The anniversary of my mother’s death always swings quietly around the corner from the bauble-clad glow of Christmas and New Years.
Here’s the routine from years recently past: I feel fine most of the day, but some moment overtakes me and breaks open a cavern of sadness, a few minutes wide and as deep as the Earth.
Not this year.
This year, I could see from a mile away, is built differently.
Possibly because with the loss of my friends’ son, I’ve been in a holding pattern of grief-adjacent for eleven months.
Possibly because healing claims its own right time, wanted or not.
Possibly it’s just an off year and we’ll return to our regularly scheduled soul-torn crevice dive in 2015.
Whatever the reason, this year I crave but cannot reach the taste of grief, salty and bitter and ever so slightly sticky with unexpected honey. This year I prod my scars, scrabbling in vain for scabs to raze bloody. This year I wear out my welcome on a handful of closely guarded memories.
I cannot feel loss clinging to my protagonist’s boots anymore. Now I’m merely leafing through it, sidelined as “dear reader.”
A shadow of a feeling.
Grief at the loss of the grief of loss.
Good thing love and laughter and the best damn moral compass around remain.
My souvenirs from mom.
Owlet’s first intentional complete alphabet.