On November 5th, 2021, I lost my mom. Not in the way most people view loss, but it’s a loss in its own right. I received a call at 4:37pm that day and knew my mom would never be the same.

I never expected for my family to live the trauma we have experienced over the past four months. I guess no one truly expects for something as horrible as murder to happen within their bubble.

Do people write about the loss that comes from outside of the death of the actual person? The death of who your mom was the moment her husband died just feet away from her? The death your heart experiences when you come to the realization that nothing is the same and will never be the same again?

I’m in arguably one of the hardest seasons of my life, and the biggest supporter in my life can barely support the weight of herself while standing. Within minutes your mother turns into the child and you become the support system.

It’s not fair. None of this is fair, and I, by far, have it much easier than my mom. Still, it feels like my heart has been ripped from my chest and my security blanket has been pulled off leaving me naked and scared just trying to figure out how to keep moving forward.

I’m the oldest sister, so in a way, I’ve always been the caretaker – it comes naturally. However, consoling your mom for months as she grieves the loss of her husband while simultaneously experiencing severe symptoms of PTSD is something I’m not sure how to do or continue to do.

I need my mom back – no, I want my mom back. Need implies that she doesn’t deserve this time to grieve and slip into the shell that depression brings. She deserves all the time she needs. However, I want my mom back. My heart aches knowing that I will probably never get the mom I knew back.

Losing a person as they still exist hurts, and it’s a grief I’m sure many understand but few discuss. My siblings and I have experienced our own loss separate from the loss of Chad, and that deserves to be recognized and mourned all the same.