To say that losing a child is hard at any time would be a vast understatement, but losing a child while in the midst of a global pandemic adds a whole new level of complication. There are no friends and family surrounding you at a big funeral bringing you piles of food so you don’t have to cook for weeks, or, in general, just being there for you with a big hug. This is what today’s guest, Rhonda, has had to endure since her son, Robbie, died after having a seizure this past August.
In addition, Robbie had Asperger’s Syndrome and OCD so he was challenged socially and had few friends. He struggled throughout his life to get through school, keep a job and make friends, but he was resilient and persevered, hoping that one day, he would make enough money to move to the beach. Rhonda said that she worried about him every single day, hoping that he would be able to keep his job and not have any anger outbursts with co-workers. She would text each morning to make sure he was OK, and then she would be able to go on with her day.
Since Robbie’s death, Rhonda’s life has been turned upside down. From the outside, friends have even indicated to her that her life will be less complicated now that ‘she doesn’t have to worry about’ Robbie, but they don’t understand at all. No matter how complicated your child’s life is, it is not better without them in the world. She would rather worry about Robbie every day for the rest of her life than grieve his death each day. Someone who has never lost a child might not understand, but all of us who have, surely do.
Understandably, over the past 5 months, Rhonda has felt alone in her grief. That has caused her to turn to something she had never really thought about before – poetry. In her isolation, she finds that writing poetry is a way for her to express herself and her feelings. She also searches the internet for poems about grief and has compiled them into a book that she can read and re-read during her darkest times. These words, along with certain verses from the Bible give her comfort when everything seems lost.
This was written by me especially for my Robbie:
His book has many chapters
Funny, hopeful, happy and blue
But the chapter that is yet to be written
Is why he left and broke my heart in two.
Torment and pain fill it’s pages
It’s sorrow is endless and misunderstood
But this chapter must be written
To shine a light on all that is good
He was a source of goodness and strength
Never letting anything get in his way
He was such a joy to those whose lives he touched
But happiness and sadness filled his days
But his story doesn’t end with death
No that’s just where it begins
His memory will stay with us
And will be told until our lives end
Now he is gone and my life must go on
Despite the long days and endless nights
But this chapter will end at last
When God’s plan is complete and what is wrong will be made right
So my precious son be happy where you are
And this chapter will be complete
And If by chance you are wondering where I am
Just let your heart guide you back to me
Beautiful, Rhonda. Robbie would be so proud.
Thank you Paula. I sure do hope so.
Thank you Paula. I sure do hope so.
Thank you so much for sharing Robbie’s story. I have a friend who recently lost an adult child, and I am desperately looking for insight to help me help her. Sharing your loss has given me some much needed insights, and I thank you so much. I am so very sorry for your loss.
Hello and thank you so very much for listening to Robbie’s story and also for leaving a comment. I’m so sorry to hear of your friends’ loss. One thing I can tell you is that just being there for someone and letting them know that you are there no matter what means more than anything else. Offering support to her but also just going ahead and doing things for her because she may not be able to ask for help herself. She has a wonderful friend in you.
Dear Rhonda , thank you for sharing Robbie’s story. My son was also socially awkward and I worried about him much as you did with your Robbie. He passed September 2020 unexpectedly at the age of 23. We spoke or texted daily but I had not hugged him or seen him since mid March when covid took hold of our world. Instead, I watched as you did from afar hoping he would overcome his struggle. I cried through much of your story . I cried for you , for me , for Marcy and for all those who have lost a child. Our stories are hard to hear but also bring a small bit of healing and hope that we will get through one more day , and then another and another. Thank you
Hello and thank you so much for your comment and for listening to Robbie’s story. My heart goes out to you on the passing of your son. You, of all people, understand the difficult journey we as mother’s have with son’s that have so many challenges. It’s so heartbreaking to know that these young men have to struggle every day just to survive in a world that can be very, very cruel. Take care and grieve your way on your own timetable and reach out for help when you need it (if you can). Thanks again.