Anniversaries. Does the word make you think of Happily Ever After? It’s usually a term used to describe a memorable time in your life that you want to celebrate and remember. As a newlywed, I’m anticipating what it’ll feel like to celebrate my one-year anniversary. It will be such a big milestone for me and my husband.
But thinking about anniversaries also makes me reflect on the passing of my sister-in-law. I still can’t believe that February 19, 2019, will mark exactly one year since Melissa passed.
Many people have assured me that it would get easier with time. You know that old saying, “Time heals all wounds.” I can agree to that — to a certain extent of course. But when the feelings and emotions come creeping back, it’s like a wave is knocking me down into the depths of an ocean and I can’t swim. There is no one to rescue me. I can only seem to bear it by looking into my daughter’s eyes and stealing a hug or two.
I have thought about her on every holiday, every vacation, and every event where she wasn’t with me, with us. When my little one says or does something funny, all I can think about is how I wish I could call or text her about it. She is the only person who would truly enjoy hearing my nonsense ramblings.
When I look at my daughter or at my husband, I see Tia Mellie. She and my daughter have the same nose, especially when my little one smiles and scrunches it up. She and my husband have the same eyes. She was his only sibling and I can only imagine the loss he feels as well. I think about her when my husband travels for work for weeks at a time and how she would always be at our home that same afternoon with fast food and fun to distract us.
She was the absolute best.
Recently I’ve found myself looking at our old text messages and just smiling at our daily comments and gifs and laughing at our inside jokes. More often than not, my smile turns upside down and tears start rolling down my face. I don’t have that close bond with her anymore, or with anyone for that matter…
I Miss Her All the Time
In times like these, I can hear my daughter ask, “Mommy, why do you have that face? Do you miss Tia Mellie again?” Truth is, I don’t miss her again, I miss her all the time. Sometimes it’s ‘I can’t believe it’s true, I can’t believe she’s gone’ kind of missing her. And sometimes it’s ‘I’m so f&$@! pissed this happened to her’ kind of missing her.
I think about her a lot. More than my face shows, and definitely more than I say out loud. I miss her smile and her laugh; she really had the best laugh and I miss hearing it so much. I miss talking to her.
It’s almost a year later, and I still don’t know how to feel.
It’s strange to think this year has come and gone without her. We’ve lived almost 365 days without her. She’s not physically here with me, with us, but sometimes I feel like a part of her is still with me when I see her in my dreams. Dreams that wake me up with tears in my eyes.
Anniversaries are not always happy. Sometimes they hurt like hell when they remind us that our loved ones are no longer here with us. And to say it plainly, it freaking sucks.
This year, on February 19, we will think of her. We will tell stories about her and how amazing she was. We will visit her at the cemetery with purple flowers and balloons.
And we will hope that someway, somehow, she knows just know how much we truly miss her.