People say that grief get easier with time. But I don’t know that I agree with that 100%.
As I have touched on a few times before in posts, I lost my mom due to a winter driving accident in December of 1996. I was 14 years old and I didn’t get to say good bye. The last time I had talked to her was the evening before on the phone from a friends house.
I was shell shocked. My world turned upside down. Life I had known it as a 14 year old girl was over.
The day of her accident I remember like it was yesterday. Due to circumstances out of our control, my only way home that day was through the scene of the accident. I can remember every little detail. Knowing something really, really bad had happened but not knowing what.
All the lights of the police cars and ambulances. Seeing my Uncle waiting for me along the side of the road. Dropping to the ground after hearing what he had to tell me. Then waiting, waiting, waiting till the police would let us through. My uncle yelling at them saying it was her daughter sitting here.
I remember it all. And remember it all too clearly. Something I will likely take with me till the end of my days.
That day and the week following her accident were a blur. Yet I can also remember them with spectacular detail. A side effect of my ridiculously good memory.
Now at 30, it is easier, but not gone. I still have bad days. I have moments that feel like a punch to the gut and take me by surprise, leaving me breathless. Times when everything is good and happy and wham! It all floods back in.
A couple of years ago the anniversary of her death marked more years of my life without her in my life, than I had my Mom in my life. Things that people might not think about as a milestone in time, is something I think of all the time.
My relationship with my Dad completely changed. Throughout high school I saw the guidance councillor frequently, which did help me at the time deal with going from 2 parents to 1, and just high school drama in general. I know that my life could have went really bad, but for the most part I believe I was an ok teenager. I drank at an early age, but for the most part, it didn’t hurt anyone.
However, I’ve always felt like damaged goods. The girl with no Mom. Like I had it branded on my forehead. I hated those awkward moments when it would come up that I had to tell that I was “Motherless.” Followed by that uncomfortable look that I always got from the person I was talking to out of pity and not knowing what to say back to me.
I always felt (and often still do) that I was robbed by the world. I was robbed of my Mom, I was robbed of my childhood, I was robbed of my memories that would never be. The universe had a hate out for me and from then on out I would be labelled as “Crystal: The Girl Whose Mom Died in a Car Accident.”
It wasn’t until sometime later into my grief that I actually got help. Real help. Help to let me move past crying about it every night. Past not being able to mention her name without my throat tightening and my eyes burning with tears. Past blaming her death on the outcome of my life. Past why I hated myself and fed that hatred with food (although still working on this in a different light). I was 26ish when I got that help.
Having a daughter myself, the loss of my own Mother was consuming me. I was almost jealous of my daughter that she had a Mom when I didn’t. I had thoughts of not wanting to be ‘here’ anymore and got the help I needed. Finally got some closure. Through meditation and guidance, I was able to tell my Mother the goodbye I never did in ‘real’ life.
After that, I felt more at peace with the way she died and her being gone. I will never get an answer to ‘why’, nor be over grieving the loss of my Mom, but able to go about my day to day routines and it not eat at me.
I still think of her daily and try to talk about her to my children. I still find myself talking to her and asking her to just help me out in whatever it may be that I am struggling with at that moment. I still get envious of Mother/Daughter relationships, something that I can never have with my own Mother and leaves me longing for a void I just can’t fill.
Lately I have really been missing her again though. I feel that empty presence in my day to day life again. Finding myself getting teared up and crying at the thought of her not here, and of longing for her to be here.
My little brother is getting married in about a month and a half and I wish she were here for him. I wish she were here for me.
I got married 8 years after she had passed on what would have been my Mom’s 45th birthday. A way for me to tie her into my wedding day. I missed her not being there. It was obvious in the day we chose, the flowers we had, the colour, the first dance….the list goes on.
This is different though. Being that I am 5 years older than my brother, he was only 9 when our Mom passed. In some ways, I feel as though I filled the Mother role in his life to a point.
That is what I am feeling now. In planning a bridal shower for my soon to be sister in law for our sides of the family, helping plan the stag and organizing the food, being asked advice for wedding planning and prep.
I am excited for this wedding and I love it, but can’t help but feel I am filling in for where naturally, the mother of the groom would be.
And it makes me sad. It makes me sad for my brother, it makes me sad for my Mom – that she is not here, and it makes me sad for me.
Tears stream down my cheeks as I write down these feelings that I have been bottling up, and I know that on the wedding day, they will be there too.
I just had a conversation about this the other day with Erin, and was saying that after 16+years you think that emotions are buried. You don’t expect feeling to surface again. But they do, and they did.
It makes me wonder if there will ever come a day when I don’t long for her or miss her terribly. Or is grief really never ending and if ‘time heals all wounds’ is just something people tell you so that you can try to move on…..