What can I say? The title of this posting says it all. I went into Amanda’s Facebook page to see what her friends had posted recently. I went into the photos to pull out some of them. I really need to go in and get them all copied into my computer. That’s when it tore me apart. Seeing the photos of Amanda in her childhood all happy and smiling with her brother, her dad and her friends. Where did the days of happy childhood go? What happened? When do kids become jaded and mean? Why do they do that? I look at the photos and with a stark realization, I will never be able to hold my daughter again. I can’t laugh with her. I can’t shop with her or watch her get married or have her babies. I won’t be able to be the grandmother that tells her all those things that she did as a baby and what she should do with her own. It’s the who and whats out there that made this not possible.
My therapist says it is healthy to cry. I do all the time when I think of her. Not here. I read the blog posts from Rehteah Parson’s parents and can feel their pain also. It is the same as mine only mine is 7 months old and there’s is only 1 month. I do think that my therapist tests me from time to time. He will mention Amanda’s name to see how fast the tear ducts might flow. I think that’s how he gauges on my mental well being and the state of my PTSD. I usually cry. He says it’s normal. It wipes me out. But it’s part of the healing he says. And so is the advocacy things I am doing. And talking to the ones I have – whether via social media or on the phone. So to all of you … you are my healing process.
I went out to dinner tonight with friends and was recognized in the parking lot by a person who identified himself as an RCMP officer who knew about Amanda on that night of October 10th. I got a thank you. I also bumped into a work colleague at my doctor’s office today. I hadn’t seen her since before October 10th. She also wanted to thank me for sharing my voice. She told me that I was making a difference. And that difference would be for her son who is now only 4 months old. I hope that changes can be made.
I was also reminded of an Amanda story. I am searching this out to see what particular grade this happened. We think maybe grade 3 or 4. Amanda was always thinking of ways to help in her community if she wasn’t operating a lemonade stand. Her idea at school was to do a shoe drive. Collecting shoes that people didn’t want to give to the Shoe Bank. Is there even a shoe bank around? Well Amanda saw this in the local paper and wanted to do it. She got some friends interested in the idea. They presented it to their school principal. (I was also a teacher at the same school so saw and heard it all.) The idea was accepted and off went the girls. They made posters and put them around the school. They collected boxes for the shoes. Everyday when shoes arrived, they would assemble them in the front office foyer in their pairs and all in neat orderly rows. Oh, we can’t forget that each day, the girls would count them and keep a running record. So if you want to talk about an integrated curriculum, there was math, graphing, art, writing (for the morning announcements), public speaking, and we can’t forget the media interview. Someone came to take a picture of the shoes and do a mini inteview for the local paper. The funny thing I do remember is that somehow, a pair of shiny/sparkly/rhinestony high heels (for me) and runners (for her) ended up at home. Amanda really liked them and snuck them to her house. She figured that you could also trade the shoes. I still have the high heels in my closet. She wanted to be able to wear them someday. I will dig them out at a later day and take a picture to share. So you see, that was the ever caring side of Amanda. She always wanted to do things for the better. And yet, the people who didn’t know that part of her, treated her like crap.
I read a blog today that intrigued me. It was by Jim Nico of The Social Network for May 17. There was a link to Glen Canning’s blog. Glen is the father of Rehtaeh. I couldn’t help myself but to reply to Jim’s blog post about social media. I won’t name specifics but speak to it in more general terms.
I am also wondering … where might my luggage be? Who might have it? And if you do have it, can you please return what was in it.
I surprise myself how writing can calm me down. They say that if you move your thinking from the back to the front of your brain, it will provide calmness. I am calm now. Not crying. Sad yes, but not as sad as 15 minutes ago.
I read the comments from yesterday’s post. Thank you everyone for being there for me. You will truly never know how much it means to me. And for the AH’s out there, you have a sad life ahead as karma bites.
Love you all,
from Princess Snowflake and her mom, xoxo