradicting, questioning and ultimately destroying me with my own thoughts.

Someone asked me recently if they thought the inquest into William’s death would give me closure, some sort of ending to the ‘process’, the legal aspect. William is not a process and neither was his death, and you see the inquest will not bring closure or answer any of my questions, because long after the inquest has closed its doors, I will always be sat there in the quiet of William’s nursery, looking at his cot, imagining his perfect, doll-like face in the cot that Sunday morning, wondering why? Why William? Why my beautiful innocent little boy who had so much to give, who asked for nothing but gave everyone so much joy, so much happiness and so much love? No-one will ever be able to answer this question, no matter how much they try. Maybe, one day, when my time comes, and I get to walk the stairway to heaven, I will find out. Maybe.