August 10, 2013 Evening

by Robyn Bryant

Saturday, August 10, 2013 Evening

By now most would expect our family to be back to normal and our grieving process finished.  It will never be over!  In fact, I bet few will read this to the end.  Some will think, this will make me sad or this is just more of Robyn’s blah, blah, blah.....I cannot change any of that.  Last Sunday was the 6 year Anniversary of John Bruner’s entrance into Heaven. I had the privilege of spending a very quality few hours with Margie.  She and Greg have been so helpful to Chris and I during our journey without Christian.  As the week progressed, I found myself getting sadder and sadder and thinking about every detail of 2 years ago.  Then August 8th came, I tried to be strong!  Bailey had a full day at GPS with a leadership training session since she is a class officer and a new student luncheon.  When I dropped her off that morning at GPS, I briefly visited with a few people then got in the car and tried to decide where I would walk, I mapped out a course in North Chattanooga that I have walked frequently over the years, thought I was ready, parked, and decided the GPS track was my destination for my walk.  Two years ago, at the time I was walking, Christian was having further testing done trying to find a diagnosis.  That day 2 years ago,  was so busy, I never got my shower or changed out of my sleeping scrubs.  But as I started around the GPS track, I wanted to feel closer to Christian.  I was walking a track,  my Christian ran many times during middle school and some during her junior year.  Her “Tree” is standing tall at the end of the track, the perennials around the tree have thrived in all the rain we have had this year.  I was hopeful for a good walk, I have had a few aches and pains.  That day, I felt like I was elderly walking around and around the track.  I kept going, I watched the grounds crew busy making all look perfect, watched the painting of the soccer field and thought about Emily Cullum’s senior year of Soccer and prayed for something to lift my spirits.  At a mile, I thought about stopping, but did not want to tell Margie that I stopped at a I kept going, completed 3 miles and even did the wider bleachers several times.  I was drenched in sweat.  I wanted to take a closer look at Christian’s Tree and pulled around by the Vision’s Center/Crew House, all looked well, the marker was intact and clean and there was one huge weed I first thought was a plant.  I tried pulling it up, but was only able to break it off.  I am sure the grounds crew was not happy to find that laying at the end of the track.  Oh well! I did some stuff just for me to help me feel better that day, but nothing seemed to lift my sad mood.  When Chris got home, I suggested he and Bailey go out to our lot.  I really just needed to be alone to cry.  Yesterday, seemed a little better, but today the sadness has been worse!  Most do not realize, that I was with Christian almost every moment of everyday she was in the hospital and 2 years ago, this was only day 2 of chemo, I was not going anywhere.  I hope one day, I will stop re living each moment of her journey.  They were not all bad.  From May of 2011 until April 20, 2012 when she became too critical to verbalize any longer...Christian and I had a closer relationship than we have ever had.  Did I drive her crazy, did we fight, YES! But at the end of the day, I was always who she wanted with her.  Chris and Bailey were always around and Christian loved them tremendously (I am so thankful for the time Christian and Bailey had at GPS together, hours in the car together, they were extremely close!).  But, Christian and I had a routine while in the hospital and we did not like to deviate from that.  When she was first diagnosed a good friend, Angie Johnson made bags monogramed for packing for the hospital.  We kept our bags packed and loaded the car ever clinic visit, never knowing when an admission might sneak up. We eventually bought shelves (that I think are still in room 316).  The past few days, I have cried a lot of tears.  For the first time ever, I feel myself withdrawing from some of my good friends.  I had two friends reach out, one I talked to on the phone and was barely able to get through the conversation without crying and the other texted and I just told her I needed to be alone.  I normally crave company, but all week, I have just wanted to be alone.  I know I am going to survive, will I ever be the same? No!  I have already experienced happiness and joy since Christian left us.  This month, I think will always be tough, diagnosis month, the beginning of Christian’s Senior year and nothing was going as planned.  In my head, I prepare for May 26th, the day Christian died and November 22nd, Christian’s Birthday.  But these dates caught off guard  me this year...thank you all that continue to pray for our family.  Despite all, and my many tears today, I still feel very blessed! - Robyn Bryant