Mother’s Day 2019

All the complaining across the years returns to haunt the impatient daughter.

Nine weeks, three days, just over two hours.

No graveside tears were shed, no cards sent to surrogates.

Tears confined by four walls and shame. Am supposed to be stronger than this. Should be able to “sit with sorrow” or ask for help.

Death of a parent is universal, just breathe. It gets better. Kind people acting with caring.

I Don’t Want to Feel This Way. Emotions careen wildly through hurt and loss. The whimpering woman huddled there, can’t be me. Not again. Heart heaving. Gasping, breathless. Shivering in sorrow. Visceral responses.

Scarred but resilient.

Wish I could craft lovely prose to honor my mother and the magnitude of loss, but no. Think my way out? Do the work? Resolve it all now?

Not an option. Neither formula nor framework repair the cleaving. Only Chronos will bring relief.

The dogwood did not bloom this year, least not that I could see.

It stands outside my window with just its leaves of green.

The world still seems askew, limping ’round the sun. Months have passed; the loss of mom unabated.

The dogwood did not bloom this year, perhaps next year it will.

2:30 a.m.

Dogs asleep. Chihuahua snores. Protests from an aging refrigerator.

Can’t breathe.

Sad. Mother’s Day looming. Sorrow, so much sorrow. They – mother, grandmother, dear friends- walked in my dreams last night. Doing everyday things, never seeing me.

Conflicted. Logic versus longing. Do we truly learn and refine our behaviors? Am I a fool to believe? Yet, if I speak truth to one who questions, is it hypocrisy to disbelieve their words? Circle yes if you love me, as is?

Exhausted. Death of young and old, long past and recent. Damaged belief in ability to discern authentic versus fabricated. Aftermath of frantic late night workout to meet daily goals.

Charmed. Despite insecurities, past actions, and logic. Wouldn’t life be less messy alone, more orderly and predictable? Perhaps. Of course order has never been my priority. Life’s messy exuberance enthralls me.

This Moment. What is wanted? What is needed?

Must Remember: Need versus want. Sleep.

Twenty Moons

First disbelief, and hurt.

Rage joined and stayed, stoked by another.

                                                                                                            Why did you stop loving me?
Was anything real?
You were my happily ever after and I was nothing to you?


Resignation and despair: happiness existed only in fairy tales.


Do you even notice I’m gone?
Do you miss me?
Did you see the moon tonight?

Moons pass.

Abandoned heart surrendered to ego – flattery and attention

Even then denying forever.

Actively refuting “in love.”

Ashamed that ego overruled heart and mind.

                                                                                                                            Where are you?                                                              I so want to call. I can’t call.

It’s not fair, to ask for help from you.

Mom’s sick, and I feel so alone.

What if you don’t answer? What if you do answer, and it’s just sympathy, but you don’t really care?

What if you have someone else who is your happy ever after, since it wasn’t me after all? What if?  


Constant battling and badgering. Checked – out, shutting down, emotional reserves depleted.

Eighteen moons.


Tenuous connection disintegrates entirely; Just Leave Me Alone.

Mourning death.

That Name in messages.

                                                                                                                          Surprised, grateful. Mustn’t admit the longing, casual questions
(probably not) questions to mutual friends,
the aching void of these past eighteen moons.
Perhaps just being polite and gracious.


Nineteen moons.

In Person.

Hugs and conversation, one topic rolling into another.

Laughter, that smile.

A touch.

Don’t be a dolt and embarrass yourself.
Cool is Not in your vocab, eh?
Breathe. Just be.  Passion stirs.
No. Must stop.

                                                                                                                                Lessons learned? What is essential?
Love. Autonomy. Fidelity. Honesty. Passion.
Can these co-exist? Can I trust?
Can I risk losing again?
Am I strong enough?

Twenty moons.

I wonder.                                                                                                         

Easter Sunday 2019

This is my first Easter with no familial obligations. No parents to call or visit. Folks checked in; others invited me to Easter brunch/ lunch/ dinner. I couldn’t do the so-sorry-how-are-you things.

Struggle with the sympathy invite. Think it’s meant to be nice, but I hear “Never asked you over before but heh, pretty pathetic you’ve no family and have nobody, wanna come to my place? It’s been almost two months, you need to pull yourself together.”

Amidst all the holiday noise and angst (real and imagined, I admit), someone unexpectedly invited me to breakfast. Breakfast turned into a day – filled with laughter and tears, comfort and caring.

I don’t know if the timing was purposeful Or serendipitous. If words said were real or fleeting. I don’t know much. But I do know I am grateful that today, for a few hours, grief was set aside and my heart stopped hurting.

Riding the Wake

Kayaking – peaceful, often solitary. Paddling, appreciating nature when SUDDENLY a powerboat screams past, assaulting the quiet, spewing a huge rollicking wake. Fight it, tense and angry? Breathe, and paddle into it head-on?

Yesterday, I fought – clenched, tight, outraged – emotion roiled a tenuous calm. Resenting these new roles, and responsibilities. Aching with loss. Disappointed with my inability to navigate new waters without losing control.

“Point the front into the wake” – words from a lifetime ago. Took a while to do – to face the turbulence, to admit being overwhelmed, to give voice to grief, to risk the exposure. Different voices, similar messages. Still upright.

So, today, I paddle into the emotion – rolling with heartache, remembering joy. Feeling the wind, seeing beauty. Reaching inward to the person I aspire to be. And so very grateful.

Riding the wake, eyes to the sky.

Six Weeks, Four Hours

He’s a lumbering sort of fellow, slightly hunched, always tense.

During the last six weeks, we’ve spent more time together than the previous 10 years, including around our father’s death.

Two consecutive evenings, he has found his way here. Finally comfortable, he settles into the recliner, raids the chocolate stash, and waxes philosophical on topics from his profession and mine.

Neither of us stated the date or time, but he seemed to linger until a bit after 8:36. As if we could stop her death from being real.

In six weeks since That Night, two more have died, one has gone into hospice for pancreatic cancer, and still another abandoned all hope for freedom at a newly delivered death sentence. Just in my little world.

Trying really hard to breathe, to will my heart to slow and heal.

Six weeks and four hours.

The Quiet

Infinite iterations of Quiet enshroud the night – comforting, suffocating, pondering.

Whispering winds through new spring growth, whirring of the refrigerator celebrating a sparkling kitchen, soft, steady breathing of a wee chihuahua.

Unspoken disappointment and anger, universe of silent electronics, fear.

Questioning, grieving, dreaming.

The Quiet provides respite from Busy, Important Things.

In the quiet, Grief expands and contracts – feeling Loss, Gratitude, Unfinished.

And tonight, wondering when Quiet will be my Always.