You push, I pull

Ronan. Where are you? It’s the question I ask myself a hundred times a day. How did I get here? To the place I don’t belong. Will I ever belong again? I’m seriously starting to doubt it. Do I even want to belong? I’m thinking not. Do you see me? Sitting in the dark, sobbing on the beach? It’s been a few days since I’ve written. I’m sorry. I always miss you so much more when I don’t write to you. As I go through my day, my mind does it’s best to try to make me focus on other things, besides you being gone. I think it’s a defense mechanism…. to get me to function, to get me up and doing things such as trying to be a mom to your brothers. My mind pushes the pain of missing you so much, away. Stuffs it down inside so that I am still numb for most of the day. It’s only at night that I am able to sit and process everything. It’s my quiet and alone time that I need with you to go on. It’s our special time, together. Just you and me, baby. Like you would always tell me.

The days are still blurry. Filled with keeping your brothers busy. Trying to shield them from all the screaming sadness in my head. I cracked tonight. They saw it all. It was bound to happen and I feel terribly guilty about it. But even I cannot control when I am overcome with sadness and just need to cry for you. It just comes and once the floodgates open, there is no stopping it. I should know the warning signs by now. I know the cause. It happens when I don’t do my daily running, when I don’t get 5 minutes alone to cry about you, when I don’t write to you. It all piles up. Tonight, I just gave in and bawled until snot was dripping out of my nose. Sobbed on this bed in front of everyone. I decided I needed some air so I left for a walk to try to clear my head. It didn’t really help, but I could at least feel like could breathe a bit, instead of feeling like I am walking with a plastic bag over my head, suffocating. The fresh air, dark sea, and cold sand was where I needed to be so I could sob, alone about you tonight. Without the watchful, worried eyes of your brothers. They don’t need to see me at my worst any more than they have to. So, here I sit at 12:00 at night, on the beach, writing to you. Screaming at the universe that I hate it. Because I do. Nothing will ever make sense again. Ever.

I sat today and talked with a dad. A dad who lost his son. And it seems as if I have somewhat relived losing you all over again today. Every single thing that came out of his mouth are all the things I think in my head. For the first time since you have been gone…… bingo. Everything this dad said to me made perfect sense. And that is huge because I have decided that nothing will ever make sense again and most people don’t know what the fuck they are talking about. He didn’t sugar coat anything, he didn’t tell me that the pain will become less or go away, because it won’t. He did tell me how he had to make the decision to not become bitter and angry, and how to keep it together for his younger son who was 4 at the time. How he didn’t have a choice and he had to figure out a new life. How is happy again. He told me happiness will come again to me. He of course cannot tell me when…. 3 months, 3 years….. nobody knows the answer to that. As I sat and watched this dad today we both got pretty teary eyed. The pain in his eyes is almost indescribable. Except they look exactly like mine. All day I walked around thinking about this dad and why in the world such a thing could happen to him and to his son. He’s a really good dad and person and this makes no sense. I’ve come to the conclusion that there will probably never be an answer. And I’m pretty convinced that there is not a God. Shocker. I’ve struggled with this for a while now. If there was a god, shit like this just wouldn’t happen. A god wouldn’t have taken you away, Ronan. The love for you in this world should have been enough to save you. End of story, Ro. This wasn’t supposed to happen. It was bad fucking luck and doctors that just didn’t have the answers.

Everything is broken now, and I don’t want to fix it. I want time to sit and be sad and cry for you until I am ready to heal bit by bit, piece by piece. I’m not ready to be put back together yet. And anyone that pushes me to do this before I am ready can just sit back and watch as I pull away. Because pulling away is just second nature to me. It takes A LOT for me to let people in just in my normal life. Letting people back in now, after losing you, is going to be very difficult. I don’t mean this in a hurtful way, but it’s my way of protecting myself. Just like that little turtle that I spoke of a couple of posts ago. I will take my little head, peek out to see what’s going on, and pull it back into it’s shell, only to come out when I feel that it is my time. I may lose people in the process, but now, my only concern is survival. Survival for me, my marriage, and my kids. Those 3 things right there are what I am trying to focus on to keep our family together. I know the statistics on the families who lose a child. 90% end up divorced. Lovely. As if our pain isn’t enough. Tonight, as I was looking up at the sky, I actually wished for it to suck Woody, Quinn, Liam, and I up into it. To swallow us whole. At least we would all be pain-free and we would all be with Ronan, together. Fuck this world. Life is overrated after you lose a child.

