So I took the day off, and I planned nothing for today. I readied myself to cry and mourn and pull out my hair. I have chocolate and Gilmore Girls on standby, and good friends and a boyfriend who are ready with their comfort and support.
And you know what? Today, so far, has been a good day.
Maybe I did most of my grieving around Easter. Maybe year two is just different than year one. Maybe its actually getting easier as time passes. Maybe I'll be wracked with grief later this afternoon.
Whatever the reason, today I am thankful for life. For the small things - the apple blossoms on the tree outside, the sunshine, yoga. For the big things - my sister's coming baby, a loving boyfriend, my hopes and dreams for the future. There are so many signs of life all around me. Maybe my experience of loss and grief is giving me the eyes to see them anew today.
Thankfully I know that this is what my mom would have wanted. She would want me to grieve, sure, but also to laugh. She would want me to celebrate the beautiful things that have come my way, even the ones she wasn't around for. And her pleasure at my joy makes today so bittersweet that I'm smiling and crying and laughing all at the same time.
There will always be hard moments (or hours, or days, or weeks). Memories will pop up at unexpected times and bring me to my knees in pain and sadness. But joy, and the assurance of good things, is tipping the scale in the direction of life. And that is a good thing.
I love you, Mom. Thank you for guiding me into sweetness instead of bitterness today.