The clothes hanging over the edge of the laundry hamper in her closet were as she’d left them. I am wearing some of them now. The teal-coloured Haida long-sleeved t-shirt.
I love to wear something that was close to her body when she’d been alive and well. It’s a comfort. I have been doing that every day.
Mom, there is so much to do that it’s hard to make time to process anything, and for that I am somewhat grateful. Yesterday, for the first time, all the visitors having left, there was finally enough time and yet too much time, and I spent it trying to escape the terrible feeling of loss and regret.
Mainly, the constant re-realizing that here I am, in your house of dreams, where you’ve wanted me to be for so long, and yet you yourself are not physically here.
That we will not visit your favourite shops together, play the piano together, have coffee on the upstairs veranda together overlooking the sea. That we will not sit at the kitchen table together, me recording your story snippets — all that is gone forever, and can’t be regained. Any plans I had or have for that are useless now. What I have left is the dear folks left behind, and yet I’ve momentarily lost the urge to do anything meaningful, even as I realize how important meaningful life work is, now that you are suddenly gone.
I think on your life and all you achieved and it makes me amazed. I feel I’ve been terribly lazy by comparison. I know what you’d say in response to that, but your kindness and encouragement was so automatic and unconditional that I never took it seriously. And yet it was so much a part of my survival that I’d come to rely on it.
I knew I always had a friend and cheerleader in you.
I can’t stand the fact that you’re gone. Any philosophical resolve to accept it, any knowledge I have of how matter and energy work, that the concept of spirit persists in memory and emotions and all that, is useless to me in this moment.
I just wish you were here.
The hardest, and at the same time most beautiful thing, is that every line fits into a song you’ve sung, and your voice is everywhere in my head, along with your quick smile and your positive attitude.
I have to say that writing all this down helps a lot — and you helped give me that ability, too.
Dad got me my first diary and told me to document everything, but you gave me permission to do any creative act imperfectly. You understood that was the essence of creativity. And you imparted that to so many people. You changed the world for the better in that way.
It’s raining here today, and your sea view is still darkest grey… I sit in the soft rocking chair with my laptop, it’s the first time I’ve done my morning pages since arriving.
If I can do this every morning, I imagine myself surviving.
I feel like you are right here. This is the only time I’ve felt truly connected with you, and yet also accepting of my own true feelings, without burdening anyone else with them.
You knew me better than anyone and yet, in spite of that, you thought I was perfect as I was.
I find that feeling here again, now… in spite of all my terrible inadequacies.
The rain is ticking softly on your sloped ceilings, your house is warm and clean and just so much as you’d left it; your art everywhere, such a homey yet tidy place… it paints a picture of someone who loved and cared for things, and for life in general… but more than anything, it shows someone who loved the people in it, above all.
Love you mom.
Thanks for being here, now.
2020-01-31 07:07 PST
Friends… those were yesterday’s pages. Just wanted to say thanks for your support. Every kind word has been a gift and a comfort. Today is better than yesterday. Thanks in part to you.