I’ve learned so much since you left this world. But at the same time it made me realize how little I actually know.
My Mom died February 23rd, 2017. She didn’t pass away, she didn’t go home, she died. On New Year’s Eve of 2017 as the clock counted down I felt a sense of relief. Even though I was celebrating with friends at a wedding, I couldn’t stop the tears from flowing. It’s over I thought, this terrible year is over. We can’t do anything except go up.
After the first anniversary of my Mother’s death I’ve heard two things.
- You made it through all the firsts of grief, it gets easier.
- It doesn’t get easier, in fact the second year is harder.
All I know is that both of those statements are true. So I wouldn’t say life has been easier. Life is just different.
I feel guilty. Why is my grief any different than anyone else’s? We all lose. We all experience tragedy. Maybe one day I’ll stop writing about it, but for now, I don’t care. I guess it’s my coping mechanism.
So read if you wish, or just exit the page. This is for me, although if I can help someone else along their grief journey, than I will.
This past year has been full of life and love. I became an Auntie. Times 3.
Dustin and I got engaged.
And we got married.
And it was the most wonderful day of my life.
And my father and sister and all our friends and family danced into the night.
And my Mother wasn’t there.
It was painful, and brilliant and wonderful all at the same time. She wasn’t there physically, but I felt her everywhere. I felt her in the sun, on the beach, in my sister, and in every person that I touched. And damn did I feel her in those Long Island Iced Teas.
I can say one thing for sure. That huge life moment without her was hard. It sucked. It makes me not want to have other huge life moments without her. It makes me angry. It’s not fair.
But it’s also not fair to those around me. The ones who are still here who love and support me. My Dad. My Sister. Dustin. Dustin’s family and our friends who have loved us for all time.
I’m not the same person anymore because she’s gone. And I’m sure I’ll be a new person at the next shift in life. I’ve learned that no one stays the same forever. The true accomplishment is learning how to navigate life with each other as our new selves. And once we figure it out, there we go, shifting again.
I’ve searched for her. There have been these intense moments where I could literally feel her wrapping me up or filling the room. It’s unexplainable. And then she’s gone. The intense change in energy when she’s there and when she’s left is so profound. I have found her in the little things. In book stores, tulips, and lemons. I have found her sitting with my dog in Dad’s living room.
It’s easy to not say anything, or to say it from a screen. But if you ask me in person, I’ll talk. I will share. I will listen. Don’t mistake my grief for sorrow. I am happy. I love my family. I love my life. But there are days where I will sit and listen to Bob Seger and hibernate. We deserve those days just as much as the good ones.
‘Have you ever seen the rain comin’ down on a sunny day?’Creedence Clearwater