My grief makes me feel like I’m two people; a Jekyll and Hyde situation. I long to be the person I was before…there’s that word again, “before”. I remember myself very well, and I feel like some of me is still here, but some of me is gone. It left so abruptly, I’m still adjusting to its absence. This new normal, this journey of grief is in the driver’s seat for now and I’m just along for the ride. I want to do things I used to do, but there’s grief saying, “Whoa, hold your horses. You’re not ready for that just yet.” How can I not be overjoyed for the birth of my best friend’s baby? How can I not be there at the hospital with her? How can I not want to see, hold, smell, and kiss that new little one? Easy. It makes me feel like to worst, most horrible person in the world for not wanting to do those things, but lucky for me she’s the most wonderful person and is so understanding when it comes to Peanut and my grief. She knows that when I’m ready, I’ll be there to meet my new “niece”.
I feel like I wear a mask sometimes. I put on a smile, make small talk, but all the while I am on the edge of bursting into tears. Crying comes so easily now; I hate that. It makes my face flush, my nose run, and my eyes puffy…how attractive. On bad days, the smallest thing can make me cry and then all the feelings of losing Peanut come rushing in, as if to say, “oh you’re crying, here, let us make it worse…” On good days, it’s a little easier, but those tears are still there. I sometimes wonder how I've gotten this far. There are mornings I wake up and it's almost like I have to remind myself that it wasn't a dream. Peanut is gone and I have to get up anyway...have to learn to live life without him. Sometimes I'll be so caught up doing something that the pain and heartache fade a little, enough that when I stop what I'm doing it rushes back and all that hurt floods my heart and I'm almost overwhelmed. Yet another thing I have to get used to.
I started a new job, and wanted to put a picture of my son somewhere on my desk. I put it somewhere I didn’t think people would see, but a couple of them did. Their eyes lit up as they cooed and asked, “oh, is that your baby? How old is he?” My heart stopped; I knew it would happen eventually, I just wasn’t ready. To the first person that asked, I answered “yes, and he WOULD be about four months old.” It was a woman so she knew immediately what that “WOULD” meant. She apologized and walked away. To the man that asked, I said the same thing, only he didn’t get the “WOULD” part, so I just let it be. After that, I moved his picture. Not because I’m ashamed, I’ll never be ashamed to talk about Peanut, but because I’m just not ready to introduce him to everyone yet. I don’t think they know me well enough; almost like they don’t “deserve” to know him yet. Yeah, I like that.