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looking back – 2013

As it turns out 2013 would make me motherless. Cancer had finally kept its darkest promise.

This can’t be real life. It can’t. This happens to other people. People I feel sorry for, I pity them, even still. Even now that it is me. I can’t erase it from my heart, so it wears on my face too. If you lean in close I am positive it’s markings are there. It doesn’t dissipate, evaporate, vanish over time. It stays with you.

Watching her go. Ever so slowly. Those days were heavy yet floating- full of peace. A holy place, heaven was close. I was careful to place little exchanges, words, thoughts, smiles, I love you’s gingerly in my pocket, I pull them out now to marvel at them. I keep them close and secret, as if saying them out loud makes them less or pretend, and I want them to stay real and mine.

Time moves Godlike for me now, a year feels like a day. Everyone moves on. For me it was just yesterday. I wake up wondering what is wrong. Something doesn’t feel right. I remind myself she is gone. It is the first thing I think of. Still new and fresh, an emptiness, a nothingness, a void that I fill with other things, people, projects, responsibility. It only scratches at the surface. “Her absence is like the sky, spread over everything” (-CS LEWIS) … That is the closest I can get to describing it. The safety of a home is not a place, it is a person, it is in your mother’s arms.


But can’t I? Just as her absence is like the sky, so is her presence. I see her in everything. Every periwinkled hydrangea, every kiss I deliver to my girls, every time I vacuum the living room rug. She is not in the sadness, the tears (and there are thousands) that is not where I find her. She is in the living. In my children, in her children, in me. So here’s to 2013, the best and the worst year I ever did live, and here’s to living…

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