Change and time. Both consistent. Forward motion happens, even if we want to stand still. Or feel like we are. Much like life and death. They happen and we are swept along with them. Whether we want to be or not. Last week, a family friend died. She was only a few years older than my mother. That’s a little close to home, friends. A little too real. This friend also happened to be the mother of a classmate, which made it easy to slide myself into that scenario. I went to the service. I sat with my mother, living and breathing. I was grateful for those breaths. Since we had to go through a funeral for our son, Sean and I have talked about the fact that when other people die we are somewhat numb to it. That our former overwhelming emotions seemed to be tamped down. It makes me feel unlike myself. Yet another thing that is different. That has changed. I understand why. Because somehow, the sorrow will never be as much. The sadness will never be as strong. And I suppose, that is the side affect of death when you are the one left behind. If you let yourself, you become comfortable with it. Not necessarily happy that it is there, but aware that it is and able to walk with it as your companion. I think sometimes that it makes me come across as unfeeling. And I don’t mean to be. But I think it’s what I’ve got to give, after. Most of my grieving has been done. Or continues to be done as we move along. On the other hand, I sometimes find myself driving to work or standing in the shower unable to stop the sobs. Big, gulping tears that seem to come out of the blue, spurred on by nothing obvious. They don’t happen because of something that has happened. They are not the result of a song or a smell or a memory. Meaning, I have moved from the constant state of heavy grief into the new excitement of what I call “grief bombs”. They just kind of blow up. Not on anniversary dates. Not because I am going to a funeral. Just because it is Tuesday and apparently that seemed like a good day. I go to visit Bennie’s grave and rub the stone and say hello and I love you and I miss you. Nary a tear. I watch a sappy movie, nothing. But I get up to move forward for the day and WHAM. Grief. Tricky, sneaky bastard. But, that is I suppose the new consistency of my life…the change at this time that needs to happen for reasons I cannot understand. As I don’t understand many things. Nor do I need to. Nor do I have to. Not my job. I just have to move, one foot in front of the other, and if on some days I can’t do that, that’s OK too. Do I like it? Not particularly. Don’t have to. Am I fortunate to have a little one who helps to ease it, or if she sees me crying, cries with me? Yes, I am. Do I hate the fact that she’s going to have to know from the time she can understand that death is not selective, it comes to all ages? Yes, I do. But, again, can I control it? Nope. Do I want to? Sure. However, I can control how often I tell her I love her. And on days when change and time happen at alarming rates, I can hold on to her giggles and her smiles and her cuddles and the sweet way she flops onto my chest when she’s tired. And I can smile. Which really, is pretty phenomenal. I wasn’t sure that would happen again.


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