Bionic Mamas

you're not losing a vagina, you're gaining a son

Six Months In


Six months in, everything about having a dead mother is still awful. In case you were wondering. Someone remarked today that there is no proper timeline, take as long as you need, but I think the truth might be that there is no timeline at all, that this just continues to suck, world without end.

I know things were worse or maybe more actively bad say five months and three weeks ago, but it doesn’t seem like the chronic stage of this will ever be less painful. It’s true that I no longer contort my face in silent screaming every time I am alone in the shower, but I still cry every day. Sometimes I am in bed at night and it strikes me that I haven’t cried that day. Those were the nights I have the most trouble stopping crying.

The thing is, I really don’t think I’m depressed. I know what I’m like as a depressed person, and this isn’t it. I’m the tired all the time, distant, shut-down kind of depressive. The kind where you can’t shake the idea that the whole world is just a movie you are watching. I don’t feel like that. I engage with my kids, I find things funny and interesting. And then, because she loved my kids and there was literally nothing on earth that didn’t interest her, I immediately want to call to tell her about it. Luckily, that doesn’t happen much more than 150 times a day, usually.

Did I say she loved my kids? Well, she loved the idea of the second one. This girl who is such a pleasure, such an easy baby. Who I am able to purely enjoy in a way that, sick in so many ways, I couldn’t enjoy her brother at this age. To whom I know I am a better parent than I was to him, the kind of parent I wanted to show mine I could be.

(Do not get me started on my father, whom I love very much and whom I feel very hurt by and very worried about right now. Suffice it at this writing to say that I feel like I have lost both parents at one stroke.)

Dear Whatever Doesn’t Kill Me, begins an ecard making the Facebook rounds. You can stop now. I’m strong enough.

18 thoughts on “Six Months In

  1. I’m so sorry. I think the trouble is that this will never be ok. You will always miss her, miss sharing all those special moments.
    And I’m so sorry about your dad. I do hope this part of the story turns around.

  2. i’m so sorry you’re going through this, bionic. losing a parent pretty much sucks all the way around. and the dad thing, i can tell you only from my experience that people do all kinds of remarkable shit when their loved ones die. one day you will wake up and it will feel less shitty, that’s all i know.

  3. I am thinking of you, sweetheart. I do wish that big bloody ocean wasn’t in the way of me bringing round cake and a shoulder.

  4. Oh Bionic, I’m so sorry. Six months already, but yeah, you’re not counting DOWN to anything. Just six months when your mama should have been with you, should have been enjoying these babies with you. Fuck.

    But I hope it’s not unsympathetic to say how glad I am that you’re not also depressed. Grief-stricken is hard enough without depression.

    Saying “it will get better” is presumably useless when it’s all “world without end”, but I do a lot less silent screaming these days than four years ago in case that gives you something to imagine. More like periodic punches in the face. And if you need some practical advice, I say get a really boring life and find a way to make your children loathsome, so you won’t want to share these amazing experiences with anyone.

  5. I was wondering. I’m sorry that it’s still so hard, but I think you’re right that there’s no timeline on hard and that if it does fade into something that’s more of a scar than an open wound it won’t be noticeable until it has already happened. And loving your kids is the best way to love your mom, hands down.

  6. Hugs. (for lack of wise and comforting words)

  7. I too am very sorry, dear bionic. If the few moments I spoke to your mother on the phone (that day in which my brain failed me in the gardens), she was so responsive and interested – and now it might sound I am exaggerating but you know I am not – it really struck me what a lovely conversationalist she was. Not that you need to be told, dearheart. I am just very sorry for your loss.

  8. My mother died last month. I’m still in the screaming in the shower stage. My father is struggling too. I hear you from a place I hate.

  9. My mother died 8 years ago (I was 27) and we were very close. Honestly, it always, always sucks. Sometimes it’s worse than others. All I can tell you is that for me, I did get to a place where I didn’t cry everyday (sometimes I still cry, but it’s few and far between). A friend who had lost her brother told me it’s not that you ever stop missing them, it’s just that you wake up one day and you realize you have gotten used to the feeling of constantly missing them. And she was right. I am now accustomed to the mom-shaped void in my life. The pain does become less intense. I am so sorry for your loss (I still think the first year after she died was the very hardest of my life, and that includes plenty of other shitty things that happened to me after my mom died). I know this weekend will be especially painful. Take care of yourself as best you can.

  10. Arrived here from Mel’s roundup…this is a post I needed to read right now. Thank you for writing & sharing it.

    I am deeply sorry for your loss.

  11. I’m so sorry for your loss. My mom will have been gong for 3 years next month. Grieving never ends in some ways. Yes, I don’t cry as often, but there are some things that are still insanely hard. Especially since she never got to know I finally got pregnant and meet my son. She really wanted grandkids. That kills me.

  12. Here from Stirrup Queens… My Dad has been gone for a long time and while you’re right – the idea that there’s some ‘end’ to it is a big, fat lie… However, you do get a little more… numb. It’s just excruciating until then. :/

    Sorry for your loss, it’s a crappy club to be a member of.

  13. I hope this does not sound unfeeling, but I am so glad you were so close to your mother, even though it makes things so hard now. It sounds like you had a truly wonderful relationship.

    I just wanted to come and say hello and say I am thinking about you. Every day, but tomorrow especially.

  14. I believe it’s called ‘grieving’, no? And oh, your poor father, and you, trying to cope with his grief and withdrawal on top of your own.

    (I hear a lot of people say “Oh no, I’m not depressed, I just feel distant/ really anxious/ disengaged/ like a grey day/ unaccountably angry at everything/ paralyzed.” Honestly, your grief sounds nothing like depression. It sounds like you lost your MOTHER.)

  15. Have you read “A Grief Observed?” I found that very accurate, and non-judgy, in the past.

  16. Thinking of you. This sounds so hard. I hope that your dad finds his way through this and back to you.

  17. I am so sorry. I don’t have anything smart or interesting to say other than that, but I am SO sorry!

  18. I was just thinking about you again, and thought I’d let you know that. I hope that the kids continue to be delightful, and that the unbearable is somehow becoming bearable.

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