Mother's Heartbreak

A Story of Addiction & Loss

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Bereaved Mothers Day

With Mothers Day around the corner you can’t go into a store without being swallowed up by Mothers Day gift displays and cards. Commercials are full of suggestions on what to give mothers on their special day.

What if you are a bereaved mother? Where are cards for us? None of us wanted this title. None of us wanted to watch our children leave us behind. None of us wanted to stand in a church listening to stories about our child’s life that ended too soon. None of us wanted to spend birthdays, holidays, and yes, Mothers Day at the cemetery. 💔

Mothers Day for a bereaved mother is filled with heartbreaking, gut wrenching grief. One of the hardest days for many of us. We have lost a piece of our hearts. It has been said that child loss is one of the worst traumas a human being can endure. Yet, here we are enduring another holiday that so many other mothers cherish.

We feel as if the world has walked away. Friends of the past have disappeared. Our grief too heavy a burden for their unknowing hearts. Many feel we should “move on” and forget that our child is gone. After all grief does have a time line until it becomes your grief.

Many of us suffer silently as we hear of others plans for Mothers Day. Many will retreat to a safe space until the day has passed. Whatever we do and how we survive is up to us. It’s ok not to be ok on Mother’s Day.

My wish for you is to know you are not alone. Be kind to yourself on this painful day. Buy yourself flowers or a favorite candle. Bring out the photos of your child and let your love pour over the faces we can no longer touch except in our hearts and minds. Let beautiful memories wash over your soul with its healing balm. Recognize we are still mothers and will be until our lives are gone. We must hold each other up and reach out to other mothers who share our grief.

We must encourage each other to find healing and hope. We must be sensitive and acknowledge that our grief like our love will last forever ♥️

My fellow bereaved moms who have become my dear friends I wish you peace on a day that will bring tears and pain. None of us chose this path but together we will walk each other home into the arms of our loving children.

Hugs and Love,
Matt’s Mom. 🌹

99 Months


Matt,  99 months.  My brain counts the months as my heart screams how can this be.  How can it be true that life has continued to march on and I have been drug along in my grief.  How can this grief continue to bring me to my knees?  To make me want to scream from the rooftops that I am in so much pain?  How can all this time have passed yet still feel like yesterday?

Perhaps it’s because Easter has come and gone.  Another holiday without you.  Perhaps it’s the memories that continue to haunt me of past celebrations.  Two boys with chocolate faces and hands running through the yard Easter baskets swinging from their arms as laughter filled the air.

Perhaps it’s the memories of two men laughing as they walked in my door seeing Easter baskets filled with the same chocolate they loved as boys.  

Perhaps it’s the silence that has replaced the laughter, that silence is deafening as the grief is powerful.    The silence from your brother.  The silence of those who have passed on.  The silence haunts my heart and leaves my soul empty.

Yet, I have good days.  Days where I cope well.  Days I find joy in little things.  Flowers blooming in my garden.  The dogs chasing a squirrel through the yard.  An unexpected phone call from a friend.  A clear Cat Scan.

I guess you could say I’ve learned to cope, to handle the pain.  Sadly when I think of how long you have been gone, how long I’ve had to bear this grief that’s when my reality begins to haunt my heart leaving me breathless and wanting to scream.

Some say Silence is golden.  I think of what I wouldn’t give to hear the shouting, the laughter, the voices of two little boys whose smiles were covered with chocolate……..


Just A Car But So Much More

Matt,   The day finally came.   I could come up with no more excuses.   My car was 18 years old and starting to have major problems.   Ray had been after me for over a year to trade her in and get something newer with all the bells and whistles my sweet girl didn’t have.  I kept putting it off.  Not even wanting to glance at anything he would find that he thought I might warm up to.  

First I used my cancer.  Hell, If I could get something positive out of this complicated disease, I used it to stop the purchase of a new car which meant trading in a piece of my heart.  I kept telling him after the next scan I’d start to think about it, then the next scan, then the next.  Finally after my February scan my oncologist said lets spread them out I’m not worried about letting you go longer between scans.   Talk about a double edged sword.  Yes I was praising God for the great news but deep down I was starting to mourn what I knew was coming.

It didn’t take long to find her replacement.  A brand new Toyota Rav 4 was coming into the dealership within a few weeks.  She was mine……

I felt like I was betraying the 4 Runner and all the memories she held for me over the years.  The two of us driving the dogs to the beach.  Laughter and wild barking from our back seat passengers as they bolted out the door running toward the surf.  The smell of salty, wet dogs and us covered with sand after trying to corral them into the back seat for the return home.  

