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Sunday, October 18, 2009

I am sorry I took a break

I am sorry to have taken a break from this - I (Dad) didn't realize the therapeutic value I was receiving from doing this blog until I stopped. Remembering what happened so many years ago keeps me from thinking of how awful it is losing Andrew.

People have said that there is no pain like losing a child. I, in my ever logical thinking, thought that the pain would just be more intense than that of losing a parent (I've lost both) and as it was with losing a parent, the pain would slowly fade.

Most people lose their parents after they have moved out on their own and the day to day presence of the parent has already been diminished. They have comfortably settled into a routine of talking on the phone and seeing the parent in some convenient routine but the parent is no longer there when they wake nor when they go to sleep. When the parent passes, they think it a blessing because the parent's suffering has ended and the parent has led a long and happy life. Even if they don't believe this, it is said to them so often in the days following the death that they accept it as truth.

I am here to say there is no comparison.

My pain at losing Andrew transcends any other emotional pain I have ever experienced or ever will (except, God forbid, to lose another child). It is a whole new world of hurt, there is no depth or duration – it is constant and completely different in a way I find hard to describe…….. and the pain hasn’t faded, it has intensified.

As each day goes by, I miss Andrew more. At the strangest times, his image will flash in front of my minds eye for the briefest second and immediately I remember that I will never see him again. Suddenly and for no reason, I will hear his “voice” in the white noise of the day and immediately I remember that I will never hear him again. I will touch or smell or see something that reminds me of him and suddenly an image from the hospital, until then forgotten, floods over me and I choke up. My mind isn’t filtering out the “unpleasant” memories and leaving only the pleasant. Instead, it is retaining all the memories and bringing them to the surface one at a time.

And to all this add that mom and I don’t share the same pain. This I can reason out in perfect logic. I have pain in the realization that the things mom will always have memories of, I can never experience.

I am really just beginning to remember all that happened from the time I realized that Andrew would die until some time last week. I've remembered bits and pieces all along – the moment he died, a special friend at the wake, putting the Pall on his casket – but other things are just now emerging into my memory and all I can do is ask “why did my boy die ?”


  1. Brian, I'm glad this is therapeutic for you, cause I love reading the stories about Andrew's life!! Thanks for taking the time to share them. With love for you, Eleanor, Allison, Annie, & AJ

  2. Brian, this telling of Andrew's story is wonderful. Please don't stop because it's not only healthy for you, it is an addition to his beautiful legacy. During his too-short life, there were SO many times you almost lost him. Eventually, maybe years from now, you will be able to modify your question, from "why did he die?" to "how was he able to accomplish so much in only 18 years?" He was such a gift to you and everyone he came in contact with. Love always to all of you, my very dear friend.

  3. Brian, I am so sorry. I cannot even imagine the pain you are feeling, but I can only hope that your gift for expressing your feelings and dealing with it will help. I know it is too easy for me to say, having not yet experienced any of your losses, but I believe this life is but a moment, and you WILL see Andrew again. But there is someone who understands your pain, He lost His Son too.

  4. Uncle Brian, Your words are so beautiful and as I read and cry- I'm in awe. I cry over Andrew's passing often and mom always reminds me, "if it's this hard for us, imagine how hard it is for Aunt Eleanor and Uncle Brian". And I can't imagine. All I can do is offer my love and support.

    Thanks for sharing this- it's so special and I look forward to reading it everyday. I have such vivid memories of Andrew's early years- Barney concerts, "so excited", his scooting across the floor and the fireworks on the 4th.

    Love to you and Auntie Eleanor.


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