Sunday, May 21, 2023

Life and death

Dear Sonzee,

It’s a little after midnight and it’s way past what my typical bedtime has been these last few months. My eyes hurt. It’s a combination of the tears I’ve suppressed, the ones that have managed their way out secretly, and the fact that it is way past my bedtime.

It’s hockey tryout weekend and while I was on a lengthy phone conversation with a mom of one of your brothers teammates, while also texting some others, aba walked in to tell me that a daughter of a family in the chabad community, died. 

While I’m continuing to talk with my friend and text about our current life happenings, hockey…and the drama that occurs with it, another child died. It’s a family in our community…one that probably even attended your funeral (I really didn’t keep tabs). I anticipated it to happen…as usual when a child has a rare diagnosis of any sort, especially cancer. Call me Debbie downer, I like to refer to it as realistic Randi. It’s also the only way I know how to process the death when it (undoubtedly) occurs. It makes the heart break “more tolerable” I suppose? 

My mind is mixed with numbness and intense pain. I’m conflicted. Am I crying over their daughter? You? My current status as a bereaved mom? The fact that someone else in this community will now understand my pain? Is it wrong if the tears are for you? Who are they for? What are they for? Why do children have to die?

I struggle. Do I attend the funeral? I can’t. I should. I want to puke at considering going to the same exact pavilion I sat under for your funeral and seeing another child being buried. But, how can I not show support? How do I support myself? Will it make it better? For who even? Which one of us? No. It won’t for either. We just both now get it. We are both members of this awful, shitty(sorry your siblings hear it all the time anyway) club that NO ONE WANTS TO BE PART OF. I just cant process this. 


I don’t get why children die. Why one of them was you. Why one of them is another child of someone I know. How does this keep happening??? 

I want to give her a hug while we both cry, because there might be some sort of comfort in that for both of us. But, maybe she doesn’t want a hug? Maybe she doesn’t want to process that there is an after part now that her daughter died. I hardly understand how I am alive still. But I am. She has other children, so she will find a way too. HOW though? How do we find a way? It’s not normal, it doesn’t make sense.

And then. Then life continues. Because, I continued my conversation about hockey and tryouts with a choked voice but I am an expert in covering up the emotions, so not enough that my friend knew I even got horrible news. Life continues because tomorrow your sister will have her girls pool party for her upcoming 10th birthday and your brother will have his last hockey skate of tryouts. That’s what happens. 

People die. Kids die. You died. But life…life some how, in some way, making zero sense of how life and death seamlessly merge together continues to go on…with a new normal…that constantly makes me pause and reflect at how surreal it is to continue living when your child does not. When you did not.

I love you so very much baby girl and miss you that much more!!! Please welcome Shaina with a big embrace and show her all you’ve learned. Keep her comforted if she’s scared or missed her home, and remember to always be safe and have loads of fun while you’re both pain free.

Until next time.

Love always,

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