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it makes no sense

it makes no sense

Newsflash: I have been sobbing on and off all day. Shocker, right? Holly is crying again. Holly is missing her boy again. Holly is posting a picture of Mason on Facebook again. Will it ever stop? Will she ever move on? Lemme answer that: nope. I am forever paralyzed, forever suspended in grief, forever grappling with reality because this feels like a dream. It feels so fake, but I cannot find a way back to my real life. I am still begging God to give me back my boy. I cannot move on. Everyone else has, but I am still stuck here, in this moment, in THAT moment, trying to fix everything. If you’re as sick of me as I am, please feel free to stop reading the blog. I totally understand. It’s the same crap, different day.

I write these blog entries to get some of the grief out, to put into words this anguish that tries to smother me every day. Maybe this little blog will one day help me make sense of things. My stomach hurts every day. My eyes leak tears every other minute, and when they’re not leaking, they’re burning. I’m so tired. I just want to go to sleep and find Mason. I am absolutely sick of this life and cannot wait for it to end. How unlike me.

I used to post on FB about how much I loved my life. ILML!!!!! All the time, every week, invariably there would be a post about how thankful I was for my life and how much I loved it. I seriously loved my life. That’s not to say I didn’t have problems, I just never aired them on Facebook. I posted positive, fun stuff all of the time. Funny posts. Happy posts. Pictures of my travels. Stories of the conversations I had with my son, Mason, usually followed by ILML. I have never had the ‘FML’ attitude. Not me. Happy, happy, happy.  I viewed FB as an avenue for fun, not a source of therapy or real friendship. Real stuff happens in real life, not online, right?

That’s how I used to feel. Now I get it. Now I understand why some people post their most personal thoughts on FB. Real life is hard, and real relationships are hard to find. Sometimes we need our virtual friends to chime in with a ‘like’ or a quick comment to let us know they’re thinking of us. I get it now. I have never felt more alone in my whole life… I am so thankful for an online community of support. Whether or not we have met, the encouragement is much appreciated. I need this outlet. It’s just me, and I feel alone every second of every day, even when I am sitting between two friends and laughing at a joke they’ve just shared.

I’m so sick of feeling this way. Seriously. I am not drawn to misery. I am gifted with inner joy. I am determined to thrive, not just survive. I have never, in my life, laid in bed, felt sorry for myself, played the victim, and expected someone to fix things for me. I won’t do it now, either. If you’ve met me, you know that I love to laugh. I absolutely love it. I am full of joy, I find humor in all kinds of situations, I tease my friends and I play to the crowd and I would do almost anything to laugh! Knowing that, you can imagine how foreign this dark cloud feels, and how repulsive it is to do battle with grief every dumb day.

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So here I am… in an ‘unfixable’ situation, with a heart full of grief, and no light at the end of the tunnel. It is unfamiliar territory, for sure. It is beyond uncomfortable. It is scary and miserable and painful. Who will help me come up with a new ILML post for facebook? I’d really like to get back to that life. I didn’t grow up in a warm and fuzzy bubble of candy coated love. I worked hard to create an amazing life for myself and my son. I fought some tough battles to preserve a safe, healthy environment. I worked hard to earn the money to provide, and to have some pretty cool vacations. I invested a piece of myself into my son every single day of his life, and as a result, I was the love of his life and he was mine. I want it all back!

Sometimes, I blame myself for what happened on June 3rd. I hold my own hand to the fire and I burn it repeatedly, because I am convinced, somehow, I failed. I get angry at the universe, I want to blame anyone but myself, so I start thinking of every single person who failed Mason, let him down, abandoned or hurt him… and I want to blame them, but I know it isn’t their fault. They weren’t even on his radar. There is a small handful of people that Mason wrote off a long time ago. He recognized them for who they were, and chose not to chase them for love. He was waaaay smarter than I was at 13 & 14. No, it wasn’t their fault. They had nothing to do with him in life, and nothing to do with him in death. Inevitably, I move away from ‘them’ and point the finger back to me. That makes more sense, right?

