Inspired by the life lately photo dump style post. When you are grieving your life feels split into two. There is your life but there is the death, you live every experience in real time and then you play it back in your mind but with your missing person in it. There is your loss but what cuts deepest is the beautiful life that they are missing out on, you feel sorry for yourself but more so for them. Because my Mum was absolutely someone who suffered from FOMO. Never turned down an invitation, always popped in for a coffee and a catch up, always made the most of free time by going out on an adventure or throwing one of her famous ‘Miley Cyrus parties.’ And here she is not. Never got to give her lifts, I passed my driving exam after she had passed. One of my healing places has become my shit car, I drive and listen to Sugababes and Robbie Williams, imagining that she’s sat in the passenger seat, singing along with me or telling me a story I’d heard a million times before. I remember I would often cut her off and say “yeah you told me that already” – what I would do now to hear her waff on about her teenage antics or describe to me in great detail the contents of her lunch (another thing she used to do that I would roll my eyes at). My mum loved a list! She has left behind notebooks full of lists. The last poem I wrote her was a list poem, 10 things I love about you. I am so glad I had the cop on to face the fact that our last time together was precious and fleeting, prompting me to make double triple sure that she knew how much I loved her. We never talked about death, but we were both thinking it. Talk about death with your loved ones. If not you wind up questioning did you do theirs right. Let them waff on, treasure it, their most annoying habits weirdly convert into some of the things you miss the most. Somebody’s isms is what makes them, them. And true love is loving someone warts and all. My mum had a mighty temper! She effed and jeffed her way through all scenarios. She sometimes would ‘go mad’. Something I may have inherited bits of and have to work on, something she has began to work on in the last part of her life. Because don’t we have a way of glorifying the dead? My mum was epic but she wasn’t perfect, but the more time passes the more perfect to me she seems, because perfection is subjective, and without the isms she’s someone else. I get angry at certain things, things that make me question my own nature. Somebody saying an old person is doing so well, as if dying young is a failure. Someone saying “couldn’t live without you” to or about a loved one.. because we thought that, but when it happens, you just have to, you just somehow build your life without them, around the big gaping hole that they have left. You learn to get cosy with death, you have your morning cuppa with death and say, how the devil are you today? You live with it.
You feel like a fraud sometimes. Other times you have an amazing day out and don’t think of them till 5pm and then feel guilty for it. You have reoccurring dreams that it was all a big misunderstanding, of course she’s not dead you bloody idiot! You see her in everything, in the way your baby niece walks, in her isms. She’s in the sky, she’s on the radio, she’s in the passenger seat.
Sometimes that’s comforting, reading or receiving the ‘signs’ and other times you’re like fuck that, I only want actual you, the you that I can wrap my arms around your torso and rest my head upon the chest of, the you that will stroke my hair and tell me how brilliant I am.
Sometimes I am comforted by researching and exploring the idea of living many lives, daydreaming about what karma you have collected to take with you into the next, who or what you might be now. We did a few past life regression experiments in this life, in one apparently she was married to a man named Bere Wolf out collecting eggs in the village, we laughed about how boring it was. So sometimes I think I hope you’ve reincarnated as something absolutely fabulous but then other’s I think no, Helen Moody or nothing! She’s mine!
I’m here saying life is split into two for the grieving, but for a lot it’s split into two already, real life and life on social media. Sharing your grief online puts you in the firing line for mean spirited people to think you’re using it in some way. It is so personal, something that holds far too much value to be traded for likes. Yet when you don’t share it, those same mean spirited people will say “oh well she seems fine”. In the spirit of being my mOsT aUTHEntic SeLf I’m sharing this today, my grief, my life, lately.