By Beth Seyda –
I usually love Halloween, seeing all the little kids in their cute costumes struggling to hold up their trick or treat bags and trying to say “trick or treat”. But that first Halloween was only a couple of weeks after our infant son, Dylan, had died and I knew I could not be at home to give out treats this year. I felt bad about it, but I knew that I would be in no shape to see so many kids.
So my husband, Mark, and I decided to see an early movie and have dinner. This would keep us away from our house when the young kids were coming around and get us back home before the college kids got wild on Franklin Street. I turned off all the lights in our house so it was clear that no one was home as I left to meet Mark downtown.
The little ones had already started the door-to-door ritual as I drove out of our neighborhood. I cried as I saw all the little ghosts and goblins. It was another reminder that our little one was not here. I would not be able to hold Dylan’s hand and walk him around our neighborhood on this holiday. This was just one of the many things we would never get to do.
When we returned from the movie and dinner, Mark and I talked about how it was good to be away. We needed to take care of ourselves this time. There would be other Halloweens.
Beth Seyda’s life was transformed in 1997 with the birth and death of her critically ill newborn son, Dylan. She combines her 25+ years of professional experience in consumer research with her personal experience as Co-Founder and Executive Director of Compassionate Passages, Inc. The mission of her non-profit organization is to give a voice to pediatric patients and their families through advocacy, education, and research with the goal of improving pediatric end-of-life care and providing support to dying children and their families. Compassionate Passages donates the book Empty Cradle, Broken Heart: Surviving the Death of Your Baby to bereaved families.
Beth lives in Chapel Hill, N.C., with her husband, Mark, and their 7-year old son, Tyler. To learn more about Beth’s non-profit organization, go to: www.compassionatepassages.orgTags: Depression, grief, hope