Parent Column – February 2021

Jan 10, 2021 | Parent Column

The voice heard in my silence – 

The pandemic we are all facing is challenging but allows for some rare opportunities of self discovery. I have taken many walks by myself where I contemplate the events and meaning of my life. My future seems uncertain. There is concern as to whether the company I work for will stay in business. Do I retire or find another job if that is even possible? The feeling of isolation from family, friends and a normal reality weighs heavily upon me. I worry about loved ones getting sick and possibly dying. From this train of thought it is a short leap to thinking about my entire life. What have I done, where am I now, and what do I want for my future? My honest contemplations of life led to a deepened desire to examine it all. What stands out the most in my life review is my son Adam’s passing and the emptiness it has created.

Quarantine, six feet of separation and social distancing are the terms dominating our consciousness in 2020 and continuing in 2021. Feeling isolated is natural under present circumstances. When Adam passed away eleven years ago I felt isolated in my grief and pain. I was surrounded by many loving people but their love could not penetrate my numbing hurt. There was a numbness that encased my heart and caused an emotional paralysis. I was alone within myself. My thoughts were foggy, my feelings were numb and a sensation of a surreal reality permeated my consciousness. Looking back I realize how similar things are today to what I experienced eleven years ago. I was socially distant from all people and quarantined within my own essence.

Because of the pandemic I spend a great deal of time by myself. Self imposed isolated is difficult and I need to frequently think of the long term goal. Stay healthy because a grandchild is on the way. Stay healthy because you have potential to live for many years and can be productive. Stay healthy to honor Adam’s spirit.

Isolation is challenging but offers the opportunity for self contemplation.

With a new year beginning and relocating to Long Island,new goals have been set and a new chapter of my life Is beginning to unfold. This past May 21st was the 11th anniversary of Adam’s passing and a broken heart dominated all I thought and felt. I was deep within myself that day and the several days leading up to the dreadful anniversary. I found myself adrift within my own inner silence.

Within that silence I heard a voice coming from my heart. This voice was saying “I’m hurt and I yearn for comfort, for peace of mind.. Even after 11 years of healing I’ve come to realize that I’m still in a state of convalescing. Perhaps this is the way it will always be. I cannot imagine ever being complete after Adam’s death.

I was very connected to my son. It would be accurate to say there was a spiritual bridge from heart to heart that linked our souls.

I can dance, travel and be funny but there is still a gaping hole in my heart that is ever present. From that broken heart a voice can be heard. Ironic how suffering and joy can coexist. It was this realization early after my life changed forever that enabled me to resume some level of normalcy. There was no chance of avoiding the pain but perhaps I could infuse some happiness into a horrific reality. My inner analysis and perseverance to regain my life were largely successful. With all of my efforts I realized that I will always be a work in progress. I will never totally heal. They are so many times since Adam’s passing where in my inner world of isolation I hear another voice coming from a world of silence, “I’m hurt and I miss my son”. The voice continues to say “It’s been too long since we’ve been together, laughed, acted silly and talked about life. I can remember your smile and feel the joy in my heart as we connected but all of this is just a memory. I miss you.”

So speaks the voice of my heart in the silence that encases by entire being.

In my silence I hear a voice.

– Rick Jacobs