Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Undercurrent

I'm not sure how to express this, but I now know I can feel happy and sad at the same time.
When Lydia got married a couple of weeks ago, I rejoiced in her happiness, but I had to make myself scarce several times that day to deal with uncontrollable sadness as I thought about Maura--how she would have loved the occasion, the dancing, the food, the time with sisters and cousins; how I will never see her walk down the aisle...
And I returned to work last week--same location, different job--and am very happy with the change. My new position is a much better fit, and is something that I love. But several times a day just for a few seconds at a time, I shed a few tears, and then get on with it.
But it's more than just the tears. It's the sense that even when I am smiling, I am sad. Sadness is the constant undercurrent. I'm not talking about the fake smile/fake happy that I still do a lot. I'm talking about legitimate, unforced smiles and genuine joy. And always underneath, tugging at me like the undertow at the beach, is the grief. Always.

5 comments:

SLY said...

I know what you're talking about and I thought something was wrong with me. When my best friend/boyfriend died in college...as time went on, I'd get immersed in my day...I'd play a game of yahtzee with a friend, I'd eat ice cream with my sister and there was sheer joy and happiness in that moment...and then I'd remember that James wasn't here anymore and it was like a ton a bricks went straight for my heart. And there was and is this back and forward thing.

I used to think I had no right to experience any positive emotion. I thought if I did, I'd forget James. It took a long time for me to be okay with smiling again.

Macarena said...

Good to hear you like your job better. Of course you would. You are totally a people oriented person and you'bee be sooo good to those students!
Thanks for continuing to share your thoughts. Even though when I don't understand, I just learn so much from what you write!!
Hugs going your way.
Macarena

Anonymous said...

Hi Erin-
How did you come up with the name Maura Cassiana? It is very beautiful.

-A friend of a friend

Anonymous said...

It is quite natural Erin....like the rug was pulled out from under you is how I always explained it. Losing a family member, mother, father, child is very difficult and while time does heal the sense of loss and need to shed a tear is always there! I know...I do that. :)It's ok....I viewed the wedding pics and I too thought about Maura and fact that you daughter was not there. The photo of the girls holding Maura's picture was very special. Believe me, she was there with you the entire time.

Elsa D. said...

Muitos abra├žos. I am thinking of you.