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I DO FEEL THAT TOO

05 May, 2021

“I do feel that too”
- a letter to the grieving children 

Hey, you might not know me and I might not know you 
but we have something in common to share,
we both lost our parent(s).

We might not share the exact same story in losing them 
but maybe we share similar pain and hardships.

For me personally, one of the most painful things in grieving is
the feeling of being the only one feeling this way.
The feeling of being dismissed, belittled, and not understood.
That’s why I’m writing this to you, you are not alone,
there are others who feel the same way you do,
at least I do.

I’m not writing because I am an expert in grieving
or that I’m better than you in handling it.
I’m writing because maybe I too need someone
Someone to share those feelings to;
Someone to understand the silent scream of agony inside of me
that I can barely express.
Someone to tell me, “I do feel that too”.

No matter how old they are, parents are forever their children’s
strongest foothold in this side of the world. 

When the foothold is taken away, no matter which stage of life the children are,
they will stumble, they will fall.
So the first thing I want to tell you; the feeling you are feeling right now, the feeling of wobbliness, the feeling of not being able to stand up on your own;
I do feel that too. 

A child will forever want to please, show off, and be accepted by their parents. 
When they’re gone, it’s hard for us to celebrate and to take joy in our successes knowing that at the end of the day we no longer have them to tell us, 
“Good job son, Good job daughter, I am proud of you and I love you”  
No, this is not childish, this is not silly, I do feel that too. 

A celebration is only as meaningful as the people we are celebrating with. 
Birthdays no longer feel right. Parties are no longer exciting.
Family gatherings …. 

It makes us miss them even more and makes their absence magnified. 
Don’t get me started on weddings, to see my friends dance with their dads,
to see them walk proudly down the aisle, to see a complete set of parents.
Wedding would break my heart to the point of feeling guilty
for not being able to be happy for my friends.
In wedding parties, I would feel like a black spot smudging a clean white wall.
So friends, the anxiety and dread you feel for
the upcoming big days and celebrations,
you’re not alone, I do feel that too.

Someone once said,
“No matter how old a daughter is, they always need their mom”

I think at any given time no one would stop being someone’s child.
When our parents passed on, they not only left footprints but also shoes to fill in. 
Oh how these shoes-filling-moments broke me the most. 
When I had to do all the things my dad used to do for us,
all I can think about is how I wish he’s still here …
to show me what to do, 
to tell me where to go when things need to be fixed,
to advise me with things to say at the administrative offices.
If you think of these often too, you need to know, I do feel that too. 

On the day when I needed someone to drive me somewhere,
oh how I wish he was still here. 
On the day when I crashed my car,
oh how I wish he was still here.
On the day when I couldn’t figure out how to open the car’s hood,
oh how I wish he was still here. 
On the day when the house were leaking everywhere,
oh how I wish he was still here.
On the days when things were heavier to bear,
all I can think about was oh how I wish he was still here.

All the “oh how we wish they were still here”,
it brings sadness,
it brings frustration,
it brings anger,
it brings pain. 

I do feel that too. 

And the worst of all,
when people we care about have to go through the same thing. 
We’re hurting as well with them, our hearts break together with theirs
And on top of hurting together with them, we can’t help but
to relive what has happened to us, we relive our griefs. 
Overwhelming sadness, excruciating pain all over again when we think about what they have to go through and at the same time,
we have to re-feel and re-live what we have been through. 

Do you feel this too? 
I do feel that too. 

These are only few things that I can turn into words
I know there are million other feelings when it comes to grief.
It’s hard, it’s tough, it’s unbearable at times. 

but friends, please allow me to share some things that I think will lighten it a bit

First, it’s true, our parent(s) has left this side of the world, they’re no longer with us;
but other than them, we have the Parent of parents who are still here with us nor would He ever leave us.
The Father to the fatherless, The Mother to the motherless,
The Parent to the orphans,
 the God of the universe himself who calls us by name,
who knows us inside out, who loves us like none other. 
It helps to remember that we still have God with us and just by knowing that
we’ll know that everything is gonna be okay in the end. 

Second, I think with loss comes a superpower,
we now have a special ability to sort of understand
what others might be feeling and help them through. 
I decided to write this letter because two families
that I care about had to say good-bye to their beloved parents in the past few days.
The overwhelming sadness as well as the desire to help
but not knowing how has made me write this letter because
maybe, maybe this help,
maybe not just them but others too. 

And last but not least, on hard days, sometimes it will help to ask ourselves,
 

“What would mom or dad want me to feel in this situation?
Would they want me to be happy?
Would they want me to go on?
What would they say to me if they were here? 
What would I say to them if they were here?”

 

All in all, let’s promise one another to re-learn how to live again, together.
We owe it to our parents to be the child they wished us to be, to carry on their legacies, to live on.

Friends, I do hope you can relate to this letter.
If you have more things that might be relatable, please let me know.
It will be great to know that I am not the only one feeling this way.
And for you, please know that you are not alone.

I’m here to tell you, “I do feel that too.”


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