“At first an ordeal and then an accomplishment, the daily run becomes a staple, like bread, or wine, a fine marriage, or air. It is also a free pass to friendship.”
~ Benjamin Cheever, Strides

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Not Okay

I apologize in advance - but the mood in this post is not going to be an upper.  Here's a really funny Avery picture to make up for it.
Let's get those clothes off of you.
A lot of my friends check in with me from time to time to see how I am doing since my mom died.  I usually just say "I'm okay." It's quick, easy and doesn't require any real response.  As long as I am busy and not left alone too long, I generally am OK.  I guess you could say that I've been dealing by NOT dealing.

Last night was one of those night that makes you pay for not dealing.

I wish I could go back in time, back to the days when I still thought my mom walked on water, where we spoke on the phone almost every day.  Back before  the end of college, when my mom made it to my graduation because we flew her in.  Back before, I realized that my mom wasn't really good at calling me.  Back before my mom only made it to my wedding because Mark and I paid to fly her, my stepdad and my half brother in.  Back before my sister died and all the things I realized in that aftermath.

My mom was so much fun when you were with her in person, but if you lived part way across the country as I did these recent years, not so much.  One of the things my Dad has told me often in the last couple weeks was to remember the good times.  But, remembering the good times HURTS so much more.  When I remember the bad things, I can just be mad at her and not her so damn much.

The good times.  Back when I was little and we walked in the park near her apartment back in Houston.  We stopped at EVERY clover patch looking for that elusive 4-leaf clover.  Later, in NJ, the Dunkin Donuts trips after her paper route where we indulged in delicious Bavarian creme donuts.  The many times when we visited the Jersey shore and played every game and ate every bad-for-you food on the boardwalk.  The sand castle I bought on one of those trips to the Jersey shore still sits in my bath room, a reminder of the good times...and I can't stand to look at it.

My mom HATED having her picture taken.  I was trying to find pictures of her in digital form after she died, and I really don't have many.  It's horrifying and makes me think that I was a horrible daughter that I don't have enough pictures or good memories in recent years.

And then, to top off the daughter of the year award - one of my self-pitying thoughts last night was about how my first mother's day with Avery will be overshadowed by the fact that it will be my first mother's day without my Mom.  

My husband went out to the store last night when I said a giant piece of cake or a cupcake would help me feel better...and he brought home a GIANT cupcake.  It did help a bit.
It's so big, I could only eat half of it.
So, the fact is, I miss the mom I had when I was little and didn't know any better...and I miss the relationship I could have had with my mom.  I grieve that reconciliation is no longer possible.  I regret the lost time more than I can say...and that more than anything makes me cry EVERY time I think about it.

For anyone that made it through this complete sobfest, thank you for listening, I'm sorry to be such a downer.  I will make up for it with another cute Avery picture....
In my dreams, I'm a ninja.
Thank you so much to all my friends and family that are there to support me, whether I show how much I need it or not.


  1. Tears are in my eyes. You are going through very similar things to what I went through when my dad died. Little things made me cry - like the pet rock he got for Christmas one year that he thought was so awesome. Like the sky being blue & it was a perfect flying day. And then the reality of who he wasn't was there too. It made for a very tough grief process for me. All of the things he wasn't faded away eventually & I just remember the times we had. Please let yourself go through this process - it will be better for all 3 of you in the long run.

    And that man of yours is a keeper! :)

  2. Mandy--I would be worried about you if you WERE ok right now. This is an uphill battle and believe me, doesn't ever feel easy, at least for me. Good days and bad, memories and regrets. It is what it is. Just know, it's OK to be sad & mad & regretful. Your feelings are valid, after all, you are the ONLY person to know what this feels like. I lost my Mom too, it suck balls. I have no doubt in my mind that your Mom was proud of you. <3 you girlie!

  3. Love you, Mandy! I've never experienced the loss of a parent so I can't even imagine how much that would hurt. I think it's normal to grieve the loss of what was and what could have been. Give yourself time...as much time as you need. Everyone grieves in different ways and that's okay. I'm here if you need me!

  4. My thoughts and prayers are with you at what I know to be a very difficult time. I am sorry you are hurting. The positive things/times you remember with your Mom will live on through you and the memories you share with your daughter.

    You are doing the best YOU can in YOUR situation, don't ever let anyone tell you differently.

    Thinking of you.

  5. Dear Mandy, I am *so* sorry and my heart goes out to you! Please feel free to call or text anytime! Sincerely, Lynne

  6. Oh, definitely no need to apologize! Writing is great therapy, and I'm impressed that you're able and willing to put some much of what you're feeling into words. I am sure this will be difficult for a long time, but am glad that you have lots of support around you, especially your sweet husband. Love that he brought you a cupcake. Tears are good!

  7. This post was making me sad, but then NINJA BABY and then I laughed. :)

  8. Mandy, I'm sorry I'm seeing this three days too late! I hope you're feeling better today, but I realize the sadness will come and go. If it's any comfort, I am sending you many virtual cupcakes and good thoughts, and I will heed the advice implicit in what you write and call some family members I don't speak to often enough. Strength and courage coming your way!


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