Matt, tomorrow is Mother’s Day. My 6th without you. Even as I type these words my heart continues to disbelieve my reality. I can feel those waves starting to change from swimmable to ones that will pull me under sucking the breath out of my lungs. That familiar chest heaviness has been following me all day waiting behind every corner ready to pounce.
This year, my grief is multifaceted. A blend of old and new. Still having the power to bring me to my knees. This is my first Mother’s Day without my mom, your grandmother. Last year I struggled to find the appropriate card. We weren’t best friends. We were oil and water. She was black and white and I am grey. Mother’s Day changed after your death.
Before you died we went through the motions. Both uncomfortable but playing the game by presenting a false front to friends and family. After your death she abandoned me. She wasn’t there to hold me as I screamed. She disappeared from my life like that sailboat you see on the horizon floating further and further away until it’s no where to be found.
Most of our fights began when I questioned her behavior. I just wanted to understand how she could walk away from her grieving daughter. She died with her secrets untold. I grieve the relationship we never had. I grieve the life you should have had. Her death, so unexpected just like yours. I was foolish with both of you always thinking there would be another time to talk, to hash things out. Your deaths hold shocking similarities. Sudden and so unexpected.
So now I once again fight to pick up my pieces. To try to make it through a day to celebrate Mothers. Realizing I no longer have to stress about finding that perfect card for her has churned up emotions I never thought I would feel. Knowing there will be no card from you shatters my already scarred heart.
Time does nothing to lessen my grief. Mother’s Day is bittersweet. I will always be your mother. I long to hear you voice. To see you coming in the door with that smile lighting up my heart. I long to step back in time and redo everything done when I foolishly thought there would always be more time to say what needed to be said.
I long to have a relationship with my mom. One that was loving and natural. I long to hear her say I love you. I needed so badly for her to explain why she chose to ignore my grief and get on with her life. I long to return to the past when you were both here and time was something we had plenty of.
Reality is harsh. Tomorrow will be filled with loss. I feel like I’m floating on a very small life raft in a very big churning ocean. I know those waves are coming. I remember their power to pull me under struggling to find dry land. Tomorrow I will have no control over when or how they hit. Memories will find me as tears will fall. Life as I knew it is gone. All I can do is hang on and wait for the seas to calm again.