Only it doesn’t make sense… not really. How can I blame myself? I loved him more than anyone on this earth. From the moment he was born, I protected him. I didn’t let the nurses prick his heel every hour just because he was a big baby (Uh, no thanks. He’s fine.). I didn’t let the preschool administrator get away with leaving him unattended on the playground (some other boy would bite him daily… hello? Unacceptable!). I defended him in 3rd grade when he got in trouble for protecting himself against the 5th grade bully (so what if the wine bottle opener he brought looked like a pocket knife? It was his version of West Side Story and they were about to have a dance off!). I held him while he cried after his 13th birthday because his ‘dad’ showed up drunk, then abandoned him for the second time in his life. (I was the one who begged his dad to stay involved, to stick it out, to stay in touch, anything but break my son’s heart again.) I was the one who bought him more shoes because they wouldn’t even return his shoes to him. It’s sad, but absolutely true.

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I was the one who bought him glasses because it made his vision ‘crisper’ (he liked that word). I think he liked how he looked more than how it made him see… if you catch my drift.  I was the one who dipped into savings to slap braces on teeth that were already perfect. He just didn’t like the gaps… which would eventually close up, but he couldn’t wait. I caved. Let’s get the braces! It made him so happy! Every smile thereafter was filled with a big, fat, metal grin! I was the one who comforted him when a girlfriend broke up with him, when a youth leader told him to never come back to youth group, when his best friend left him alone at the lunch table and made him feel left out. ME. I was there.

I was the one to handle the sex talk. I was the one who caught him smoking, and talked to him about choices. I was the one who picked him up when he was suspended for kissing at school and ditching the dean… I was the one who had the conversation with him: “It’s not the mistake that defines your character. It’s what you do afterwards.” I was there when he was hurt. I was there when the thunder and lightning scared him. I was there when he needed to shnuggle after watching a scary movie with his friends (don’t tell him I told you). I was there when he made mistakes, which FYI is a normal part of growing up, so let’s keep our little judgments in check. Even Dr. Dobson suggests that we want our kids to make their mistakes while they’re young when the consequences are smaller…

I was the one who was always there, without fail. Me. Mama. Shmuvver.

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It makes no sense that he would be taken from me, when lousy parents keep breeding. I dedicated my life to raising him with love and respect. He was happy, fun, kind. He was energetic, hopeful, encouraging, generous. He was magnetic, and people were inexplicably drawn to him. The girls wanted to date him, and the guys wanted to be in his circle.  He befriended the outcasts, preferring them to the kids who were so ‘mainstream.’ He was beautiful, outside and inside. It makes no sense that he would not be given another chance. It makes no sense that he was not saved.

We loved each other senselessly. We fought, sure, but we always forgave each other. We apologized to each other when we were wrong. Yes, I apologized to my son when I was wrong and he manned up and apologized to me when he was wrong. We had an amazing relationship – anyone who knew us can vouch for that. When my mind spirals out of control, and all of my blaming fingers point back to me, I have to remember the truth. Other parents wish they were as close with their child as I was with mine. Which brings me back to WHY? Why us? Why him? Why death?

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I am somewhat comforted by what I found in his phone, if ‘comforted’ is the right word. I should have read his phone immediately, but I was too distraught. Too shocked. Too consumed with grief. Honestly, too afraid of what I might find. I eventually did go through his phone. I read everything. It is obvious that he meant this as a diversion tactic. He had no idea this would be permanent; he was pulling a major stunt to get out of trouble. A typical teenager thing to do, only Mason chose the wrong method and was killed instantly. He is gone because he made a terrible decision that he thought he could control… he is gone because he didn’t get a second chance. He made a mistake that went too far. It is unfair, incomprehensible, and insane. Soooo many people get second chances. Why not Mason??? I cannot wrap my head around it.

It. Makes. No. Sense.

