What Is It Like to Lose A Child ?

February 21, 2013 — 5 Comments

What is it like to lose a child?

Jamie Caulk When a parent loses a child, it is the worst grief ever. We are on this journey of grief with out loss of Jamie  for 16 months now. People told me and I read that the second year is harder. I would say it is harder in a different way.The initial shock and numbness is gone, but the emptiness and hollowness of your heart is still there. Most people think or say, “I can’t imagine.” No you can’t please don’t try.

There are a lot of grief support groups on Facebook, one of them called Grieving Mothers I joined when it had approximately 1200 moms, it is now up to almost 22,000. That is a lot of mom’s who have lost a child. These groups become a place where mothers can talk about their child, vent, rant, and encourage one another.

One of my favorite groups on Facebook, is Journey of the Survivor, from Grief to Survival. It is a private group so posts don’t go out on your wall.

Most people including family don’t know what to say to you? Should they mention Jamie’s name? Should they not? Will it upset me? The worst is people who think it is “time to move on”. I haven’t had that happen in my circle of friends or family. But a lot of mothers do. Let me be honest, no one really “moves on”, or “gets over it”.

You are changed forever, some call it a new normal.

Mothers Who Discover about Brain Death and Organ Transplants Too Late

Some of most heart breaking stories I read come from mothers whose children had signed the Organ Donor Card and when their children are declared “brain dead” their organs were harvested. They had no ability to stop it. It is a legally binding contract for anyone 18 and over. Somewhere along their journey in grief they discover that “brain death” is not true death and that their child’s organs were taken while they were still alive.

Severally injured? Yes?

In a coma? Yes

But not dead except by the “legal” definition of death.

These moms live with incredible guilt, grief and pain. Bernice Jones said of her torment:

“I have to live with this ugliness and wait to see my son again. This pain-this incredible void-is most difficult to endure. I cannot view his pictures and enjoy the memories of this beautiful creature that God created, blessing me with his birth and life. I am haunted by the TRUTH of what I witnessed and the revealing of his torture and death. My negligence of his foolishness and playing with a gun is a burden all of its own. To allow him to be taught such a perverse doctrine is quite another, this having the ability to take his life given any number of medical scenarios that could have arisen in his lifetime. You see, he had permitted “organ donor” to be put on his drivers’ license at which time the preparations for the ceremonial sacrifice commenced.”

Some moms, like me find out enough about organ donation that they are able to prevent the harvesting on their children if they had not signed the donor card.  Yet they find out the doctors and hospital’s won’t treat their child anymore, their care is futile and they are forced to “pull the plug”. I despise that term, it is so cold. 

Making sense of your child’s death

Memorial bench dedicated to Jamie and Lillian Caulk in Saline, MI Every grieving mother, father and siblings have to make sense of the unexpected death.  I am so thankful for my Ann Arbor Real Estate Team and Keller Williams brokerage. They have been so supportive from the beginning as has our family and friends.

I like what Heather said on her blog Team Carter, “I feel like we boarded a plane out of Holland and landed in an unknown area. It’s not even fair to give this land a country’s name because for the most part it is just plain ugly. The problem with this land is that once you are here, you can never EVER leave. Your passport has been revoked, and you just have to try your best to make a new life in this barren country. A country that NOBODY wants to live in. There is no way that I will ever learn to love it like I did in Holland, but I am sure trying my best to make it a little more beautiful in as many ways as I can.”

I am trying to make sense of Jamie’s death by blogging and writing a book on our journey and the brain death deception. I hope you will subscribe and follow along, leave comments, and ask questions.

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5 responses to What Is It Like to Lose A Child ?

  1. It’s been 10 years since my son died. I can testify to the fact that there is no “getting over it” or “moving on”. Yes, my life goes on. But, there is not a day that I don’t miss him or wish he was here. The ONLY thing that has gotten me through this is my faith and knowledge that he is in Heaven with Jesus. I can’t imagine going through the loss without that foundation. I don’t have the added burden of the organ donation issue. I hope your articles and forthcoming book raise awareness of this issue. I can say I never knew the details either.

  2. Missy thanks so much for stepping out and writing this blog I really am thankful for the research you have done.

  3. Missy the analogy of leaving Holland and arriving in a permanent desolate place an losing your passport brought home the losing of a child more real to me. There is ‘no moving on, getting over it’. It was a stark story of the reality that y’all face.

  4. Although quite a few years have passed for me, the dread of that moment never leaves. I don’t mind my son’s death as much as the thought that he suffered a lot of purposely concealed pain. I feel for him, not for myself. People die from all sorts and it is essentially their business. It is the WAY people die that concerns us, the living. If one’s child dies in agony this is where society has to put its efforts. I have written my viewpoint on my website “Organasia.” It is not very popular with the anti-donation set because they misunderstand me as advocating for harvesting. I am actually anti-donation and beyond. I hope to alert the public that this issue moves up (or down) a notch every day and so must we.

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