We used to nickname her pumpkin when she was younger

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Happy 21st Birthday my beautiful girl.

This picture was taken on her 19th birthday.  By the time she got to blow out her candles we had already started to eat her cake :)
21 years ago...  
To this day I woke up at 6am and was in labor with you.  You were born on your due date exactly at 12:00pm . It’s as if you were on an agenda.  “I will be born when I’m due exactly in the middle of that day. I have things to accomplish. I don’t have much time.”

I never held a baby in my life before you, you were so beautiful, so round, with lots of hair.  The nurse said I gave birth to an Eskimo, your hair was so dark and long and thick. You had a set of lungs on you that even made the nurse run to me in the middle of the night with you. “Take her!” she said “she’s keeping the other babies awake in the nursery!” and left me there with you screaming in my arms.  It didn’t surprise me when you were in a “Screamer Band” in your teens.  

I was so inexperienced as a mother but I vowed to always do the best I could. I watched you have your first belly laugh over nothing, I watched your teeth come in, I watched you walk at nine months, I listened to your full, well spoken stories by the time you were two, I watched you figure out reading at the age of two.  You were so precocious in so many ways.  You had things to accomplish. You didn’t have much time.

I watched you as you thought deeply over events in life. I watched you cry over hurt animals. I watched you stand up for the underdogs of the world. I watched your intelligence and sensitivity take over your emotions. 
I hugged you, I kissed you, I play-wrestled with you, I played jokes on you and once in a while I yelled at you.  We rarely fought, we were so close.  I watched you go through your teenage years in amazement as to how much more stable you were than I ever had hoped to be when I was a teenager.  

I watched you become obsessed with your passions. I watched you pinch your pennies. I watched you cry over boyfriends. I watched you become a beautiful young woman.  I watched you have dreams for your future in science. I watched you struggle with being an adult. I watched you as you lay in your coffin.  I watched you as they closed the coffin over you. I felt my heart shrivel.

Now it’s your turn to watch me. You watch me cry over you and all of my losses.  You watch me laugh at silly animal videos. You watch me as I read and get inspired for my goals for my future. You watch me struggle with living without you. Maybe you chose this short life before you were born so you could watch over me in my second half of my life. From this earthly perspective it just doesn't seem right that a child should watch over her parents. However, where you are now there are no such rules of time or order; there is just love.  Where you are now you embody complete love and light and can't help but watch over me because we are forever connected through mother-daughter bond and love.

Happy 21st birthday, my beautiful daughter, my beautiful Pumpkin. I miss you so much no words can describe.  You spent almost 21 years on this planet being my daughter and I am grateful for having that time with you.  I would rather have lost you than not to have experienced you at all but I would much rather have had you longer as my daughter than to have experienced this loss.

I send you hugs and kisses. I send you my motherly love that will never ever ever die. I miss you.

Xoxo Mom <3

Monday, November 7, 2011

What was that sound?

I remember the first time I laughed after Alysia passed away, the sound of my laughter startled me.  Did that come from me?  It seemed so far away from where my head and heart was that it belonged to someone else.  It was the strangest sensation.  For weeks that was how my laughter felt. At first I couldn't comprehend how one iota of me could find humor in anything and yet here was my body laughing at something.  How bizarre that is when you feel so disconnected from your body.

Over time when I would laugh or even have a good moment it no longer startled me, the disconnect was beginning to reconnect.  My mind and heart were also feeling the laughter and the good moment but then I would feel tremendous guilt.  What right did I have to laugh or have a good moment when Alysia could no longer feel those moments?  What right did I have to have a brief moment of happiness when I lost my only child?  What sort of twisted mother would ever find happiness under these circumstances?  Did I not have a heart?  Am I that cold that I could find a good moment, a good thought, a good feeling within these circumstances? Oh my God, did that good moment mean I am forgetting about her? Or I am squashing the grieving out of selfishness to wanting to be happy? Then the heaviness would set in, the mourning, the fear and the tears would come back.

After a while I would equate happiness with heaviness.  After going back and forth from happiness to guilt to sadness, eventually the feeling of happiness automatically came with sadness and guilt.  There was no processing between the two. So when a good moment was happening I would constantly feel a cloud of heaviness on my heart and a feeling of fear that I was forgetting Alysia and a feeling of guilt because I didn't deserve to be happy since the worst possible thing was happening to me and the family.

As I write this blog, I am having a strong moment, in fact I have had a fairly strong week and I write what follows knowing full well I could slip back at anytime.  They say time heals all wounds, and they also say that grief is a wound that people don't want to heal because it is the grieving person's way of feeling connected to their loved one who passed away.  So how does one balance this constant tug of war on the wound? The healing that automatically happens with time, the healing done divinely on it's own.  Just as a physical wound heals without our conscious thought so does a grieving wound, unless of course we keep reopening that wound because we are afraid to see it heal. Unless we keep reopening the wound with our conscious thought.

Once at dusk I was feeling that sadness creep up on me and quite frankly I was sick of it but knew I had to let it run it's course like I do everyday this happens to me but a little voice in my heart said to me "You have a choice, you can choose to let this carve a path in your psyche that every dusk is a scary time or you can choose happiness." Ha! Easier said then done...BUT I vowed to at least try, to at least trust that little voice and so I began changing behavior patterns...replacing some mourning rituals I developed with new behaviors.  It doesn't always work.

However, this past week I've felt a shift.  I hear myself laugh and it feels like it's coming from me! Oh and what's this? I am feeling happiness without the heavy guilt and sadness? I am beginning to feel more like me again. Again, I stress this is a good week, next week who knows? It doesn't matter right now because right now I am feeling happiness, I am actually looking to the future with hope.  Grieving is not linear, it's back and forth, up and down, inside out, outside in, it's forward in time and backward in time.  Each of those moments are real.

It is a relief to know that I can feel happy and feel hope without forgetting Alysia.  I still cried this past week but they weren't those heavy despair tears.  I still miss Alysia but that feeling isn't accompanied with wanting to not go on.  Somehow the swinging of the emotional pendulum is coming to a middle point where I can be happy and hopeful and still be connected to Alysia.