December 1, 2010

December

December...the most wonderful time of the year? For many victim/survivors December isn't the most wonderful time of the year.

I remember well the December of 1991. My husband, Mike, had just been killed in late November and then all of the sudden--everywhere I turned it seemed--people were jovial, celebrating, shopping, and going to parties. I wanted to shout, "Hey, don't you see what I'm going through?? How can you be so happy around me?" I went to the local mall because I felt like I had to buy our daughter something for Christmas. I wasn't there very long at all when I felt like I was being smothered...like I was having a panic attack. I had to leave.

Of course these strangers didn't know what was going on inside of me. I looked like any other young Mom at the mall. But inside, the grief was excruciating.

And so here we are in December. Many victims of drunk driving crashes are going through just what I went through. Yes, it may have been years ago when their loved one was killed by a drunk driver, but they are still hurting. Or, it may have been since last December that their loved one was killed and this is the first holiday season without them. And seeing people having fun hurts them. They wish their son/daughter/mom/dad/other loved one was with them to usher in the shopping season or eat cookies or decorate their home. And the reminder of how they died is brought to the surface once again.

Take time to breathe and reflect this December. And remember, this will be behind us in 30 days.

5 comments:

Jacquelyn said...

I can really relate to this. My 19 year old daughter Taylor was killed by a wrong way drunk driver in November of last year. The holidays were spent in a fog of terrible grief and pain. I only went to the mall a few times because I absolutely had to. I walked past all the stores we had shopped at for school clothes only a few months before. It was excruciating. I wanted to stop every Mother with her teenage daughter and tell them to love and cherish one another and never to argue over the small stuff. It seemed like every where I went I saw complete families and wondered why I was not allowed to keep my daughter. I had hoped this year would not be as difficult but it is. I wish everyone who has lost a loved one in a drunk driving crash peace this holiday season. I will remember all of you in my prayers.

Connie Beard said...

I was really glad to read this. I feel this way and so much more during the holiday season as I am sure Laura does and others do that lost their loved one over the holidays. I lost my only child over Christmas of 2006. The drunk driver cras...hed into the car Matt was riding in on Dec 21st and he was in a coma on life support over Christmas until he died on Dec 29th at the age of 21, three weeks before his 22nd birthday. Christmas for me is when I watched my only child, the child I raised by myself, die. While I know the holidays are hard for all who have lost children and loved ones, when you have the anniversary of their death at the holidays it is a double nightmare. How is everyone celebrating as you are mourning the death? How can that be? How can the death of your child be such festive time for everyone? Sadly, even many parents that have also lost chldren don't understand our added burden with this. We seem to get lost with the anniversary of our child's death.
Connie Beard
Matt's Mom
My Son, My World, My Hero

Connie Beard said...

I was really glad to read this. I feel this way and so much more during the holiday season as I am sure Laura does and others do that lost their loved one over the holidays. I lost my only child over Christmas of 2006. The drunk driver cras...hed into the car Matt was riding in on Dec 21st and he was in a coma on life support over Christmas until he died on Dec 29th at the age of 21, three weeks before his 22nd birthday. Christmas for me is when I watched my only child, the child I raised by myself, die. While I know the holidays are hard for all who have lost children and loved ones, when you have the anniversary of their death at the holidays it is a double nightmare. How is everyone celebrating as you are mourning the death? How can that be? How can the death of your child be such festive time for everyone? Sadly, even many parents that have also lost chldren don't understand our added burden with this. We seem to get lost with the anniversary of our child's death.
Connie Beard
Matt's Mom
My Son, My World, My Hero

Tiffers said...

I've always been what I now call "passively" passionate about the fight against drunk driving. It's always been a huge concern for me but I haven't really gone out and done anything about it. I took a wonderful class this year at BYU on social advocacy and I really decided that I need to use my voice to help with causes I believe in. I did my class report on the "Get MADD all Over Again" campaign. I really admire everything you do and would love to help by adding my voice to yours. I would love to get a red ribbon to tie on my car, especially now during this holiday season. Where can I get one in Utah? Or can I order one online?

Jo Fergus said...

There's no easy way to remind people that DUI is a shared responsibility, but the Nova Scotia Liquor Control has come up with some light-hearted ways to spread this incredibly important message among the people we know...Pass it on!


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