Today it is the tenth anniversary of your death. I can’t believe that 10 years have passed since you were in my life. So much has happened that you were not part of, and at the same time, so much occurred because of you. I still miss you and wish you were with me but time does heal old wounds.
I have noticed that the pain of your loss has changed. It is not as overwhelming as it used to be. I also don’t look every night at your picture over my bed. Nor do I frequent your gravesite as often. You are still present in this house and we still speak of you but not as much as in the past. You will never be forgotten however we do not hold on as tightly to your memory. Your presence in our lives has altered.
I do speak of you more with strangers. I don’t fear the pity of others as I once did and mention your passing more to people who I meet. I feel you have the right to be counted when people ask how children I have. My normal response is to say that I have three boys at home and thankfully many did not find this response strange. I could never reply that I only had three children because you will always be my child but I did not want to say I had four in case they asked for ages or more. I was uncomfortable about their reaction might be once they learned that one child has passed. I still reply with this statement but more often I find myself saying that I have 3 boys at home and a daughter that passed away several years ago. I am proud to have had you as daughter and want to still count you as mine.
To tell the truth, I am proud to be a survivor of loss of a child. Survivors of other tragedies are often proud of what they have overcome yet loss of a child is a taboo subject that many do not discuss. But why not? I survived the tragedy. 10 years later, I am a happy and fulfilled woman with 3 children who enjoys life. If that is not surviving then I do not know what is.
This 10th anniversary day also feels different. The pain is not overwhelming me as it was in the past where I could not stop crying for most of the day. It is more a day of sad remembering day. When I went to your gravesite this morning, instead of just crying I planted some flowers on your grave and repainted the wording. I felt like I was with you and not searching for you.
Last night when I woke up as I always do the night before your anniversary, at the same time that I last spoke to you alive. The exact hour when I returned to bed after you threw up once again black decaying liquid from within. When I knew that I did not know how to further help you and decided to try a new technique I learned of visually sending you healing energy to help you with your pain. I saw you in my head being lifted up out of your body. I always believed that at that moment I helped you pass on into the light / death.
Last night I called for your spirit to come to me so that I can again feel your energy. You came to me but you didn’t feel like my little girl. Your spirit energy has changed. It felt more mature. Maybe part of your current life cycle / reincarnation. I understand that you too have changed in these ten years. I want to get to know this new you.
This morning at the gravesite, I planted some flowers in your gravesite only using my hands, none of the gardening tools that I brought, so that I can feel the earth that you part of six feet below (we do not bury in a box). I repainted the letters on the gravestone and remembered how 10 years ago your father, brother and I traveled to the hills of the Galilee to choose this exact stone that would become your gravestone. Although time has passed I still painted the letters in pink. The words do not stand out against the light beige limestone but I felt your young girly spirit tell me to paint it 10 years ago (I can already hear my mother-in-law complaining). I was with you at the gravesite. Two women who fought together against cancer; two women who together overcame death and passing; and two women whose spirits continue to be together 10 years later.
Time does heal old wounds. The wounds changes into scars that is slightly visible to the eye. The wound isn’t the red open wound it was 10 years ago burning with pain nor is it a bright infection pink that itches and hurts constantly reminding you that you are gone. It is a slight pinkish scar that is part of me, lovingly reminds me of you and is worn as a badge of honor for surviving.
It is an honor to be called your mother and you will always be my daughter. Our relationship has just changed a bit that is all.
Your loving mother, now and forever.