I think when anything traumatic in life happens or something that is life altering you go through all the regular stages of trying to accept what is now. Sometimes you go through those stages over and over for years or even the rest of your life. Sometimes you find yourself in a better place, sometimes not. I look back at my life with Makenzie. My life when she was healthy and home. The good we had. Then I think about when she was sick. I think about how scary things were and how everyday was so unknown. I think about being in that hospital room with her every second just waiting. Waiting for answers. Waiting to go home. Waiting for the end. I think about the day she died. I think about watching that clock. Wishing it would just slow down. Wishing I could just take her home and have our last day be better than sitting in a dark room trying to keep my sick little girl comfortable. I think about holding her body as it went limp. Knowing this was now my life. Life without her. Life with a child in heaven. I was now going to be one of those sad people. One of those people who would break my heart every time I heard their story. One of those people that I always wished I could say something to that would help them feel better but never knew what to say so I would avoid them. That was now my life. I think about the days after. That morning after was absolutely painful. I screamed. I cried harder than I had cried my entire life up until that point. I laid in my husbands arms thinking of my baby's cold body at the morgue. I think about picking out the casket, the flowers, the program, the tomb, the songs, the lunch-in. I think about picking out her headstone. I think about all those days after she died. I think about how life suddenly became a routine. A series of events repeated over and over in order to simply survive. I think about those moments Ryan would find me. Hiding in a corner buried in Makenzies clothes. Laying on the floor in the middle of her room screaming. Those times I refused to do anything and threatened to stop breathing. Begged him to just end it all with me. Asking if we could just go together. I didn't want to leave him but I couldn't imagine waking up another morning with this pain.
I wonder how he did it. How he survived. Somehow he was always there. Pulling me from the darkest hours. I have spent hours/days/months worrying about him. Fearing he was being so strong but would someday crumble like me. We talked. Daily. about missing her. About how she was here and that she is still real. I think that was the best thing for both of us. To know that she is real. That our daughter died.
For some it might sound silly- to keep saying it. You would think it might hurt worse. But in reality its our life. Its real for us and we cant ignore what is. Through all of these days. Through all the firsts without her. Through all the growth. Through all the hard turns and the feeling lost moments.
We continued to breathe.
Sometimes I try to make sense of what life is today. Is it that we are not as sad anymore? Is it that we are just forgetting about that part of our life? Is it that we are just moving forward? Is it that life is getting back to some kind of normal? What is it. Why don't I cry every second like I did 2 years ago? How am I not wanting to run away from the world every time I see another child. How am I able to now smile when I see someone who is Makenzie's age instead of wanting to push that kid down and run?
It still hurts. I still cry. I still miss. I think about her every God damn second of the day. but what has changed isn't that I'm getting over anything, I'm not moving forward, I'm not going back to a normal life.
What I am doing is getting used to this life.
I am getting used to the hurt. The sadness. The forever ache in my heart. I am getting used to a life where my oldest daughter is waiting for me in heaven. I am learning how to control those sad moments so I don't make the rest of the world feel as uncomfortable as I do. I am recognizing what life was and what it is now. I am getting used to what others sometimes say or do. I am getting used to seeing life continue and I'm getting used to knowing its not going to stop just because she isn't here. I am getting used to learning how to breathe in a different way. Life isn't getting easier. The missing isn't any less.
I am just getting used to it. and by getting used to it. I can smile in a different way.