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What the loss of my children has taught me

By Erin Epstein

There are no two people who deal with grief and the loss of a child the same

I can only speak to what it’s taught me

Although there have been many layers of grief

I have learned so much about myself

I carry a lot of guilt that I know in my heart isn’t warranted

Yet, I’ve still learned so much about my worth and my value

I believe that my children are still with me

Helping to guide me and bringing peace to my heart

Again, this doesn’t heal the ache or the pain

I’ve just felt so many changes within my heart and spirit since their passing

Prior to losing my children, I gave and I gave and I gave

almost losing myself in the process

I put forth way too much energy into things, into people

I ran myself dry emotionally, never thinking about what it was that I needed

I’ve learned so much about boundaries

I’ve learned that I can let go of things that do not serve me

I’ve learned that it’s okay to care about the well being of others

yet, some people don’t need to be present in my life

You can care for people knowing that a relationship isn’t a two way street

I’ve learned that that is okay; life is too short

I’ve learned not to “sweat the small stuff”

I’m fortunate in the things that I do have

as I learned the hard way, what rock bottom looks like

I’m so grateful for each good day

I am grateful for my health and my well-being

I am grateful for any amount of peace I can find in each day

Once you learn what real pain is

you appreciate the good days and small victories so much more

My children have taught me that I deserve happiness

They have taught me that beauty can still be found through your darkest moments

if you choose to do good with it

Life is not easy

but for those of us who have faced losses so great,

we learn the value of each day

We can still feel pain but prosper

We can feel grieve but persevere

I’ve learned that each day is a choice

Some days are much better than others

Some days I still get so angry

Some days I don’t understand why my children aren’t here with me physically

Some days, the pain of wondering what they would look like,

or who they would be now is consuming

Yet, I am so grateful for all of the gifts that they have given me

Grateful that they still encourage me to look ahead and have faith in what is still yet to come

I have found that I am a much better person for having my children be a part of my life

I have found that they encourage me to love myself so much more

They’ve taught me that I am not responsible for the actions of others and we all have free will

On the day my daughter passed away, after her twin brother had already gone to heaven

I had a profound moment of thinking to myself

“now is where you make the choice to die or keep on living”

I knew that I would either crumble inside

or find some kind of way to live without the two most precious gifts I had created

Not every day has been easy

Sometimes I can process my emotions and sometimes I can’t

This is hard for me, as someone who is used to being so organized with their thoughts

I’ve learned in this process that I’m only human

What I’m trying to say here is that

grief after the loss of a child is inevitable

Sometimes the weight of the pain will feel unbearable

But, there is so much we can still learn about ourselves through our children

That is the gift they’ve given to us that not even death can take away

Thank you Dylan & Madelyn

for always helping me to see the light even through the darkness

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