This is the first time I ever write a “real” letter to you. We have never in your 17 years been apart long enough that I thought it was appropriate, and when we have been together, we’ve always talked about all things in life.
Several things have happened since you died New Year’s Day. Among other things, I have two new friends connected as we are by an understanding of each other’s suffering. I have for the first time in my life felt the need to regularly talk to a psychologist. When we meet, we talk about me or you, and often about both of us. She found out early that I am very action-, solution- and result-oriented. That will not surprise you. Last time I spoke with her she expressed some concern for me. You see, I’m right now involved in a lot of actions which I hope will result in solutions and results. But she is concerned that I use it as a distraction and procrastination in order not to be forced to confront and work with my inner feelings. I think this could very well be true, and I promise you that the rest of this letter is only going to be about my feelings – the actions are for another time.
I feel really really poorly. I am in my life’s biggest crisis. It is over two months since you died, and I feel I am teetering on the edge of a precipice. People look at me from solid ground, watch me walk safely along the edge and comment on my strength and energy. It is an utter illusion. A small step to the wrong side and I crash. The days after you died, I was in an easily recognizable shock. As one of my new friends remarked, shock is meant as the body’s defense mechanism. I had a part of myself amputated, a big part of my soul, and I stood back with a huge hole inside, lacking the ability to comprehend what had happened. I didn’t eat, I didn’t sleep.
So it felt like the initial shock ceased, and instead the feeling of oppressive sadness took over . I was and am a zombie. I interact with the material world, but mentally I am not there, not even in another world, I just AM not. I dare not think about the future. All thoughts of the future will always come to focus on the fact, that you are not a part of it. That, I just can not handle. I hope that with the help of friends and professionals, one day I will learn to do that. But today it’s just way too overwhelming.
The shock, the pain and the grief is still so real, so powerful. I’ve had exactly one full day since New Year’s Day, where I have not cried. It is not a goal or target; just an observation. It has become worse. In addition to the the grief and the pain, the loss is starting to affect me. I have a physical need to put my arm around you. To go to one of your football games and watch you play. To hear you say “hi!” when you come through the door. You’ve always loved Christmas and birthdays. When you were very young, I loved to watch your expectant face when you opened your gifts. Last Christmas, less than 3 months ago, you gave – as always – thoughtful, lovely and loving gifts. When Mom and I opened the gift from you, you had that same childish expectant face; but this time in joyful anticipation of how happy we would be, of your gift to us. This sensitive, thoughtful and loving Hans, I miss. So much. Infinitely. Indescribably and unbearably. I am advised to try and fill the hole in my soul with all the wonderful memories of our life together, and I must pad it out with my infinite and eternal love for you. I will try to use my love for you as a force to get me ahead in life. But right now, sweetheart … right now I miss you so much that I find it difficult to find a meaning in life. My new friends are talking with, or at least to their dead boys. I wish I could talk to you. But my need is not to say anything to you, my need is to hear you answer. To see and feel the love from you. It is indeed your love I miss.
Many years ago when we went to Parken together, we took the train from Farum to Ryparken. We had some great conversations on our walks to and from the stations. The other day I was at the FC Copenhagen – Brøndby game. Like your very first match at parken back in 2005. After the game, I took the train home and for the first time in ages, I sat alone … and I felt your presence stronger than ever since that damn New Year’s Day. And it’s better than nothing. It’s better than not to feel your presence. But it’s not nearly enough.
I am a completely destroyed human being, my heart is broken and my life with a future without you is undesirable to say the least. Education, inhibitions and a sense of responsibility towards your mother and your brothers prevents me from thinking seriously of joining you. I also know that you would always wish for my continued long and good life. The same desire for you has indeed been my top priority for the past 17 years, but such wishes – our wishes – are ultimately only dreams, they are in fact dangerous illusions about what we think we can control.
All I can do now is try to build a new “me”. Try to repair my heart utilising my love for you. I’ll try that, at the same time I every day move one day further down the road, forming my future. A future I will not accept, because it does not include you.
I love you. So much. I can not live without you. But that’s exactly what I’m forced to do, and therein lies my curse.
You rest in peace, but believe me, in my heart you are fighting side by side with me, for my life and my future.
5 thoughts on “Letter to Hans”
We can not currently live with this loss; we can but hope that eventually we will learn to do that. We are so looking forward to seeing you and hugging you in a little over 9 months time! In the meantime you are in our thoughts as I know we are in yours. Love to you all! ❤️
Thank you so much Jean, for all the love and support you – in the middle of your own grief – still find the strength to give us. Hans loved you dearly and we are all left so much poorer in life without his expressed love.
Our hope for you and for us is, that as hard as it is to face every day, each day will bring us that closer to learning to live without Hans – as inconceivable as that seems now.
Hans has left us memories of a Happy Hopeful Young Man. We try to honour him with the same Hope through our pain.
Dearest Ivar, and Jackie, Kris, and Simon and Vicki,
Your pain and loss is immeasurable. It is shared, but not divided. There is no answer or solution that can offer relief. Our Hans was always the lively sparkley One. So how can I speak his name and feel so dead inside and jaded. The only answer for me is that I know the future lacks his Sparkle and Life.
Mindful people can say that the Now is being poisoned by the fears of the Future. And horror of the Past. The Now cannot change the past. It is what has happened in the past that has stolen him from us. The Now and the Future can bring us times to reflect and enjoy all the moments we shared with our Golden Boy. That is what we are trying to do.
I am so thankful that we had moments like yours when we laughed and teased and talked, hugged and touched hearts with our Golden Boy. I try to remind myself my pain is only reflecting the amount of love and joy we had for Hans.
There will always be pain because there will always be the time we had him. I cannot and would not exchange the pain for not having experience of having Hans in our Lives.
I am hoping you can live with this Loss living also with the Love you and he shared ❤?❤
Always remember Hans yours and Jackie’s precious son and Simon and Kris’s precious brother will walk beside you forever, he will talk to you and he will help you get through this most awful time! I cry for you all every day and hope each day will be a bit better than the last one but very often they are worse!
I can only give you all my love and tell you Hans was and still is a very special Grandson who had such good principles and so much love.