One week later

There's blood on my bedroom floor; streaks and spots of it all over the master suite. The kitty hasn't brought us a creature in an age, but the day after my Aunt died, she showed up with half a rat. The bottom half. She literally gave a rats ass for me.

Now that's love. 

Last night we went to bed and discovered her eagerly pawing at the dresser, meowing while reaching under it. A flashlight didn't revel anything under there but the reality is that there is something dead or dying in my bedroom.

I slept poorly.

Today, everything feels too hard. I ended up sobbing in the kitchen, my hands coated in olive oil as I try to make roasted veggies. Lily, at 12, puts her arms around me and tells me it is OK. "I can't get my emotions under control" I tell her.
She shushes me and replies, "Stop trying to control them and simply feel them."

When did she get so damn wise?

Grief has let me move through my week without too much trouble but today, grief wants me to resubmit to the waves. I am undone. Unable to breathe. Gasping at the sink, being supported by my child. Feeling unable to get by for one more second. My Aunt - my other-mother - been dead a week and today, this feels impossible to navigate. I'm drowning in the loss of her. I feel her in everything an her loss is everywhere. Bigger than that, I feel the reality of my own age. I'm old enough now that this will just keep happening. And I don't want it to get easier. And I need it to get easier. 

Anya spins on the deck... giggling and dizzy as she blows bubbles and attacks them with all the intensity of a ten-year-old. "I'm a bubble ninja!" she exclaims. I watch her play, free of this shit. She's in the moment, where I want to be. Watching her feels survivable. Watching her allows me to breathe. Being comforted by my 12-year-old tells me that I'm doing a good job with these kids. I just wish she didn't have to comfort me.

Tomorrow will be better. Tomorrow will feel possible.

Today, I'm going to let grief have me.