Anniversaries – two

Last year, on top of keeping a journal, I also kept a calendar where I marked important things. Things ranged from appointments to behaviors to triggers and anything significant (not all horrible, sometimes just things people would say to me that’d make me laugh).

October 6th, 2017 was the last time I cut myself. And tomorrow (technically today I guess though it is just after midnight at the moment), is 6 years since my mother was killed in a car accident. And I know each blog I’ve had, I’ve always pointed it out and I will probably do so for the rest of my life.

Because sometimes I still can’t believe she’s gone. This week I laughed when I bought computer glasses for work because they reminded me of the ones she had in prison, the ones she called “birth control glasses” because they were hideous.

I laughed again when I thought of the time she convinced herself that a moth had taken residence in her ear and would say, “But Felicia, I can hear it flying around!” She was like I am. Just convinced of things that are in my bubble and once self-convinced, cannot be unconvinced by others.

In my calendar, by this point last year, I had started drinking more. (To be fair, it started in the beginning of August, when Jared died.) I marked each day I drank (drank, drank again, etc). I’m glad I kept records because I forgot so much and it’s good to track progress.

My suicide book is not gone but transformed into a book I save solely to write intrusive thoughts, in mostly vain attempts to clear my mind when the medicine can’t kill them all. So I have placed this anniversary next to my mother’s and it isn’t a big one compared to what came later in the month, what came in November, December, January. The year has been full of intense changes, returned loves, and the excruciatingly slow process of self-examination and modification based on new knowledge.

Remembering my mom is sometimes a checkpoint for progress: how am I holding up? Am I the same or different? By how much?

I miss my mom a lot, forever. I miss myself from a year ago, only sometimes.

Prison

We would visit my mom almost every weekend the last year she was in prison. She would say, “If any of you ever end up in prison, I will get back in so you’re not alone in here.”

And now I realize something about those words and that promise.

I (more than usual) allow myself to think of my mom and the hole I have inside me because of her death. Her promise was about more than physical prison.

I spent so much time without my mom growing up, even hating her at times and refusing to speak to her for months, years. Having her back let me feel the true depth of happiness that I’d forgotten from childhood.

And she was always there to listen to me and support me even when she knew I was wrong; she always backed me up, she always stayed with me, on my side.

And I realize now that I am just like my mother and when she was gone, I was alone again. I hold my awareness she gave me through experiencing her behavior like the blade of a knife. I am just like her but instead of running and leaving things or people behind that I may cause pain, I turn it on myself. I deal with it alone because my mom was my fellow prisoner, because the bottomless pits inside of were never going to be filled but it was better to have a partner when trying the impossible.

I think it’s somewhat of a selfish reason to miss someone but she wouldn’t think so. I don’t even remember the dark parts of her anymore, just the light. And for that I am grateful because being alone is worse with too many dark memories.