After I sat on the beach forever, Woody came down to find me. We met up on the boardwalk and he wrapped his arms around me. I snuggled into his warm chest and just cried. He held me for a long time. We then sat down on a bench together. Talked a bit and I just told him how I just really miss you so much today. He said he knows. He gets it. He told me that for as much as he is hurting, he cannot imagine hurting more. And he knows that I am hurting even more than he is. He knows my pain is so much deeper than his. Not many fathers would admit that. But this is not any father, Ro. You know that. He is the most amazing man that has ever existed, besides you little one. I love that daddy of yours. Even though he is the one I push away the most because he is the one who will take it and I know this. It is so much easier for me to push away than it is to let people in. Obviously I’ve got some underlying issues that probably need to be discussed in therapy.

Your daddy and I sat on a bench for a long time while I just cried. The sky was all cloudy and dark. Pretty soon, the clouds started parting ways and I could see the little moon trying to peek it’s head out. A few minutes later, a full moon was reviled. It was gorgeous and lit up the whole sky and beach. I told the moon that I loved you to the moon and back Ronan. Your daddy and I held hands and walked back to our condo to tuck everyone in.

I’m so tired tonight. I have so much more to write about but better stop here. I love you, Ro baby. So much. I hope you are safe. Sweet dreams, my love.


30 responses to “You push, I pull”

  1. Maya – heartbreaking to read your blog. Grieving is so lonely, so all consuming and so personal but I hope that one day will find you feel less alone and that there is more sunshine than darkness. For now, I wanted to send you my love and to say that I think of you often. xx

  2. So sorry that yesterday was so difficult. I’m glad Woody is there with you, he truly is your rock and totally knows what you are going through.I’m thankful you had a long talk with that dad. There are no true answers about how long or deep the the sadness and pain will be, sort of like the oceans waves. You are still in the eye of the storm. I wish I could take away your pain, with time it does get better. Just keep thaking those baby steps forward. I hope today is a better and happier day for your family. Our thoughts and prayers are with your entire family.

  3. Marian Cutler Avatar
    Marian Cutler


    The fates got oene big thing right, pushing you and Woody together. For today, that’s a win. Keep on “being” and a path towards happy will reconnect with you. That, I know without doubt.

  4. Every time I see a full moon I think of Ronan. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about you. As people have said before, little things happen throughout the day that make me stop and think of sweet Ronan. I keep his button that I got from the brightest star event on my fridge. Hugs to you and your whole family!!!!

  5. My heart breaks for you Maya…I pray for you and and your family every day…

  6. We may be strangers Maya, but we are both Mothers. Maybe that is why I am so drawn to your story. My heart truly aches for you. You are an eloquent, beautiful woman who is helping so many with your words. I wish I could say or do something to make you feel better. An impossible task I’m afraid. Just know that I am thinking of you and hoping for a hummingbird today 🙂

  7. I’m so sorry Maya for all the pain. Life can be so unfair. I am praying for you and thinking of you all daily. I’m thankful you have Woody and your twins in your life to love and be with. I am praying for you all…

  8. I’m so sorry Maya ♥♥

  9. Maya…I thought of Ronan when I saw that big beautiful moon last night. I am so sad for you. I do believe that us moms have a stronger bond with our children. Its just the way it is. What a great man to admit that. Not many would that’s for sure. I wish I had some wonderful thing to say that would take all of this pain away….just like everyone else does. but I don’t. Its so funny to not even know you but to cry for you so hard and wish so badly Ronan was here with you. I sure hope today is better for you. I think all the people that love you will understand that you are not ready for them yet. If you need to take 3 years….if they love you they will still be there with open arms. Nobody except you knows how you are feeling. Your family is number one! Believing!!!!!!!!

