The new normal.

I cannot imagine now the time before. I am thinking of once how that vista might have looked? A gentler landscape perhaps? Rolling green hills, sunshine, glittering calm sea nearby. I am rested calm, smile of contentment on my lips. Better than a romantic book. Loved and being loved, Mother, wife, friend daughter.

I am writing with cynical smile on lips for this view has gone, pshhhh, like a puff of smoke.  I sit here writing all kinds of words that do not add up. Life was tough before not easy I was not skipping or winning at life. I was worn out, tired to be honest. I have always given out too much to everyone. I suppose looking back I was that loving kind person in spite of life’s adversity I was strong and kept going. I was a loving caring Mum and had done the best I could to bring up my boys. My Mummy love was strong, is strong, was unconditional, is unconditional and constant, always constant.

Capable confident compassionate Caring kind. That was me. Part of big happy extended family. We had our challenges but were coming through the other side.  I was loving kind person in despite of life’s adversity I was strong and kept going. The old path had its hurdles to jump over but I just kept jumping, if I fell, I picked myself up.

I can place me in a busy world where folk k would call on me and lean on me. I very rarely could say No to anyone needing help. I was super Mum super friend super wife surrounded in capability! The friend that would help. I was Andrew’s Mum, in this cruel world protecting him, keeping him safe and supporting him to navigate life with my Mother’s love.

I think this superwoman running around sorting life out thought things would get better. I was hopeful and optimistic that the next view or vista would be better. In those days I thought there would if not happy, would be a better ending to the constant challenge’s life chucked at me.

Now here I am in the new normal. This is the best I can do to remember views from before, time as it was, me who I was. Grief mists everything now. However now I see with clarity there was an inevitability that my lovely boy would be taken from me. It always felt like I was safe keeping him. I lived naively then thinking I suppose that I could. That a mother’s love would be enough to keep him here. In the new normal I see that a mother’s love is not enough.

In this new normal of every morning I awake to revolving thoughts; dead, gone, not asleep not waking up, not coming home. My boy is dead.

Over months the new normal life has given me time to sit in nature and feel the landscape change. Today’s normal; Bleak winter view. Yesterday I told a stranger I have one child, the other is dead. Calmly without tears. My boy has died. There is my world now. Mother of dead child.

Every view or illustration of every truth I have based my life on has been rubbed out or come undone. The woman before no longer exists and the path she was on no longer is there so there is no view. There is no map to follow.

Life to death.

Love to grief.

In this new normal I have to take comfort in very small things, trying to create any memory that may provide relief from this constant pain.  Grief obscures all future views on which hopes aspirations or dreams based upon.

This new reality, my new normal shifts constantly there is now little surety, only moment by moment, minute by minute. I am lost in reality of life without my boy.  I have no idea now of what I am looking at. In this new normal all this love is now grief but I also have love to protect others from this pain, my grief. In this new normal I cry and wail in corners. In my new vista I stand alone, lonely in my mother’s loss, full of sadness I cry alone.

As this new world reforms, I realise I am held in love and mercy alone. I no longer worry for my boy, he is okay, he is at peace. I pray now for the strength to carry on, to create a new normal of love, peace and mercy.

Purple candles, hope and faith

Purple candles lit for hope and faith

I hold on with my love deep love

My boy at peace and safe

No longer needing to be one step in front of him

No jumping to catch up

Purple candles

Hope and faith


I stand here still, with my light

My candle to light

White to reflect his pure heart

His loving soul

Lighting candles yet no reminders needed

Candle white for my boy

Purple candles

Hope and faith


Yearning for my baby boy

My small boy

My not so small boy

My boy all grown up

Time of Advent

Memories all stirred up cause pain

Purple candles

Hope and faith


Memories swamp me

Pain tears and heartbreak

I can carry no more

Wanting to lie away from the light

Deeper into this deep despair,

this loss is impossible to bear

Purple Candles

Hope and faith


No place to hide no place to rest

Finding brief respite but yet behind follows the tsunami of grief

Overtakes me

Flattens me

Looking at pictures of my boy

Smiling laughing

Purple candles

Hope and faith


No need of pictures this mother’s love

always in my head and heart

Always loved

His soul has gone but not left

Forever in my heart

That golden thread of a Mother’s love cannot be broken

Purple candles

Hope and faith


My boy’s voice I hear

Over and over

He is okay

He is at peace

In the golden light

With love and mercy

Purple candles

Hope and faith


My face


Bright and beautiful

Glint in her eye


My sparkle

I inherited that sparkle from my lovely mum

I can see her twinkle in her eye

She gave it to me

The bright side

The cheeky funny side

Looking at me

I am the same






All okay, they say possibly brighter than last week, last month

They want hope methinks

I know the sparkle is not there

No joy, no point looking who cares now?

I used to brush my hair look at my face

Now the moisturizer goes on as something to do

A brush goes through my hair

As I mad enough with grief avoiding more attention

If I bothered to look at all the sparkle is subtly replaced with dull sadness

In manic days I rose early to do yoga

In willingness to go on

Now I reluctant fall out of bed and go through the motions

Not sure why I neither care nor bother about what I am seeing or others see

Others tell me I look well or better

With this grief comes physical illness too you see

I hold myself tight so that I can

look bright



I feel exhausted at holding my face together

It best collapsed in dark corners where it folds into my grief

My face resigned to grief

Rearranges to fit in with today



It is too early in my grief-stricken brokenhearted state to have an energy or inclination to seek solace. Anyone who offers me relief from grief is misplaced. I do not feel comfort. I have routines to make me walk forward to make me get up and move forward. Creativity in me cannot help but express how I feel. It is not that there is comfort in writing these words or making my drawings I just do.

Music is emotional not comforting. Most words make me weep if optimistic or celebratory I weep for what my boy will not have, what as a Mother I will not share and if sad then throws me into deep despair. Some music that has a bigger spiritual meaning has held me in my pain.

I write in my boy’s old room wondering is this comfort? Does it bring ease gentleness? I feel nothing. It touches nothing in me I am too consumed with grief to notice. Today I sit in darkness late afternoon. Unwell I am glad that I have had permission to stay in bed, to be sick and do nothing. No respite in bed just tears and grief. Crap TV like a drug numbs me for a bit. No hope or joy out of the window now. Dark dull dreary day. One big black crow sits in the tree tops. Winter brings no comfort but reminds me that this enduring pain and suffering will go on and on and on.

Is there any solace in nature? I have written about it enough. I have reached out to the skies and trees and all that nature offers. Writing this I see my boy on the open landscape running reaching out, breathing deeply, up a hill. It did not save him. I see the beauty in the light, and all that is natural around me. Nature wants nothing from me. Trees do not talk. The land and sky do not tell me platitudes. There is a simplicity in watching the sun rise, surety in first winter frost. Nature carries on whilst I fall apart and my life’s journey has disappeared.

Many show me love. Some close and some far. Close loved ones keep me safe. My beautiful oak tree of a husband holds still and lets me lean deeply into him. He holds strong. This makes me feel safe in my pain but does not remove the suffering the sadness this deep grief. Circles and spirals of loved ones surround me, closest friends walk with me and sit still. Wise friends do not offer comfort or solace, they offer to witness my grief, walk or sit with me. They provide distraction when needed and safe places to weep.

Doing stuff like lunches, or eating or drinking healthy food, jam, soup, wine or anything else, or doing other stuff like hot showers, nice soap, yoga, walking or dancing or anything that might remotely look like it would bring me any solace occupies time.It is just stuff to do. This just brings me respite. I mean respite, not relief.

Other people’s words sometimes connect to my grief, gives me insight and understanding. There is empathy from peers and safeness in our mirrored truths. But I would not call this solace or comfort.

All these things, stuff, things to do just kick me out of bed, make me pretend to function and prop me up when really, I would have fallen, I have fallen, dragged me up and pushed me on.  As I repeat, these things also bring respite but not relief. After their diverting times I return with my grief all stacked up, my bucket full of emotional distress overflowing and causing added pain. What I am trying to say this grief , this sadness, this pain never goes away? you can turn away for a minute or two but when you come back it is there waiting looming large .

Being in nature, up a hill, on my own there may be a fleeting moment of clarity, a brief moment with a robin, the breeze in the trees.  Being in church makes me congruent and open, producing no fakery brings respite. Breathing deeply, quiet prayer, a moment of love, mercy, peace, an understanding that my boy is safe. Is this solace? Who knows? May be now is not the time.

I cry in corners

I shall walk in hazy sunshine to day with one who walks beside me in grief. Friends who reach out knowing at times I need gentle company to distract me from this pain. The mist hangs heavy today I cannot see my trees and the garden looks like it has been rubbed out and redrawn in winter style. The grass glistens with ice. The world looks eerie and like me weary.

I am so tired now. Early days of being numb and manic long gone. This week I looked up the day on which my boy gently left us. The day I sat by his bedside holding his hand whispering my last words to my sleeping boy. Alone. No matter how many walk beside me, my loved one who holds me, I am alone with this mother’s loss. I cry in corners, dark corners where I cannot be seen or heard. I weep in empty churches praying for mercy, knowing my boy is at peace. Silent tears in public places when I can look away, turn my head. I wail and scream and shout in an empty house with a locked door.

Am I offering protection to ones I love? Not consciously so. I am not sure if I have control or ability to give directive now to this loss this pain. The way it comes and goes is not my strength to stop or guide. When tsunami of grief comes, I have no strength to stop it.

