I didn’t quite anticipate how much I would miss Monica during the day. How much I would think about her minute to minute. Is she sad? Did she fall down today? Does she have friends? Is she answering questions? Does her teacher know how funny she is? How special she is? Really, truly know?
I knew I would be sad. I knew it would be different. I knew her absence would become a new normal for us.
But, I’m just not there yet.
A lot of good, loving people have tried to comfort me: “It’s ok! It’ll get easier with time. I’m sure she’s doing great. Just think of how much you can enjoy being with your other kids!” And I know all those things are true.
But right now, it’s like I’m in the middle of a sickness, or cold or something. I don’t think anyone with the flu has ever been comforted in the moment by being reminded, “Don’t worry! I know you feel bad now, but it’ll get better someday!”
I’m still in the commiserating stage. The, Wow, yeah…that sucks. Or, hmmm, I’m sorry that hurts so bad right now, want some chocolate? stage (by the way, the answer to that last question is yes. Always yes).
And part of me doesn’t want to feel better, ya know? Like somehow I will love her less if I stop missing her so much.
Don’t worry. I know that’s not true. I know it.
I just don’t feel it
Because I know I will feel better. I know the good and the beautiful and the wonderful will quickly catch up to all these dark, tired feelings. Mo is reading! She talks kindly about her classmates! She says “the whole shebang” because her art teacher does! She beams and brims when I pick her up, and just fills my heart and my home in the evening. And I hug her, and love her, and tell her I’m so proud of her…
And those moments, the hours we do have to play and talk and love, I soak them up. Because I know that for most of the day tomorrow, she’ll be beaming and brimming for someone who is not me… in a place that is not my home.
And I will miss her.
There are other hard things about starting a school for the very first time, but I’ll just leave it at that for now. And, of course, add some happy and ridiculously cute photographs. Cause heavy is heavy is heavy. And life is actually, truly so good.