Survivor’s Guilt..?

Since stumbling into the world of Mom Blogs, I have read so many stories.

Many are happy, touting remembrance of the little moments in childhood, reminding mothers everywhere to stop, look through the eyes of your little ones and just let them be little for as long as they can.

Because they grow so fast.. and then all you have left are those carefully preserved memories to remind of you of the days of snuggles, princesses and superheroes.

However, there are a few mommies out there (that I have read at any rate), who will never get to see their children grow. Their stories and shared memories of lives ended too soon have touched me.  They’ve made tears fall freely at the thought of ever having to face such a horrific tragedy.  Their grief is almost palpable in the words on the screen and it breaks my heart to even imagine the pain associated with the loss of a child.

It’s mind-numbing to think about it.

My heart hurts and I’ve shed so many tears in the past few weeks for women I have never even met.  For the pain they’ve endured over senseless tragedies.

I’ve shed tears as I’ve held a five month old infant in my arms, thankful at how lucky I am to have such healthy children.

I’ve also shed tears because, in so many ways, it all has served to make me feel as though I am so completely inadequate as their mother.  I’ll explain..

These mothers have suffered the ultimate loss and, yet, they have carried their pain and grief with dignity and eloquence.  They share their stories with thousands in an effort to keep their children alive in the memories and hearts of others.

What right do I have to get frustrated with my own children when they will never be allowed the opportunity to even hold theirs again?  How can I possibly ever consider that the fact that my 5 month old thinks it mandatory for me to carry him around the house 24/7 is an inconvenience when these mothers would gladly do it just for the chance for the children they’ve lost being allowed their time on this earth?

Alive.
Breathing.
Crying.
Screaming.

Anything just to have them in their arms.

I have some form of what I can only compare to “Survivor’s Guilt” for tragedies that I wasn’t even a part of.  Guilt that my children are healthy.  That my baby is healthy.. and that I somehow seem to take it for granted.

He cries and I get filled with angst because I can’t fix it without carrying him around.. and that’s inconvenient when there are other things to be done around here.

How can I possibly view it as inconvenient when there are so many mothers out there who would give anything for that sort of “inconvenience” rather than the alternate and horrifying ending they were given instead?

While I know these feelings are unfounded (because every mother gets frustrated; even those grieving a loss get frustrated with the children still in their lives), and possibly even a direct result of stress mingled with PPD, I can’t stop them.  I don’t know how to silence the tiny, nagging voices that reverberate in my heart and soul.. the ones that tell me how selfish I am for wishing for a half hour of peace, a silent reprieve from a screaming infant.

Because there are so many mothers who would gladly trade that half hour of silence for the child that they no longer have the opportunity to comfort here on earth.

Screaming or otherwise.

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About Caitlin's Concepts

Mom to 4 boys and drowning in a sea of testosterone!
This entry was posted in My Babies. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Survivor’s Guilt..?

  1. MamaRobinJ says:

    I’ve been there. Had exactly the same thought when reading other, more horrible stories. And I wrote a similar post recently and others rallied around me. Hard is hard, they said. When we’re struggling with PPD, hard is really hard, even when it’s not horrible in those same ways. It’s okay to feel that way, and I just try to remember those other mothers during my tough moments.

  2. We all feel that way. We’re human. We get annoyed. We get angry. We feel joy. We feel pain. All we can do is live fully – and not feel guilty for what we have.

    btw? LOVE the new site. Congrats!!

    xo

  3. This survivor’s guilt, it serves no one. Wrapping yourself up in this only denies your children that part of you. While I agree that the loss of a child is unimaginably sad, the child denied the attention of his mother who is lost in the pain of others is just as sad.
    You need and deserve your 30 minutes of silence and at some point you will find it. Take of you and be the best you and your children and you will both benefit.

  4. Shell says:

    I think we tend to lose sight of the bigger picture due to the small annoyances.

    (so excited that you started a blog!)

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