In 2012 my one year old son George passed away suddenly. One minute he was crawling around our playroom laughing and giggling and the next minute he was led on the floor fighting for his life. Two hours later he died in our local Emergency Unit with his Mummy and Daddy beside him. Our hearts were broken, our lives smashed into pieces. How do you cope with such loss? How do you live with the images and heartbreak?
Paul and I talked, hugged and cried. Sadly it wasn’t enough. Just 5 days later my husband and best friend walked out of our home and took his own life traumatised by the loss of our George.
Having lost both my son and husband I have experienced every type of emotion possible. To this day I have no idea how I survived but I got out of bed every morning and kept going for the sake of my two remaining children.
With limited professional support available I relied on family and friends to get me through and a number of other things made a difference helping me on the road to acceptance and a new type of happiness.
BE OPEN AND HONEST
Be honest with your children friends and family. Talk to your children about what happened in language they will understand. Use words such as died and dead, they need to know its final and the people they loved will not be coming back. We have always talked openly about what happened to their daddy and brother. I did not tell them immediately the details but with time I have added blocks for them to build with.
Photos and videos are still shown in our house. We talk about the boys all of the time and remember them on birthdays, anniversary and at Christmas. Photos still hang on the walls of our home and we are learning to smile at them whilst remembering the special memories. I have made memory boxes for the children with items of Paul and George’s in. They also add things to these from time to time.
With the support of my family and friends I have no idea where myself and the children would be today. If people offer to help say yes. Everyone wants to do something to take your pain away and if picking up a pint of milk helps – say yes!
After losing my son our family received no professional support. This I believed contributed to my husband’s death. I established a charity called 2 Wish Upon A Star to help suddenly bereaved parents in Wales. Paul always wanted to help people when he was alive and through the charity he continues to make a difference.
TAKE TIME OUT
I honestly did not accept that I had lost Paul and George for almost 4 years. I threw myself into anything and everything to stop thinking about them. Eventually, just last year I crumbled. I hit rock bottom but at least then you know there is only one way to go and that’s up. I got professional help and starting to face what I had experienced. Since stopping, crying and hurting I feel I am in a much better place to face life and the future.
Life is now good. A different good! I live life with no guilt and feel I am starting to be the mum I always planned to be. I have a new, wonderful partner who I love very much. I will never forget but the children and I need to live life now to the full for us and to our shining stars.