The seasons are different in New York. The two and a half weeks that I spent in Seattle were truly the turning of summer to autumn: the trees had a bit more scarlet every day that I spent there. I literally watched the green be eclipsed. Back home, the change hasn't started, or at least hasn't gotten as far. I don't know what makes the leaves turn when they do, but it does feel a little like going back in time. Scheduling a client this morning, I was shocked to see that it's October. October. How did this happen?
A friend from childhood re-posted a blog link on his facebook page, letting "friends" of his who aren't "friends" of mine know about Mom. He said she passed away after a long battle with breast cancer. I have been mulling this over, this sense of time. And talking with Dad this evening, he mentioned it, too. The perception of time is interesting. It was a long battle. It was the blink of an eye. Dad said today that sometimes it feels as though one hundred years have passed since he grocery shopped, cooked dinner and was home on the couch. And sometimes it's completely unimaginable how quickly everything happened. That less than a year ago Mom was vibrant, riding her bike, enjoying the fall colors, anticipating the possibility that Gary and I would get engaged (oh, yeah, it hasn't been a year since that milestone, either). I don't know if this is some riff on the Theory of Relativity, or if it's akin to the parenting mantra that "the days are long but the years are short" or if this is just human nature to forget how painful the pain is so that we can go on living, but I suspect that it's a function of grief and loss.
My dreams of Mom have shifted in the past couple of days. I had been dreaming of her as she was, sick and incapacitated in some way. But last night, I dreamt that she was her whole, healthy self. Her hair was long, she could see, she was sitting upright, unassisted and we were just having a conversation, but she was very sad. I hope that these continue to evolve and, in time, she will appear in my dreams as I hope to remember her most: joyful, active and enjoying herself. Loving life as she always did.