This post is garbled in my head, so there’s not much hope for the written version. Have been thinking about pictures – the capturing of moments, and how precious that is. And the title of this post… it’s a nod to The Cure, who will be playing in Charlotte without Sue and me… makes me sad. Love that song.
Bobby and I had an appointment with Dr Jerry this evening – the first since my “retirement.”
We talked about my quitting – I told him how I have more clarity, my thoughts are clearer and more identifiable. That the all-too-familiar panicky, overwhelmed feeling has been replaced with one of contentment. Bobby concurred – told Dr J that I seemed like a burden had been lifted off, that I acted more like myself than I have in a long, long time.
Last night, I looked through old pictures, when everything was much simpler. It’s the first time I’ve been able to look at old pictures without feeling stabbing, debilitating pain. Dr J says that the fact that I want to watch home videos of happier times is a sign of acceptance… that I’m finally beginning to open myself up to remembering prior to 2004, before breast cancer reared its ugly head.
This is what people are talking about when they say the “memories grow sweeter with time,” I guess? I have detested that saying… seems like nothing but a trite, meaningless platitude. But I’m realizing that there’s some truth in it (as is probably the case with most trite platitudes). The pain is still present – it’ll never leave – but warmth of the memories is beginning to overshadow the giant wave of loss that I feel every time I see a picture of our mama.
When our lives screech to a halt, we have a choice. We can A) figure out how to live, or swim, again; or B) stop living (either physically, emotionally, or both) and sink straight to the bottom.
During the weeks and months immediately following Sept 17th, I chose to live and swim (figuratively speaking of course… I’m terrified of water and would promptly drown in real life). I had to. Mama is too deeply ingrained in me to allow giving up, although I seriously considered the ramifications of sinking to the bottom. Mama was the most stubborn, determined, courageous woman I’ve ever known. She never gave up, she never stopped fighting. If I stopped fighting as a result of her death, it would be a dishonor to her legacy.
And another random little blurb:
Dr Jerry said something interesting this evening, in light of my recent analysis of relationships… “The people in our lives either raise us up or pull us down.” Hmmmm….
Here are a few favorites – I love them, and they’ve been kept hidden for long enough.
And one of my very favorites…. Mama watching the Everglades go by. Her smile was content, peaceful – this is the picture that I always tried to bring to mind when the horror film was playing in my head during those first few months. This is my Mama. This is how I want to remember her.