It's no secret on this blog that my family lost an amazing woman to a car accident just shy of three months ago. Every day, I expect the pain to go away a little more and the world to become okay again a little at a time. That, my readers, is not how grief works. It doesn't hurt any less three months later as it did when it happened. Things are still far from okay in my world and don't look to be getting any better in the near future. Sure, life has gone on and we have a new normal that we live with daily but everyone acts differently. Everyone thinks differently. We all seem to be trying to cram as much into one day as we humanly can because we may not get a tomorrow...and that is exhausting.
I can understand and even handle the exhausting aspects of life. I can handle the heavy weight upon my heart and soul. I can handle the children's outbursts of "I miss Grandma" and have even been able to tell when they are really hurting and when they are doing it for attention. I can handle talk of going through her things, thoughts of how different Christmas will be this year and even the talk of selling the house. Those things, a little at a time, I can deal with. I can process them and not lose my cool. I can live through it.
I cannot however deal when grief mercilessly knocks me on my ass and ferociously claws at my heart as it's doing today. You see, today marks the 28th anniversary of my husband's birth. A happy occasion by any right. A celebration of life lived (or at least endured) for 28 years. So why does it have me once again in the pits of despair? Because the woman who gave birth to this amazing man, the woman responsible bringing him into this world in the first place, who labored for hours and then cared for him for years is no longer her to celebrate her accomplishment. Birthdays are meant to be happy and joyous celebrations for the person who's having them but really they are a celebration of the accomplishment of our parents. The parents who brought us into this world and raised us to be the people that we are. The parents without whom we couldn't have been born to begin with.
Today is the day to say Thank You to my husband's parents for bringing a man into this world that was destined to stand beside me. A man for me to love. A man who without whom I would be nothing. Today should be filled with gifts and parties and happiness...instead, in the cruelest twist of fate, my Dear Hubby is at the cemetary wishing that just once more he could hear his mom's early morning voice singing "Happy Birthday" to him. That maybe for just today she could come back and hug him and share in the wonder that has been the first 28 years of his life. Retell the story of his birth over and over so that it is burned into his memory forever.
Days like today make me wonder why the rest of us bother trying to get through life without her. And then I hear my accomplishments waking up and walking about the floor above me and I realize that we have to go on because there is still life that must be lived and enjoyed. I must push back at the ugly blacness that is grief, stand up and wipe myself off...
...even if it takes every ounce of energy my body possesses just to take one step.
So, It's Your Birthday, Honey. My wish for you is the strength to battle the overwhelming grief and the ability to get through this day with at least one smile. Thanks for telling Mom that I love her, too when you visited the grave this morning. Sometimes I'm not sure she hears all the times I talk to her. I love you.