Grieving the loss of a grandchild
we miss you baby girl
Grieving the loss of a grandchild
When a child dies it is devastating to the parents and other immediate family in a way that is unimaginable. When a grandchild dies it is not only grieving the loss of a grandchild that is so painful but also grieving the loss your child is suffering through as well. When your child’s child dies there is an overwhelming sense of grief and helplessness multiplied by your child’s grief. It is so difficult to try to be strong for your child and to be there for them while you are also grieving the loss of your grandchild.
The First Few Days
At first it was difficult in ways I never would have imagined. It seemed to me that the family’s devastation was expected in the first few days and throughout the funeral process. During that time in the first few days following her death everyone I came in contact with knew what had happened or we were contacting them to tell them. Everyone who heard about it was devastated and upset by the news. After the funeral the healing process is just beginning it is not over. I specifically remember the first time I went to the grocery store after her death.It was bewildering. Here were people just getting a few things at the local grocery store who had no idea of the tragic event. They didn’t know what happened and they were not affected by the death at all. It was such a lonely and empty feeling. I was the only one in the store (that I knew of) who had a grandchild that had just died a few days ago. Nobody knew and nobody cared much, they didn’t even know me. Checking out the cashier asked “how is your new granddaughter doing?” She was shocked by the news and told me how sorry she was while bagging my groceries but it really didn’t matter too much to her. I am sure she felt bad but she went on to the next customer as I walked out. Back to life as usual was not an easy task.
As a mother it is very difficult to have had my child suffer this tragic loss knowing that there is nothing I can do to make it any better. The mental pictures of my daughter collapsing to the floor that morning crying and screaming “No! “ are carved into my brain for life. This alone is a very painful memory for me connected to the death of my beautiful five week old granddaughter Alexiana Marie.
Alexiana Marie was born February 22, 2009. Her delivery went well without any complications. Given a clean bill of health she came home from the hospital and became my daughters little diva. My daughter was so happy and so in love with her. For five weeks Alexiana appeared to be a normal healthy child, gaining weight as she should. Everything seemed to be fine even to her doctor during routine infant checkups. Sarah called her the “little diva” and made sure she was always dressed just so. Sarah changed her daughter’s outfits a few times a day making sure her little diva was clean and beautifully dressed by day and in her cute little PJ’s for night.I think it was the happiest I had ever seen my daughter. She had hoped for a girl and was so excited to finally have a little girl of her own. It all came to an end on the morning of March 28, 2009 when Sarah awoke to find Alexiana not breathing.Her death was later ruled to be SID’s when the autopsy could not determine why this otherwise healthy child suddenly died.
Dealing with the death of my grandchild has been the most difficult thing I have ever had to do. It has been over two years and I still have bad days.Sometimes the tears are too difficult to fight back and I wonder when or if it will ever end. Will I ever get over this? I doubt it.