For the last hour, I have struggled. I started off the day pretty well this time. I only cried for a little bit. Then I fixed me some food, which required me to go into the kitchen.
The first thing I saw was the cat sitting on the table. That’s a spot she loves, and she would sit there with Erin in the mornings while she ate her breakfast. I try not to notice that her seat is empty. The few times Shaun and I have sat at the table, I sit in her seat. I don’t want to look at it.
Then I opened the pantry. The middle shelf is no devoid of “her food.” There are no traces of here in the pantry now. Well, except her two lunch boxes on the top shelf. And the box of popcorn. I think of her then, because we ate a big bowl as a family for a snack every evening.
Then I mixed up a flavored water, and got into the straw drawer. She had an entire drawer full of different straws. Well, those made me cry.
And now I have just come across an email to my personal box, talking about breathing. It was a spiritual article, about breath work to be exact. I had to stop reading when it mentioned that you can only live a few minutes without breath. I know that. I watched her die.
As I decided to come write, I heard the old song that goes “It only takes a minute, girl, to fall in love. To fall in love!” It probably took Erin about that long to die to be honest. And it took much less than that for me to fall to pieces today. Maybe just a split second actually. Those small things, they broke me.
I cannot tell you how much I miss her, because I can’t put it into words. There are no words for it. There are no words for how I feel. There are none. If I could touch you and show you how I feel, you would recoil in agony. I am sure of it, because I would if the roles were switched.
In an effort to take my mind off of “this,” I want to make a list of things that I thought of last night that I would have shared with Erin when she was older. I don’t’ know why I thought of them. There were just some things that had to wait.
- SouthPark and Mr. Hankey
- Aqua Teen Hunger Force
- All of the Super Hero (Marvel, X Men, etc.) movies – she didn’t like adult themed stuff
- Giving her a YouTube account, and FaceBook. She begged, and I never would say yes. Too dangerous for a 10 year old.
- Explaining the truth about Santa, and the Tooth Fairy, and the Bunny.
- Shaving her legs and makeup, and starting her period. We were close to the period, I could tell by her eye rolling!
- Liking boys. She did not like boys yet, but I could tell a few of them intrigued her.
- Her first concert – well aside from the Wiggles ones we went to when we were young. I would have loved to take her, but you can’t take a kid that age to an adult concert.
- She never went to an Auburn football game, or even to Auburn to visit. She wouldn’t have lasted a quarter, and it is so expensive, so we put it off. But she wanted to go to Auburn. I overheard her talk to a friend about it.
Basically, we had a lot of unfinished business, in my book anyway. I saved a receipt from the pretzel place in Parkway Place that was dated February 2014, right before her first Children’s admission. I don’t know if it was last fall or this spring, but I bought her first pretzel and she loved it. It was our thing, to go to the mall and get one. The last mall visit, we were busy, and knew we had to eat when we left. So we didn’t get a pretzel, and I am sad about that. I found the Feb. receipt yesterday in my wallet, and I will keep it forever, and I will think of how we would sit in front of it or the Pottery Barn and eat our pretzels, and then go shop.
During moments like these, it almost kills me to breathe. I just want to die and forget all of this horrible business. But the tears will subside like they do, and I will go on without her. And maybe tomorrow will be better, or maybe it won’t.