9 months and counting

A person's first thought when they hear the term 9 months is the impending birth of a new bundle of joy. The bundle brings about immense love in the family, parents anxious to meet the addition and the beginning of a new life in the home.

Today, 9 months for me means 9 months of grieving. It has been exactly 9 months since we had to say goodbye to my beloved mother. While I can tell you it has not been an easy road, it has been one that I have no other choice than to travel.

Living in her home has been the biggest heartache for me because it is a constant reminder that her home has a new lady caring for it. Never in a million years did I think that the lady would be me. While her home has been changed drastically, her spirit still lives on here. Her rocking chairs which she used to sit when calling everyone are still used for phone calls, her garden has her little touch of cheeky characters that she loved to buy in her precious dollar store and her kitchen still feeds a family.

And although I cry less, the dull pain of her absence still lingers in my heart. But to be honest, I'm all cried out. I feel empty. As I go throughout the motions of living my life, I am often halted when her face flashes before my eyes and a voice whispers, "She is no longer." Yes, her spirit lives on, as those that like to rush your grieving like to tell you.  I am referring to needing and wanting her to be physically present. A moment when I can look at her and say to her, "Can you believe this is happening?"  Those moments are no more and no one can replace those exchanges between a mother and her child.

Last week, my older brother from New York came with his family to visit. I looked forward to seeing them but as soon as I saw him, it hit me, the wave of grief that I have now become a pro at hiding from people. All I saw were flashbacks of my childhood, memories that we shared with our mother. And although I should have been happy to have them, it was just another reminder that my mother is gone.

For the past 9 months, I have been fighting myself over what I'm supposed to do and what I want to do.

I'm supposed to go on, putting my feeling of grief in the back seat because life supposedly goes on.  It does go on but not because you want it to but because that's just the way it goes. It's not going to stop because you find it physically painful to pull yourself out of bed in the morning. It's not going to stop because you feel alone in the world with no where to turn. It's not going to stop when you push down your true feeling as to not make anyone uncomfortable only to have it burst out of you 3x over.

The grief will never end but life will go on with or without you and there is nothing you can do about it.

So basically, for me, these 9 months have been pure shit. Thanks for asking.

                                                            The only way I can hold her now, through pictures.


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