The WHAT IFs & IF ONLYs
Some of you know this, but I have some terribly sad news to share. Our beautiful sweet son Morgan took his own life last Monday night. He was 29yo, in a difficult marriage, and on the outs with us. Alcohol was involved. Lots of alcohol was his way of dealing with everything. Hal and I and Ryan, Mo's brother, are completely heartbroken and so terribly sad, as are our close friends and extended family. It is a shock and a pain so crushing it is unimaginable, only slightly above unbearable.
Mo’s suicide has left us with so many unanswered questions and massive guilt. Maybe murder is worse… Overdose seems akin to suicide in many ways. I imagine a child’s disappearance and never knowing is the worst pain a parent could ever know.
But suicide brings on a relentless barrage of what ifs and if onlys and it began immediately. What if we’d called that last day? If only we had. If only we’d done that intervention we’d considered. If only we’d gotten the chance — no, TAKEN the chance to tell him how much we love him. That nothing would stop us from helping him any way we could have. That while we refused to abandon our grandchildren, we were refusing to abandon him too. That everything we were doing was ultimately for his children and ultimately for HIM. That reconciliation was not only possible but very likely.
Likely because underneath his rough militia man exterior was one of the sweetest, kindest, most loving men you’d ever know. Just like his brother! We are so blessed as parents!!!
We did tell him most of it. We called, emailed, texted. Over and over again and none of it took. So we didn’t call that last time because it was so painful, an exercise in frustration to have him ignore us as he had so many times before. He would not let us help him.
So here we are on the other side. Wishing we had. Trying not to punish ourselves for not.
We do know intellectually we are not to blame. That Mo had his own higher power and we aren’t it. He was an adult who made some bad choices and was unable to face those bad decisions, then make changes. He must have been in such unbearable pain and that thought is the saddest of all. That a person with such possibilities, so many talents, so smart, so funny, so capable could be left feeling so hopeless.
My Hindu friend put it beautifully: “he came to do what he had to do, then left.” We have to live with that as much as we wish he hadn’t gone.
There is a hole in our hearts forever, but we will fill it with love and something positive. I can’t think of how else we’ll truly get thru this. People have told me I’ll grieve for years but omg I can’t. I refuse. I cannot live in this kind of pain and I cannot watch my husband and son suffer so. AA saved my life 33 years ago. I’ll find a group of parents who have survived this and learn from them. I’ll walk thru any fire to come out the other side. And I’m going to drag Hal and Ryan with me!
We have two precious grandchildren (Mo’s son and daughter) to love, we will stay sane and whole for them. The love and support of our family and friends are keeping us out of total despair. We are so grateful for all of you.
We will get thru this. Life is upside down right now. Not quite sure what it will look like going forward. I know we will N E V E R pass up an opportunity to do or say anything that could turn into a what if or if only. Never ever.