Yesterday, Wednesday, January 12, 2011 was not an emotional landmine, it was an explosion.
Josh has been working for the past two months on putting Trina's clothes in boxes to store for Asa to have when he grows up. Once he was done he was going to have mom and I come over to go through them and take what we wanted. Tuesday night Josh came to pick up Asa and asked mom and me if we wanted to come over the next night and do that.
As soon as the words were out of Josh's mouth I had an instant headache and felt like vomiting.
As luck would have it, yesterday was also the day I volunteer in Asa's classroom. My mind was completely gone, my thoughts going forward to what the rest of the day held in store for mom and me. I told Asa's teacher and she was so sympathetic and hugged me. I love Mrs. T and have already made up my mind that when Valentina starts Kindergarten I'm making sure she has Mrs. T too.
After school Papa watched the kids while mom and I went over and did what we had all been putting off for a year.
It was surreal walking into Trina and Joshua's house and seeing all of her clothes in big clear containers. It was unbelievable that this even had to be done, the fact that she isn't here to need her clothes is just unreal. The three of us went through every item and talked about what we remembered of her wearing one of her 48 black t-shirts or her 26 denim skirts or her 85 sweaters. I was able to take the things that were really important to me but the bulk of it is being kept for Asa. There was one piece of jewelry that I had wanted ever since she died. I contemplated having her buried with it but decided that I would probably want it later on. It was a small silver bangle that I had given to her just before she started chemo. She wore it to every treatment and at one point she was devastated as she had lost it. Thank goodness it turned out it had fallen off her freakishly small wrist and was in my car. Well, wouldn't you know it, we couldn't find that bangle anywhere. We went through all of her jewelry boxes and every other place and it was nowhere to be found. But just as what had happened to her happened to me, it turned up in the bottom of a box which was in a box inside a box.
I cannot remember the last time I was as emotionally spent as I was last night. I've been angry at times this past year, I've been distraught, I've been shocked, I've been devastated but last night was something different. Last night I was covered in sadness. I had dreaded that day but it was even worse than I thought. For the first time I felt as if I just wanted to curl up and sleep for weeks. I have never had that feeling before. Of course once the kids were in bed I was unable to decompress and didn't fall asleep until almost 2 am despite going to bed before 11 pm.
Sleep has been elusive the past two weeks. Even my ambien isn't doing much good. Saturday night I medicated myself so that I could sleep all night but I still woke up in the middle of the night, only minutes off of the exact time she died. Even death is unable to separate our eerie twin-like connection.
Saturday will be one year since she was buried. I haven't been to her grave site and don't know that I ever will. That is not where she is. Well, technically and physically it is, but it's not where I want to see her. I see her in my pictures that are hanging on my wall. I see her in the bowl that is in my cupboard that she always used to put olives in. I see her in her medication bottle that I haven't been able to remove from my refrigerator. I see her in the fleece throw she gave me just before her last Christmas. I see her in my lights that are around my kitchen window that I had just put up days before she was diagnosed and vowed not to plug in until she was in remission. I see her in Valentina who shares the same thrill for life and finds glee at every possible turn. I see and feel her everywhere. It is, and will be, impossible for me to ever forget that I was lucky enough to have THE best sister any girl could ever dream of.
I see my sister everywhere but the physical absence of her is pure torture.