After such a different day yesterday – yes, I am reluctant to say better because that isn’t entirely accurate – after such a different day, Shaun and I decided to grab a bite to eat last night. We went to Tortora’s at Hampton Cove. As a family, we have always loved Tortora’s. Erin loved it. I agreed to go and thought it would be fine, and when we got there Shaun said let’s sit in their sports bar area so that we’re not with families. Should be ok right?
Wrong. We hadn’t been there 10 minutes when I began to cry. I noticed the pizzolis on the menu and it upset me since that was what Erin always got. I managed to dry it up but I didn’t enjoy myself very much, and by the time we were driving the 5 minutes it takes to get home I realized I was down and depressed again. It didn’t get much better as the night went on. That longing in my heart was there in a huge way.
To make matters worse, I was putting up our TV controllers for the TV downstairs into their box. They haven’t made it into the box in ages, and I don’t know why I did that, but when I did I found a folded piece of paper and I knew it was Erin’s. When I opened it, it was a “Sleepover Plan” that she and Simone made last year for a pre-Halloween sleepover at Simone’s house. I remember it vividly. They discussed it by phone and Erin made out her list, complete with a drawing at the bottom of her sleeping in Simone’s room. It made me smile. Then it made me cry.
I have said this to myself, and maybe here, that I miss being a Mommy. I am still a Mommy. I just don’t have a child anymore. I miss ordering her food, helping her cut it up if needed, and even telling her to eat what we got her! I miss everything about being Erin’s Mommy. And that’s the problem. In my mind and in my heart I still am her Mommy. I don’t know how it is for parent’s who lose their children at older ages, but my daughter will always be 10 and I will always miss the kid things.Not that I would feel much different, but I would have loved to have at least 10 more years to watch her grow up. Heck, even one more day would be the greatest gift in the world.
I thought about the times that she and Simone, and she and Anna Kate, ate at Tortora’s. It was one of our places we would always take them and holds a lot of memories. I can see the pictures taken there in my mind without even pulling them up to look. And so this morning I cry. I still don’t feel “as bad” as I did a few days ago but I cry profusely. I have no shortage of tears to roll down my cheeks even though you would think they would be all gone from sheer volume. I have many regrets of things not done, or that could have been done better. Many regrets of things I wish I had done differently or not done at all. Would it have changed the outcome? Who knows. It may have changed my feelings of regret, but it may not have. Still they linger.
The first picture here was taken in May 2013 at Tortora’s. Erin loved the dough and she was being silly.
This was taken in July 2013 and it’s her and Anna Kate. Anna Kate was there for a visit after moving, and they were so happy to see each other.
And last, I guess it was just timing…when I sent the image of Erin and Simone’s “plan” to her mom, she sent this back. She had found it in her car this morning and had already planned on scanning and sending to me. I think this must have been last birthday (December 2013). In case anyone ever wonders, Oliver is one of Simone’s cats and Erin LOVED him. She always included him in any mention of her animals or any animal for that matter.
Thank you for sharing Erin’s memory with me. I hope to get “her site” finished soon or at least enough for you to all to read and look at. It’s live at http://erin.bluestarhome.net, but it was too emotional at the time for me to do any more than two pages.