My mom stopped breathing 102 days ago.
I had my first real cry today.
I don’t know why the tears didn’t come on June 13th, a little later, at her service, or even after that.
Sure, I welled up a couple of times. But no cry.
Tonight I went to bed, and the eulogy I wrote flooded my thoughts. I had to get up to read it, and it happened.
When a writer, an artist, a musician, or any kind of creative tells you, “I didn’t do that, the images come to me” or “the words, they come to me” or some such nonsense, it’s not nonsense; they’re not being modest. It’s what happens to us.
Even though I had been writing mom’s eulogy in my head for months before she took her last breath, I found myself struggling to find the words just days before her memorial service, then they spilled out.
They came to me, through me, by me, and, tonight, I understand, for me.
I shared the words to celebrate mom’s life, but they were always for me. And on this, the 102nd day since her death, I needed those words. And like the words, the tears, they came.
Writing is hard and magical. Grieving is hard and mysterious. Words and grief are also gifts.
I don’t pretend to understand how the words come or why the tears don’t. But I’m grateful for the gift of words that help me connect the dots, that light a path through, that heal and open me. And I’m grateful for the tears that wash me with remembrance, remind me of the importance that person…
I deleted “that I lost” from the last sentence, because those aren’t the words, and mom’s not lost. I know she’s with me and with others.
And that’s the miracle isn’t it? Something you did so many years ago will touch someone who is clueless, a stranger who never knew of you. A flower descended from seeds you planted with patient steady hands might brighten that stranger’s table, bring a smile to her child, push hope up through the soil of a broken heart.
©Pennie Nichols. All Rights Reserved. 2022
Grief sneaks up. Most of the good stuff I’e written has been about my mother after she died.
You write fabulous stuff so the posts about your mom must be amazing! I’ll look for some. Thanks for reading.