9 months, 3 weeks
I started this post a few days ago when I was doing "ok". I had it halfway composed, giving a brief history of how the first days, weeks, months felt as a way of comparing that to where I am right now. Then, I slid down the slippery slope of grief, back to a place of "not ok".
That's where I am right now, in the land of "not ok". Tears, sadness, hurt. I was doing better a few days ago, damn it. I was able to look back and see how far I've come. I was thinking "it's nice to go days, even a week or two without crying". Then, BAM, here come the tears, the tightness in the throat, the weight in the chest. The unbelievable longing for Brianna. For her to be here with me, in my aching arms, to snuggle, to kiss. God, how I miss her.
I know what triggered the slide down this time. But knowing that doesn't make it hurt any less. That's how the grief goes these days. I'm more aware of the triggers. I can step outside of it and analyze it and figure it out. But, at it's core, it still hurts. It always will. But at almost 10 months, I also know that the "down" days won't last forever. I know there will be "up" days. I also know the "up" days can't be forced. Happiness, laughter, smiles will return, but in their own time. And there will still be tears and pain and heartache. Here, in this new "after" life, I've learned that happiness and sorrow, laughter and tears, smiles and heartache can co-exist. You can have all at the same time. Life is now a constant contradiction because Brianna will always be both present and absent from my life.
The other day, while I was in the shower, I was giving this post a lot of thought. I had just read Angie's post and was contemplating just where I was in my grief and my life so that I could contribute to this project. It just felt so important to put it out there, for others who will come behind me and maybe find some similarities in their journey when they get to 9 months, 3 weeks. To know they are not alone. As I typically do on a Saturday, while I was showering, I had music on in the background. Right as I was contemplating this post, "Ordinary World" by Duran Duran came on and I caught the lyrics. Even though the song is about a lost love between adults, all I heard was the lost love. As someone put it on a blog I frequent (sorry, I can't remember just which one), every love song is now about my baby. The chorus to "Ordinary World" summarizes how I feel lately.
"But I won't cry for yesterday
There's an ordinary world
Somewhere I have to find
And as I try to make my way
To the ordinary world
I will learn to survive"
I know that somewhere out there is my new ordinary world and I will keep searching for it. And on my way, I will find a way to survive. And I hope that one day, I'll find that I'm doing more than surviving. I hope to one day look around and realize that I'm thriving. But, today, right where I am is still a mixture of emotions, good and bad. It's messy. It's a lot better than it was months ago. But, it still hurts. I still miss her. I still want her here with me.