Lots of people ask how I'm doing in dealing with my mom's death. Most of the time I can say "I'm fine" or "About like you'd expect." And when I do I can keep it together and hardly feel the weight of the grief. I'm good at compartmentalizing and at deflecting. It's a practiced art. But sometimes I'm forced to name it outloud. I'll be sharing with someone who doesn't know and I'll have to say it. Actaully say it.
"My mom died this summer."
And that's when it's hard. That's when it's really real and I can't just gloss over it and pretend I'll be able to call her up tomorrow. And I hate it. I hate to say it because then the wall that holds all those emotions at bay cracks wide open and there they are in all their teary snotty splendor.
And yet as much as I hate it, I know it's important and necessary and good. ..it's a part of the grief. And my reality, our reality, is she's gone. She's not with us. She's not there for advice, or support, or encouragement. And I hate that even more than I hate saying it.