January 2009 Archives


| 5 Comments | No TrackBacks

Last weekend we had a bonfire in memory of my mother. It's been a little more than a year now since she died. It was a gathering of friends and family, poems, songs, stories, fire, marshmallows, supressed tears and gentle hugs.

I had visions that I would write every day about my mother during December and January. That I would have lovely stories to tell. All year long I've had little moments where I remember my mother. I wish I'd recorded these moments.

I'm glad I've had time recently to be with my father and sister. I feel slightly more human. I don't really feel anything about my mother's death any more- except for a bit of confusion over this lack of feeling. I must be in denial. I used to call my mother weekly- sometimes more often, just to share every little story about school with her. Successes, failures, frustrations. I consulted with her on how to clean up the marker when the toddler in my care drew on the unfinished wooden table. You get the picture. I referred to her as Stephanie to indicate that as I grew into adulthood our relationship changed and grew into something more than mother daughter. She hated it- but I think she understood my intentions and so, for a long time she put up with me calling her Stephanie.
But now- it's like I feel more pain at not feeling pained about her death than I do about this loss. It's not that I don't care. I do. It sucks. But I say this and write this with little emotion. I feel somewhat inhuman, uncaring, forgetful.
That is why I appreciate being around people who remember, who care on a daily basis. They share their memories, and emotions and I remember that I am human, that I miss her too.

I'm a little concerned that I am going to fall apart someday, or that I am not entirely human. Ever since I was young I've felt different in terms of how I approach and view death - detached and pragmatic. I figured once someone really close to me died I would feel/be different (more normal in my response to death).

It is different.
I can hear my mother telling me to count this as a blessing, and hear the hurt in her voice as she says it. The kind of voice that says she knows logically that the hurtfulness is unintended- but stings anyway. Like when I told her I was a little jealous of the knitting she did for my other siblings cause she always experimented with me- tried something new for the first time- and then made an improved version for them.

So- outside of feeling like I don't feel appropriately- I'm good. It's weird. I know I shouldn't really worry about having 'normal' greiving. I should allow myself to let the memories and tears come when they do. I worry that my lack of distress/grief must mean I didn't love her. Like I'm not honoring her. I did, and I do.