The holidays have come and gone and it was rough, as expected. Our small family of three didn’t so much celebrate the holiday as we did acknowledge it with modified tradition. There wasn’t much baking, no trip to Grace Cathedral, no dinner out on Christmas Eve. We even dispensed with the Christmas Tea. Never the less, Tom was missed and Christmas Eve is when it hit my mom. I felt it Christmas Day. Although a bit numb, we made it through. It’s now behind us.
Yet here I am a few weeks later sorting through a stack of greeting cards and I’ve come across a stack I bought for Tom. Last year at this time I made a mini resolution to send Tom a card every week to let him know I loved him. I wanted him to know I was in his corner, rooting him on. But time ran out. Sadness grips me again as I am reminded it’s not behind me: it never will be.
One of the cards had these words written on the cover, “Your strength may surprise you. The rest of us already know.”
It’s perfect and I wish I had sent it to him. I can’t send it to anyone else. I’ll keep it and think of him each time I read it. I also can reflect on how surprised I am by my own strength as my grief evolves as each month goes by.