In the days that followed, I began to realize how much was missing and would be affected going forward. It wouldn’t be just George who would be grieved, there was so much more.
It was all the relationships built along the way.
Each of the children had a unique relationship that was lost.
Shyla no longer had Dad in the stands watching and being her cheerleader when she was on the ice, or to root for their favorite teams.
Michael didn’t have his PlayStation playmate or movie-watching buddy. He also didn’t have the man who would help him through those awkward stages of teenagehood.
Emily no longer had her rock who would cuddle her when she was sad and watch her on stage with massive pride.
Joshua no longer had his Dad to listen to his stories and bring him to early morning hockey practices with Tim Horton’s in hand.
I had lost the man I was supposed to grow old with, the man I was supposed to travel with, and finish raising our children with. I lost the man who made me feel loved, wanted and cherished. I think that’s what I miss the most still, the feeling of knowing without any doubt that I was loved unconditionally.
Time is Not a Healer
“Time heals all things” is a lie.
Time doesn’t heal lost promises, vows, relationships, and future plans. However, it does produce new relationships and connections.
Today I have a different connection with the kids. I’m not only Mom anymore, I’m Dad too. I’m more of the cheerleader at hockey and ball and have enough pride for both parents in all their adventures.
I need to be more of the rock for them and be their confidant. I’m the sole provider now for them – not only financially, but physically, emotionally, and spiritually as well.
New Sibling Connections
They are also finding new connections with each other.
I’m watching them be a little kinder to each other and take on different roles of their own.
Probably without realizing it, Shyla has taken on a bit of a parent role. Making sure they are tidying up after themselves and helping diffuse squabbles.
Emily has become the “guardian”. Making sure everyone is OK when they’re sad, or even stub their toe. She’s becoming an incredibly kind soul.
Joshua is ever willing to lend a hand and I have to remember to give him enough praise for both Mom and Dad.
Michael has become incredibly independent. He is learning to balance responsibilities and his own recreation time.
A New Family
Our family is still grieving the relationships that were and the family that was.
I heard a lot of people say a “New Normal”, but it’s not normal at all.
Today we have a new family completely, with new connections, relationships and bonds. Our ties today are stronger and I cannot wait to see the family that we become.
I wrote a post inspired by Alisha’s story in September 2014. “I love you” was the last thing Alisha heard George say as he headed off to hockey…” Read the rest of the story here.
APPLICATION: Alisha Lemoine has launched a Facebook page (“Just For Us and Our Kids”) for single parents to share their story and build a community of fellow travelers. Have you lost someone that you loved? How are you dealing with the grief? Please leave a comment for Alisha. Thank you.
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Alisha, you have articulated so well your journey. Praying that God continues to give hope in “What will be” and what you are creating in the here and now. Thank you for sharing.
Thank you for sharing your story, I can hear the love in your words and descriptions.