Yesterday the kids went back to school. My relatives left on their own journeys to points all over the country. My daughter Corie leaves for Guam today to continue her tour of duty in the Navy away from her husband and kids. Unfortunately my sons Mickey Jr. and Joshua didn't make it but they both had a chance to see Cody before he passed. It was great to have all my brothers and sisters here along with my mother. I am one of seven kids so the craziness was something I remember as a child. When you throw in some of the children and grand children it can get pretty wild. I love them all very much and I'm glad they could make it.
We had been warned by the funeral director and many others who have been in similar situations that the hard part comes after everyone leaves and we are home by ourselves. Well it didn't take long to see that come to pass. Diane had gotten a little better everyday since Cody's passing but yesterday seemed to be a setback. In no way do I love Cody any less than Diane but I seem to be handling this much differently. She seems to be consumed by it most of her waking hours. Still crying at the thought of her baby being gone. Me, I just can't explain it. I did most of my crying the morning of his death, before the viewing and during the funeral. The kids, although they mention him many times a day they seem to be handling it pretty well. My company offers free counseling for such situations and I'm going to look into it today. I pray that Diane can find peace. I know that being a father who has lost his young son is extremely hard but as a mother it is much harder.
The funeral was wonderful. The unbelievable turnout of people was heart warming. We saw so many of our friends, family and people we didn't know. There were so many people from Georgetown Hospital that they must have shut down the Pediatric Clinic and PICU. So many people showed up from my office as did Diane's. The words that were spoken by Father Bob warmed our hearts and had Diane and I both in tears. She and I wrote the eulogy that was given by my friend Tom Ousley and to hear it put to words made everyone laugh and cry. It is truly amazing to see how a 6 year old child had touched so many people, many of whom he never met.
Besides the monumental task of healing we must somehow start to get our house together. For years now we have been stacking bags of papers, toys and games from each hospital visit. Every time Cody would go for a treatment, inpatient or not he would get a prize for his great behavior. We have toys in every room of our house. Boxes, bags or just piles. They must be gone through and Diane would not let anyone else do that. She will pick out the toys and keepsakes that have great memories and meant a lot to Cody. The rest I hope will go to children less fortunate than ours. We have leftover medical supplies that we will donate to charities that take such items. A little red wheel chair that was on lone from the clinic for Cody's final trip home must be returned.
As we try to get our lives back together we walk a fine line. One where we try to hang onto memories and good thoughts of Cody without somehow not living in the past. There is a part of you that somehow feels like you betray your son for even trying to move on. You feel like you must remain miserable for the rest of you days as a tribute to your lost child. You feel that you will be less of a parent for letting go. I know that is what my wife feels, on top of the gut wrenching feeling that she just misses her little baby. I love you Diane!