Well, hi there!
It’s been quite a while since I’ve written on here but with the new year already underway, I figured it was about time to get back into my writing and sharing life & my sweet mama with you all.
Where to even start?! So much has happened since I last wrote a post. It’s kind of weird actually, how much life has changed since 2021. I think that the weirdest part about growing up, is realizing that life just happens and if you blink, you miss it. All of a sudden life is happening to you instead of for you.
The weather here in Northern California has been nothing but torrential rain, hurricane-force winds, and cold these last two weeks, but honestly my mood has felt like a hurricane too, so it kind of fits. I think that the holidays are single-handedly the worst part of grief. Even after 4 years of celebrating Christmas without my mom, I still miss her holiday spirit. This year, my grandparents visited- for the first time since 2019. What an absolute JOY it was to have them here, for the first time in my adult life- I was able to take a full paid week off (PTO rocks!!!!) and spend time soaking up their love. For once- the holiday feels weren’t AS bad as they usually are, but I still had the pit in my stomach- knowing we were hurtling towards another year without my mama, yet somehow the weight felt lesser getting to be with my favorite humans.
For anyone who doesn’t know (I imagine it is a very small amount), my grandparents are the GREATEST humans in the world. I have always been so vocal about how truly special they are, and anyone who meets them knows that it’s the truth. To know them is to love them. I mean look at the incredible, strong, courageous, and beautiful human they raised in my mama! My mum was an only child, and I think that made us so lucky because we never had to share my grandparents with anyone else. Yeah, that might sound a little selfish, but life would have been so weird if we did have to.
Growing up, my grandparents visited us almost every weekend, and oh the adventures we all shared! They live about an hour to an hour and a half away from the town my sisters and I grew up in. A cute town named Kendal, in the quaint countryside of the Lake District. (P.S. If you have never been to the Lakes-put it on your bucket list- It’s a MUST see). Whenever we went out with nana and grandad, it always turned into us asking (more like begging) them to tell us stories about their lives growing up and when our mum was young too. The laughter and joy we shared on our day trips to Lake Windermere, Grasmere, Grange-Over-Sands, and all the hundreds of places we visited, will always be my favorite part of growing up.
I think sometimes, we forget how lucky we are to have a set of grandparents that cherished us, and spoiled us to no end. I am constantly reminded of how fragile, and short our lives really are. The gift of life is something we all truly take for granted, myself included. Whilst my grandparents were visiting, my nana’s sister passed away-my Great Aunt Elsie- someone else who I have tons of memories with as well. It struck home, just how quickly things can change, and reminded me how truly simple it is to share our love, joy, and memories with each other. The night we got the news, we (myself, nana, grandad, and Dominic-my fiance) lay in the guest bedroom of our house, and shared (with a few tears but mostly laughter) memories we had of Elsie.
Once again, I faced the reality of death head-on, something that still terrifies me on a daily basis.
After my mom died, I thought life would simply cease to exist, how could I breathe knowing that the lady that brought me into the world and literally gave me life, wasn’t here anymore. Yet, somehow, the world kept turning, and each breath became easier than the last one. I ache for her still, there will never be a day that I don’t think about her; but I find her in the little things. The first night my grandparents were here, my nana and I walked into the kitchen to clean the dishes, when all of a sudden- the lid of a candle just flew off the counter across from us. Not a single person or animal were nearby, and we definitely put it down to mama just coming to say hello in her own way. Even just having my grandparents here, made it feel so much more like she was with us too. She may not be physically here, but her spirit is in pieces scattered through all of us who knew her.
I think the whole point of this post, is to remind myself and all of you who read them (if anyone even does read them!) that we should cherish every single second we get with our loved ones. Now y’all don’t get me wrong, there are definitely a few family members who I am quite fine with never talking to again, but that’s a post for another day (maybe). This is simply to say, we can choose our family, and they may not always be blood, but we should share love, laughter, and joy while we can.
We will never be promised tomorrow, and 2022 brought quite a lot of reminders of that too. Here’s hoping 2023 is the year where we all get to start fresh, spend time with the people we love and care about, and let’s hope it brings less chaos and stress too.
Stay tuned for more posts, and hopefully some new podcast episodes too- I fell off from my writing and recording last year- but I want to bring it all back. I enjoy sharing, and in so many ways it is cathartic to my own healing process as I continue navigating grief and life. Happy New Year folks!