Time and autumn
My mom and I went hiking yesterday to Snow Lake near Snoqualamie Pass. Sylvia was there in the last wildflowers of summer.
Sylvia was born in August and it is now September. Which means I could now say my daughter died last month. Fall is rolling in, my favorite season, but she was born more in the summer. So she died in a different season. My birthday is coming up, but she died when I was 29, not 30. Time is moving on even though I feel completely paralyzed, trying to hold on to the ‘nearness’ of her being here…last month, last season, last year. Time is different now for us. It moves painfully, shockingly slow. I have never seen a new mom post pictures with a caption of, ‘Wow my baby is 3 months old! This has been the longest 3 months of my life! Time has just drug by!’ It is usually the complete opposite with begs and pleads for time to slow down and their baby to stay a baby forever, to stop growing and to preserve moments. Time flies for them. I always get the idea that if you ask a mom about the concept of time in relation to their growing children, their answer would be relating it to a fast forward, but only in hind sight. One day they look at their toddler…and realize they have a toddler.
Our time is slow. My days drag, weeks take forever and this five weeks has been the longest of my life. It’s only been five weeks. I keep having to remind myself. Five weeks. Five weeks. Five. Weeks. I mentioned in an earlier post that I related our lives after Sylvia’s death to being diagnosed with a terminal illness. This terminal illness, however, allows you to live as long as you normally would, but everything you do, for every second of your day, you will be thinking about it, you will be consumed by it, you will grieve about it, you will fear it, you will have flash backs that debilitate you and you will feel an emptiness that is unimaginable. You can function, but only on a level that the chaos and sadness that is constantly pounding in your head allows. But! You also will remember the happiness, cling to the memories and pray you can find joy again. Your lows are to a depth that only those with the same diagnosis can relate and your highs will never be as high, or not without pangs of sadness. But this disease won’t kill you, it just is there, exhausting you mentally, physically and emotionally. Every, single, second until you die, just as you normally would have, except you are not the same.
That is the closest I can come in a feeble writing attempt to create an analogy of life after your child dies.
I have come up with lots of analogies, attempts at an explanation of my thoughts and emotions that I thought originally were to help others understand. I realize now that these comparisons, metaphors and phrases are really just to try and help my very analytical brain understand what still seems totally and completely unreal. I keep talking and stumbling and processing and crumbling and writing and crying to create some connection in my head that this is my life, for the rest of my life. It has been five weeks. I will live the rest of my life like this. As I have quoted before, this pain is not a burden. Perhaps hourly I thank Sylvia for her life, her love and her legacy. We are so thankful, grateful and honored to be her parents.
It’s fall now, little girl. You would have loved it.