Posted June 11th 2013
Tonight I have that dreaded Sunday feeling that we all have when we know we have the work the next day. This is a different feeling though as tomorrow will be my first day back at work since I lost Jack. This is the last and only picture that I have of Jack & I in the morning before we went to school in the mornings. Tomorrow it will only be me in the house when I wake up, there will be no Jack to wake up, no Jack to make breakfast for, get ready, watch TV with and no Jack to have that kiss and cuddle before we leave for school.
Am I going back to work because I have moved on? Am I going back because this pain is better? Am I going back because the time is right? Am I going back because I want routine in my life?? I have been asked all of these questions and the answer to all of them is no. The most hurtful to any parent like me is the perception that by going back to work you are moving on. I will never move on from losing Jack and I don’t believe that any parent ever moves on after losing a child. You may learn to cope but never move on as that suggests leaving your child behind. The routine is the scariest bit, I am going back to an old routine that is so very different now, and my life has lost its purpose. It is just me in the house and it feels so empty without its daily buzz of Jack. Tomorrow and every day, my heart aches for Jack as I open my eyes and realise that this wasn’t actually a bad dream, it has all really happened. The last day that I said goodbye to Jack on our way to school, I had to idea that it would be last. We are approaching the 6 months mark, it feels like this happened yesterday but an eternity since I said that last goodbye and got that last kiss and cuddle from Jack. Tomorrow I will wake up and have to face the reality that those special moments that we all take for granted won’t be happening in my house.
Bereaved parents are no different to any others parents, we have houses to keep and bills to pay and therefore we all have to return to work at some point. I am lucky that I have been able to have 6 months off and I am lucky that I work in a supportive workplace with the most caring staff and pupils. Some parents have not been as lucky as me, having to go back much quicker, losing their jobs or not feeling supported. It is also the perception that men should be stronger and go back sooner, how can any of us make that judgement. I know how hard it was for Derek to go back and it is now I can appreciate that fear. I found a petition lately from a bereaved mother who like me wanted to use her situation to make a change. She claimed that after the loss of a child, an employer only has to allocate you 3 days off your work. 3 days, 3 months, 3 years who can put a timeline of this nightmare. If someone was to ask me when the right time to go back to work is, I don’t think I could answer as I genuinely don’t know. I don’t know where the last 6 months have gone and I don’t know how I got to be here. One thing I do know is that without friends and family and the support from all of you, I wouldn’t be here today. I am trying my best to reply to all of you but its taking me some time to work through them all, please know all your messages mean very much to me.
I have found it very hard to smile this week, yesterday was Jacks school sports day and I found it so hard to see all the pictures and comments from the proud mums and dads as I wanted that to be us with Jack. Yesterday, I really felt like a wasn’t a mummy anymore and that was something I loved being with all my heart and soul. Today I have been filled with such sadness at the thought of starting tomorrow and the school routine without Jack. If you take anything from this, tomorrow when you get up for work and your rushing to get the kids ready for school and all get out the door, take a minute to appreciate those special moments as like me, you just don’t know what the future holds.