Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Ups and Downs and Inside Out

Since my daughter's death, my moods and emotions have been so unpredictable.  But lately I've been experiencing more extreme ups and downs...feeling very protective and private of my thoughts and emotions one minute and then the next minute wanting to blurt out my deepest feelings to any old stranger on the street.  I'll see something that reminds me of my daughter and I fall to pieces, then the next minute the cat does something cute and I laugh hysterically--then I think about my daughter's two cats that she left behind and I'm sinking into a hole again.  It's really becoming extremely annoying to me.  Annoying isn't a good word here, because it's more than that.  It's leaving me feeling very vulnerable most of the time and unable to accomplish much of anything. Right now I have two people that I feel comfortable talking to but they live over 300 miles away, and only so much can be expressed in text and short blippets on the phone. I'm also struggling with just wanting to sleep all the time.  I feel like I'm doing worse now than right after the tragedy.  It's been 7 months.  Is that normal?  I'm thinking I should try to find a counselor to talk to or at least someone a bit more qualified than the 7-Eleven clerk.  I will have to look into it.  Maybe.  We'll see. 

I watched the movie the Village last night, again...for the 20th time in my life.  I flipped across it on tv and was taken in by the resemblance of the Ivy character to my daughter.  Not only were there physical similarities, with the exception that my daughter has...had blonde hair, but also the spirit of the character was so much like my Hillary.  She had this exuberance and fun-ness and also a stubborn determination.  She also had an innocence and an openness, acceptance, compassion, and love for others.  I had never noticed it so much before when I've seen the film but it mesmerized me and I couldn't help but see my daughter in that portrayal of Ivy.  I miss her so much and I know I don't only mourn her abscense but also the absence of what her life could have been.  I also can't help but see all the ways I've failed her and I wish so much I could make it up to her and love her better, do better for her and by her.  Protect her.  I'm her mother and I wasn't able to protect her from this.  I wasn't able to fill her up with enough love so that she would never consider taking her own life.  I feel the burden so heavily of being responsible.  I just want a chance to start over from the time she was little and love her unconditionally, extremely, to the deepest part of her person and nurture her more completely so she would never need the approval of anyone, any guy, any thing, any person in order to feel whole.  But I can't.  I had my chance and it's gone...with her.  But, I do realize that I have an opportunity for those things with the children I still have with me on this earth.  Even though they're no longer little, I can still love them extremely.  I can still express how wonderful I think they are and how proud I am of them, and how I will be there for them no matter what.  I can still talk to them with love in my eyes and a smile on my face.  I remember when I was young and I would try to talk to my dad about something, (my parents were divorced and I grew up with my dad) he would look at me, not paying attention to what I was saying, but focusing on something else about me with a disapproving look on his face - and then he would start talking; I'm thinking he's going to comment on what I said, but no...it would usually be something like, "You're teeth are yellow.  Did you brush your teeth?"  "You're not wearing that outfit, are you?"  "You have too much make-up on, you look cheap."  Ugh, yechh.  Too many negative memories starting to flood back that I've worked so hard over the years to release.  I don't talk to my kids like that, but I haven't been perfect.  Obviously.

I need to work through this so I can think of my daughter and have it accompanied by only positive thoughts about her and not pull me into a tailspin.  I want to be available to my living children, fully present.  I want them to know that even though I grieve their sister with just about every cell in my body and every part of my being, that they are still important and worthy of my attention, my focus, my effort, my thoughts, my love.   It's difficult to do consistently because I'm such a mess right now.

I want to think positively so I can face my days with some amount of strength.  I know I can't continue to beat myself up and expect to move forward.  I was thinking yesterday the most positive thought I could about myself right now and it was this...at least I'm not drinking myself into oblivion or consuming meds to take away the pain.  And then my heart was so heavy for all those people out there - people I don't even know..."possible" people who have suffered some kind of tragedy who are doing just that...self-medicating to cope with the aches and regrets and unbearable heartache.  I wish I could reach through the dark clouds and into your life and pull you out and say, "Let's hold on together, let's cry together, sob, weep, scream, yell, laugh, talk, sit...be quiet together.  Feel each others' presence and not expect anything from each other.  Just be, and let that be enough. 


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