Defending My Grief: A Mothers Point of View – By MaryBeth Cichocki 


sad-505857_1920Grief is described as a multifaceted response to loss, particularly if the loss is someone to which a bond of affection is formed. To me, there is no greater bond of affection than a mother and her child. Mothers love their children from the first second that stick shows a plus sign. I fell in love with both my boys the minute I knew they existed. Dreaming of hair and eye color. Buying clothes and decorating a place both in my home and in my heart for the son who would give me a reason to be. Who would change my heart as no one else. Some little person, so fragile yet so precious who would give my life meaning like nothing I would ever experience again. Only a mother can ever come close to the feeling of holding a new life seconds after birth. Only a mother who buries her child can know the life shattering grief that breaks your heart into pieces that can never be repaired. I’ve heard from so many people since the death of my youngest to the addiction that took his life and altered mine forever, No Mother Should Ever Bury Her Child.

Yes, so true. People say they understand, I say I pray you never do.

Now I am forced to defend my grief.

There is nothing that can be done to heal my broken heart. My son, forever 37, my friend, the man who’s battle we fought together is gone. His demons won and he left me behind to pick up the pieces of what used to be my life. I am a nurse, I took care of others mothers babies. Saving them or holding that mother as she said goodby to the baby born too soon to survive. Now I need someone to hold me and tell me that this nightmare will get less intense. That there will come a morning that the grief doesn’t slap me in the face as soon I wake letting me know Matt is really gone. Memories fill my mind and bring me to my knees. A bag of chips he loved or the whip cream we would share and fight over who got the last squirt. Everyday is filled with pain and the shock that I will never hear his voice or see his smile. To those of you who get to decide how long I get to grieve I say close your eyes and imagine your child is gone forever. No more phone calls, hugs, holidays. Keep those eyes closed until you feel the tightness in your chest and the lump in your throat, this is my life.

To the director of my department, sorry the 12 weeks you can hold my position and expect me to come back and be that ICU nurse that I was before, where has compassion gone. We are a health care facility but we have no compassion.

I have been a nurse at the same facility for 35 years. I paid for an insurance policy for long term disability and now I have to jump through hoops to prove that I am a mess and cannot work caring for critical babies. My doctor has tired of all the forms he filled and faxed to this insurance company, now he tells me he is done that I must got to a specialist for help. Why does the medical community not get it.

There are no pills to cure me. I am grieving my son. A boy who became a man with a horrible disease. He was in my life for 37 years.

How do you put a time limit on a mothers grief. So now on top of everything else so heavy on my heart I have to fight to be given the precious gift of time to grieve. I need to cry whenever the gut punch comes. I need to be comforted not condemned for being a grieving mother. I have never asked for anything from anyone. I pulled my weight, never called out, worked extra shifts. Now I look back and wish those extra shifts were spent with my family. To those of you who don’t get it I pray you never do. There is nothing worse than losing your child and having to defend your brokenness. Just look at my face, my eyes say it all.



About Magnolia New Beginnings

Magnolia New Beginnings, Inc. is dedicated to advocating for those affected with the disease of addiction, creating educational opportunities to inform and raise awareness about substance abuse, and supporting addicts and their families in the process of seeking recovery, maintaining sobriety, and reaching their highest potential through a new beginning. Magnolia New Beginnings has no paid staff, no overhead aside from minor administrative costs such as postage, website etc.., which allows all donations to go to the intended purpose; raising awareness and helping to create new beginnings for those affected by the disease of addiction. We strive to create a united voice among advocacy groups in order to create change. Check out Magnolia on their facebook page and website
Bookmark the permalink.


  1. I have never experienced what you’re going through, but I am offering sincere hope that things get better for you. It’s a very sad situation you’re going through, and your employer is treating you very unfairly. I hope in the very near future things start to pick up for you. Grief is individual – go at your pace.
    Peace be with you!!!

