I have heard this expression over and over again in my life, and I find myself reflecting on this as I am now approaching the fourth anniversary of my daughter’s death.
Tomorrow, the 4th, she would have been thirty years old. She will never see 30. It is such a bittersweet thing to imagine your child never aging. I am happy she will never see wrinkles and gray hair, or experience arthritis and back problems, or all the inherent pains that come with old age; but, then again, I am sad that I don’t have her here to sit beside me as I go through these things.
Just recently, as often happens, I was joking with a friend about mothers and daughters, and I was ragging on my mother about some meaningless thing, and the friend in a casual remark said, “Well, you know what comes around, goes around.” It was a slip, I know, for I immediately remarked back, “No, not with me.” She was horrified and started apologizing profusely.
I used to get so angry about statements like that, the casual day-to-day life statements made by people who have never experienced the death of a child; but now, the anger is cooling and I have resolved to know that no one will understand unless you have been there. She did not mean anything by what she said. I am sure I was there once upon a time, as well.
So, the “time heals all wounds” is a spurious comment. Time does not heal all wounds – it heals the anger, it dries up some of the tears, it wears away the shock, but never will it heal the pain. It’s really odd, but most days I feel like I am on the other side of the mirror, an Alice in the Looking Glass, in some surreal world where nothing makes sense and there is no hope of return. Forever falling, I guess….
This post in not to engender sympathy or empathy. It is simply to let the world know of my beautiful daughter and how, as the sun rises tomorrow, she came into the world 30 years ago like a bright star to my life. She was the gentlest of souls and I am not sure she even realized the sweetness she brought to all of our lives, even people who just met her. Even as a baby, her happy smile and quiet manner radiated around her. I miss those days. I miss every day with her, and am so thankful she was in my life.
So often, now, what I miss most is our conversations, even if it was simply on the phone – hours of chatting and laughing, talking about our favorite books or movies, and on and on… As time moves on and healing never comes (and I know and resign myself to it never happening), the one other thing time does not do is take away the fear. As we enter the new year, fear still sits beside me. I was once that carefree person making casual comments, but no more, for I know that all it takes in a split second to change a life. A single phone call in the middle of the night and there you are.
I will never again say “time heals all wounds”. It does not.
D. K. Marley
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