So I write. I think. I read. I dream. I remember. I imagine. I cry, and I cry, and I cry. I’m no closer to finding a way out of this thick, painful fog, and nowhere near figuring out how to live. That’s where I am, folks. Seventeen weeks later, and I am still lying on the bathroom floor, pouring my heart into the rug, hoping my neighbors cannot hear me. I am still standing in the kitchen, begging God to return my son to me. I am still staring at the mother’s day plant from two years ago, hoping it never, ever dies, and wondering what I can do to climb back through the tunnel of time and find June 3rd again.

To live without him is crushing me.

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  • Sarah
    Posted at 03:24h, 30 September Reply

    I have to admit, this is almost impossible to read, but I’m reading. I’m showing up in spite of the fact that I am completely ill-equipped to give you the support you need. I have no idea, no answers and no solutions, after all, you have been the one providing them since the beginning. You have been the one teaching us how to be here for you, which sounds ludicrous but its true. Oh, and your friends did a pretty wonderful job of teaching me too. I have nothing but prayers and a broken heart for you, oh and I have hope too. I have hope and I know that you deserve THE BEST, and you know what? I believe you are destined to receive that greatness. Because the broken parts are where the light shines through, and though your pain is great, your light is blinding, Holly. You are not alone. You are so loved. Can you feel it? Xoxoxo

    • its just me
      Posted at 19:54h, 15 October Reply

      because of glennon, i always want to call you sister sarah… :0) so, sister sarah, i have written this out and i read it to myself every single day. i thought you should know, since they’re your words: “I believe you are destined to receive that greatness. Because the broken parts are where the light shines through, and though your pain is great, your light is blinding, Holly. You are not alone. You are so loved. Can you feel it?”

  • Melanie
    Posted at 04:00h, 30 September Reply

    My dearest friend Holly. Oh how I wish there was something that I could do to ease your pain. Something that could make it all better. I have always been the friend that could make you laugh. Make you smile. Just using silly comments or inappropriate outbursts. Or sharing three bazillion Facebook posts followed by Hell Yes or Damn Straight. These are the things that would make you laugh. But through this awful tragedy. You have been the one who has inspired everyone. You have been the one to comfort and be strong. I pray every day to God to please wrap you in His arms and hold you and to please ease some of your pain and bestow some peace in your life. I’m at a loss for what to do but always know I love you completely and will always be here for you.

  • Ana Rios-Arriola
    Posted at 04:25h, 30 September Reply

    I hear your pain. I lost my son on 2-14-12 and daily I still want him to walk through my door. Blessings I send to you for being brave to post what I feel and can’t write about. I send you Love & Light too. My heart bleeds my soul mourned my spirit yearns and I live with a mystery which doesn’t make sense from a God/Goddess I love. Ana

    • its just me
      Posted at 19:51h, 15 October Reply

      ana, you will forever be in my heart. this is a terrible journey we have been thrust upon and i pray for you to find and seize every single moment of joy that you possibly can.

  • Dani
    Posted at 06:17h, 30 September Reply

    wow wow wow girl.Your journey is far from over&you just keep spilling the words out.Love is forever&loss is forever..bottom line.You have a network of people who will never grow tired of your words&want your heart to be healed.I promise you that….Like I said before we are all just passing through….Love u girl.

  • val hennessey
    Posted at 06:42h, 30 September Reply

    we have a man and wife in Australia who lost there 9 year old son to a kidnapper and murderer This boys name was
    Daniel Morecombe
    His killer wasnt found for ten years
    Daniels body was then found and laid to rest
    Daniels parents found a way to reach out to all the schools right across Ausralia and spread the safety message for all kids
    see Daniel was waiting for a bus when he was taken
    his parents drive from country town to country town from city to city keeping kids safe from strangers
    maybe you could do something similar
    Talking to school kids about consequences of there actions
    may stop someone else doing
    Sending aussie love your way xxxxx

  • val hennessey
    Posted at 06:50h, 30 September Reply

    you know what else Holly
    You were not just a mum to your son you were also his dad
    as I was for my daughter
    Her dad was never in her life so I made up for him not being there
    my daughter wishes me a happy fathers day and a happy mothers day
    I say well done Holly for being mum and dad to your boy xxxx
    Now get up and do
    you can grieve standing up
    Much Love xxxx Val

    • its just me
      Posted at 19:47h, 15 October Reply

      hi val – you’re right! we are both mum and dad! i’m so glad to know that your daughter celebrates you every chance she gets. you are blessed.

