Today I will be reliving the most horrible night of my life. Honestly, it plays over and over in my head many times throughout the year, but today I remember the day like it was yesterday. The memories race back in exactly the order God placed them there on the night of August 23, 2013. This was the night my son, Tyler, was taken away from us. He lost his life in a car accident just three short days after his 15th birthday.
It will be five years that he has been gone. I know what you are thinking: isn’t it time to move on or get over it? Well, it might be five years or 55 years—you don’t just get over it. You learn to adjust, you learn to work through it on a daily basis, you move on but it’s only because life doesn’t allow us to stop. If you have not lost a child you have NO idea the hurt, the pain, the sadness and physical strain. I can tell you that night a piece of my heart broke when Tyler died. The pain is hard to describe but I would guess it’s similar to having a heart attack. I am told it’s the pain of losing a child. You might even tell me that your friend or grandparent died and I will wholeheartedly feel pain for your loss. But, losing a child is a loss that is so different from a friend or grandparent. It is because I gave birth to him, he was created by God from my husband and me. We nourished him, loved him, we protected him except that one night. It was out of our hands. God was in charge and took him home. I think that is why it is so hard. We are his parents and our job is to fix things and protect our children. But on August 23, 2013 my husband and I could not do either. We could only hold our son and sob with sadness.
So when, you ask, isn’t it time to move on? Think of your family or kids. If you were in my shoes, which I hope you never are. Would you be ready to move on in five years? I am moving on I am just keeping my son’s memory alive. I love to hear his name, I love to hear people talking about Tyler and I want to know he has not been forgotten. You see when you say to move on the only way I can do that is by bring Tyler’s memories with me, because that is all I have left of him. I don’t have is face, his blue eyes, his unforgettable smile, his funny laugh or him. All I have is his pictures and all the memories my mind will absorb.
So please tell me, when you say to move on are you wanting me to forget about my son? Do you not want me to mention his name or remind you of him at all? Most people say they are worried they will upset me if they talk about him. You forget he is on my mind daily. I like it when people tell me a story about Tyler or say they miss him. Just the other day a young lady asked if I was Tyler Hillmer’s mom. I said yes, and she went on to tell me how she had met him for just a short amount of time. She said how she really enjoyed knowing him even if it was for only a few months before she moved. I do not want to make anyone uncomfortable mentioning Tyler’s name. But, this is my life! This is what I have left of my sweet blue-eyed boy. It brings me joy, it warms my heart it gives me hope that I will get through another day. You are darn right I will mention his name.
So when you say it’s time to get over my loss and move on, these are my word to you. I wake up every day getting over not having Tyler here as a part of our family. Every day I get over not hearing his voice, not seeing his smile and not watching him grow into an adult. Many days I move forward but then move one step back as I am reminded that my family of five is now only four. I am sorry if you do not feel comfortable talking about my son since he is not here. I work through the loss of my son daily so when next August comes I am a little stronger, a little more healed and have moved a little more forward. I will not apologize for saying his name; I will continue to love and keep his memory alive. But I can tell you I will never fully get over the loss of son because a piece of my heart will always be gone.