5 Months Later

"It'll get harder before it gets easier."

That's what my cousin Lissette said to me about losing my mother. But I wish I knew when it would get easier because so far, easier hasn't even shown a glimmer of itself. Some days I feel like I'm in the same space as the first day I found out my mother was gone. I may not cry as much on the outside but on the inside, I'm rupturing. When I hone in on what I'm feeling, it stings my heart. Here I am 5 months later feeling as heartbroken as that day. I just want to be rid of it already.

Some days I wished I wasn't so close to her, that I didn't love her as much as I did. I could move on from not having that loving relationship. I wouldn't miss her. But I went from knowing her every move from the day I was born, and to then not having her around anymore. That reality is unbearable.

I always hated being the youngest. I knew the day would come when I'd have to say goodbye to my parents forever and I'd always be the one with the less time spent with them. I hate that I had her for only 40 years. My mother was 65 when she lost her mother in 2003. I never paid attention to her age until I had to pay attention to mine. I thought she was so young to go on living a lifetime without her mother and now look at me.

I remember my mother not wanting to even hear my grandmother's name, see a picture of her, or wanting to see her resting place after her burial. All of it was too much for my mother and I knew that, I just never asked how she was dealing with it. And as the years passed, I still never asked my mother how she did it, how she lived the rest of her life without her mother. Perhaps if I had asked her, maybe it would give me some reprieve from what I'm feeling. But I didn't and I have no idea why. Maybe I was just too selfish to really pay attention.

It was probably because I saw my mother as invincible. She had the vulnerability of anyone but she was so strong, too strong, for so many. It's when she passed that I realized it was too much for her to handle. Everything was being placed on her shoulders, every issue, every burden and she never complained, at least not to me. And I don't think that was fair to her to be our everything. Unfortunately, I can't go back and rectify the past for her. As the circle of life goes, even though I do not agree, her life here was served.

So on the anniversary of her 5th month gone, Monday, October 17th, I am in front of her plot writing this and wondering if she can see me here. Is she reading this from over my shoulder? Is she sitting here with me? Is she crying here with me? 

Does she miss me?

                              Titi Elena, Abuela and Mom


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