      • Val hennessey
        Posted at 08:14h, 01 October Reply

        I am so blessed
        sending love to you still Holly xxxxx

  • Marilyn Arbogast
    Posted at 09:18h, 30 September Reply

    I don’t know you personally, Holly, but I just wanted to tell you how fortunate you were to have all the experiences you did with motherhood and such a sweet relationship with your son for those fourteen years. Though you are experiencing such a void because he is gone, you are forever so lucky to mother, protect, guide, council and share him with your friends and family for all that time on earth. Life is not fair and you will always miss him but I pray the tears will turn to smiles when you think of him and see all the things/places you shared together. He didn’t mean to hurt you by going but surely recognizes now how much it did now. It wasn’t necessarily his choice because there is a plan for each of our lives. He is lucky to have been loved by you and you will see him again and spend the time laughing together you enjoyed here. He will always be your son. The Lord knew you both would only be together a short time on earth (because he’s in charge of that)but the real “life” is the one we have for eternity. There is NEVER an end there like here. For some reason known only to the Lord (and you later)this was the way the “plan” had to be. You will be blessed for being the mother of such a wonderful son of God with a reunion sweeter than you can imagine right now. Now go forth and radiate all that joy that he gave you. He didn’t mean to stop your life but to give you reason to embrace every moment of the sunshine. He isn’t here but you can still make his life meaningful and live on by helping others that you feel he would have wanted to if he’d had the chance. This action will eventually swallow up some of that pain because you will still be sharing your lives. He is trying to comfort you…let him do that.

    • its just me
      Posted at 19:45h, 15 October Reply

      thank you, marilyn. you remind me to look forward to that sweet reunion. i think of that every day and pray that time absolutely flies! i will see him again. cannot wait! until then, i will do everything i can to raise awareness that snap decisions can have permanent consequences. we need to think, to pause, to realize we matter. xoxo thank you for your encouragement.

  • loree
    Posted at 11:48h, 30 September Reply

    Agree with Dani. Love is forever and loss is permanent — in this life. Keep right on posting. It helps release some of the grief a bit at a time. It is your way of grieving — and in the process you are raising awareness for others. Wish a hug could make everything alright, but having been down a portion of this path you are on, I know that it can’t. If it could, I would send you truckloads of hugs. Will continue to keep you in prayer.

    • its just me
      Posted at 19:43h, 15 October Reply

      hi loree, your truckload of hugs arrived today, and i accepted every single one of them!!! thanks for the ‘virtual’ love. i appreciate that. it helps. xo

  • Julie
    Posted at 12:38h, 30 September Reply

    your words never get tiresome. Remember, we who are reading this, are reading it because we sought you out. Your words bring comfort to us, though, they are only possible because of your pain. Your words remind those of us who are complaining about our circumstances…our small circumstances…that we really have charmed lives and that someone else, lots of someone elses have a real reason to complain. Your words bring hope and courage. I’m sorry that all we can do is tell you that ‘we’re sorry’. Small pittance for what you offer to us. Thank you, Holly.

    • its just me
      Posted at 19:42h, 15 October Reply

      thank you, julie. it’s true – we all have troubles. it’s good to put it into perspective, and it helps to acknowledge that everyone hurts sometimes. thank you for reading & commenting.

  • Mieke
    Posted at 00:20h, 01 October Reply

    Your words break my heart. I have spent many aching days on the floor sobbing. Our losses are different but so real and painful and hard. I’m so sorry. It doesn’t make sense and its not fair. And some days that’s all that it can be. Hugs to you my friend that I don’t know.

