We were eating ice cream tonight after dinner and I asked Jacob if he remembered what his dad's favorite kind of ice cream was. He didn't remember, so I reminded him that it was vanilla ice cream with chocolate powder (Nestle Quick). Chocolate ice cream was too chocolaty for his liking, so he preferred to mix the chocolate powder in with the vanilla ice cream.
A few moments later, he said, "I wish Daddy didn't eat ice cream." I asked him why, and he said, "because maybe he wouldn't have made mistakes."
Now, I know one thing doesn't have anything to do with the other, and I'm certain that Jacob knows that, too, but I'm sure that was just his way of bringing it up. Maybe. What the hell do I know.
Anyway, I reassured him that ice cream has nothing to do with making mistakes (how horrible would it be to grow up thinking that eating ice cream leads to mistake-making?!). I asked him what kind of mistakes he thinks Daddy made, and he said that maybe he wouldn't have gone in that room and got killed.
Again, I reassured him. It was not his daddy's mistake. It was the mistake of many others that caused that. The room wasn't safe, and no one told daddy or any of the other workers that they shouldn't go in there. But because of Daddy's accident, now they know it wasn't safe and some changes were made to the room that will hopefully keep it safe for other workers that have to go in there.
One of the things I learned from the psychologist at the SSLF conference last year was that kids verbalize a fraction of what is actually going on in their heads. It's on his mind more than usual lately, and is imagination is running wild. I hope I'm giving him just enough information to give him a correct "picture" of what happened, but not too much that it will cause his mind to go in places a five year old's mind shouldn't go. Oh hell - his mind is already where a five year old's should never go. And Sydney will probably hit this stage at some point as well, and I'll have to go through the same motions with her. She's already hitting her own stage right now as it is. This SUCKS.
It does seem that lately, we're all going through a tougher time dealing with Matt's death, but I'm also just taking the time and making the effort to write more about it. Maybe these aren't things I should write down and commit to memory, but I've got to get it out of my head. I'm hopeful that by getting it out in writing, that maybe my nightmares might subside, and my waking hours may be a little more peaceful.
I should also clarify that I'm not in a constant state of mourning like I was, but it just seems more pronounced lately. Not to mention that this IS my outlet, and while there are lots of other positive things going on in our lives, it's this stuff that I have to purge.
So many more of these types of conversations have taken place from the very beginning - with Jacob, Sydney and many, many others - but I typically don't write them all down because who wants to hear about this shit every. single. day? (Even though there are many of us who do live it every day and all day..)
I'll try to make more of an effort to write about the good stuff, too. But right now, part of my grief (I should be a fucking counselor since I'm constantly analyzing the reasons or unreasonableness of my feelings) is that I'm letting myself feel it more, and it's more pronounced because that's the best way I know how to hold onto Matt. I'm not ready to let him go yet, and when I grieve and remember details of the good times and bad, it keeps him closer to me. I don't know if that's healthy or not, but I don't particularly care about now - this is just the way it is for me.
Maybe another reason is that if I let myself feel it all (unlike what I'd been doing for a while), I'll be able to somehow heal more. Maybe it also has to do with the stage my kids are at right now. Maybe I should feel it more so I can be more effective at helping them through their stages better. Again, what the hell do I know - I'm still faking my way through all this like I know what the hell I'm doing.
I doubt there's a right or wrong way to grieve; it's different for everyone, and everyone has to do what they need to do to get through.
This is just what I need to do right now.