Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Musings on grief

I had a dream the other night. I was with my Dad. We were cleaning his house, retouching the paint on the walls, vacuuming behind the couch. Serious cleaning. We were getting the house ready for my Mom. She had gone on a trip and we wanted to surprise her when she got home. We were so excited because she was coming home that afternoon, and we had to hurry to get everything done. We were so happy she was coming home.

Then I woke up.

Sometimes the fact that she is not coming back just hits me so hard. Like I've run full tilt into a wall (which I've done, I'll tell you that story sometimes, it's kinda funny). I'm shocked by the realization that she is gone, so stunned I can't breath. It hits me at the strangest times, like first thing in the morning, or when I'm putting on lotion she gave me, or when I forget and pick up the phone to tell her something that happened during my day.

I used to talk to her every day, sometimes twice. The Greatest used to marvel over how I could call her to tell her we were coming over, then proceed to spend the next half-hour talking to her and still have plenty to say when we got to her house. I miss her voice, laughing with her. We laughed so much.

I've been trying to give myself time to grieve, but I don't even know what that means. I don't have time to just sit around for two weeks crying, I've got kids who like to be fed on a fairly regular basis. I've been trying to let my emotions out, but I think The Greatest is really wishing, ok I know the Greatest wants me to keep back a bit of this anger. Alright, since I'm being soul-baring honest, he wants me for-the-love-of-all-that's-good to stop taking it all out on him RIGHT NOW. And I want to, I'm just so sad and angry.

I want to return to normal life. Back when I used to be able to focus on things. Back when I didn't lose everything important on a regular basis. Since her death I've lost my wedding rings, my palm (twice), my mp3 player, the car keys, my debit card, and my youngest two children (which really did happen, I'll tell you that story sometime, it's kinda funny). I've found all of them except the mp3 player. I'm just tired of losing things.

I know my life has been irreparably changed, that the old normal is gone. I just don't know how to find the new normal. I don't know how to not be so angry. I've done lots of knitting, but I don't know when to show it on my blog. It seems disrespectful to return to such frivolity.

I almost feel like returning to anything I did before she died is wrong, like I'm ignoring the fact that she is gone and her passing has made things different. Returning to the status quo would feel like I'm saying she didn't matter. As if I were saying things were one way when she was here, and now that she's gone it's still the same, as if her presence or absence doesn't make a difference.

I'm lost. I don't know what to do, how to handle this.

I miss my Mom.


Kim said...

Delurking to tell you to just hang on and take it a day at a time. Don't worry about how the kids are going to get fed, you will manage everything and someday you will look back and wonder how you did it. Keep chugging along - cry if you want to - go in the shower and scream if you want. Do what you need to do. After my son died, I had to be persuaded by my sister to get up and go to the funeral home. You will survive this and I am here praying for you.

mama_tulip said...

I know you do. (((hugs)))

strangelittlemama said...

I understand.

Areli said...


Katrina said...

You have such a way of putting into words those thoughts and feelings that are so real. I'm touched every time I read what you've written.

I keep coming back to the question--what would I want for the people that I love and who loved me if I were gone? I would like to know that my life made a difference to them, that I would be remembered and that memory honored. That I would be acknowledged with a smile, even a chuckle. I know they would be sad, and I would hope that they had support from all angles.

But I would want them to hurt for as short a time as possible. I would want them to find the joy in what makes them happy again. I would want them to know that it's ok to find something amusing, that it's good to laugh. Especially if they shared laughter with me.

Forgive me if I'm making this sound simplified. It most definitely is not. I'm just trying to bring comfort to my friend who is very sad.

There's no denying that you will be hurting for a long time. Your mother is irreplaceable. The way you grieve and how long you grieve is completely yours to walk through. But please know you've got friends who care about you very much. I know that doesn't bring your mom back. But you are most definitely not alone. I hope you know that.

Janis said...

Oh sweetie...I remember going through this 7 years ago with a dear friend of mine. Little did I know that I too would be diagnosed with BC 7 years later facing the same demon. She went through so much of what you are going through. Time will make the pain easier to bare. Promise.

As a mother and BC survivor, we don't want you to grieve but to live. We want you to carry on and grow strong. Raise those beautiful children. We will always be with you.

Fitztwins (BC.org)

Chris said...

bit by bit by bit...

Bonnie said...

Return to the frivolity. Your Mom would want you to.

You are very, very lucky to have had a mother you could talk to and be so close to. I don't. Mine never calls me. If I don't call her, then I just don't hear from her.

I lost my father a year ago, so I know what you are going through. It takes time. Tears will flow when you least expect it. People understand and are kind, because there is no one who has not had a death in the family.

It's a cliche--but time will bring you acceptance and peace.