I know that I am now months on exhausted. I am not sure if it is from wailing and crying or more from the effort of daily functioning. I lay in bed this morning, weary not wanting to move, texting I am fine I am getting up and dressed every day. The effort of keeping clean and wearing clothes that match and washing my hair is exhausting. It is as a truthful open individual I am full of layers of illusion now to keep everyone safe. I would not wish this distress on any one, it would be cruel to let a loved one witness such pain without them having any opportunity to help. I dress I comb my hair and I drink coffee. I look like I am fine, I am okay. Yes, layers of illusion all around me like the mist on this morning, feeling cold and unforgiving too.

I talk to folk I get out and about. I look at nature. I like trees. I draw pictures and write. I am doing so well. It is so exhausting but protect you all I must. If I opened my heart to you all you would see is its true broken centre, my sadness would be contagious and those I love would drown in my sorrow. I cannot have that. It is my pain, this mother’s pain that I must hold. This weight of sorrow only I can hold, no one however loved can help me. What would be the point of overly sharing ?

My true witness to my grief is the bigger one, that greater light and love of being of love and mercy. It is in the trees, the last fallen leaf, the white light of winter through the mist. The connection is there as the winter rays of light start to break through the trees. I break the silence with my wails my sobs behind locked windows, doors and my broken heart opens as my whole person drips in sorrow. But I am not alone I am held in love.

No one must nor need to witness my pain.

Nature a witness of grief

No need for heroic or heroine rescuing


I am here to stay in this pain

Spiky dark trees with white light

Bird sits alone

No birdsong

Stark bright light

No happy ending

Just me a Mother without her boy

With nature to witness her grief

Sitting still arms wrapped around her pain looking out on the day

Quiet stillness

Cool chilliness

Lone robin pops down into garden

Finches go about their business

Nature carries on

Comfort in nature as it moves through

White winter light will not offer redemption

but there is surety of the first big winter frost

The birds now decide to sing

A reminder that in nature time moves on

Nature asks nothing of this broken Mum

Walking through woods, the trees stand tall

Telling that all will be well

Mother’s  suffering shared into this world, to the trees  and nature will absorb all pain

It takes it all holds the loss on this winter’s day

Freshness of the day

Coldness on this mother’s  cheek

Alone without her youngest boy

Cry, breath taking wail

Weeping in sorrow, deep sorrow

Love in the beauty of nature

Love in the greater sense of being

For love is grief

Suffering is an expression of all this mother’s love

It pours and flows out in all directions

Just sore raw hard-edged pain

Loss for boy, for this mother’s love once gentle and kind

Love is ugly

Love is beauty

No sweet happy endings

Not redemption but mercy


I am just so tired now. Another Monday arrives and the grief is deeper. There is a weary waking to pain now. I awake not so shocked at the pain I now endure. For I am resigned to another day of suffering.  I live feeling totally grief stricken and I am sinking lower with exhaustion carrying this huge weight of pain.

Life has a pattern now. Weekends are for trying to get on with life and seek respite. I am with my loved one and we can fill the time with comfort of a warm fire, a movie, conversation and music. He distracts me with his love, holds me in kindness.

Come Monday I am really tired to start the week. Mondays always hit hard for re run of the day. It is so cold now no longer manic I am now weary of this grief and escaping from nightmares tips me out of bed and into the day. Tired from carrying grief held all weekend I let it loose in great sobs and big dripping tears. Goodness I am so tired, crying is exhausting.

So, another Monday, there have been 17 of them now, grief just evolving into the new reality of life with loss, and being broken hearted.  Monday and my weekly screening of a mother’s goodbyes. In my head it is a re run of my old black and white movie. Grayscale. Soft blurred images. It has all the pathos of the old-style silver screen; the pain of this Mother’s love rerunning the shame in my head for all the if only, so tiring.

Every day I ask this is not of my world my life my destiny surely to not be a grieving mother? Every day he is in my mind lying there, peacefully asleep. I remember the touch of his skin. His soft smooth man child skin. That beautiful perfect body all ready for life. Too young to know the future. I could lie beside him and sleep.

My boy stays in summer. He is there in the summer sun, warmth, end lazy days of summer. Golden light and autumnal grieving long gone. Winter, dark trees, cold frost and advent begins. So here comes Christmas and it is everywhere. Hope and optimism and cheer. Tinsel decorations and trees. I am worn out with it all, this shininess and optimism.

I walk to catch fresh air to wake me up. Thinking I rule against going into the attic for boxes and bags full of memories; gently hanging all the baubles on the tree, recalling stories of Christmases past. Smiles, love, hope. The box stays shut dusty in the attic; I am too tired to shift it.

No excited phone calls or anticipation of meeting him off the train. No long-awaited hug, hugs that would hold me close. I am too tired anyway for conversations of future hopes aspirations dreams.

I am exhausted with heart ache. Weary with pretending to escape my raw reality, and tired with feeling so sad.

No present reality of any hope just today’s exhaustion of grief.