Wedged between two days of celebration, my daughter's birthday and New Years Eve, is the most difficult day of the year. The day of gone-too-soon. The day is bittersweet. Sweet for knowing a perfectly lovely person and getting to be in her light. Oh how it shines. Bitter because she is gone. I can not even say 'too soon' because there never could have been a good time. And yet it was too soon. Way too soon.
December 30th became this day for me in 2009.
It has changed every day since then for me. I can not get past the anxiety every time anyone leaves our house in a car. Obviously, most people leaving our house on any given day are leaving in cars. It annoys my son, because I think he feels like I should not have been so deeply hurt. The whole thing was terrible for him, and I wasn't strong and stoic like I think he wanted me to be - like I think he still wants me to be.
I bring up Victoria too much. I do not bring her up enough. I am forever changed. I know this. I think about her mother, father, and brother every day. I do not reach out to them nearly enough. I feel silly in their company, not because they have been anything but lovely, but because I do not feel lovely enough. I feel unworthy. I feel like I do not know the right things to say. Or even worse. I feel like I always know how to say the wrong things. Like sitting with Ethan at the viewing and laughing at something completely wonderfully silly he did and saying "Oh Ethan, you're going to be a great uncle!" Yes folks, that's me. If there's a completely absurd, insensitive, downright stupid thing to say? I will think of it and say it. Then I will feel immediately embarrassed and ashamed.
Because she is gone I go out into the world trying to spread some of the joy and kindness she gave to the world. I smile at everyone. I hold doors for whoever chooses to walk through them. I choose to let people go ahead of me in lines. I pass out compliments like I am throwing candy at a parade. I let people out into traffic. (even those people, because they deserve kindness too) I try to do little things to brighten the day for people. Maybe it will be the only nice thing anybody does for them or says to them the whole day?
It's been four years. I realize I can not do it myself, but I can do my part. You are all pretty amazing people. I know this because I pretty much know everyone who reads my little blog. I'm asking for your help.
Would you help me this year? Help me shine some more light on people? I know that alone, I can never do enough to make up for this one amazing young lady. But if you could help me, by doing even just one more little kindness every day? We could brighten things up a bit, right? What things do you do? What things will you do this year?