This time it was at the mall. The three of us were shopping for winter clothes for our rainbow about to turn two. He’s grown three inches since July, and all his pants are way too short.
As we leave, I see the Christmas clothes and swoop by with the stroller to see if there is anything cute for his picture with Santa.
And there you were, standing there with a sly grin next to the rack. It’s been awhile since you showed up and stayed with any longevity. Sometimes you text or call, but then aren’t heard from again for a while. This time your presence lingers. You show me the Mickey Mouse Christmas dress that Willow & Hazel would look so incredibly adorable in. The two on the rack are 3T as well. Dex LOVES Mickey Mouse, so, of course, they would too. I break down sobbing right there in the store. You caught me so off guard.
James ran ahead and had me push the stroller out of the store while he pays. I try and collect myself and walk away. I didn’t say goodbye; I knew you’d be back eventually. The problem is, you never really left. You hang around, stalking, waiting for me to drop my guard. This time, though, you’ve hung around. Almost every day I hear from you.
It’s been nearly three years since the girls died, the first year I relied heavily on you, you carried me everywhere. Last year, you popped up right after Dex arrived and around milestones with him (you weren’t going to miss those, were you?) but largely stayed around the edges.
So why? Why are you hanging around so much this last month? Do you feel like family? Must you come to every Holiday?
Well, my friend Grief, consider yourself uninvited for the Holidays. You’ve overstayed your welcome this year. We need some distance and time to grow apart. A distant memory, never forgotten of course but pushed to the back.
I can think about my daughters without crying now. I can smile when I think of them. I can feel joy when I think about them, so it is time you moved out of town. I don’t mind the occasional visit now and then, after all, you were a big part of my life and memories of the girls.
Goodbye means forever, so let’s just say goodnight.
By Krystal Roark