Well, here I am, a little over 3 months since Kaitlyn died. It’s raining cats and dogs outside, which is what it did yesterday. That’s ok, it goes along with my mood. It seems that bright, sunny days are an insult to me, and insult to the fact that Kaitlyn is gone. How can the sun ever shine since she’s gone? How dare it. How dare anything go on as usual, but it does. Life is going on all around me. People talk about their lives, their happiness, their sadness, milestones of their lives, and some talk about stupid mess. Life goes on. I also have to do things that are part of normal things I have to do, such as go to the doctor, buy a few groceries, but it’s not done normally. It’s done with the worry that I burst out crying at any moment, without warning, without trigger. Then there’s things I have to do that aren’t normal, that aren’t like someone’s regular routine, but things that have to be done. Like yesterday, I had to go to the place where they have Kaitlyn’s tombstone and give them the picture of her that I want on it because the stone has come in (they didn’t make it there). They wanted a big 8 x 10 so it would show up clear when they resized it and the only one like I have of that size and the most recent, is the one that is on her marker at the gravesite, which is the same one that was put on her visitation pamphlet. It’s a beautiful picture of her, though it’s not the most recent. The most recent would show her with her short hair and I really have nothing in the size that they would want. So I used the one I had, which is really how I remember her most, because she had long hair all her life up until the last year of her life.
I took the picture inside of its picture frame to protect it from the rain. Just like Kaitlyn wanted to protect us from her depression by not telling us about it. Only my protection of her picture did protect it from its demise, her protection only made her demise assured.
As I stood there as the lady took the picture and put it on her scanner, she scanned Kaitlyn’s image onto her computer. I saw the image as it came up and I thought about all the happiness contained within that picture. How innocent it was to me, how innocent she looked. Or was it only me that saw the happiness and not her? I wonder if the depression she talked about in her suicide note was present when she was taking this picture. According to her, it was always there, and must have been during this time. I thought about how she hid her depression from us and how very evident it was to me how well she hid it by that picture. She smiled as though she had the world in her hands and was assured by her intelligence and drive, that a wonderful future lay out before her. But that future would be cut very, very short from the result of something inside of her that I knew nothing about.
The lady scanned the picture and I took it and put it back into its frame to protect it from the rain that continued as I went out the door. I headed out into the world that was dark, grey and raining, and dreamlike, just as dreamlike as the dream I woke up from that morning. It was a dream with Kaitlyn in it, but it was one of those dreams that did not make sense at all, just like my reality makes no sense at all. What time I am not consumed with grief, I spend it in some dreamlike numbness that somehow protects me so I won’t go into a depression I will never come back from, because the grief I experience is all consuming, all dark. I sometimes wonder if these brief moments of respite are signs that I am healing somewhat, but they’re not. They are just my mind’s way of giving it rest and preparation for the next onslaught of realizing just what I have lost. I’ve lost part of my future, my husband has lost his youngest child, my oldest and only remaining daughter lost her sister, my parents and my mother in law have lost their grandchild. And Kaitlyn, most importantly of all, lost her whole rest of her life, a life that was so full of promise, a life for which I was all wrapped up in, for her future and what she wanted, was what I wanted. There will be no medical school graduation, no residency, no medical practice, son-in-law by her, no grandchildren from her, but most of all, there will be no her in the future. The only thing I have left are memories of her. Memories of one of the most amazing people I have ever known.
So I go on about this world either lost in a sea of grief, or in the dreamlike state like the dreams I have. The dreams are merging with reality, because my dreams are as unbelievable as the reality in which I live.