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A terrible word

There are moments where words feel inadequate. Moments where words lack the dimension to capture feelings. Moments where stringing words together like strands of DNA still cannot begin to estimate the uniqueness and complexity. And yet the simplicity. It is too visceral, too primal for modern language.

In the after of my crying, I can’t quite find the words to describe the feelings that flowed out of me.

In a word, it would be:




Self pity


No, these words are too flat.

Is there a single word dynamic enough to adjust to and measure the varying proportions of these individual emotions in each beaker of tears I cry? What would that word look like? Sound like? Would it be as guttural as my wailing over the steady flow of the shower? Would it be as empty as the pauses where I catch my breath and listen, looking around to see if anything has been righted around me? No, nothing has been accomplished.

I say his name a hundred times in these moments. Out loud and in my head. Usually as a question: Jasper?

As if to say: “Are you here?”

“Can you hear your mummy crying for you?”

“Why did you leave me?”

This is too much to put on a little baby!! Mummy is sorry. It is not your fault. What a bad mummy.

But what am I without my son? There is not even a word for me! What am I? A childless mother? A mother who has lost her child?

In a word, it would be: Nothing.

I am nothing without my son, because nothing matters more.

I am a wife to the best of husbands. Why can’t that be enough? You are enough, but it is not enough. I am sorry, my darling husband.

What a disappointment this life is. Will I ever experience anything with pure joy and happiness again? It will always be marked by my Jasper’s absence, I think. A sadness, a longing in everything. That makes me so fearful to do anything.

What should I do now?!?!

Is there a word for any of this?

Oh, it would be such a terrible word.

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