it comes like a gut shot at times, like when I realize Big'K is less than a week from her sophomore year. stabs like a knife when Lil'K is having a rough day and I just need some advice, or to escape. an overwhelming wave of nausea when I realize that last Saturday was the day, and I did not even realize it. that the trip to purchase bento boxes on Friday, the hanging around on Saturday, and trip to the beach on Sunday were enough to keep my mind from realizing what the date was. and that the timing this year is just eerie. two weekends and just nine days before Big'K's first day of 10th grade. when 22 years ago, it was the Saturday before my first day of 10th grade. three days before to be exact. the sick feeling this morning when I wondered why everyone kept saying I was just 'off' this weekend, and not knowing the reason for it, until this morning at work seeing the date on the calendar. yep. that was the reason. that even though I consciously did not realize the date, my body did. that was the reason for being so 'off', because my heart always knows.
it is not that I have forgotten. you never forget something like that. it is just that with time, the pain changes. I do not know anymore if I believe that time heals. I have told other people, even told myself that it does. but I am no longer sure. I do not feel as if I have been healed. I do feel that I have changed. I do know that time will change things. I know that my mini-breakdown a couple years ago helped so much. such a strange statement to make. when I read those words on paper it does not make sense. but that breakdown...it definitely fixed something. changed something. healed something.
I know I was blessed to have the years that I had with her. I wish I would have paid more attention. and learned more. I wish I could be more like her. with the patience of a saint. the smile that could light up a room. fantastic baking skills. a mother like no other. and so so much more.
grief is like a continuous circle. you are constantly in one stage or another. sometimes you stay stuck in one. I was stuck in anger for a long time. unable to move past it and continue to grieve. that is so dangerous. and destructive. it took me 20 years to get out of it. but things have been so much better since I have. I have chilled in acceptance. every once in a while though, something will hit and boom the circle will start over. but that is ok. it helps. moving through the stages can help to change your grief. mold it into something you can live with. and I am there. moving. and living. and it is way better than where I was stuck for so long.
I know it will always hurt. I know it will always make me cry. but it will not hold me hostage.
I have changed.