“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language And next year’s words await another voice.” –TS Eliot

Dear Isaac,

Hi Sweet boy. I think about you everyday. I’ve spent the last month in full body armor trying to endure the cheerful holiday season with an open heart (yes that is sarcasm), but my words have felt on lockdown. I stutter and stall and cannot locate them at all most of the time. I’ve never struggled so much in my life as I seem to these days to find words.
I am just not the same person that I was, but I love you as much–or more–than ever. This is such a fierce duality. I feel like I’m navigating wild terrain. My heart knows the way through it, though, so I am trusting in it, even though I don’t have a map and I don’t know the language yet.

I am a refugee in my own country–my own mind–a refugee of grief.

I just want you to know this–that I love you and that I know that I have changed. In general, in life, I’m not asking for anything in return; not for patience or forgiveness or for anyone to listen to a lengthy explanation of where I’m at–which I don’t have the right words for yet, still, anyway, other than I am on a journey that, for the first time in my whole life, for now, I have to do alone & utterly sober, with no guaranteed outcome or happy ending or expectation of anyone waiting for me at the end.
Being in grief may have made me less able to communicate & less present but it has not made me unkind or numb. I love  dearly and I’m so sorry if I have caused any pain or feelings of shame or rejection to any of the people who love me by changing so much. I have really tried to atleast show my gratitude even if that was all I had/have right now.

You have not been replaced– for better or worse, as sad as it may sound (due to the irony), you are still my closest companion…😊
Every single aspect of my life has been impacted by your death– and your choice. It is not an exaggeration to say it feels like an earthquake hit and I’m sorting through the rubble, not sure if I can rebuild or if I have to find an entirely new landscape, view, country….the only thing in my life that makes any sense right now is work– because my hands remember how to care for and listen to others bodies, my hands guide my heart right to the light and the hurt I recognize in others. I love my work and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to still be growing in this way.
But… if it were possible, personally,  I would take a vow of silence until I had the words I need. I would go live alone in the woods until I was healed. Until I was me again. But how can I be me without you?
It feels like a long time to be riding a roller coaster. Or in a war zone. Or cleaning up after an earthquake. I think anyone would be tired and want it to be over. That is not to say that it even feels remotely possible to stop missing you– just that missing you this way is utterly exhausting and lonely and I wish more than anything and with all my might that you would come home.

Happy New Year, wherever you are, darling boy…

“There is a wilderness we walk alone–however well-companioned” –Stephen Benet

Published by: christinaryanstoltz

I write to touch the supple center of unguarded ache~ To release myself from the pressure of not knowing how to move forward from the unfathomable loss of my beloved son, my beautiful boy Isaac, to suicide, of not knowing how to release my grip on of the past, both the worshipping of it as well as the beating myself up for it, and letting go of the need to know what I could’ve done or what on earth I will do now. I write to heal.

1 Comment

One thought on ““For last year’s words belong to last year’s language And next year’s words await another voice.” –TS Eliot”

  1. This is beautiful and maybe hits too close too my heart. I completely understand this awkward state of trying to be in the moment while really being lost in your head. Life is hard. Hang in there. Shine on!


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