    I just had to add that your Liam and Quinn are the cutest little guys! They look like they are having so much fun here! I keep thinking maybe we will run into you here in San Diego…maybe one day. We don’t get to Coronado that often…but it is so beautiful there!

    I am hoping today is better….


  10. Dear Maya,
    So sorry yesterday was such a bad day. Grief does come in waves. Sometimes tsunami huge, sometimes ripples that fan out like from throwing a pepple into a lake. It washes over you, engulfs you, and then a speck of sunlight shines through. And just when you dare say you ‘might’ be feeling a smidgeon better the next fresh round of waves hit. It’s a cycle that repeats and repeats….. Better is in the eyes of the beholder and each of us have our own internal clock tracking any “progress” we make and each of us have our own triggers that throw us back into the swirling waves of grief. At first so rapidly and relentlessly that we have to gulp for air when we manage to struggle to the top for a second of clarity before thrashing us back to the abyss. Hopefully time will be a friend and allow more fresh air between the waves of grief as it marks the days since your baby died. I know nothing about losing a child Maya. But I KNOW the pain of great personal heartbreak and loss. Four years and counting and I still struggle mightily some days. Like a rollercoaster that drops your stomach to your feet and before you catch your breath fully it hits the next high and then drops again to its floor. It’s a revolving door Maya and you are only beginning this journey though I am certain that seems impossible. Four years after losing the love of my life I feel like he’s been gone forever. And paradoxically I feel like I just blinked and he is gone. The loss has not gotten easier though I can say there are days now where I do not cry. Some days….. One thing I have been wanting to share: When Hugh died he had asked me to give a piece of ‘him’ to each of our three sons so they could keep him with them always. My sons chose crosses and the funeral home sold those. These crosses have an opening to put some ashes in and they took care of that for me. Now each of our three sons and myself wear these crosses always and have a tangible reminder of his love always there. I also got a beautiful ‘stone’ heart with some of his ashes in it for me and I travel always with this, so he can share in all my moments away from home. Not sure if that would be comforting to you or your family Maya. But my sons cherish those crosses and each of them feels a constant presence of their father with them. Just a loving suggestion. NO ONE can KNOW your grief Maya and that’s ok. Surrounded by people grief is still a solo journey. For each of us. I too have begged the powers that be to take me with him and gotten no response. I too have heard the ridiculous things people parrot to try to help. I finally told an acquaintance that I knew exactly when I would feel better. When this life is over and I am back where I belong, in his arms. So don’t let anyone else tell you the track you should be on and monitor your “recovery” process. Only you can say whether this thing, or that helps YOU. There is no right or wrong grief. There is just grief. All consuming. Until it isn’t. You will know and recognize the moment your heart starts sewing all those pieces back together. It will heal Maya. But it will NEVER be the same. How could it?
    My heart weeps for yours,

  11. Hoping you have a good today! Maya, I think about you and your family daily. Every morning as I’m getting ready for work, putting on my make-up – I can’t stop thinking about Ronan, you, Woody and Liam and Quinn. I can’t even imganine losing my own son – not sure I would ever be able to function again.

    Wishing I could give you a huge hug,

    Spring, Texas

  12. I think of you everyday, you are in my heart.

  13. Maya,

    I check back daily…and when you don’t write to Ronan I worry. As a mother myself, my heart aches for you, for Woody, and Liam & Quinn. I am so thankful that you have them in your life. YOUR CIRCLE OF TRUST!!! Family!

    When I saw the full moon…I said hello to Ronan! to the moon and back Ro!

    Hoping today is an OK day for you…Woody and the boys. Enjoy SD. Enjoy the sun, the beach, the pool. Enjoy each other…every minute of every day!

    You & Woody = Each others rock. Each others ZIG & ZAG. Each others YING & YANG.

