I had someone recently tell me not to use my loss as a crutch and that I "have to get over it sometime." This person was speaking particularly to my incident with SGT Knowitall, but I got the feeling they were also referring to any future encounters also. A crutch is defined as "A staff or support used by the physically injured or disabled as an aid in walking, usually designed to fit under the armpit and often used in pairs." or "anything that serves as a means to an end. ex: He uses drugs as a psychological crutch." (Freedictionary.com). Seeing both of these definitions, this person did not use the word crutch properly. For one, as much as I would love to, I cannot physically use my daughter to hold me up, she is buried 6 feet under, but emotionally she does hold me up and keep my strong. Her, along with Foster keep me going, because I highly doubt she wants to watch her mommy fall apart and crawl into a hole and die from her view in heaven. Second, as a means to an end, I am using her but in a positive way. I have my first meeting with the Non-Profit group founder this week, and we are going to discuss my role in this organization. Also, I am in the process of writing a letter to our Senator and OSU Medical Center to argue my case about the National Guard Regulation and OSU policy. I am using my daughter and my experience as a means to an end. That end will be when no other woman has to worry about money or work or discharge from the Army, if God forbid another woman has to experience this.
I believe what the outspoken person was trying to tell me was not to use my daughters death as justification for all of my words and actions. I hate to break it to you, but probably 75% of what I do on a daily basis revolves around Rosie. My thoughts are always one her, the way I feel, the reason I adore and love my husband even more than before, my appreciation for friends and family, the way I can truly feel for someone else who suffers a loss, even the loss of a dog. Do I blame all of this on my loss? YES! April 20th 2010 has been an extreme pivitol point in my life. As I have mentioned before, there is the Erin prior to that date, and the Erin after that date. They are two totally different people. If anyone has a problem with that, be my guest to walk away and not speak to me again, because this is who I am now. I am closer to God, stronger in my faith, I am more aware of people's feelings, more appreciative of the little things in life, and realize how much life truly is a miracle which is taken for granted too often.
Of course there are things that I am not completely happy with in this new person. I was very outgoing and would rather be out with others than cooped up at home. Now I would rather stay home with Foster than go any where. I used to not worry about stupid things, but now I worry about losing loved ones. I also feel so guilty about my reactions to close friends and loved ones finding out they are pregnant and having babies. I am ecstatic when a new announcement is made, but then this little ugly voice in the back of my head goes, "Why does she get a healthy baby and I did not?" Not that I would wish this pain or suffering on my worst enemy, but I just wish I had had that happy ending too. When a new pregnancy announcement is made, I have to admit beneath my happiness for these women is a little bit of jealousy, and I feel awful for this. I also instantly start praying for that person to have a happy, successful pregnancy, because NOW I know that the first trimester is not the only threat. I see the wonderful naive happiness these women have being pregnant and I know I will NEVER have that again in a pregnancy because of my loss of Rosie.
In response to this person's comment about getting over it, I won't, and I hope I never do. That was my daughter! Unless you have been through the loss of a loved one, particularly a child, it is not something you get over. You learn to live with the pain, and it gets easier and easier every day, however, you have a permanent hole in your heart that every once in a while likes to ache so bad that you feel like you can't breath. These pains come without notice, and unfortunately, people like SGT Knowitall feel the backlash. As I mentioned in that entry, I felt immediately bad for using my daughter's death in a way to shut someone up, but sometimes it needs to be done. It raises awareness that you do not always know the path someone has walked and the life they have lived, and judgment is not ours but something only God has the right to do.
Please do not let this entry fool you into thinking I am angry with this person. They just do not understand and I am trying to raise a little awareness. I am pretty good at verbally justifying myself, but I feel, especially lately, I am better with words when they are written down, and I know this person will read this blog and hopefully think twice before opening their mouth to a person who is hurting, me or anyone else.
Well Here's a Huge Update
2 months ago