Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Grief. Again.

A secret: I write a lot here, that I just save, and never post. I might vent, and worry that I'm bitchy. I might complain, and worry that I'm tedious. I might say "fuck" and worry that I'm potty-mouthed. I sometimes consider who's reading, and become intimidated. I have, sometimes, hit SEND anyway, and though I've never been sorry, I still fret.

Here's an entry I started yesterday, and side-lined:
Brian sent me another round of pictures, yesterday. I hate for him to read this, but hey, I just got the thumb's up from him to "blog your heart out, Mom," so I'm going to tell you: Opening that pic of him, his clear skin and blue eyes, it crumbled me yesterday.

Maybe it was just my mood, or maybe it was just not seeing my son's face for 5 months, and knowing I'll have to wait 5 more. We talk on the phone, and send a few lines back and forth on email, and check in on one another's MySpace accounts. He's in my heart, as I mail one care package, tape up another box, and start filling it the same day, for the next week's mailing.

There are some days that I actually think, "this isn't so bad. Brian's doing pretty good. I'm doing pretty good."

But it's also true that a few times a week, I'll be driving along, or mindlessly pushing a cart through the grocery store, and I think, "Holy Mother of God! My kid is on the other side of the world!! He is serving in a WAR!" It hits me as if it is the first I've heard of it. My heart skips a beat, every single time...and all I can do is take a deep breath, and keep moving.

So, I keep moving, as do thousands of other parents and spouses and siblings and friends. Chin up, move forward, rah rah rah...there's my kid's face in an email oh my god, he's beautiful oh my god I miss him.

That's it, I started crying and decided not to post.

Champaign has lost another.

It has not yet been announced. Jeff called me this morning: A Champaign Police Officer's son was killed in Iraq.

This morning.

He just wanted me to hear it, before. Before. Before I heard it on the news. He told me, and I lost the wind in my body. God. Okay. Okay. God. Okay. He just wanted me to know. Ok. Thanks. Thanks for calling.

Brian's father is a Champaign Police officer. It is one of his "Brothers in Blue" that just lost a son, today.

And I got the call. And I put on my coat, and left my office. I ran to Di's house. My friend for 26 years, who, last time she heard I cried alone, said "Dammit, next time you call me!" I did it. I called her. She wasn't home, but baby, she turned her car around, and she was waiting in her kitchen when I got there, with open arms and a box of kleenex. She let me cry until I could cry no more. Then, she fixed me coffee.

And once again, a soldier dies, and I go back to work.



  1. Fuck.

    I'm glad you went to Di. One time, I didn't call the Divine M because it was three in the morning. She scolded me HARD the next day (and you haven't been scolded until you've been on the receiving end of a Divine M scolding.) Told me never to be stupid again. I haven't been. Glad you weren't stupid either.

    You've got my number, too. I can't make you coffee but I can make sure you don't cry completely alone if Di isn't there.

    And it's your blog. Write, whine, repeat, swear, blog your heart out, whatever. We'll read. Or we won't. But either way, don't let us censor you. Ever.


  2. I have to admit, I just cried with you and for you...
    I couldn't imagine, not even for a second what your going through.
    (Trust me, I tried -- it just hurt too much even pretending.)
    I have a few close friends serving overseas as well so I get it, but it has to be a completely different range of emotions when it comes to your child.
    As proud as I would be if my son chose to serve his country, I hope he never has to... I'd be more scared than he would..

    You have a beautiful son as well, and I will be counting down the next 5 months with you.
    You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

  3. Anonymous1:14 AM

    We're all here, for you, and for each other. You probably have a ton of numbers in your phone, never hesitate to call, we're all dealing with it. It may not be our son or daughter or even our friends but they're OUR troops and we're all coping in our own way. If there's anything we can do for Jeff's brother in blue, let us know.
    Jeremy Jay

  4. I'm sorry, Lori. No mom should have to go through what you're going through. I wish he could come home now, and all his buddies.

    Did I tell you I read every word, and I love you? I mean in a grandfatherly way...

  5. Sending you and Brian all the strength I have to stay on steadfast. I'm so sorry to hear of another unnecessary loss, and continue to keep Brian's safety in my thoughts. Big hugs girl, really big ones coming your way.

  6. StFarmer7:41 AM

    This post makes me realize how trivial my "problems" are.

    Regarding censoring yourself for the benefit of your readers... put that thought to bed. It's your blog, you're kind enough to share it with us. Those that don't like it are free to not read.

    I don't know of anything I could possibly say that would ease your fears about Brian. I think I'll take a cue from my dad and be a better listener than a talker. That being said, you have my number - feel free to use it... anytime.

  7. Anonymous8:13 AM

    Say what you need to say, don't sensor yourself or worry about being offensive to others and don't fret. Get it out and Let it GO!!!
    There are easier things in life than dealing with a deployed child. It is the hardest, yet most honorable job in the world that we as mothers will ever face. Child birth and the teens were easier to deal with.
    Know you are not alone in your trek and the feelings are shared. We all really slip from time to time, but those who truly understand, can appreciate the fact that sometimes there aren't enough words or emotions to explain just how we feel.
    Will keep you and yours in my prayers.

  8. And my heart breaks for a family all over again because this post is back up.

  9. Thanks for your comments, all.

    Pobs: It is back up. I took it down after realizing that the DoD hadn't released any names, and the news was not yet public. I took it down immediately. TV crews called me at work today, for information I didn't have.

  10. I realized that. Was over here when you had the "I've taken the post down" post up...if you can follow that. Which is why my heart breaks, because I know this soldier's friends, family, loved ones have learned now...


  11. No one should go through what you and so many others are going prayers and hugs are with you....

  12. Can't wait until he comes home.
    Yeesh! Love you!

  13. Nobody should have to go through that. Ever.

  14. Hi - I don't know you (I found your blog through some intricate weave of comment-posting) but my heart is with you right now.
    Your post brought tears to my eyes. You do a tremendous job putting into words the horror that is virtually indescribable. We, too, are a military family. My brother-in-law just returned from his second tour in Iraq (I posted pics of his homecoming on my blog: The love, the fear, the daily panic, the not-wanting-to-listen-to-the-news-but-listening-anyway-because-you-can't-turn-it-off...
    I hope these next five months fly by for you and you will have your son in your arms again before you know it. He is a beautiful boy. Take care.


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