Thursday, May 15, 2014

On Grief

My beloved Yiya passed away on April 25th.

She went peacefully in her sleep in the middle of the night. She was 90 years old and until she suffered congestive heart failure in February had been in good health. She had a very rapid decline in her health making her death somewhat unexpected (she was 90, death at 90 can't be too unexpected).

It's been a very surreal experience. We went to the funeral home and picked out prayer cards, a casket, flowers. We wrote her obituary. We had a wake. We had a funeral. We buried her.

She's gone, and this is what the new normal is and it's very weird.

I keep forgetting she's gone.

We went on vacation recently (let me tell you, having a loved one die right before vacation is some excellent timing), and while at the flea market there I found myself walking over to the tent advertising clip on earrings (Yiya never had pieced ears, and loved her clip on earrings which were strangely hard to find). My excitement quickly turned to tears when I remembered that no, I don't need to stop in at that tent and look at earrings because Yiya is gone.

When I was getting ready to go to my parents' house I almost called and asked if Yiya wanted me to bring her some leftover cookies we had in the house. Then I remembered she's gone.

I was going to call her to tell her something and then I remembered that I can't call her anymore.

It's been rough adjusting to this new normal.

Mother's Day especially was a hard time for me. My entire life I've celebrated and honored not only my mother but my Yiya on that day. It was a constant reminder that I'll never send her flowers, or buy her candy and a card, or go visit her again.. The whole day just sucked basically, and I spent most of it fighting tears. I didn't want to do any of our usual Mother's Day things. I didn't want to go out (having a crying fit at the zoo will really only get you strange looks), I didn't want to even acknowledge that it was Mother's Day, but I also knew that wasn't fair to my mom, my mother in law, and my grandmother in law. I toughed it out, but let's just say it will not go down in history as one of the best Mother's Days ever.

Life goes on, but grief strikes at the most random moments rendering you a sobbing mess. I was folding laundry last night when out of nowhere the tears came and I found myself having a cry-fest on the bedroom floor. I'll be in the car and boom, tears. Out running errands and I have to have a moment in the Target parking lot to get myself together because I cried most of the way there. It sneaks up and surprises me at the most random times.

The unexpected grief is the worst. I know certain things will be harder than others, and certain things will remind me that she's gone, but when I'm just doing my thing and it hits me and I lose it... That's the worst. You can't prepare for that. It's especially hard since I don't like crying in public, or around people. Hell, I don't like being emotional in front of people in general.

It's been rough.

I'm not sad for Yiya - I'm sad for me because I miss her. I know she had a long, full, happy life that almost anyone would enjoy but I'm sad that she's gone and that she's not part of my life anymore. I know it was her time, and I accept that but I'm still sad.

My Guys help. Not only do they bring me immense joy, but they keep me busy. I also have to try to keep it together for them - they don't like to see me cry and when I do they do their best to comfort me which really only breaks my heart more.

It's a process, and I know that in time it will get easier but right now it's hard and it sucks and I hate it.