As parents, we devote ourselves to our children, their happiness, and helping them to realize and follow their dreams.
Parents who have lost a child carry an invisible weight marking a deep absence and grief in everything we do. From shopping for groceries, sitting in traffic, or walking the dog, the burden of loss is ever present, while the world moves busily forward as if nothing has changed.
It is unimaginable to know how or why to reinvest in life, especially in the first few years. Many parents face a crisis of perspective and feel less purpose in life. How do I imagine myself happy again? How do I celebrate their birthday? Who will fill their seat at the family dinner table during the holidays? What am I doing with my life? Who am I and what do I believe? For some this may compel them to leave a job, reorient friendships, or reexamine their religious or faith-based beliefs.
As time goes by and the intense pain begins to wane, you may feel as if you are losing touch with your child and not fully honoring their life by continually grieving. This is normal and, over time, many parents manage to balance these feelings. Finding ways to honor your child and integrate their legacy in your daily life will help you restore your purpose and meaning in life.