Day 4- Now
Who am I now?
I don't know how to answer that. I heard an analogy shortly after Kale died that really hit me, but I didn't think it was possible. It was describing grief as a rock. Right after the one you love dies, you are given a ginormous boulder, it overwhelms you, it overtakes you. Everyone can see it, everyone notices it. It's impossible to miss. But as time goes on, that boulder shrinks. It's still a heavy burden to bear, but you carry it in your arms, people can see past the grief-rock to your face. Eventually, and usually with much help and support, the rock keeps getting smaller and easier to carry. You always carry the rock, it's a part of you now. But it gets to the point where you carry it around in your pocket. You take it out sometimes because although it's small, it's a huge part of who you are. However, you don't share it with everyone anymore. Many people don't even know or realize you carry around this rock of grief, but it's always always with you.
That's about who I am now. I'm got a rock in my pocket I carry around with me. But most people don't know. Most people don't realize how much I actually am still grieving, because I do it in private, and move forward with life still. But it's very much a part of my everyday life. Kale's death affects most things I do, and like all my other children, he is constantly a part of my thoughts.
Last year I posted about how I'm a person who doesn't wear mascara anymore because I would cry it off. I now only very rarely wear mascara. Because it seems like the day I choose to wear it, is the day I'm going to cry.
But who am I now? I don't even know sometimes. I'm me. I could easily slap the labels on me: Mom of an Angel, Bereaved Mother, Mom of Three kids, etc. But I'm just me. I still like to quilt, I still like to read, I like to watch my TV shows, I love my naps. So much of me hasn't changed, but it is 'tainted' (for lack of a better term, I feel that word has a negative connotation) with the death of my son. I feel like my vision on everyone has a filter over it in a way. It's hard to describe. It's just a way I view life now. My new routine involves regular visits to the cemetery. It involves projects in his memory, to help other mourning families. It involves support groups. It involves talking about Kale with my other children and letting them talk about them whenever they want. It involves making new traditions for our family that includes Kale, which means being very creative.
But I'm still me. I'm different now yes, but I'm very much the same. I know my roller-coaster, and I know the feelings that come before I have an emotional break and take care to protect myself during that time. So if I can't give you a reason why I flaked on you, or why I can't do a certain thing, understand that I have my reasons, they're just very difficult to put into words.
This picture is the most recent picture I have of me, taken this summer as we celebrated Kale's 1st birthday at the cemetery.