(The post below was written on April 18, 2020. My mom passed on April 4, 2020.)
I’m still here.
I’m still struggling.
I cannot believe it’s already been two weeks since my mom passed away.
I planned on waking up so I could stare at my phone at 7:01 this morning to honor the moment my dad called me with the news two weeks ago today, but I slept in and missed it. I’m a little annoyed with myself, but I know I needed the sleep.
On Thursday I took my dogs down to my parents’ house to visit my dad. He had gone out to the store and wasn’t back yet when we got there. When I pulled into the empty driveway and saw that the house was all closed up and locked up, I took pause.
For the past several years, there has always been someone’s car in the driveway when I pulled up. If my dad wasn’t home, someone was always there with my mom. The garage door was always open. Someone was always home.
It was the first time in many years that I had to use a key to get into their house.
I walked into the empty house and immediately took note of the silence. Such a strange sound to hear in their house. I also noticed all the lights were off. A strange thing to see in their house.
No one was home. No one was coming. I felt an emptiness unlike anything I’ve ever felt before.
I walked into the front living room, the room that became my parents’ bedroom over two years ago. The empty space where her bed used to be breaks my heart every time.
I pictured myself sitting next to her as she slept in her bed, listening to music and holding her hand. So many hours spent doing just that.
I wonder how many hours I spent staring at the beautiful Thomas Kinkade painting that hung above her bed. How many hours I spent sitting in that chair in the corner, trying desperately to move it closer to her bed because I never felt like I was close enough to her. How many hours I spent kneeling at her bedside on cushions I would stack on the floor, kneeling there like that until my feet and legs fell asleep and I could barely get myself to stand up.
I would stay there for hours, often forgetting to eat or drink anything until I was reminded by a headache, lightheadedness, or my stomach growling. Time stood still, but it also went by too fast.
I just wanted to make sure she knew she wasn’t alone. I wanted her to know I was by her side. I wasn’t going to let her go through this alone.
All in the name of love.
Because that’s what you do when you love someone.
I grieve so hard because I loved so hard.
Because I still love so hard.
And honestly, I would do it all over again.
Anything for my mom.