As the title says, being a parent is hard. I mean, most people know that, and it’s a given I suppose? I more or less knew, going into it, that it would not be an easy road. And after step-demon, I figured the road would be more or less a cake walk.
Hell, kiddo is an amazing child (as I have posted before), he is never in trouble, usually helps out, sometimes without even being asked 😉 , and hell, he won’t even swear! Sure, he’s still a “kid” at 20. And he still fights and argues, and the NLD means he loves to correct errors in speech and facts (even when it doesn’t matter eg: general conversations and re-telling of our day). But in the grand scheme of life? He is a dream child.
But, as I have said, and will say again, being a parent is hard. You expect scrapes, bumps, bruises. You expect the arguments, and back talk. You expect the costs and extras. All of that, is easy to prepare for.
You expect heart ache, and you think you know how you might handle, after all, we have all been there at some point. But you can not imagine your own pain and heartache seeing them suffer.
My son comes across as this tough, rough, and even at times uncaring person (to outsiders). But he is also fiercely loyal, and very sensitive. He is a granite stone with a gooey centre.
So when his rabbit died this morning, I had no clue how to react. How to help him. All I could do is hug him and try to stop my own tears at his pain. The struggle between wanting more than an hour sleep, but needing to be there to help comfort him.
To watch him struggle with his own feelings of guilt over the rabbits death*, even though he lived about average age for his type/size.
It’s hard to prepare for your child’s heartbreak. If it was a relationship heartbreak, maybe I could help, I’ve had a few. Pet death or loss? Maybe, but his added feelings of guilt? Even though it’s not something I feel is warranted, I just want to take his pain.
You can prepare as much as you can to help your child, but any heartache they feel … it can crush you almost as hard.
I hate feeling helpless. All I can do is be there, give him loads of hugs, and try not to fall to pieces when I see him build a coffin (yes, he did), when I see him wrap the little guy in his favourite blanket, place his favourite toys in with him, and try not to lose it completely when I see him throw the first shovel of dirt over him.
Being a parent is hard, but feeling the pain of loss must be so much harder.
- He feels it is his fault that when when he had a job he never took him to the vet for a check up, nail trimmings (the rabbit would fight us when we tried), and to figure out why he had “gunky bum” (google had no real help other than “up his fibre and wash him”). Plus the rabbit really hated being out of his cage. My son kept trying, but he would go right back in his cage faster than you can take him out.