They say when you receive shocking news, like the death of your 10-year-old son, you go into shock.
I suppose that’s true. I look back on those first few days and it’s like everything was under water, or happening in a really bad dream. There are moments that stick out with crystal clarity, and things that are just a blur. It’s supposed to be your mind’s way of protecting you from something too terrible to bear.
The shock—that anesthetic protection—is wearing off, three and a half months later.
How does it feel? You know how you cut yourself with a really sharp knife and there’s just a split second before the pain kicks in, where you are looking at this gaping wound, about to gush blood? Or when you get novocaine at the dentist but you feel it start wearing off and you realize, crap, there are a lot of nerves in your gums? Or when you have surgery, and you’re on painkillers and you think “this isn’t so bad,” but then the painkillers wear off and you realize that it IS that bad?
It’s like that. Except much, much worse because those are all transitory situations. This is forever.
The reality of living a life without our middle child is sinking in for all of us. Our family has been blown apart, and is slowly trying to knit itself back together. We will never be the same. There will always be scar tissue. And real scars hurt.