Post-Mother’s Day

It’s Mother’s Day. It’s a day of breakfasts in bed and handprint art projects, of last minute flower arrangements and sappy social media posts. It’s a day where Hallmark and the entire rest of the world remind you to appreciate your mom.
I require no such reminders. Not only due to the morbid fact that I don’t have a mom anymore, but because I appreciate her now more than ever before.
I knew Mother’s Day would be tough this year. I mean, d’uh. But knowing that something is going to suck doesn’t reeeeally make it suck less.
If my mom was still here, I probably would have re-posted one of the five or six pictures of us that I had in my possession with a caption about my favorite “crazy lady”. I would have ended it with “ti amo”. That’s how we ended most of our conversations.
It’s how I still end them. Because I talk to her a lot. After a lifetime of relying on her to listen to me wax poetic over every inconsequential inconvenience I suffered, I’m not sure how to stop. I miss her talking back though. I miss that a lot.
It’s been nearly eleven weeks since my mom died.
Eleven weeks is a long time. It’s long enough that the calendar has changed over three times. Long enough that the snows have all melted and my daffodils have come and gone. Long enough that the world has emphatically moved on and long enough that for the most part, it expects me to have done the same.
Eleven weeks is a short time. Short enough that we haven’t even ordered a headstone yet. Short enough that I still have the box full of pictures from the wake sitting on my dryer. Short enough that her name still pops up when I go to call a 781 number. Short enough that sometimes, even despite my best efforts, I forget that she’s gone.
That might be the hardest part in a sea of unspeakably hard parts. Every so often, I’ll read a headline or hear a song and make a mental note to bring it up the next time I talk to her. And then it hits me. It hits me so, so hard.
My mom and I were not the Gilmore Girls. We spent more of the thirty-one years we had together at odds than in harmony. Still, she was my best friend. And I miss my best friend.
Ti amo, mom. Happy Mother’s Day.

Scream of Consciousness

My mom has been gone for twenty-four hours. And the crazy thing is, time is just going to keep on marching along. Soon, it will be forty-eight hours, and then a week, then months and years. The amount of time between her last breath and the current moment is just going to continue to expand. It will grow, infinitely.
There is no preparing for this kind of thing. Sure, most people are vaguely aware that, statistically, they’ll probably outlive their parents. When a parent is sick, that possibility feels more explicit, more tangible. When a parent is dying, that possibility is utterly suffocating. You live with it hanging over your head, pervasively winding its way into your every thought. And the worst part is that it doesn’t matter. Because, no matter how much you’ve thought about it and worried about it and cried about it, it still takes your breath away when it happens. It still leaves you feeling like a fucking astronaut, floating in space, realizing that someone has cut your tether and now you have no way back to comfort and safety.
My mom was my comfort and safety. No matter how sick or tired or stressed out she was, she would listen to me complain and try to help me put things into perspective. She had a way of being the most chaotic and most calming presence in my life, simultaneously. I don’t know how to do this without her. People talk about not knowing what you have until it’s gone, and it sounds trite. Cliche, even. But there is so much truth to it. My mom used to apologize for relying on me so much, and I always waved it off. Of course she could lean on me, don’t even worry about it. I never really stopped to consider how much I relied on her in return, until today, when I subconsciously thought about calling her to tell her about how hectic things have been, no less than five times.
And it wasn’t until today, as I dug through a box of old notes and photos, that I really gave very much thought to who my mom was a whole person, not just as the person she’s been for the last ten years. She was a baby, as evidenced by the immunization booklet from 1962 that I found bearing her name. She was a kid, who made her mom homemade cards with crayons and glue sticks and tissue paper. She was a teenager that hung out with her friends and went to concerts. She was a bride, smiling and radiant on her wedding day. She was a daughter, who went through the same agony of losing her own hero as I’m experiencing right this second.  She had history. She had wisdom. She had thousands of shades of gray.
She lived twenty-six years of her life without me. But, I had never lived a second of mine without her. Not until twenty-four hours ago.

A Series of Unfortunate Events that Have Kept Me from Blogging for Six Weeks

Miss me yet? I know, I know. I have been positively dreadful about keeping up with my blog lately. I have a million and one excuses, but most prominent is that my typical routine has been so disrupted by illness and inclement weather, that I haven’t had a normal week since before February vacation. And I am, undoubtedly, a creature of habit. If it makes you feel any better, I haven’t touched my bullet journal or my novel in the last six weeks either.
But enough with excuses. Back to blogging!