Random stuff, reflections on the meaning of life and death, humour, self-deprecation, a bit of bad poetry.

My son’s occupational therapist died last Thursday. His name was Jeff and he was only 23. Around the time he should have been at our house, as he had every week for the past two years, I sat my son down on the sofa and told him that his friend and mentor was gone. “Jeff died?”, he asked in disbelief. I nodded and watched his little face crumple in pain, then recover a second later as he sucked in the horror of it all and held his breath for what seemed like an eternity but was actually only five days.

When I picked him up from school today, I was greeted by a concerned daycare worker in the waiting area who told me Sean had finally exhaled. She told me this in front of all the other parents as my son stood behind a glass partition holding his breath once again, counting slowly to a hundred. Earlier, she had found him laying on the ground outside sobbing, with a group of kids standing around him. She knew that Jeff had died because another educator told her so right after the incident in the playground. And a little while before that, the same educator who told her about Jeff, told Sean to sit down during the after-school homework program. This was just as the dam was about to burst and my son was trying to tell him that someone he loved had died and that he was feeling upset.
When he was finally released from the holding area, he ran into my arms and exploded. It was a very messy and public display of grief, rather unfortunate in its timing but long overdue.
Quite frankly, I am relieved. Relieved because he is finally releasing the sadness he feels over this loss, and expressing outrage at the unfairness of it all. “Jeff didn’t deserve this.”, he managed to say through his tears. I held him tightly against my body all the way to the car.  
I honestly don’t know how he has been able to keep it together for so long, when I have been turned upside down and inside out since it happened. 
Because there are reminders of Jeff everywhere in our house: the bed he taught Sean to make by lining up the edges of the quilt with the bed frame, the neatly organized books in his bookshelf that Sean was never able to put back properly until Jeff showed him how, the chore schedules and “how to cope with bad days” strategies taped on the fridge, mom’s OT cupboard (badly in need of its own intervention), and the basketball I gave Sean for his birthday the Monday before Jeff died, that he continues to practice every day, as a way to honour his friend.
I can’t imagine what Jeff’s family and close friends are going through now. Maybe some are holding their breath the way Sean did. Or perhaps they have realized, as we have, that the worst part of his death isn’t the unfairness of it all, but rather the selfish bit- the way Jeff made our lives so much better, how we took for granted that he always would, and the grim acknowledgement that things will never be the same now that he is gone.
Love you and miss you, Jeff.
Sharon and Sean

4 thoughts on “Grief

  1. Seaniedee says:

    This is sad but also beautiful that he touched Sean and meant so much to him. Personally, it gives me some perspective with regards to some petty things I have been bitching about. I hope somewhere down the road this makes Sean a stronger, more compassionate, and more courageous person.


  2. I hope so too, Sean. Thank-you for your kind words. xo


  3. Anonymous says:

    There is absolutely nothing more I could say….I am without words…so …Thank you for sharing. Take care of yourself and your very, very precious son.


  4. I will. Thank you, Carol…xxx


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Fevers of the Mind

Writing, Poetry, Short Stories, Reviews, Art Contests

Melanie Spencer

Watercolour Artist


Julia Kastner, Writer. my reading and reactions.


Analyse own life


Notes on Seeing, Reading & Writing, Living & Loving in The North


A Blog About The World of Art

Thoughts from a Fat Old Lady

This is the stuff this fat old lady thinks about

rOsalia Cerro

Sustainable Graphic Design Solutions • Solutions en graphisme durable

Changing On The Fly

A Podcast on Hockey & Politics

Grieving maman

Surviving the loss of my son

Books for Life

Here you will find information about all my books and about my crazy thoughts.

Silent Songs of Sonsnow

"I have enough time to rest, but I don't have a minute to waste". Come and catch me with your wise words and we will have some fun with our words of wisdom.

Family In the 2020s

Cool Family Ideas

%d bloggers like this: