Saturday, June 08, 2013

The New New Years

Today is mom's "Death Day."

Ah, so much. So so so much.

The days leading up to today have been strange, it's been looming in front of me. In a way there was even some anticipation. I've had a lot of thoughts and I've been waiting until today to write them down in this post and ... I don't know what I thought. But today I woke up early and went for a run by the lake, which oddly enough, I never do. It was so beautiful this morning. I felt okay. I thought today would be about peace and mindfulness and quiet.

And then I got home and I felt anxious and tight and sad, so, I'll sit with that.

I feel like June 8 is my New Years. I've mentioned before, I don't live much in the past. I forget it easily and do not dwell on it at all. But a year ago today I will always remember. Clearly. It's my new touchstone. This is the new control group, my new jumping off point.

So in my assessment of my new year:

I feel like it's been really quiet. Like I've been really quiet. There is no doubt that my social life is different. There were friends I had one year ago today that are not really my friends anymore - that's a very strange thing. I am not nearly so social as I was. For the past few months this scared me. I've been "worried" about me. But then I was listening to a Dharma podcast and she mentioned that even just practicing Buddhism can make you much quieter. I took comfort in that, maybe it's not just grief that made me quieter, but introspection too.

In all honesty, it has been anything but a quiet year. We went to Morocco, John quit his job and made a major life change, my business has continued to grow, I've been running and reading and walking, meditating, Sweetie Maude, everything. Every. Thing.

I am absolutely terrified. I was not an anxious or scared person before mom's death. Even when she had her stroke, that was okay with me. But now, oh my god I'm so scared. I'm so scared the anvil and the shoe and the sword of Damocles are all going to fall at once. And when they do, it's over for me. Now this fear can take all kinds of forms - John getting sick, me getting sick or hurt, money, old age, not having enough money to last eight years in a home like mom did, being stuck in some city home, losing my of things I was always so proud of was that I really felt like no matter what happened, I could handle it. The universe and I were on solid ground. I still believe that, AS LONG AS I still have my mobility and my brain. As long as I have those two things I will be fine. As soon as I lose one, it's all over. And I am so so so scared and I think about it and worry about it way too much.

The flipside of this is I've been putting a lot of pressure on myself TO LIVE EVERY DAY TO THE FULLEST. Don't waste time! You should be doing something MEMORABLE RIGHT NOW. Balance I guess.

What I get most nostalgic for, what I miss in a very vague way, is being taken care of. Not even that, but being able to be taken care of. That there was someone who would always be there, always for me. Someone watching more closely than anyone else. I feel a little floaty, less rooted. I want it to feel like freedom and it feels like loneliness.

There is nothing like your mom dying. Nothing. Everything else is behind it, there is nothing that will ever affect me like this. There was a scene in Mad Men when Sterling said of his mother's death "I thank her for giving me the last new experience I will ever have." And I understand that. There's nothing after this. I'm already married, there are no children. No other death will be like this one. I've mentioned before there's some relief in that statement, I'm so glad I don't have to do it again.

Anyway. I wish I could come on here and speak beautifully and wisely and Buddhistly about the death of my mother, but in some ways it's harder now than it was a year ago. Now it all rises to the top, everything in the past 43 years of my life seeps back in, day by day. It's not just the sudden grief, but it's like...the long grief. Like the long con. Some days I see the beauty but most days it feels like a subtle pressure in my forehead.

To my new new years, let's see where the next year takes me. I will work on less fear, finding some sense of safety and peacefulness and continuing to be grateful for each and every day my feet and brain work.

Miss you mom.


Erica said...

Oh, lovely.
I am glad you wrote this. Thank you for sharing this with us.

You are doing beautifully. Keep being you. Cause you is what is right. In every way, whatever it is.

When we get old we will have each other. I/we won't let you fall.

Remember to breathe. And know that even the days that don't feel epic are, because they are YOURS.

Your mom would be so proud.

I love you.

Hixx said...

Thank you my friend!

I want chocolate.

Melisa said...

I'm glad you wrote about this. I'm thinking about you even though I'm two days late reading. xoxo

Erica said...

Let's get some chocolate.

Hixx said...

Aw thanks you guys!