Friday, June 18, 2010


I have a new "yard guy." My mailman is new and the neighbors behind me have a new dog. Colby has not met either of these people, or the dog, and that is another reminder to me that life for those of us who are still here goes on. There is movement in the progression of life and that movement does not include Colby. That thought makes me incredibly sad.

Every day I am reminded that Colby is not here, at least not in physical form. I pass his favorite drinks at the supermarket and put several in the basket . . . and then take them back out. My cable provider requires me to install new converter boxes, something that is not one of my strengths when it comes to skill sets. Colby could have done it when he was four--and that is not an exaggeration. I, meanwhile, will most likely spend and entire frustrating day and still not get it right. I find (yet another) pair of his socks (in a box), wash them and begin to put them in his sock drawer. Then stop.

Counselors say that the mind of a grieving parent is overloaded similarly to that of survivors of post-traumatic stress syndrome. That's why we "forget" our child is no longer here, why we have trouble focusing or remembering to do things we've done every day of our lives. It's one of the many reasons why we eventually turn into different people than we were "before."

That change, or the evolution in our stages of grief, is another movement away from our beloved child. We must go on without them, yet every time we turn around their absence is a gaping hole in our lives. I greet the new yard man. Wave at the new postman and introduce Abby, my dog, Colby's and mine, to the new dog behind us. I do all of this in a wave of grief, for they are more reminders that Colby has really and truly moved on.

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