    • its just me
      Posted at 19:40h, 15 October Reply

      mieke, i am thinking of you. thank you for reading, and sharing part of your heart with me. xoxo

  • Jodi Knippel
    Posted at 00:46h, 01 October Reply

    I too have just one child. A boy, and so much of what you write reminds me of when he was younger. Your whole bathroom blog had me smiling with memories. Mine is about to turn 20 and now in college. Because of YOUR WORDS, when he called last week and said he was sick I dropped everything and came to him. Last night I got to hear him tell me that it meant everything to him that I was there to make him feel better. Because of your loss I now make sure to take every opportunity to be the best mom I can be. I know its not much, but I wanted you to know that your pain matters, and it reminds me to be better.

    • its just me
      Posted at 19:38h, 15 October Reply

      jodi, your post fills my heart with such joy. thank you for taking the time to share that. hug your boy every chance you get, and throw in some extra hugs from me!

  • Morgan
    Posted at 04:17h, 01 October Reply

    You are amazing for writing these. No matter how much I cry reading them I can’t even start to know what you have and are going through. I’ll always remember sixth grade science with mason. Stay strong.

    • its just me
      Posted at 19:37h, 15 October Reply

      love you, morgan. i’m glad you have some fun memories of mason in science class! he was a nut! i miss him.

  • Ana
    Posted at 05:00h, 03 October Reply

    I don’t know you personally but reading your blog has given me strength I had two miscarriages in one year and I was very depressed and mourning in silence, I pray that god can give you the strength and healing you need to continue with your amazing journey, spreading awareness and words of hope and strength for those
    in need thank you so much.
    Also idk how you would feel about this but I wanted to mention a guy named Gary spivey he can help you reach mason.

    • its just me
      Posted at 16:46h, 18 July Reply

      Ana, I don’t know how I missed your comment before. I am just reading through comments again today, just to encourage myself, and found this one. I am so very sorry you lost your two babies. How heartbreaking. I’m sending you love. Thank you for sending me encouragement and prayers. xo

  • Chrissy M
    Posted at 07:27h, 07 May Reply

    You don’t me and I never knew your son… I was turned on to your Facebook page, blog and website by a friend. I was immediately drawn to your message. As a mother the thought of walking one step in your shoes terrifies me.

    I don’t know how you’ve come so far. I feel as if I were in your shoes, I would have came up with a million excuses to take the same road as Mason did just to escape the pain.

    I am inspired by your strength and your words. I’ve been on here all evening reading all your blog posts. I’m in Awe of you! I don’t envey you at all. I can’t even imagine what life has been like since that June day. Your so open, and honest. Some things you’ve shared Id be too scared to.
    I pray I never ever know your pain but and so happy I found your blog and website for Mason. I wouldn’t have ever know the risks of suicside in happy well adjusted children with out this!!!

    There is so much I have learned in one evening and I will use what I have learned here to talk to my own children.

    Thank you for sharing your deepest thoughts

    • its just me
      Posted at 16:38h, 18 July Reply

      chrissy, thank you for your heartfelt comments… i am glad that my words have helped to raise awareness. i never knew something like this could happen. never imagined i could lose my son in the blink of an eye. i wish i had known then what i know now. thank you for encouraging me.

      • Chrissy M
        Posted at 18:54h, 18 July Reply

        Thank you for responding, I know you must get very busy with everything your now involved with! I continue to go back and read your story in hopes I never take what I have for granted!

  • Jo-Ane Heinle
    Posted at 22:23h, 01 October Reply

    Dear Holly
    We have never met…yet I feel strongly connected…your posts are honest, deep & truthful. Please let me share that my daughter is a middle school counselor in Vegas….She has shared ‘A mason grace project with many of her Jr. Hi kids Get the message out….….thank you for your blog..thank you for your honesty…even though we have never never met..we are connected in lifes’ Six Degrees of Separation…

    • its just me
      Posted at 13:41h, 31 October Reply

      Thank you for commenting, Jo-Ane! Please share my gratitude with your daughter. I’m so happy her students are hearing these messages at such a critically important age. xo

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