By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee
Every time I begin to write today... it seems my words begin to talk about ... Tommy. I wonder 'why'? He would have been 43 years old on November 20th... and this is the third Thanksgiving he isn't ... here.
I know I'm thinking about him... though, my mind is thinking about other things. I'm glad I'm not crying. Do you know ...I miss my son. I miss him with my very heart.
I don't worry that you will tire of me writing about him, when this happens. You have the choice to go on to the next blog... post. This happens ever so often. I write grief, pain... it's what I know best. Then, I write my colors/my life... my thoughts.
I was thinking today of how Tommy died... I wondered if his eyes were opened long enough to look up at the beautiful, blue sky... see the white sea gulls flying over him. I keep imagining the sea gulls singing to him... 'Tommy, come home... it's time to come home'.
I pray that he didn't feel any pain in his chest... nor feel pain as his body collapsed on the sand. I pray that invisible angel's hands guided him gently as he fell.
Did his ears hear the waves as they washed ashore close by where he lay? My son died a beautiful death... people say this to me. I can 'see' that they are right. Everyone would want to 'go' that way. My mind worries for any pain he might have felt... he had two blockages to his heart. The autopsy showed this... I wonder... is it possible he didn't feel pain?
Imagine the music that the ocean, and sea gulls make as the sounds blend together... soothing, soft... hauntingly beautiful. Doesn't it touch your heart? I think Tommy heard this special music as his soul ... soared to Heaven. Soared to the sea gulls singing, 'Come home, Tommy... come home'.
For the moment... I've went to the place where I don't usually allow my mind to go... to 'that moment when my son lay on that sand'. To the moment... he... died. I feel I want to cry... but, I know I won't for now. I don't know 'why' I won't... I just 'know'.
I can see in my mind's eye... my little 3 year old grandson squatting down to his daddy's level... asking him to come play with him. He probably put his little hand on his daddy's shoulder, to shake him to wake up. Tommy was always playing with him... pretending to be asleep, and such... then, surprise his little son with a big grin, and a roar! He didn't ... that time.
Thank-God for the little group of people close by... they were the only people around. They came to Tommy, and Taban... watched over Taban until he was safely with his mother. His mother didn't know where Tommy and their little son... disappeared to. She, her family were putting luggage up in the hotel room.
I wonder when Tommy grabbed Taban by his little hand... did he feel an urgency to get to the ocean, to play with his little son as he wished to do... as quickly as he could?
He barely made it in time to play for a short time... he left on a journey that was unexpected... one he can't come back from.
The grief... in my grief, I would almost feel he was going to walk up any moment... appear from around the corner. It felt like 'almost' anytime, I was going to see my child. It was like when I was diagnosed with cancer... in that shock... I kept feeling somehow, I could step back 'through a door'... and everything would... be back the way it was. Everything would be alright.
Some day I will sit, and try to explain that more... it's a very interesting way of thinking. I've never heard anyone describe 'real grief'... I've never had opportunity to be around anyone who has grieved like I have. I understand... no one's been around me to see me ... grieve ... like I have. It's a very private thing.
When someone you love, dies... somehow, in the shock... it feels like you can 'shift the time' just a little... and it's like 'they can come back'. It doesn't make sense... I just tried to 'go back' for a moment to 'feel', so... I could describe it. It sounds strange... maybe sometime, I will examine it more in my mind... and write it, to tell you.
In my mind, I used to wish I could reach out... part the air like opening a curtain... see the steps to Heaven... go up them quietly to the top so, I could peep... hopefully, to see the angels walking by... see Tommy. I would have softly called, "Tommy"! Then, watched for his sunshine smile!
We all wish... we all think... don't think... feel, cry... sob, weep when we grieve. Sometimes, we do nothing... I grieve quietly, privately... the only way to know I'm grieving is to see it in my writing. I don't talk about it. Only at a rare moment will Skip see me grieving... I don't want to upset, worry him. If I'm not alright... he can't rest. So, I write the pain...
When you look at me... you'll see my smile, and know everything's alright. Because... really, I am. I don't know how others grieve, I know how I do. I only have my grief... to compare my grief to.