Wednesday, August 01, 2007
Hannah to Mars
As I have discovered Hannah is everywhere I am. She is all around me and at times there is no escaping the memories as they come flooding in. While most of these memories are funny and happy, they are also quite bittersweet as I know they are just that, memories and my funny Monkey Mine is no longer here to make more memories. It is so very painful when that realization hits I can barely breathe.
But, these memories are also what continue to get me through the day. One of Hannah's favorite pranks was to blow her straw wrappers at people. When she was just past two years old, Nana taught Han how to carefully tear off one end of the straw wrapper and to twist the other end and then blow the wrapper at someone. Hannah thought this was the most incredibly funny game and never did an opportunity pass her by. She always blew her straw wrappers at a family member. Always! So, I began to take up where she left off and today blew my wrapper at Brien. :o)
Somebody commented that Hannah is all around me because she is in my heart, and to that end, they are correct. And yet, somehow, in addition to that, she is still *everywhere*. Hannah is soon to be on Mars as well. Her Pop made sure her name was part of the Phoenix lander. Hannah is about to be truly out of this world! ;oP
I was overcome with grief today when I realized before too long I will no longer be able to say, "The other day, Hannah said..." or "The other day, Hannah did..." because it will no longer be the other day, it will be weeks, then months, then years. My life will be moving forward away from my times with her and I positively ache at the thought. I want everything to remain fresh and crisp in my mind, and unfortunately, I know that won't be the case. Quite frankly, that too scares me.
By living in the here and now, Brien and I have managed to make it through almost two weeks. This afternoon he mentioned things weren't quite so hard for him, that the pain wasn't as intense as it was even one week ago. I wish I could say the same. Each day seems to be getting harder for me instead of easier, as the reality of life without Hannah becomes my new definition of normal. To be very concise and slightly vulgar about it, it SUCKS! It sucks more than anything I have ever thought or experienced and I have to say, I HATE it!
I've spent the past two mornings crying and I worry about what is going to happen as I start my new job. Will there be mornings where I am incapacitated with grief and won't be able to teach? Will I break down in tears in front of my students? I'm frustrated because there are so many unanswered and unanswerable questions. I'm a planner and I need to know how things are going to go well in advance of me doing them. Just ask my mom. I used to (and in many cases still do) drive her crazy as I tried to plan and prepare for events in my life. Hannah was the same way. In this instance, there are NO answers and I can't plan. My life is out of my control and it frustrates me and scares the life out of me.
There are things I've been finding comfort in though. Lily is a joy and delight daily, even her vicious temper complete with screeching fits. It means she's alive and healthy. She is so very silly and she will make faces at me just to make me laugh. One of our favorite board books is "Moo, Baa, La la la" by Sandra Boynton. I'm sure we have read it close to 1,000,000 times at this point between night night stories with Hannah and now Lily. It begins, "A cow says, 'Moo'. A sheep says, 'Baa'. Three singing pigs say, 'La la la'." This evening I asked Lily what a cow says and she said, "Moo". I then asked about a sheep and was told, "Baaaaaaaa". To be silly I asked her, "What to three singing pigs say?" to which she replied, "La la la!" in a very sing song voice. Oh did I laugh and did it feel good! :o)
Our good friends Troy and Kat joined us (okay, more like treated us to) for dinner this evening. It's Kat's birthday and she wanted to share her evening with us. I was thrilled to be with them and to visit and just wish we could have visited longer.
My other moms Lana and Cathy came by this afternoon brining stuffed shells and yummy bread which were saved for dinner tomorrow night. Cath and Lana wound up broken down on I64 and were mercifully safe and sound in spite of a potentially dead alternator.
I can't tell you how wonderful it is to have so many people who love Brien, Lily and I so much coming to visit and take care of us. I keep thinking Brien and I must have done something right in our lives to be surrounded by so much love and support. I once again want to thank everyone so very much for taking the time to share what an impact Hannah has had in your life and/or to tell us you are thinking of us and praying for us. The outpouring continues to amaze me and I am greedily sucking it all in and using it to bolster me through my more difficult moments. Brien and I discussed today how this grieving process is like a giant roller coaster ride. One moment we are fine and the next, swimming in grief. I find it very overwhelming and am eternally grateful for every one of you who have taken the time to come and visit and learn more about my sweet Monkey.