Many of the condolences that we’ve received over the past 11 days since my mother passed have included the same word, “time”. “In time you’ll heal.” “It’ll take some time to get back to your old self.” “You need to give yourself some time to grieve.”
Some of this advice coming from people who have also lost a mother (or father) or someone close to them and others just offering up what they hope will provide comfort. But my question is this: “What is an appropriate amount of time?” Is it okay for me to start getting back into my normal routine already? Or do I wait a month or two to start moving on from the heartbreak? One thing I know for certain is that whether I start today or in six months from today, I will always acutely feel the loss of my mother.
But for some reason I feel almost guilty that I’m trying to get back to my regular routine. . .I’m taking the kids to the circus Thursday and I’ve called a meeting with my friends to dive back into our website collaboration. I have no choice. This is how I have to cope by doing things that bring me joy. . .not for one second does it take away the sorrow I feel but I can’t let myself sink in to an abyss that I may not be able to crawl out of. . .I have two very young children who need me like the air they breathe and I have to start helping them regain a sense of normalcy.
No matter how much time passes I don’t think it will make me feel better. . .I think time simply fills spaces and preoccupies our minds until one day the pain is not as keen as it is in the beginning. We all grieve differently; we all have different coping mechanisms and for me I know the key will be creating and spending time with my family. So while I appreciate the concern, please do not think for one minute that I am in denial or undergoing some unnamed stage of grief. I have talked about my mother EVERY SINGLE DAY since her death, I have looked at pictures over and over again, I hear her voice in my head and say a prayer that her soul is resting in peace every night.
I have to let her go but I will hold on fiercely to her memories. Because they are my memories too and someday I will have to tell my children these stories about the amazing woman, their only living grandparent at the time they were both born, who left their lives much too soon.