  2. Your words move me to tears and prayers for you and all who have lost a child – to this disease or any other. A deeply soul filled prayer seems to be the only thing that would match the profundity of such an event but at the same time it seems to be not enough. Insensitivity directed at you by people you’d reasonable think would be supportive could possibly stem from a feeling of helplessness on their part. The hurtful part is that they will never admit to feeling this way and end up blaming you for your suffering. And clearly, sometimes it’s about money. In this case ignoring a 35 year honest commitment to one place only to be kicked in the gut. I wish that I, at the very least, could somehow right this wrong but in reality I can’t, and on a spiritual level it’s not for me to interfere between what you and (hopefully) your God have convened to accomplish, so I send you my prayers and let you know that somebody is holding you in their heart and if this brings you a second of solace please take it, it’s intended for you and all who suffer in the same depths of pain.

  3. I am so sorry for all Mothers and Fathers who have lost a child. My prayers are for you to receive some relief from Above. Grief never goes away, but I hope time will make life a little easier to deal with. God bless you all.

  4. When I lost my son I thought with time the pain would diminish, instead I just learned to live with it. Sorry for your loss. Lifting you up I prayers.

  5. Thank you for writing this and sharing. Your words grabbed my soul, also, losing my precious son 3 years ago at age 26. There are no words to describe the pain, but we live with it. Much love to you my friend.

  6. This breaks my heart. I am dying a slow death with my son who refuses to admit he has a problem or seek help. I know well his alternatives-jail, psych ward, death or rehab. Every day and night the good memories come flooding in and hurt…and the fear of the future paralyzes me. Every part of my life is affected-work, relationships, eating, sleep. I am in recovery myself and hold out a feather of hope, knowing life CAN get better, but he has to want it. I am sending heartfelt prayers to all mothers out there.

  7. Oh dear, I am so very very sorry about the loss of your precious son, but also the loss of compassion from everyone around you who want you to “get over it and move on.” I am so sorry. No one on this planet knows how a parent feels losing their child unless they lost one themselves. People can be so unfeeling and insensitive. They just have no idea. They must think there is a time limit to grief.

    I don’t have the grief you do, nothing compares to your’s. However, I lost my husband of 43 years, and the grief from that wasn’t easy (believe me I know this is not the same as your’s). But what got me were other people’s ideas of when I should be better. When I should “accept” and move on. When I should “get out” and be with others when I didn’t want to be. If people can’t understand grief, then they need to shut up about there views and opinions about how we ought to feel and when we ought to let it go. No one can tell a grieving person when to let go. It happens when it happens. We live too much on time-tables and agendas. We can’t even be people anymore.

    Bless you. And ((hugs)) for you.

  8. I am so sorry for the struggle you are going thru on top of the horrendous pain you have to live with. I was no longer working the morning I got that phone call that destroyed my world. I raised my son alone and we were only 20 yrs apart so “grew up” together in a way. My son took his life Jan 31 2015. Out of the blue…..he had been feeling bad and getting depressed over the fact that he couldn’t figure out what was wrong. For about 3 yrs he kept feeling bad in one place, then another, going to many drs. To no avail.

    After a year and a half, I still don’t think I could go back to work. Possibly, but never in the same stressful environment I had been in. I’m still not able to be with people that knew me “before” or that knew Brad and I. We were friends too. Went alot of places together, I fit in with his friends, he fit with mine as we both had friends of various ages.

    I know it’s hard for people that have never lost a child to even fathom the depth of heartache we suffer. We will never be the same person, never have a complete heart again. We have to live on, but we can do it on our terms. We don’t, and quite frankly can’t, go back to our old life. If that means changing jobs when you are finally able, then ok, you go someplace new and start new.

    I so understand what you are saying about different food or music or something funny you want to share with him. Brad was 44 but we still had certain inside jokes and things we thought were funny when others might not.

    It’s just plain hard living now. Everything is forced. Do what you have to do to get thru.

  9. Powerful share.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.