The smell of crabs we caught after spending the day at the bay.  You kept throwing live ones on my seat howling as I would scream and run around the car.  So many deep conversations we shared about your addiction as I held you captive with those childproof locks.  Many trips with you cussing as I drove you to another treatment facility tears running down my face as I continued to tell you how much I loved you and needed you to live.

Walking through the beach house together picking out what would come home and what would be sold when we knew you had lost everything we both loved.  Loading those memories of sunny days, long walks and so much love into the back of my 4 Runner.  Watching tears roll down your face as we pulled away from our heaven on earth for the last time.

Memories of driving to church together I can close my eyes and see you sitting in the passenger seat.  I could smell your Phoenix scent.  I could picture you holding Scarlett in your lap after we rescued her together.  Our love of animals was just another quality that bonded us together.

My car was another connection to you.   On bad days as the grief was hitting I swore I could smell Phoenix flowing through the air.  I could see you sitting beside me looking my way with that smile on your face.   

The drive to the dealership was brutal.  My tears were uncontrollable.  I wanted to shout stop I can’t do this.  I felt like I was losing another piece of a connection to you that I could mentally not afford to lose.   Ray kept saying I was the only person he knew that was crying because she was getting a new car.  Ray has no clue as to what that old girl meant to me.  To the memories she held within those 4 doors.  To the connection to you that’s comforted me these last eight years.

In between my tears I managed to snap a shot of her being driven away.  My memorial to you now a snapshot that will forever be imbedded in my heart…..



Disbelieving While Grieving

Matt,  it’s been 8 years and one month since you left this earth and I still find myself in disbelief.   January always hits me the hardest as it’s the beginning of another year but it’s also when you left. 

Somedays I allow myself to pretend you are enjoying the beautiful weather in Florida.  Spending time on the beach relaxing with friends. Then reality will sneak up on me and I feel the weight of grief hit my heart.

The other day I was grocery shopping and saw a can of Beef A Roni.  I had to stop for a moment as the memory of  sending you care packages of food came flooding back leaving me shaken.  

I find myself longing to talk to you.  To hear your voice, to see your smile.  I know so many years have passed but the reality of life is just so unbearable that’s it’s easier to sink into the fantasy that you are alive.  

I have days where I just sit and tell myself that you are really gone.  That what’s left of you sits in an urn on my shelf next to the last picture taken while you were alive.  It’s still seems so surreal and I have such a hard time wrapping my head around this truth that has become my life.  

I’ve read that losing a child is the most devastating experience a parent can live through, I’m finding it’s also the most unbelievable.  I look at pictures of you as a young child and wonder how did this happen.  How did your life end before mine?  Losing a child goes against what we are taught to be the natural order of things.  Children bury their parents not the other way around.  

I know that as long as I live I will carry my grief over losing you but now this disbelief had snuck into the open cracks in my heart.  It appears to have moved in and has no intentions of ever leaving.  Until we meet again I will carry you in my heart………….


All Is Quiet Except For My Heart


Matt,  Today is New Years Day, the frenzy of the holiday season has come to a close.  All the stress of preparing for the perfect Christmas has melted away.  The world has returned to a quiet state, even the Hallmark movies have been returned to the shelves waiting for the next holiday season.  

8 years ago you were celebrating New Years Day on the beach in Florida.  We both spoke of our hopes and dreams for the new year.  Both of us fooled into thinking you beat your demons and we would see each other again in a few weeks.  

I was booked on a flight in February to leave frigid Delaware and join you in sunny Florida getting a glimpse into your new life.  I remember asking you to look into hotels around your sober home so we could spend as much time together while I was there.  I dreamed of meeting your friends.  Of seeing where you worked.  Of seeing where you now called home.  

Little did I know that in 2 days you would be gone and all my dreams would be shattered at my feet.  So now my body remembers. My heart is anxious.  My soul is in a state of unrest.  My mind is flooded with memories of plans that never came to be.  My body aches as I know January 3rd is quickly approaching and I’m struggling to survive knowing I haven’t heard your voice or seen your handsome face for 8 years. 

I wonder how long this pain will live in my heart.  Will the marching of time ever start to dull it.  Each New Year is a reminder of what will never be.  I wonder if you know.  I wonder if you see how your death has impacted my life.  

This New Year I will continue to pray that you have found your peace.  That you are whole and healed.  I will pray for strength to walk through this new year without you hoping that one day, one year I will find my peace. 


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