It’s been sixtythreemilliononehundredandfiftyeightthousandfourhundred seconds
since I last heard you laugh, gave you a hug, told you I love you more than anything, saw your crazy morning hair, felt your soft neutrogena lotioned hands, listened to you say the last thing you’d say to me in person, “don’t forget to take a twenty from my wallet, I’m sure dad’s not feeding you much.”
I like that our last encounter wasn’t sad. That it was just another morning, you just happened to be in bed not feeling well. I like that your last words to me weren’t teary, but rather a funny thing. I can remember it and laugh, instead of remember it and cry.
Things have changed a lot without you. Only now have I just begun to realize that this has to happen, that I have to be okay with it. Everyone says that the first year is the hardest, hitting all of those big days for the first time without you would be terrible. Truth is, I didn’t even know what was going on half of the time in 2010. I think this past year was significantly harder, somehow the extension of time made it finally feel real. Buying a prom dress, driving your car for the first time by myself without you taking a million pictures of me pulling out of the driveway as a mom should, deciding where I’m going to college, cutting nearly a foot of my hair off without you holding my hand. That was the tough stuff. Not the birthdays and holidays. I think I’m just starting to get that this is it. My life is mom-less and that’s how it’s going to be. I feel like I’m coming out of the hardest year, hitting today. At least I hope I am.
Tonight we celebrated you. We weren’t sure what to do with ourselves, as these big days usually feel. I think we did today just right. We surrounded ourselves with family, friends, flowers, beer, wine, pizza, cheese, memories, music. We didn’t talk much about you, since you hate being the center of attention. We did cheers to you though, about thirty times. I’m sure you joined in with your “chardonnay with ice on the side please” for at least one of those, even if we didn’t all get to clink your glass.
I meant to capture some moments of tonight, of us genuinely having fun, as if you were here. I totally forgot. That’s okay. Maybe it’s not about the photos that we don’t have, but the memories we do.
It’s about that pair of perfectly poured Guinesses enjoyed.
And those sophisticated sips.
And the large amounts of cheese consumed, as only you could appreciate.
Cheers, mom. zicky tacky, zicky tacky oy oy oy!
I love you more than anything, always and forever.