Five In a Life Plus One...

by Ashe

Hey, my name's Ashe, I'm thirteen years old and in eighth grade. Recently in the past year(2013) bits and pieces of me have absolutely crumbled. This is all real, this all happened. To those of you that can relate, please know you're not alone.

It began in September. When my step-grandma went into a coma. She had been put into a retirement home three years before when she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. Now I understand she was old sure but that night I heard she had gone into a coma I began thinking... "What if she died... What would happen to everyone....?" And the next morning I couldn't help but think it was my fault. I thought those things, and... Even when feeling that sort of pain, I went to school and pushed through it. Wearing the brightest smile I could as to not make anyone worry.
Then November rolled around with Thanks Giving break, and with guilt still pressing in the pit of my stomach, I picked up my ringing phone. Now. I'll tell you now. My grandma rarely calls...(from my real dad's side) unless it's really important. But from her tone when she said hello. I know it wasn't good.
So I sat down on the floor facing my window and said hey.
"Hey Ashe, I just didn't know if you'd heard yet..."
What... What heard what?!?! My mind was reeling.
"Uhm... Heard what..?"
"Your cousin, James, died last night."
I was frozen, I sat there speechless, staring out the window.
I choked on my breath and my words. "Yeah?"
"You alright?"
I gritted my teeth, "Y-yeah, I'm fine... Hey Nanny... I'm... Gonna go."
She knew, oh she knew why I was hanging up. She knew I wasn't really okay. But she didn't push me...
I sat there, phone in hand, staring up at the gray sky and just cried silent tears. Right up until my mumbled 'why's' became screams of pain. I was mad, oh I was so mad , I couldn't help but yell.
When I went back into school, I had to do twice as much just to keep my pretty smile up... More to just hide away.
December 2nd rolled around and I got a call from my grandma again. This time I just didn't feel the need to answer, I didn't really want to. I was scared from the last call I got from her... So I waited until I got a voicemail...
"Hey Jenn, I just wanted to let y'all know, that uhm... Aunt Louise died a few days ago. Hope y'all are alright.. B'bye."
I let my phone drop onto the couch. Speechless. I sat there for who knows how long before my mom got home. She found me laying on my side. Tears just sliding down my face as I stared off into space. It actually took me a few minutes to realize that she was talking to me. Asking me what was wrong.
"She died..." I had said.
"Who died?!"
"Aunt Louise..."
Apparently, I hadn't said a word other than those four. I had just accepting the big hug I got from my mom, and walked up to my room in utter silence. That Tuesday I went to school and I sat down at my desk and was silent, right up until I smiled at the first person to greet me, putting on my best acting face and brushing off my silence as fatigue from not getting enough sleep.
The last thing that kicked me was December 26th.
I got a call from my grandma again, once again letting it run to voice mail.
"Hey Ashe, it's Nanny, just wanted to tell you that Jessie passed away last night... Don't know what from yet but... Hope y'all will be alright."
This time I didn't feel anything. Nope, nada, zilch. I had become so accustomed to this pain and grief. It almost felt like nothing.
I didn't seem to have to act after that. It seemed like second nature to wear that mask...
But I just snapped in my seventh period(science). I had just finished working on a worksheet and suddenly I just had to put my head down. I could feel my breath becoming jagged and my shoulders seemed to be twitching. But I just didn't know what was going on.
Some of my friends came over to ask what was wrong, and I didn't know how to respond. I just thought of the one thing that suddenly made me like that. And said it. "My dad..." I had whispered.
They seemed to completely understand after that. And they gave me space.
Now I didn't speak of my Dad except once in this entire thing.
Gary Dwayne Jones.
My dad, died when I was four. I didn't know what happened then. But I understood what happened perfectly. He was dead, gone, I would never be able to really know him. I'm told about him all the time, but it's not the real thing. It's not... *him*
After refusing to go to the councelors, I went to chorus. Where I was still unable to control my tears. I got questioning looks, but the only two that really helped were my friends K*** and E****. I spilled what I had been holding onto for thirteen long years, my true feelings about the situation.
"I've always thought that... What if... This was all a big dream... And when I woke up, he would be there, and I would still be four. I would run to my dad in tears, and bawl my eyes out while I told him everything. I asked them, what they thought it would be like if everything was fake, and I was really just lying in my bed. Dreaming endlessly."
I had never said anything like that to anyone ever, but they helped me out so so so much. I feel so much better now. And I can actually talk about things that have to do with my deceased family without having to cry each and every time!
So I thank you guys! Thank you so so much.

Comments for Five In a Life Plus One...

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Aug 12, 2014
Five in a life plus one
by: Lost my family

My dear Girl
I too know how hard it is to be smiling on the outside but a complete wreck in the inside. You have gone through so much death that it is hard for other to people to understand....that's why all of us find this website.
I too know the darkness that surrounds you, I have lost my mother, father, my only grandparent and I was ina horrific accident that resulted in my friend death.
But even after all of that every day gets a little better. You may never be that same and that's ok. Grief changes us, but I am a firm believer that you decide how it changes you, either for the better or for the worst.
Know that you are not alone in your grief, even if it seems like it. You sound like a strong and brave girl and I have faith that you will get through this and come out beautiful on the other side.
Be the Phoenix my dear. You may smolder and burn in the ashes, but you grow into something more beautiful than before.
God bless.

Aug 08, 2014
Five in a life Plus One....
by: Doreen UK

Ashe I am so sorry for all the family losses in your young life so close together. You are young and it is hard for us older people to cope with grief. You don't know what to expect and how bad grief feels like if you have never gone through it before. When you have too many together one often needs support from a grief counsellor. Don't blame yourself for something happening because you thought it.
I once had a thought. "What would I do if I lost my husband? How would I cope." I was trying to imagine the experience of losing him and how I could cope. I did lose my husband to a rare deadly cancer 2yrs. ago. But I didn't blame myself for thinking this. I thought perhaps God was preparing me for the eventuality of losing him. I was then able to put plans in place and re-evaluate my life. I am much older than you and mature enough to do this. You are so young, and as you mature your thinking will change and many more thoughts and memories may return. Deal with them and talk them through with your mom, or a counsellor before they take root and spoil your life and moving forward. We all have to go through changes in life. WE don't like change if most of us were honest about it. We like things to stay the same. Be brave and don't bottle up your feelings. It will make you ill. I did this and it went too deep and I needed a counsellor. So I do know how to cope with thoughts and feelings. Build yourself up. Don't blame yourself or beat yourself up with guilt. Let it pass. Enjoy your life and make the most of it. You were meant to be happy as part of your birth right and heritage.

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