In many ways, since losing Toby, I feel sadness a lot more. When I hear about my former co-worker losing her son-in-law and grandson (granted, that was on my road) and my friends losing their two children in the fire it hits me hard. I hear stories on the news about kids and it bothers me to the point that it almost ruins my day. We DVR episodes of CRIMINAL MINDS and occasionally Pete will watch one before me and it will involve kids and he'll delete it or warn me against it.
Still, there are other times that I feel like I am losing compassion. I KNOW that sounds horrible and I feel like a bad person because of it.
For example, a friend recently lost their grandmother. Their grandmother had lived a long life and died from natural causes. The friend was understandably upset. Their FB status, however, garnered more than 43 comments regarding sympathy. I left mine, because I did feel bad for them, but it felt empty on my part. I felt like I was just saying the words. Of course, I didn't want my friend to feel sad, but it was hard for me to feel sad for them.
I want to add, too, that the situation in this case gets trickier for me. This friend is someone who has not reached out to me since Toby died. I have invited them out to eat, asked them to attend things with me and Pete, and sent them emails about getting together. These have all been ignored. On the other hand, I have traveled to see this friend for different reasons and offered a lot of support to them in other ways. They didn't write me during Iris' pregnancy, comment on her birth, nor have they made any kind of acknowledgement of her existence. There were no supportive comments or notes when she was in the hospital...nothing.
Morally, I feel like since they're a friend I should feel supportive of them during their time of pain. A colder side of me feels like I shouldn't care. A different side of me sometimes doesn't feel anything at all. I do think that part of this process involves a certain amount of numbing.
Sometimes I think that my tolerance is a lot lower than it used to be in terms of sadness. In other ways, I feel like it's higher. It's hard to explain.
I hesitate to write these things sometimes because it makes me feel like I'm a bad person. Every once in awhile, though, I'll be feeling something crappy and I'll think I'm being terrible but then I'll read someone else's blog (usually Abby's) and they'll take the words right out my mouth. Then, I'll at least feel less alone. So, maybe someone else out there feels the same way I do and this can be helpful to them.