|Rowan drew a picture of her|
family earlier this spring, and
it included me, her, and Aimee.
But for Rowan, who was only 3 1/2 at the time, I could really only explain the basics: mommy was on a boat, there was a accident, and mommy drowned. She's now in heaven with Grandpa. Rowan understood what that meant, and it's probably as much as she coudl handle and was all she needed at the time.
But one day...
As she grows older and continues to process the loss of her mother in each new stage of her own development, more questions will occur to her, which was a sudden and new revelation to me. It hasn't happened yet, but it will. It'll probably occur to her to ask:
- What happened? Why was there an accident? How did it happen?
- Could it have been prevented? Did mommy have to die?
- Why didn't you keep her from going scuba diving that day?
- Why was mommy the only person on the boat who died?
- Was this someone's fault? If so, have they been punished, and what was their punishment?
- And probably many more.
As these questions hit, I fully expect that anger will suddenly become part of the range of emotions she'll feel. In a way, Rowan will go through her grief process SO much more slowly than the rest of us who have been affected.
Knowing this now, I realize I need to be prepared for when these questions come. I need to provide her with as much information (appropriate to her age when she asks these things) as I can, as honestly as I can. And I need to be prepared for the fact that she may explode with sorrow or rage or some other emotion, even though by then years and years will have passed.
Rowan will be dealing with this a long time. Probably all of her life.