Dear Mom, (& Angie and and and all who take the brunt of my blunt!)

I know you say it’s ok and you’d do anything for me, but I’m really & truly sorry if my need to talk open & unfiltered about Isaacs death is uncomfortable for you. I know it is bizarre and surreal and hard— and I just can’t seem to shut up once I open up.

Maybe it’s just par for the course of pretty intense trauma?

Or maybe it is because my home is empty of him, because he lived with me and was my child, and we spent so much time together (except that last week), that I feel quite isolated in my experience of my particular loss, and I think it just makes me weird and disconnected so I need to talk about details because it is something we all share— the death is the same for us all, even though our relationship with Isaac was different, ya know? And I feel like people don’t talk about it with me because they are afraid it will hurt me, or they know it will make them uncomfortable. Ive held myself back all this time from asking EVERYONE to just please tell me their story of finding out. I feel like I need to hear it or read it. I only know my story by heart and even that is only what I have access to from shock and trauma brain. I want to ask people to write me their story and send it to me in the mail. How they found out, how they felt, how they feel now, what they loved about Isaac, what they miss. How they dealt with it as a family. Is that crazy? Is that wrong? Weird? Is it too late? Will it help or hurt? I don’t know. I don’t know.

But because what I live with is my story, I live in a near constant beguiled stupor of disbelief and anchoring my words to the beautiful memories or the awful truth somehow just happens when I open my mouth because they exist simultaneously right on the surface, heart on my sleeve. Right here, as close as my breath.

Does that make sense?

I’m trying to understand it myself. But I think maybe it’s also just how I’ve been since I was little.

A weirdy.

A weirdo.

Remember the dead bunny I rescued and carried to Sunday school in my new Easter jacket?

Remember when I got my appendix out and then George had to lance the incision because it got infected? It was so gross but I also wanted to see in there so I poked around with a toothpick on several occasions which I made Jessica look at but swear not to tell.

In massage school we had a cadaver anatomy lab and I thought it would be really disgusting but it turned out to be fascinating and the most interesting part of school for me.

I always want to know details about how a person feels when something hurts, physical or emotional. You always called it nosey and it’s still true, I don’t really do small talk.


I’m sorry this is who and how I am.

The intimate details of Isaacs death are as important to me as the intimate details of his life. Macabre. There are very few people I do talk to about any of it. But I would if people didn’t scare off so easily or change the subject or disengage from me when I talk about him. If I didn’t think it would hurt them. I don’t seem to have any off limit boundaries around it or him. I still talk about him as much as I always did which was and still is all the time. I don’t know how to stop or if I want to. It just happens and I want to talk about him and I miss him and I’m different because he is gone and I want to talk about that too.

When I was dating Phil, before we had Isaac, we would go to parties and smoke a lot of pot and I would always want to talk about being high and everyone always acted like everything was normal and I was like “this isn’t normal we smoked something and it changed us for this moment let’s talk about it”.

No one ever wanted to.

It’s just me.

I hate October. I especially hate warm breezy beautiful October days. These are the last days and weeks I had with him and it makes me fucking crazy. It was just a moment ago. And yet somehow, it is 4 years of running across the desert looking for him. And I am tired of running this marathon that will never end unless I stop moving. And when I can talk about Isaacs life or death it feels like those people along a marathon route who hand out water to runners. And I am so grateful for those moments of brutiful honesty with beautiful and generous people who can hold space for me in that way.

But it doesn’t have to be you, Mom. I know how hard and awful it is for you, so it doesn’t have to be you. It doesn’t have to be any of you who I overshare different things with when we finally have a moment together. That’s what therapy and yoga mats and writing are for, right?

Much Love & Sincere Apologies,


“Going to the mat(tresses)”

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 “Dear Mom, (& Angie and and and all who take the brunt of my blunt!)”

  1. I can relate to this in my own small way. I started experiencing my fertility journey like watching a horror movie. Weeks of suspense, moments of overwhelming fear and anticipation, lots of blood. A friend reminded me to also see it as a sacred spiral…duh, right? It doesn’t take away the horrors and pains. I still have hope of becoming a mother. I can’t say that having hope makes it any easier. It makes it more complex, but I’m certainly not giving up on hope. Better not to judge easier or harder, I suppose. Just live in it. And sometimes it’s like a sacred spiraling horror movie. You are so strong and I don’t think you have anything to apologize for to anyone. You are a lighthouse. XO Karen

    Sent from my iPhone



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