Sunday, July 5, 2015

8 years ago today

. . . . . . . . Grief is ever-changing. This many years after Kyle's accident I know this: Grief burrows deep and erupts when you least expect it--when I least expect it. I can tell a story about Kyle ten times and only on the eleventh do my eyes swell with tears and I can't quite speak. I can go for months, feeling steady all the while. Then unsteady. Spring is hard compared to the rest of the year. Kyle's birthday in April, Mother's Day, the SFSU scholarship trip, Memorial Day when Ky was last home, July 4th and our last conversation, and today, the day of the fall. I have a slight sense of impending doom, like the dark clouds of a storm coming in. I am unsettled. Easy to tear. Grief is circulating in me like blood, round and round and in an out of my heart. I am not quite sure what to do with it. It is not really intrusive, it is almost comforting. Surely it is familiar. I have lots of stuff I have to do but I am distracted even more than usual it seems. How do I spend these moments? Do I look at pictures of Kyle? Do I talk out loud to him? Of course, if he can hear me, he can also read my mind, so why speak, right? What do I do with my sadness? How do I honor him? What is the "healthy" thing to do? Just be with it, right? Just be in the moment. The moment. The fucking moment is uncomfortable. The fucking moment is empty. I just miss him miss him miss him. Tonight I will be at Forest Lawn with a few family and friends. Some of us then will eat at Mijares. The food and alcohol will numb me. Later at home, sober again, I will be alone with my grief. It will be okay. I will love you always, my baby boy.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

SFSU History Department Awards

Tomorrow we present our 8th annual scholarship -- in honor of our dearly loved and missed Kyle Campbell Whitham McLeod -- to a deserving SFSU junior majoring in Latin American history. With initial and continuing gifts from family, friends, colleagues, IATSE, and others, the award has grown from $500 to $1000.00. We think that Kyle would be proud that his life produced this legacy, and that every year a young man or woman is helped to attain his or her educational goals because Kyle lived and loved and was loved so much in return. And how comforting to a mother to know that once a year--forever--someone will speak Kyle's name out loud as his scholarship is awarded.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Goodbye to The Puss

Today I held the Puss as he was sedated, yawned, fell asleep, and received the injection that stopped his heart within minutes. It was a gentle, peaceful, and comforting goodbye. I thought about Kyle, who loved our pets Toby and Puss, and took such great care with them. I still see him holding the cat up to me, shoving him toward me, "Mom, kiss the Cat; you love the Cat." Usually he did this when I was pissed off at the Puss for something like torturing Toby. I love the cat because Kyle loved the cat. So, while it was so sad, and I cried so much that my eyes were heavy all day, it was okay. A slow, sweet end to 17 years of being our Puss.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

July 3rd -- Happy News



Miranda called on the 3rd to say that Joshua and she will get married next year. Such happy news. And how thoughtful of Joshua to choose this time to propose--on the 3rd of July--giving us a joyful memory to add to all the sad ones of the holiday.

Miranda was feeling a little guilty going away for the weekend, when she has spent the last three anniversaries in some form of mourning. When she called to tell me, she mentioned that. I said what I always say to myself, that Kyle spent the 4th and most of the 5th joyous and happy and with George and Laura at Santa Cruz and the beach and in a bookstore, and that it wasn't until the night of the 5th that the nightmare started.

But now, we have Miranda's marriage to Joshua to look forward to. He is a dear and loving man, supportive, caring, strong, thoughtful. I am gaining a wonderful son.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

4 years ago tonight

we gathered tonight. a lovely group. nothing formal. george, andrew, sean, brian, esther, nadia, barb, marylou, di, siena, sel & sal, nancy, olivia, johnny, and great surprise - paul j. & james w/ carl.

the coyote showed up, some bunnies. later crows. still later after everyone but me and ML had left, a family of deer. momma, poppa & baby. politely, they didn't go for Ky's flowers or the plant that the harewoods brought. they stayed around, moving across Abiding Love and then across the hillside and then down and across the street to lower fields. as i drove away and around the bend, i had to wait for them as they crossed another street in front of me.

became aware today of wanting the silence that it takes to let the feelings come. purposefully didn't play the radio, except classical music. became more aware of how talk and food and drink takes up the space and dulls the emotions. maybe i am more afraid of the flow of feelings now than in the past.

it's not that i didn't cry or didn't feel. it's that i didn't linger, didn't quite face everything today, tonight.

dearest son, beautiful boy. i miss you.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Giving Away Ky's Clothes

This isn't easy. It's 3 and 1/2 years. S. and R. have slowly moved Kyle's clothes out of his room and into bags, first behind my headboard and then---when I was getting the place painted and new rugs put down---out onto the balcony. They've been out there almost a year now. But it's time to deal with it, but I'm just procrastinating.

It's time to say goodbye to his clothes and I can't bare it. It's helped that R. has started to wash some things, but I want really don't want her to. I can't bear that I won't be able to bury my head in a sweatshirt and smell my boy.

A family friend, who is very tall and is a housepainter, could really use the clothes, even all the paint stained things. We found three jackets -- one brand new. I feel good that Ky's clothes will go to someone who needs them. Things he can't use he'll pass on to others who can. I found so many pairs of Dickey pants -- in great condition except for the paint stains. I know I bought Ky a bunch of his Dickey stuff, but other than the paint stains, several pairs seem to be almost brand new. I found a black Dickey shirt without stains. I put it on. I'm wearing it still. Don't think I'll be able to part with it.

One of the saddest things for me, his mom, is all his boxers. I recognize all the boxers. Kids don't buy boxers; they let moms do it. Each was worn and washed so much the cloth is thin. He clearly never threw any out.

I don't want to give away Kyle's clothes. I want my son to come back and get them.

Monday, December 14, 2009

It's been a while . . .

In my mind, I have started many new entries. But, I guess I don't actually blog because the searing pain of losing Kyle has subsided and my drive to make sense of things has lessened. Or maybe I'm at a plateau where I understand as much as I'm going to for a while.

For months, I have wanted to write about magical thinking. Although I tend to be rooted in the rational, I spent weeks talking to a flickering street lamp when out walking my dog at night, half believing it was Kyle. My sister Sal, who has always been a bit psychic, says that messing around with electricity is something that spirits can pull off. (She's convinced that Kyle was the one setting off our fire detectors in the middle of the night.) I don't buy it really, but the street lamp had an uncanny ability to blink off or on or flicker right at the end of my questions I posed. While not believing, I still couldn't not speak to him, just in case. How could I abandon my boy, stuck in another dimension.

Then one night, the darned lamp was bright bright, no pulsing on and off anymore. In fact, it was so bright, I could barely look at it. Someone had fixed the lamp and Ky was clearly no where near. I felt a little silly, having spent time talking to a lamppost way after dark.

Thank you being there, for reading. My hope is that it helps or illumines something or, by telling one mother's story it tells many mothers' story.

Kyle is in my thoughts throughout every day. I miss him terribly still.