Two days before the end of 2013, I was determined to clean up our home. Being very busy during the last quarter of the year and without a helper, our home hardly got cleaned. While cleaning up our cabinet, I discovered a bag of items that we brought home from the hospital after I gave birth to Zac. I keep Zac’s things in a big box so naturally, I thought of putting those items in the box. As I was going through the box, I noticed that I wasn’t feeling the urge to cry this time. I checked myself and saw that, indeed, I can stop crying now. I don’t have to cry anymore because my son isn’t sick in the NICU anymore. Our son, our beloved boy is safe in God’s arms, laughing and jumping and happy. Grief has taken its time with me, and it served to make me stronger and wiser. At that time, I felt no need to grieve anymore. Does this mean I’ve forgotten him? Not at all! For how can a mother ever forget her child? Never! What I do feel and believe is that Zac is not suffering anymore, he is no longer in pain, therefore there is no use for me to cry as if he still is.
Being able to accept the death of my son did not come easily. For months after his death, I would cry and ask why God took him away. I would blame myself for not taking good care of him. I constantly asked my family if they saw me caring for him. It wasn’t until I realized that I haven’t asked God to heal me from the painful experience that I slowly came to terms that in God’s Sovereignty, He planned our son’s life to be so short but purposeful. God’s grace to my son, my family and me is immeasurable. After fixing the things in Zac’s box, I closed it and put it back in its place with peace in my heart for God’s will.
Here’s a video of my sister, Dr. Zenia Lim Panahon, a psychotherapist, talking about the stages of grief on The 700 Club. Everything she said here is true for me. I hope this helps someone going through the pain of grief today.