The Parental Grief blog offers comfort to parents mourning a child from the perspective of Jewish belief elucidated from teachings of Torah sages and Rabbis.
How Do We Cope With Losing a Child?
Is it Possible to Lessen Our Grief?
Our departed child had a body, but the essence of our child is their soul, and their soul lives on forever. Much of our grief stems from the fact that we can no longer relate to our child. How to we relate to a pure soul? How do we even define the ‘soul’. What is the soul’s journey through life and what happens to the soul after the body dies? How do we ‘celebrate’ our child’s birthday when now the only milestone we have is a yartzeit, the yearly anniversary of passing? It is my hope this blog will provide answers to these questions and lessen the feelings of grief, despair, anger, and guilt which a parent may feel after losing a child.
The Goal of Every Grieving Parent
Finding the Joy in Life Again
Parents mourning a child are in a special category of those who lose a loved one. Although Judaism has a set time period for the ritual, physical trappings of mourning, our internal grief will never go away. There will always be that nagging feeling that something is broken in our lives and we just can’t fix it. When looking at family photos, the only person we see is the person not in the picture. As we go forward in our lives, there will always be ‘triggers’, subtle reminders that our son or daughter is no longer with us.
Sometimes I think this world is a dream. Somewhere there’s a physical world out there where my son is still alive. I just can’t wake up from this bad dream where he’s not here. The lyrics of the song, One Day by Matisyahu, have a special meaning for me:
‘Sometimes in my tears I drown
But I never let it get me down’
Sometimes, the pain of grief does get me down. But these words remain my goal for living my life without my son. We never ‘get over’ the death of a child. We will never forget our child and we’re not supposed to. I think the best a parent can hope for is to find ways to deal with the grief of losing a child. May we all find meaningful ways which will enable us to find the joy in life once again.
Dedicated To My Dear Son
This blog is in loving memory of Jacob Roth (Yaakov Ephraim ben Tuvia Henoch), who passed away at twenty-four years of age.
Latest from the Blog
When my son suddenly passed away last year, I felt angry for months. I was angry at my husband, at my friends, at the bank clerk. I was angry at everything and everyone. I was angry at people for no particular reason. I was angry ‘just because’. All that time, I kept telling G-d that … Continue reading Is it OK to Be Angry At G-d?
Fond Memories from Long Ago I fondly remember our family seders when Jacob and his brothers were young. They received afikoman prizes for searching and finding the hidden piece of matzah. When they got older, finding the afikoman was less of a thrill, but they still enjoyed telling over the story of the Exodus and … Continue reading Passover Seder Without My Son
The Meaning of a Year Gone By Without Jacob My son, Jacob, just had his first yahrzeit. This was the day I’d been dreading. Thankfully, it wasn’t the miserable crying fest I thought it would be. My husband and I were around other people during the morning, and in the afternoon, Jacob’s older brother Adam … Continue reading My Son’s First Yahrzeit
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