I wish I could come to this page and just talk. About stuff. Without needing to mention Mum, or dying, or loss, or any of that stuff.
But it seems that it isn’t ready to leave me yet.
Not long after Mum died, I did some quick research (as you do) about the stages of grief. Fore-warned is fore-armed and all that.
I gave myself to the process (as much as I could) for the first month, expecting nothing from myself other than the essential everyday stuff. And boy I’m glad I did.
I think I had a secret hope that I could outsmart grief.
Oh how I laugh at my naive broken-heartedness.
So many people have shared with me their experience of loss, and a common theme has been that things don’t “get better” and you don’t “get over it”, it just changes over time and the loss becomes part of your new path. And even when the loss is as comfortable as it can be, there can still be an everyday moment that brings it all back with a thud.
I had my first today.
I was at the grocery shop, looking at my ridiculous trolley full of food. I saw all of the fruit and veg, and in a split second, I was fighting the tears. My brain, in one of those “faster than logic” moments had reminded me that we were keeping Dad (& Mum) pretty close at the moment, maybe I could get Mum to come up and help me chop up the vegies.
I immediately had a vision of Mum, sitting at my dining table as she has so many times (before her stroke) and saying “How can I help lovey? Want me to cut up some of that for you?”.
Oh. My heart.
No amazing pledge of undying love. No wonderful life lesson given to me by my Mum. Just the picture of her doing something as everyday as offering to help chop some vegies. THAT brought me undone.
That little peel of another layer of the onion has also exposed in me an itch that has been building for I don’t know how long now.
An itch that I just can’t seem to scratch.
What if I’ve got it wrong? What if, somewhere along the way, I’ve missed the flashing signpost that said “Kathryn, this is the path for you”.
I don’t know why these things are connected for me, but they are.
Something about the truth about life and living and dying and death and how slender it is between them.
I am just not sure. About very much at all.
Except that I will get up tomorrow, and do my everyday things, and hope that they scratch the itch.