Today Josh and I spent the morning talking to a grief counselor to set up sessions for Hunter. We figure he doesn’t need much but would love to set up a therapist for him so he has the tools and the dialogue to use when he needs it. Josh and I just don’t have any idea how to proceed with this… and a neutral person, outside of the family, to talk to may be just what Hunter needs. He tries to talk to us but it is a stunted conversation that he stops if he sees me getting too sad or if HE gets too sad. The therapist we saw today is perfect for Hunter. He will love and trust her instantly.
He is a complex kid, so it is hard to read his emotions and see where he is at with the grieving process. We need a professional that can guide him better than we can. There were some tears while we described the situation and why we felt he needs some sessions. Hunter is social and incredible but just needs that little bit of extra help. There is no telling what he is thinking when he gets quiet, he is such an old soul and has such an insightful way of thinking. As the counselor pointed out, there is no textbook to the process since everyone grieves so differently and mourning has no end date. This is never something you expect when you think of parenting milestones. My mother said it best when she said that ‘there is no limit to how strong the human spirit can become when need be’ and I agree with her! Hopefully, talking to a counsellor will help strengthen him and teach him how to grieve. I never know what to say when he comes to me and says he feels sad, although I always do my best to open up the conversation for him and to be supportive.
I am glad that Isabella and Hunter have such a close brother and sister bond. It helps a lot that Isabella can be there for him. They are such a good pair most of the time. Both of them are empaths and are very sympathetic to what the other person is going through. Lately, Hunter doesn’t want to be alone and he drags Isabella wherever he wants to play (*cough, LEGO, cough*), so Isabella (being a good big sister) has shelved all of her hobbies and has played Lego with him every day after school. My heart melts every day she is supportive. However, that being said, it was pointed out to us that Hunter becoming less independent could be a normal milestone that he would have gone through anyway, and not connected to the grief but it is hard to tell. It does seem as if there is a piece of darkness or a shadow lodged inside him when he is silent. He is a different kind of still….
So here is hoping therapy for Hunter teaches him there is a process to his grief and that mourning is okay- and how to express it! The language to express it is such an important part of the process since human beings are social beings that strive to be understood: language and explaining a situation is our processing/making sense of it all piece of the puzzle. I know that Hunter will be okay once he has that.
I am so damn proud of my kids. They make my heart grow three sizes every day. Both of them are intelligent, complex, empathetic, stubborn, proud individuals that show me strength I didn’t know existed! They make me proud, frustrated and full of love all the time, at the same time, at every minute of the day.