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Crying in the car

Posted by Alisande (My Page) on
Sat, Aug 7, 04 at 22:57

I spend quite a bit of time in my car, and a lot of tears have been shed in it. I would get blindsided by grief while driving (easy to happen since I'm usually by myself), and even several years after losing my daughter I can't tell you how many times I'd set out to a social engagement, feeling good and looking forward to it, only to have some thought hit me and trigger a flood of sadness and tears.

If anyone else goes through this, I found one thing that has helped me: audio books. They don't distract me from my driving, but they do distract me from my thoughts. I still feel periods of intense grief, but now they come at other times. Books on tape and CD are available at libraries, and I also buy them used (and cheap) on eBay.

Susan


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Crying in the car

I am so sorry for you Susan. What you experience is normal and natural. Anything can trigger your thoughts. If it's any help it took me 6 years to stop doing just what you are doing after the death of my daughter. Try breathing deeply and slowly and stop your car to the side of the road if you need to. Take care.
Salena


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RE: Crying in the car

It's kind of embarassing, but ever since the accident I've been too terrified to drive. I'd just rather not. I'm not the most experienced driver I don't even have my lisense, but even so I would still drive to the store or help with moving or whatever. To be honest, I think riding in the car is the most dangerous thing I do and even that scares me. I never had such a phobia before Dan was killed. He drowned after he jumped off a cliff, but I still feel aprehensive about motor vehicles. Get going fast in one, on the freeway or something, and I'm accutely aware I'm in a possible deathmobile. One move by a drunk driver and it's all over, perhaps quite greusomely, you know? I've always sort of felt that I could kill myself behind the wheel. But it never bothered me to this extent before now. I think it's because I'm the last child my mother has alive, and any risks I take from now on (even mundane ones =\) will make me feel this way.

I had to drive for 4 hours in the wake of receiving the news. The tears made it very dangerous. I hope if anyone gets overwhelmed in the car, they would pull over, just as you would if you get tired. Pull over and cry...


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RE: Crying in the car

I had found that the "safest" place to cry was alone in the car. That way, no one could disturb me. No knocks on the door, no phone calls, nothing. I think it has been those times when I've had my what I call worst "gut crying jags". I have felt like I could literally break the stirring wheel in half, with the intense level of anxiety, sadness etc. within me because of the loss of Chris. I haven't had a "gut cry" in a long time. I guess that's good. I know that my heart is healing. There will always be a scar and I will always and forever miss my baby, but my emotions have pretty much leveled out now after 6 years.
I can remember when DH and I truly didn't think that we would be able to survive another minute or hour, much less 6 years!
Lu


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RE: Crying in the car

I cry in the car, at the computer, in the yard under the moon, everywhere. I try to keep my tears private. Sometimes I can't. Fortunately I work in a setting where tears are approved and nobody else minds. I try not to wail.

I appreciate the kindness of others. We'll never be the same.

Nell


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RE: Crying in the car

I'll burst into tears and feel a lot of pain when I see gatherings of families with children. I thought I'd gotten over it, but recently it's come back. I try to go where I can be alone. I never had a daughter to lose, but that seems like a loss in itself. I would love to have had a daughter. I will never know what it's really like to have one to hold, to play with, to stay up with, to cry with, to take care of. I'll never have someone call me Mommy. I know that I can't pretend to know all of your feelings, but the emptiness and sense of loss is very acute. It seems like a form of grief, and hard to talk about. It's just natural to be a parent, and it feels so unnatural not to be one. You also get the "if I'd have known feeling", as in "if I'd have known, I would have had a child when I could have one, whether I was married or not", but it seems so desperate to say that. I don't know what it really is, in comparison to having a child and then losing him or her, but it sure feels like grief to me. God bless you all.


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RE: Crying in the car

I can understand what you are saying. Of course, not completely, since I have had children. I can imagine the pain of not having any at all. DH and I wanted a house full, but just put it off and didn't.
We feel so sorry for our only existing son who is left without a sibling and will have to deal with difficult issues when DH and I get older and die. That grieves us.
I'm so sorry for you to have to grieve for no children at all.
Try to put your energy and love towards other young people who will appreciate you. Sometimes others, although not blood related, can give you much comfort and company.
Bless you!!
Lu


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RE: Crying in the car

Wendy, those of us whose children died are acutely aware of 'loss of future.' You, too, feel that loss except that you don't put a face to it and we can. You try to imagine what your child could have looked like. We try to imagine how our child's children might have looked. Life is full of might have been.

Lu's advice about channeling your energy and love is good for all of us. Thanks, Lu.


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RE: Crying in the car

Thanks. I will get to see my step-grandchildren this weekend. They live in another city. It seems that due to circumstances, I get to see them only a couple of times a year, and this is one of those times. I will really enjoy being with them. I think it will take the edge off. I've been so emotional lately. Loss of future...that is true. While making the most of the present, we sometimes stumble.


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RE: Crying in the car

Wendy, it's definitely a form of grief, and I remember it well. I was married eight years when my first child was born. During that time I went through infertility testing, some of it physically painful, all of it emotionally painful. I despaired of ever having a child. And having children was always my No. 1 dream in life. When I was a little girl I sought reassurance from my mother that I'd be able to have a baby. (This was after she had a miscarriage.)

I can remember crying one Christmas Eve as my husband and I decorated our tree, afraid that I'd never have children to share the experience with. I knew grief well, having lost my mother at age nine, and this was not far removed. I felt so blessed to eventually have three children! It still seems utterly impossible that I could have lost one.

Susan


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RE: Loss of possible children

I've felt it accutely since my brother died. With half of my nuclear family wiped out, both of my siblings, I think bringing forth new life, someone I could introduce to the world, would be a major step in healing for both my mother and I. My brother was only one of two males in his extended network of cousins who is not adopted. His exquisite genes, being one of the finest members of our family, are gone. I could be sterile as many of my relatives are. I would be sad but I can adopt.

The thing is I'm only 22 and not ready at all. I estimate I have at least 5 years to go before I will be. But now it's like this driving need - I want a family so bad. It makes me even more determined to go to graduate school and work to become a stable professional as soon as possible.

I know this is way off topic but I too feel some grieving for what I've never had, in a facet of my larger grieving. It made me think of only children - they too must grieve. I truly had two wonderful brothers. They weren't aborted, they were wanted. When I can have a son, hold my baby in my arms and love again, like when Dan was born, then I will be happier.


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RE: Crying in the car

I am an only child, and when I was growing up I did wish I had brothers and sisters. But then as time went on, I got used to my solitude and space. When I would visit friends with siblings and there was chaos in the house, I couldn't wait to retreat to my own private sanctuary.

The thing is, we only children don't know what it's like to have siblings. It would be difficult and sad to have them, and then NOT have them, but it's hard to miss what you've never had in the first place. At least for me. At this point in my life, when my mother is so sick, I have wished I had a sibling to help me through this and share the load. But then again, there is no guarantee that everyone would share equally. I have friends with siblings and when the parent is sick, it always seems to be one person who does most of the work. Or there is squabbling and tension amongst them. So there are no guarantees.


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