A Father Not Afraid To Cry

Kodi absolute­ly loved to eat so this was tak­en in a restau­rant.

The final­i­ty of los­ing a loved one can have dev­as­tat­ing effects on one’s psy­che, men­tal and phys­i­cal health and [even on one’s faith]. The love derived from fam­i­ly and friends are crit­i­cal espe­cial­ly in the ear­ly days of los­ing a loved one.
That this kind of sep­a­ra­tion can be sim­ply shrugged off is eas­i­er said than done. Folks tell me you have to move on, they mean well, if only los­ing a part of you was as easy as sim­ply [mov­ing on though.
The abil­i­ty to sim­ply grieve with­out the added bur­den of plan­ning and orga­niz­ing a funer­al is a big help so fam­i­ly and friends are cru­cial in times of bereave­ment.

Kodi’s friends gath­er in our home to pay trib­ute to their friend,

Shock, dis­be­lief, anger, frus­tra­tion, feel­ing vic­tim­ized, are only a few of the emo­tions which sur­vivors go through. I lost all four of my grand­par­ents with­in the space of only a few years, I also lost oth­er fam­i­ly mem­bers in recent times which pained me immense­ly.
I was to find out in 2014 that every­thing I have ever been through, two life-sav­ing surg­eries a tumul­tuous child­hood and every­thing in between would be child’s play com­pared to the pass­ing of my son.

A bond, not even death can breach.

Yes, I have three more, I also under­stand that that ques­tion comes with the great­est of love and con­cern that maybe just maybe I have more chil­dren to fill the void.
Only that they don’t, they can’t.
Friends tell me Job got every­thing he lost even his chil­dren after the Lord gave per­mis­sion to the Devil to go after him.
But did Job receive every­thing back?
Did he get the chil­dren he lost or did he have more chil­dren?

Kodi

As par­ents, we love each of our chil­dren dif­fer­ent­ly, not less, not more, dif­fer­ent­ly.
And so speak­ing for myself as a par­ent I can attest to the dif­fer­ent char­ac­ter­is­tics of all my chil­dren, how those char­ac­ter­is­tics shape my love for them and even how I coun­sel them to live their lives based on those indi­vid­ual char­ac­ter­is­tics and char­ac­ter traits.
One of the things I con­stant­ly hov­ered over Kodi about was what I per­ceived to be his non­cha­lance to things and places I per­ceive to be poten­tial­ly dan­ger­ous.

High school grad­u­a­tion par­ty with friend

He would always laugh and tell me “Dad you wor­ry too much.” Despite my son’s dis­missal, my father­ly intu­ition was proven cor­rect not because he did any­thing wrong but my worst fear, the fear of los­ing him was real­ized.
Job 3:25 For the thing which I great­ly feared has come upon me, and that which I was afraid of has come unto me.

Life for me will nev­er be the same.
Life for the rest of my fam­i­ly will nev­er be the same.
Of course not, Kodi was the life of the par­ty, “what you all gonna do when I’m gone” he would ask as he laughed, “I’m the one who hold­ing the fam­i­ly togeth­er”.
We had no idea!

Candles for Kodi

People describe the way they feel about los­ing loved ones, chil­dren, even.
Somehow it does not feel that way to me. Based on their talks I’m sup­posed to be heal­ing but I’m not.
It feels sur­re­al, I feel vic­tim­ized, I feel like the Universe has ganged up on me, my emo­tions are still as raw as the day my son left.

I have this weird feel­ing that “yes I know you have lost your child but I hurt more than you, I am more vic­tim­ized that you are.”
I also know that is not real­i­ty but that is how I feel, that is how deeply I hurt.
My old­est son is grown and on his own now, I know Mike hurt for his broth­er much like I do.
Aj and John are away too, in col­lege like Kodi were, this morn­ing John sent me this mes­sage.

[“ Hey Pop, just want­ed to let you know that I’m think­ing about you right now.It’s a hard day for all of us but I know that it’s espe­cial­ly painful for you. I don’t have any idea what you go through on a day to day basis but I admire you for con­tin­u­ing to be you. Thank you for being a great father and hus­band. I wish we could all be togeth­er today but unfor­tu­nate­ly, we can’t. I love you so much though​.Talk to you soon.

If you still won­der why I love my chil­dren so much then.….……
I cried and cried and then I cried some more.