Yesterday was the two-week anniversary of my mom's death and my grieving hasn't gotten much better. Grief is a very strange thing. I had wanted her to die for months. The Alzheimer's had advanced so much, she had become strange and rather horrific to talk to, but the real nightmare was how much she was suffering physically and emotionally. I wanted her to be done. I wanted her out of that body, zipping around as a happy little spirit, no longer trapped in that oatmeal mush of a brain and that torture chamber of a body. When the nursing home called to say she had passed on, it was a relief and awful at the same time.
Emotionally, things haven't changed much but I know they will. Corny as it sounds, Time really is the great healer. I go to work and don't throw up any more. That's a welcome change. My beloved boyfriend is moving here very shortly; we'll no longer be a long distance relationship. That's magnificent change and couldn't come at a better time. I can laugh at work, slipping on the chipper Rebecca persona like a comfortable glove, losing myself in serving the mild and the demanding, the impatient and the laid back. There's a comfort in that too; like being on a stage, forgetting who you are and what you're currently going through. All my good friends at work have rallied around me. I actually went for a Margarita with them two nights ago, something I never do. Cool salt licks and tasty tortillas. It had been a particularly busy night and I had a gremlin table: those are the ones where absolutely everything goes wrong. I screwed up and that made me upset and that made me screw up even more. A chink in the chipper persona slipped and I had to run in the back for a bit of a weepy fest. I went for margaritas with the two waitresses who did my side work for me as I tried to pull it together.
The practicalities of grief are not often addressed. I would love to take time off, a sad vacation to cry it all out and do a bit of sobby sightseeing with my past. But poverty is a strict taskmaster. I was back at work less than forty-eight hours after Mom passed. Of course, I sucked at my job and more often than not had to leave, but I kept going back. For rent, for bills, for food and drink. And that, right there, is the strangest comfort of all. Food, water, shelter; the necessities of life. I was going back to work, tackling my grief over my mother's death, all for the sake of living. An unexpected positive thing and a road to the future as well. I'll always have the past. "Now" is fleeting; I'll half blink at the present before it becomes a memory. But the future is also always mine. No matter how miserable I am now or ever was, the future is always waiting. And in that future, this overwhelming grief will be a thing of the past. So I smile as I look toward it. And endure. Like sitting in the dentist's chair, it'll soon be over.