—Warsan Shire (via mermaidporn)
lololololol drinking on a skool nite rulz. so does my bart sweater.
katie and i.
mum & i.
Three years ago today, at around lunch time, my mother died. Three years ago today, at about this time I was standing barefoot in my nan’s kitchen while we toasted my mother. All of us looking around at each other. Black holes of grief where our faces should have been.
Losing your mother before her time is hard. Losing your mother when she was your best friend and hero is really hard. Losing your mother is just always really fuckin’ hard.
After mum died, I walked around with my mouth hanging open, I was so taken aback by the sheer size of my own grief. I would be brushing my teeth and panic that I’d forgotten what her laugh sounded like. In the week after her funeral, my sister and I cleaned out mum’s side of the closet. We kept everything, folding the dresses and blouses and pants into plastic bags. Every last shoe, every winter hat she’d bought to cover her bare scalp. We kept every last piece of clothing, and hid the bulging bags under a bed in the guest room.
And so began the obsessive process of trying to keep everything my mum had ever touched. In the first few months I collected everything I could. Half empty perfumes, never opened boxes of hand lotion. Lipsticks with the shape of her mouth memorised in their coral columns. I would open the tubes and see lines from where her chapped lips had dragged across the surface. Occasionally I would use her perfume when I knew it was going to be a really bad day. I never took off the gold bracelet I picked from her jewellery box. But most of her things I would never use, just keep in a box under my bathroom sink.
I was trying to build a shrine, a monument to my mother. I was going about it all wrong. Assigning guilt to a rapidly deteriorating tube of lipstick. How could I even think to throw it away? Does that mean I didn’t miss her anymore? But I did. Oh, how I did. Oh how I still do.
As I built my shrine, I built walls made of grief. Thick and impenetrable. I could not fathom the world for a very long time. Most days I still find it difficult. As I mourned, I lost a lot of my friends. Really good friends. I guess some people found it difficult to be around me, or didn’t know how to talk to me, or didn’t think grief should still have a hold of me like it did. These were people that should have fought for me in my darkest hour. But they didn’t. They put me in a too hard basket and left me there. Sometimes grief only begets more grief. Sometimes our walls only build higher walls. But I am forever grateful for those who kept chipping away at what I had built until a crack of sunshine leaked through. If not for them, I would not be here today either. There was not a lot of oxygen within my grief.
I have started throwing away things. It still makes my heart hurt when I realise I don’t have a use for old make up and acrid bottles of Chanel. The decay of her possessions is a very real reminder that time is passing. And that it’s passing without her.
Will a time ever come that it doesn’t break my heart that she’s not here anymore? Probably not. To be honest, I really hope not. The hole my mother’s death left in the world is a testament to the woman that she was. Every day I go to work, I love those close to me, and I carry on. Only because I have no choice but to carry on.
I love you mum.
And today, as every day, I
wish you were here.
The Mental Illness Happy Hour by Paul Gilmartin (via mayraq)
Forever my favorite quote.(via kaitmpayne)