Wednesday, September 16, 2015

This Time of Year

First of all, let me say THANK YOU to everyone for showing their support after my last post.  It was something I really needed to get off my chest.  It's odd, though.  In many ways I feel like I shared to much, and yet at the same time there's so much more I could share.  There's so much more that I wish you all could understand.  It's hard to explain my relationship with Mom, but just know that even though there were many things she did that hurt me, she was also wonderful and kind and caring, and I miss her terribly.

Along those lines, I've really been struggling lately.  Sunday marked 1 month from my 30th birthday.  That was definitely a day I thought she'd be there.  In addition, we're now just 1 month away from the 1 year anniversary of Mom's scans coming back clean.  We're also only 2 months from the Richmond Marathon.  Those are a lot of big events.

Someone asked me what I wanted for my birthday the other day.  I don't want anything.  Well, there's nothing that I can actually have.  I want my mom back.  That's it.  I want to hear her call me in the morning to wish me a happy birthday, I want to spend the day shopping in Williamsburg with her, and I want to end the day by gathering around the table with the entire family, Mom included, and simply thinking how lucky I am.  Now, without that possible, I don't want anything.  I don't even want to gather around with family and friends because it will make it so much more obvious that Mom isn't there.  I don't want the reminder that she's not here.  It's so much easier to just stay in denial and tell myself that I can call whenever I want to.

You know, a year ago people were asking me what I wanted for my birthday, and my response was similar.  I didn't want anything because the one thing I really wanted, for Mom to get better, I couldn't hope for.  The most I could truly hope for was that chemo would have some minuscule effect on her cancer, and we were headed in the right direction.  That was it.  That was all I wanted.  And then, on October 15th, two days after my birthday, we got the results back- all tumors were gone.  I remember when the NP gave us the results.  I sat there dumbfounded until she left the room, and then I looked at Mom and said, "I got my birthday wish."  It was everything I could have ever hoped for.  She was cured.  I just knew she was.  My mom was the miracle.  For months I told people that Mom was the only true miracle I'd personally witnessed.  I said that for 6 months...until we got the scans back 1 week after my half birthday.  So, now I want the impossible again.  Except this time, there really isn't any way I can get my wish.  The most I can hope for this year is a good dream.

I did also mention that  we're only 2 months from the Richmond Marathon.  I'm so excited and nervous for that one.  I have some big goals, and I'm praying all goes well.  I miss Mom's excitement for me.  I miss her nervousness and those phone calls I'd get telling me about someone else who died after running a marathon.  I'm also really nervous about reaching that half way mark.  When I run, I'm generally so focused that I tune everything else out (except for traffic), but I always looked forward to seeing Mom at the half way mark.  She'd often surprise me at other spots, but the half way point was where I KNEW I'd always see her.  During a 10k, she was there at mile 3.1.  (In fact, during the past few Monument Ave 10ks, where she participated, I missed seeing her at that beautiful turn around point.)  During a half marathon, she was always at 6.5.  And during that full marathon, she was ALWAYS at mile 13.1...with the dogs.  Generally I'd only say hi for a moment.  I had time goals, so I never really stopped.  I'd wave, maybe give her a quick hug, pet the dogs, and then run on.  What am I going to do this year?  Who will be there this year?  Hans would be there, but I always like to see him / need him at mile 17 and traveling between those two points can be difficult.  I know this year I'll hit 13.1 and there will clearly be someone missing.

God, I miss her.  I can't begin to express how much I miss her.  I know plenty of people have lost their mothers.  I know plenty of people have lost them at harder points in their lives.  Still, I can't help but think how unfair this is.  She was supposed to be around for 20 more years.  She always saw herself living until she was 84.  She didn't even make it to 66.

After these events, we get into Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Ironically, I'm less stressed about those holidays, because I've spent a few of those away from family.  I've spent them with Hans' family, or with friends' families, so it won't be as hard to deal with.  But these next few events are leaving me a wreck.  At some point, I'll be able to think about my birthday without crying, but that point is not now.  Right now, I just want my mom.  I want to enjoy Barnes & Noble pumpkin cheesecake with her.  I want to admire the fall colors with her.  I want to laugh at her excitement over all these little things.  I want Mom.

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