It is spring. We recently celebrated the vernal equinox, the time of year of new beginnings, fresh sprouts and an abundance of green. Gary and I will be celebrating our first anniversary in a few days and our Pea's three month mark a few days after that. And today marks half a year that Mom has been gone.
She died on a day of balance, and here we are on the flip side. We survived some of the roughest firsts: Thanksgiving, the holiday season, her birthday. Dad's 60th was rough. Valentine's Day, too. We still have their anniversary, Ross and my birthdays and her favorite season Seattle to get through. And Mother's Day. I don't know how I will get through Mother's Day.
The day to day for me isn't hard. It's the moments in between. It's when I have a question about parenting, or want to share, or ask advice. It's shopping for Eliza's clothes. I haven't been able to bring myself to buy her clothes yet-that's the thing I always imagined us doing together. I have zero fashion sense and Mom would have dressed her so ridiculously perfectly.
Our Pea is growing and thriving. She still looks more like Mom's baby picture than anyone else. But she doesn't remind me of Mom. When I am in full on parenting mode, when she's awake, I don't think about anything else. But when we're walking and she's sleeping, I always want to call Mom. I used to call her all the time when I was walking somewhere. To buy lunch, to the train, to and from hockey. It's been a difficult habit to break. Eliza naps when I walk. I always want to fill the silence but I don't. I force myself not to call anyone. I just sit with the silence, looking at Eliza's sleeping body snuggled close to mine, checking every few minutes to make sure she's breathing.
I sometimes think that this was all a test, that now that I've realized what's important to me and my family, that I got to know my mother in a different way and I've made peace with some of my own demons, Mom can be alive. She can meet her grandchild and be part of our lives again. It doesn't seem possible that this really happened. Even now, six months later, I still can't quite believe it.