2020 was devastating in many ways. The most visible impact will be the empty place at the Thanksgiving table which my mother used to occupy.
The family meal from the deviled eggs to the gravy was usually taken care of by my mother and my father together. The last few years, I’ve taken over the cooking to try to keep a sense of normalcy as my both of my parents battled illness. My father pulled through. My mother ascended to a higher place two months ago.
I’ve been mourning my mother’s loss intensely the last two weeks. My grief intensified along with my spinal pain, which left me unable to walk for two days. It made me realize my mother wouldn’t be there to make grits and sausage when I can’t cook for myself. She wouldn’t be there to pick me up from any procedures anymore or to remove my bandages. She’s not even there to talk to when I feel defeated or depressed.
I have no one to care for me now, I thought as I cried hard enough to create a wet spot on my pillow. There’s no one to kiss my forehead and tell me I’ll be okay.
I wallowed in self-pity for days thinking about all the year’s disappointments. No new home. Another aunt gone. Two confirmations missed: my “stepson’s” and goddaughter’s. And, no visits with them or anyone else either.
While reaching for a tissue one day, I noticed a stack of cards, the book from my coworker Michelle, an Angel and picture frame from my friend Furo that were piled up on a table. I heard my mother’s voice in my head say, “it’s okay to mourn what you’ve lost but you should also be thankful for what remains. If you look through your tears you will see your blessings. The first one is you open your eyes today.”
(P.S. I’m also thankful for my sense of humor. Second photo is the shirt I’ll wear this holiday)
#scleroderma #cancer #mothersanddaughters #blackfamily #chronicillness #chronicpain #spoonie #death #grief #Thanksgiving2020 #grateful