Saturday, May 9, 2015

Selfies with Mom

I've had this "life is what you make it"
and "don't wait for losing 20lbs, a man, a baby, to write a book until blah blah blah to do what you want to do" attitude lately. 

I've thought, seriously, about taking a few weeks and traveling somewhere. Alone. Napa, Nantucket, I've even had a wild hair to get my passport and go somewhere I've never been and do things I've never experienced, with just me because right now, well, it's just me. 

Then I do something alone and realize I hate being alone. 

My Mom wanted to go to the Columbia for Mother's Day so I met them in St Augustine. I circled the restaurant for 20 minutes until I could navigate, with google maps, how to find it.  In the midst of being lost, my mom calls and can hear the panic in my voice and asks where I am so I look to the left and say "beside Monkey Balls Cafe."  My mom being my mom asks the host, "my daughter is lost, she's beside Monkey Balls Cafe, can you give her directions?" 

In a sea of tourists, going down streets I was certain weren't meant for cars and passing up parking spaces because I can't parallel park to save my life, on the brink of hysteria. 

With people everywhere. Everywhere!  

I guess the historic old town doesn't believe in valet. 

After nearly bumper checking clueless people walking in the middle of the street not hearing my obviously invisible car about to run them over, a verbal altercation with a parking attendant, and 14 3-point turns to make it into a spot, I finally made it to the restaurant. 

Pissy and anxious but had a lovely dinner with my parents. 

Part of being an adult is knowing your limitations and a vacation 45 mins from home at a beach resort where you don't have to leave the property is probably the closest to exotic vacations I'll get until I'm coupled up or have a higher dose prescription of Xanax. 

So I do what any emotionally on the edge person does. 

I went to the boy's tree. 


My parents would have gone, they probably wanted me to ask them to go with me but as much as I hate being alone, somethings just feel like they need to be done in solitude. 

My boy's tree is in a beautiful place. It's quiet, peaceful, healing, really just beautiful and as much as I hate it, I love it even more. 

Their tree is growing like crazy. It's taller than me now. Amazing what 28 months can do for things. 

I know people were staring at me. This crazy blonde, kneeling beside a tree, trying to take a selfie with the only thing I can that physically represents the passage of time without my boys, a grieving mother trying to pose in front of a tree. 

I'm trying to wrangle the tree, snap a selfie, and looked up to see a family stopped in front of me. The dad and kids had kept walking but the mom wasn't even hiding that she was staring at me. I smiled, embarrassingly, then looked at her family and realized she had 2 boys, same age, same clothes, probably 3 year old twin boys, and I just laughed. 

Because when you are at the tree where your boys ashes are buried and you see a mother staring at you with twin boys, there's not much else you can do. 

I'll tell you something about life. And grief. And feelings in general. 

They don't make sense. 

Hardly ever. 

I saw the bear I got the boys at Christmas, still there, beat up and probably assaulted by more than a few squirrels, but it's been there everytime I go. And still plays music when you press it's foot. So I'm sitting there listening to jingle bells, over and over, coming from this bear that's been through the elements, in front of a tree that is growing, with just myself, who is healing. 

I go up to walk away, feeling pretty ok. Then the anxiety hit me. A full fledged anxiety attack there in the middle of this beautiful place. It always surprised me, each time I went to the boy's tree, that the bear was still there and I didn't realize how much I needed it to be there until I walked away from it and knew how much it would hurt if I came back and it was gone. 

So I went and got it and took it with me. 

Not logical, but I realize logic went out the window a long time ago and I'm finding healing however I need to, as crazy as it may be. 


Mother's Day is hard. For a lot of people. It's really special but it can also be really hard. And I'm trying to let the really special be louder than the really hard but sometimes just hurts worse than others. 

The past few days have hurt. 

I know my limitations and realize I probably won't be taking a solo trip to the south of France like I've thought about but I also never expected I'd be alone, after knowing such love and such loss, and still be able to smile. 

Sometimes you surprise yourself. 

I sat on a bench, overlooking the water and couldn't stop the tears from coming. This Mother's Day is different from last year, for 1000 different reasons and it hurts. 

As the alligator tears rolled from my face to my dress, I went to get my keys and hit the foot of the bear that has come to mean so much to me, jingle bells start playing again so I did what I needed to do. 

Sat there and cried. 


Until a lady walking her dog came up behind me, laid her hands on my shoulders and wished me a Happy Mother's Day.  

She was walking away by the time I turned around but the weight of her hand on my shoulder lifted a load I had been carrying. 

I'm not alone. Not today, not tomorrow. 

I carry two very special boys with me, everywhere I go. 

Happy Mother's Day- from my heart to yours! 

No comments:

Post a Comment