Staying focused is not easy as every minute of every waking day is filled with thoughts of Josh. The thoughts are mostly painful as I relive what happened to him over and over again with no respite. However, on the 11th of every month I not only relive these thoughts but I work through the day tracing my steps back to the 11th of October 2015. If I have stayed up until the early hours I start to play out each step from the moment that I am told Josh has been stabbed, that he is dead, arriving at the scene, trying to be with him then waiting for 15 long hours for his body to come out of the then RE Bar, so that I could touch his body over a blanket that he was tucked under on an ambulance trolley.
I didn’t stay up last night it was too much as the past four weeks have been really difficult for me. We celebrated Josh’s 26th birthday and while my Granddaughter blew out the candles on his cake I looked at her and remembered Josh at her age and the pain intensified. Her little face, Josh’s little face, her little hands, Josh’s little hands, so painful. As painful as it was and with so many different emotions running through me I smiled because I didn’t want to let Josh down. The next few days were awful as the enormity of celebrating without him hit me hard because I had pushed down my pain for days leading up to his birthday too. I stayed in bed or on the sofa not wanting to be a part of this world, a world that seems so lonely in the throws of depression and complicated grief. The realisation that you truly are on your own in your own pain with no way out came to me when I was told Josh was dead, I knew then and there that no one would be able to save me, soothe me or take my pain away. I did try to find a way out of the pain and darkness but I was lost, it was with your help and the help of my family and friends and my faith that I could see a very faint light of hope but a light nonetheless.
I have received thousands of messages over the years from so many of you and they have always kept me going. I would wake up everyday and sit at the kitchen table reading them and replying to them, it was so comforting just knowing that someone was thinking about me and about what happened Josh an innocent young man. One message that had a profound effect on me was from a lady who recommended that I read a book called Proof of Heaven by Eben Alexander. I think I have mentioned this before but this memory has been with me a lot today especially in light of the Sun shining all day and the beautiful blue skies. This is the link for it so that you can read it for free
When she sent me the message she said that I might not be ready to read it as it was only was weeks after Josh’s death, but she said how it had really helped her. I got a copy straight away and it helped me so much, it gave me so much more hope along with the strength that I needed to get through each day. I have recommended this book to hundreds of people and so many have found it comforting and I wanted to say that sometimes the smallest of gestures can sometimes have a life changing impact and thank you to the thoughtful lady that sent me the message. If you want to reach out to someone and send a message and your not sure if you should, go ahead and do it. Don’t be put off if that person doesn’t respond just be comforted by your own act of kindness.
While Josh’s birthday has hit me hard he continues to shine a light on me and this month I have met some wonderful people who I know will be a part of my future. People who are humble, kind, caring and compassionate, who are also living with life changing challenges but are also determined to help others. We also have spring upon us, when flowers bloom and trees begin to grow and reproduce and the days grow longer. This is the time of the year that Josh loved because it meant that Summer was not too far away. Josh loved everything about life in the Summer and as it fast approaches along with the many beautiful memories that we shared, I have to keep doing my best in my darkest of days to love life for him and to honour his happy loving personality, while doing whatever I can to help others.
While my heart will never heal I know that there is hope and even when you can’t see it please know that there is light even when all you can see is darkness. Everything changes, nothing ever stays the same so hold on in there and know that your loved one is right beside you.
Sending you love always, Tracey, Brooke and Josh 💙🙏🏻 #mysonJosh #bekind #believe #darkenssintolight