    Thinking of you and Rockstar Ro!!! Sending you hugs…

  14. oh maya my heart aches for you and your family!! i hate that you are in such a state of numbing pain. i hate that ronan was taken from you. i hate that ronan had to suffer. i hate how broken woody, liam, and quinn are. i hate cancer. i hate that you have to try and find some sort of happiness out of this ugliness. i hate that i am “getting to know you” under these circumstances. i hate it all and will never understand why this happened. i admire you SO much maya. im sure at time you dont feel strong but let me tell you honey, you ARE! i will never tell you that it will get easier since i have no clue the pain you’re feeling. but i freakin hope it does. i have no knowledge of what you’re dealing with but i have a long list of hopes for you. hopes for easier days, a little more happiness (even thought it’ll be a dofferent kind of happiness), more signs from ro, you reuniting with ro in your dreams, etc, etc. i am so glad you have such a wonderful hub…he sounds like a true gentleman and gem! so glad you have those beautiful twins who are saving you a little everyday! so glad you were able to seek solace in the dad you spoke with.
    i hope you know how loved you and ronan are! i never knew i could care so much for a little boy who isn’t mine. but there ronan appeared in my heart along with you, woody, and the twins. rootin for the thompson family every day! xoxo

  15. I truly believe Ronan is in Heaven! I hope and pray you can find some peace and comfort in time knowing he is okay, knowing you can see him again, knowing God does love you. I know you are so hurt and angry, I can only imagine! I have faith that some good will come of this for you, for your family, in due time. I hope I am not out of line for sharing verses with you, I do care so very much. Prayers always…
    Matthew 19:14
    Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

  16. Maya – I am so incredibly sorry that this has happend to you and your family. I am so moved by your honesty. Like many of these people have said – even though I don’t know you, I think about you and your family daily.

  17. No words. I’m not offended by your comments on God, nor do I have a strong opposing opinion. I’m left praying that there IS a God, though, for you, for your family. Please let there be a kind and virtuous God that helps to heal your pain!


  19. Thinking of you and your family….

  20. Maya, I thought of Ronan last night too when I saw the beautiful moon, I always will.

  21. sending you positive thoughts and wishes as you go thru your day–hang in there!

  22. I think about you so often, you’re really apart of my life now, I hate cancer, I hate that you’re hurting, I hate that Ronan’s not physically with you. I love that I’ve got to know you and Ronan, and so thankful for the lessons ya’ll have given me. I wish for you the day when it’s jus not as hard to get up as the day before. Lots of your love your way always ROBIN

  23. My name is Debra Smith and I live in Coronado, Ca.

    I went into Starbucks yesterday and while I was waiting for my latte I saw a beautiful picture of Ronan on a small card that was posted on the board and my heart smiled when I saw his face…

    I am praying for you and just wanted to tell you. ❤

  24. I’m so very sorry. Grief is a heartbreaking journey and I wonder the exact same things about God and how on earth, if he exists, he could allow such deep sadness and loss to happen. When I saw the full moon I thought of Ronan and asked him to visit you in your dreams and to bring you signs of him when you are awake. Every time there is a full moon I know I will think of your beautiful Ronan and all the beauty and lessens he has brought us all. Thank you for your honesty, your spirit and your gift for sharing it all.

  25. My heart is broken for you. Truly it is.

    Just one day at a time….one breath at a time.

  26. Maya I’m so sorry… how could you feel any other way than the way you feel… thinking of you, your family, and your beautiful Ronan.

  27. Marian Cutler Avatar
    Marian Cutler


    Just one of many who follow your journey without fail. And, probably like many, I worry when you don’t post for a while. Likely it’s part of your healing and rebuilding, please trust a village surrounds you with hope and enthusiasm. Write soon.


  28. Ditto Marian! Holding you, Woody, Liam, and Quinn in my heart and so hoping that each day going forward is one that includes a bit of healing.

  29. Just want you to know how much I’m praying for you!

  30. Hi. I couldn’t stop thinking of you during a movie at camelview last weekend. Tree of Life. I would not recommend that you see it now or maybe ever but it gave me the sense of what it would maybe be like to lose a child.

    And by “gave me the sense” I intend that as humbly and ignorantly as possible- like .0000000000000000000000000000000000000000001% x 1,000,000,000,000 of whatever I blindly imagine it would be like to lose one of my babies.

    I can’t say what exactly you are offering me by letting me in on your most private intimate thoughts but it is something that has changed me and blessed me and shaped me and awoken me and slapped me and helped me and sobered me. I did not known needed that.

    Thank you, truly. Your life has made a mark on mine.

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