This is my 100th post. A landmark worth noting, don’t you think? I started this blog 17 months ago, in the trenches of my mother’s illness. I barely knew which end was up, but I knew that writing felt good. So I wrote.
Things have changed a lot in 17 months, which is how long my mom survived after she was diagnosed with lymphoma. Early writings reflected the struggle to find balance during the stresses of caregiving, and the fears of a daughter who also was an oncology nurse. Who knew too much. Now, I write to help me navigate through grief. To help me understand the new world that I inhabit. The world without my mother.
I’m only now beginning to unravel just how my life is different since her death. Its a little bit like returning home after many months away in a foreign land. Nothing has changed: the coffee cup is where it was left in the sink, the shoes lined up just so in the closet. But somehow, everything is new, while simultaneously familiar. Changed, yet the same. I’m a different person having gone through my loss, and yet in some ways, I am more me than ever.
This blog has connected me with family that I lost touch with, and old friends of my mom that I have never met. Those that understand what it is to say goodbye, to walk away, to let go. To smile through the tears. To see beauty in everything, even heartbreak. I thank my inspiring and faithful readers, who don’t squeeze their eyes shut when I spill my guts about my dead mother and my bottomless grief. Who say not “get over it!” but “I understand.” You have made a difference in my life, and thank you for walking through this with me. I don’t always respond to every thoughtful comment as I should, but know I appreciate your time, your feedback, and your willingness to read my words and take them to heart.
Tomorrow is Mom’s birthday. I felt two breaths away from crazy last week, but now I am calm. Who knows what tomorrow will bring? No matter what, I know I can write about it.