I was going to write a long post all about Ethan yesterday, but I couldn't. And I thought just pictures would tell any mother how much he was loved. But this post is about what happened to ME.
All my children and my husband were hurting so badly, I felt I had to hold it all in, because if I let myself feel the pain as deeply as I knew I could, then nobody in the family would be strong enough to go on. So, although I cried, I didn't really mourn. I kept a good deal of my pain of loss locked up inside. And that emotional pain did a job on my body.
Yes, I 100% believed that E was in heaven and being loved and taken care of up there. But it happened so suddenly. One minute he was standing in the hallway and the next he was dead on the floor. CPR, waiting for the paramedics (20 minutes) the hospital, telling the kids. Worst day of my life. And I felt tremendous guilt. Why hadn't I seen it coming?
I ended up with multiple stomach ulcers very quickly, and in a couple month I got Rhabdomyolysis, which is a liver disease caused by statins like Lipitor. One day I simply could not walk anymore. I couldn't move, and I got an ambulance ride to the hospital in the same ambulance that had taken Ethan away.
My body was eating itself. My liver was devouring my muscles. My kidneys couldn't handle the large muscle particles that were going through my bloodstream. I got my taste of what using a wheelchair was like. It took about 6 months before I could walk steadily again, but my strength has never returned.
My emotional pain created my physical pain.
That's what anger does. That's what despair does. And I let it. I could have handled it differently. It was what it was, and no amount of anger or despair was going to change it. I should have mourned.
The next time you feel yourself getting sick, say a cold or the flu, take the time to figure out what problem is pressing so hard on your heart that it's making you sick. I bet you can always find the trigger.
And if that anger is what I called "transferred anger" that is, someone else's problem is making you angry...let them own their own problem and take the consequences of their anger. Don't let them make you sick.
I'm comforted by the knowledge that I'll see Ethan again when I make that transition to heaven.