Saturday we spent at an aftercare symposium sponsored by CMH. I was able to bring Mady with me which was the first time she has attended an event like this. While I was attending breakout sessions, she was involved in play therapy with other kids that had lost a sibling. She made a memory box, a windsock with notes to Abby on it, and played some fun games. She also made some friends, which was just as important. She'd had a rough last week and a half and I am really hoping this experience will help with her emotional outbursts and tears that come for the smallest things.
I was able to spend some time in classes while visiting with friends I had made and was able make some new ones too. It is so nice to have people that understand to talk to. We are all at different stages of our grief and are able to support each other through each step. We are able to share our stories, tears, and hugs.
One of the classes I attended addressed some of our other losses. Some talked about the loss of friends, but thankfully, ours have become closer and we have made some new ones since losing Abby. I had to admit that one of my losses is a loss of freedom/independence. This might seem like a strange thing to associate with losing a child, but it was the manner in which we lost her that caused this for me. I burst into tears as I admitted that for me to get into the car alone, with just Mady and drive to an unknown location was a major accomplishment. I am still not able to hop into the car and take off on my own. It's the fact that the accident happened within 3 miles from home on a road I have driven everyday for the last 12 years, a road that I know every hill, curve, and hole and I still could not prevent it. I just have a hard time traveling on unknown roads for fear that something might happen, especially alone with any of my girls. I am hoping to work on this loss, among others. Maybe it will help just acknowledging it.