He’s … In A Better Place
By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee
My son, Tommy and his son … Taban. The love of my Heart … when Tommy died, my whole world stopped. I didn’t lose only him … I lost contact with my grandchildren. I had Skip, our Pups … the rest of my world, though. I’m so fortunate.
He’s in a better place … stop, think about this. I hope no one ever says that to me … again. I don’t know what I will say back to them, or … if I’ll ever speak to them again.
I respect some people feel that way when their loved ones die. I even think … some people ‘are better off, and in a better place’, when they … die.
There are some people I … don’t feel are in a better place. My son is one of them … he didn’t want to be in … a better place. He wanted to live … he had dreams … hope … plans for his life.
He was going to be a parole officer … in the following weeks after his trip to the beach … he would have been working toward his goal. We were so thankful, grateful … because no one would believe the grief Tommy had experienced the year before. That’s another story for … later.
Everyone wants to see their children do good with their life. They have dreams for them. Parents want to feel happiness seeing a smile on their child’s face … no matter how old they are.
In my case, Tommy was my only child. All my hopes, dreams for my child came to an end … when he collapsed on that beach … to never come home.
I don’t have my son to look forward to as I get older. I don’t have grandchildren to look forward to as I … get older. Everything … stopped when Tommy died.
My world revolves around Skip, our three Pups … Kissy, Chadwick, and Camie. They are my world … I have no one else.
Tommy was the huge part of our world … like a table with four legs. What happens if something happens to one leg … it collapses until one learns to prop the table back up; or … throw it away/quit living.
At first, I wasn’t aware I was living. The darkness I was in … buffered me from the pain. Everytime … I would try to come back to the sunshine … like the sunshine, the pain from the bright light was too much … back into the darkness I went.
Just before … I was looking forward to Tommy doing happy things with his life. I was smiling inside at … how he smiled, his excitement to go play with his little three year old son at the ocean.
The evening before … Tommy’s eyes were sparkling with happiness, excitement. Why did that mean so much? Because, the past year he had lived in … pure hell. He never smiled again after what happened to him. Tommy was living with … surviver’s guilt.
The point here is … when Tommy died, he had finally got on the path … people were encouraging him, going to help him go toward his dream. He … had plans, dreams.
So, sometimes … I feel ‘pure, white-hot anger’ … when someone says to me, “Gloria, your son’s in a better place, now”. Most of the time, I keep my mouth shut. I try to choose my battles …
I think if someone would stop to think about what they say … before they say it … mentally put themselves in a parent’s shoes … whose child has died … think of how it’d feel to lose their child … for a moment, they’d feel that little fear.
There’s no way to ‘feel exactly’ how it feels if it’s never happened to you. You … think it won’t happen to you. I can tell you … yes, it can happen to you, just as it happened to me. Suppose … it was your only child? Suppose … that was your … whole family …
Would you … think your child went to … a better place? Could you walk around smiling … just knowing you are … going to see him one day?
I love everyone … I have a big heart. I’m not a mean person … though, I could be … if I had to be. I’m not perfect. So, if someone tells me that again … know that I might be ugly enough to turn my back on you … and walk on with my life.
I don’t think … Tommy, my only child … my son … I don’t think he is in a better place.
I think when people tell a bereaved parent such … they’ve never experienced losing a child to know the most horrible pain they’ve ever known in life.
I think they tell someone that because they’ve learned it from others … think it’s the thing to say. I think, also … it’s to help keep a person from talking out loud about their loss; no one wants to hear a grieving person talk.
No one need to worry … I won’t talk about the loss of my child to anyone. I can write my grief. He ‘didn’t go to a better place’ …
I am writing my grief, as promised. That’s what my blog is all about … real life. If you don’t agree with me … that’s okay, I respect your beliefs. I write grief … I know it best in life … grief, pain. I don’t write it to gain sympathy; nor do I wallow in self-pity.
A person can come here to read … just like in a quiet library. When finished, just click away to the next website. You can go away each time, learning how a grieving mother feels … without experiencing the real thing. I pray you never do … as a mother, I can’t tell you of any worse pain.