Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Nothing. Everything. Nothing.

There's a line in the movie "Home For the Holidays" where the main character's daughter asks her what's wrong. She says, "Nothing. Everything. Nothing. I had a not so good day today, honey." Just before that, as she got into her car after being fired, the song, "That's Life" came on the radio. She sat there for a moment in utter disbelief and sort of just existed.

At this terribly precise moment it has been 366 days, 7 hours and 37 minutes since I heard the words, "I'm sorry to tell you this, but your mom has passed." I can distinctly picture the place in the driveway, at the exposed tree root and the gravel, where I fell down, breathless and wailing at the same time. I can still feel the grief, shock, and pain take turns squeezing my chest and my throat making it nearly impossible to breathe.

It isn't unusual - the passing of friends and family members. People die all day long, every single day. But when you learn that their death was caused by suicide, the maddening culmination of mental illness and depression, it changes things. It changes everything. It changes nothing. It changes everything.

The last words I heard from my mother were, "I love you!" And my last words to her were the same. There are days when I can remember her face so vividly it is as if we are eye to eye and heart to heart in the same room. And when the fog of grief is heavy - I can scarcely see the shape of her stunningly beautiful face - she is but a wisp, iridescent pink and white, of my heart's imagination.

Heart trumps logic in grief, this I know for certain. Every hour of every day I can tell you, intellectually, that she is gone, there is nothing that can be done about it, and that someday the sharp, icy edge of grief will be softer. But the heart rails against all logic and intellectualism. The heart sees nothing beneficial in being realistic. And just about every hour of every day I am acutely aware that she is gone.

She would have turned 60 on July 15 of 2016. She wrote in her planner on that date, "60th Birthday OMG!!"

To be continued.....