As Mother's Day has now come to pass and Father's Day approaches Dad's are some times the forgotten grievers and stepdad's, well they feel almost nonexistent in their grief. Trust me, I know. My husband Bryan is the stepdad to my son Brian who we lost 16 months ago in an auto accident.
My father died last week. He was 89. He had lived a full life. He had been a productive member of society by all accounts: four children, 9 grand children, 63-year marriage, retired to a beach community in Florida when he was 60, lived with his bride in his own house right up until the last few weeks. Yes, my father was a fortunate man. His entire family came for the funeral services.
Pain runs deep. Grief scars are powerful, and sink into the darkest recesses of the heart. Catastrophic wounds can throw us into survival mode for a while.
No matter how old the wound, with the right trigger, the pain can become incredibly fresh again.
Grief is like that. And it’s especially challenging during the holiday season.
One Sunday afternoon when I was fifteen, my dad had a massive heart attack and collapsed in front of me. They resuscitated him at the hospital, but he never regained consciousness. For a week I sat by his bed and talked about anything and everything that came into my mind.
I knew he wasn’t going to make it.
Holidays can be naturally hard. When you’ve lost someone, special days can seem impossible.
“I’m scared. It’s like I’m frozen and can’t move. How am I going to face our anniversary without him?” said Tina, whose husband Frank died.
“When I look ahead to Father’s Day, all I can think about is him,” said Jeff, who lost his father.