Right after my mom died, I was determined to figure out why.  I was convinced that she had died for some reason--like a sign for me to see that would prevent something BIG and BAD from happening in my life.  When Leah was born, I was a wreck.  I just knew that she was going to have something wrong with her.  She was going to have a heart condition, or a blood clot, or have an attack in her sleep and, if I missed it, then it was my fault, because, hello, I had received a sign in the form of my mom dying, and if that wasn't a big enough sign, then I was an idiot.

Alas, none of this happened.  There was nothing BIG and BAD, but you can bet your bottom that I had her heart checked at every doctor's appointment and I watched her sleep for hours on end.  Ok, fine, full disclosure:  I still check on her several times a night to make sure she's breathing.  A regular monitor wasn't good enough, so I got a video one so that I could make sure she didn't suffocate on the crib bumper.  I refuse to let her eat a snack in the back seat of the car while I'm driving because I'm sure she's going to choke, so, instead I just drive with her screaming her head off.  LISTEN: I am crazy, this I know.  My father is an overprotective Italian, and my mother died suddenly while I was pregnant.  It's a miracle that I let my kid leave the house on most days.  But I am dealing with my crazy.  And most people don't even know about it.  Until now.

Anyway, after two years of trying to figure out what the reason was for my mom dying I realized something.  There might not be a reason.  She might have just died.  This was such a devastating realization for me that I almost let it take to me a dark place.  But, just as I was about to cross the bridge to that place, I remembered something.  I was no longer just in charge of me.  I had a child.  And she couldn't live with a mother who couldn't function.  I had to keep going for her.  And so I did.  And so I do.

But I couldn't just let my mom be a thought in my head; a memory to hold on to.  I wanted her here and I wanted to tell her things, and so I conceived of this blog.  I would write her this story, and pretend that she was here, and if other people wanted to read about it, then I would write for them too.  And I would write for Leah. This would be a living memory of her grandmother.  And, maybe someone would see it and comment on it.  Maybe someone would enjoy a post; maybe I'd get an email; maybe someone would find a similarity in their life...

It's been a week since I launched the blog, and I cannot believe just how many people have commented, enjoyed, shared, linked, loved, laughed, cried, you name it!  I've heard from so many of you!  And the things you've told me, and shared with me, and cried to me: I just don't have words.  YOU ARE MY PEOPLE, and I can't believe that this whole time I've been wondering if I would ever be able to find others out there like me, only to find you all just a "publish" button away.

You've given me wonderful feedback, left funny comments, sent encouraging messages, and proposed differing thoughts.  You've been people that I talk to daily, monthly, weekly, and people that I've never met.  You've shared intimate secrets and revelations, and you've sent me poems and stories you've found.  You've contributed your most heartfelt thoughts.  You've validated my feelings and you haven't made me feel whiny or dramatic.  (Two feelings that I sometimes think I've got the corner on.) 

You've just been there, and you've let me know that you're there.  And I want you to know that I am here.

Starting this blog and making it public was the biggest decision I've had to make in a long time, and I wasn't sure that I was doing the right thing.  But, after only one week, and because of all of you, I know that I made one of the best decisions of my life. 

Thank you.  All of you.  Thank you so much.

Dana and Mom, Italy, 1977

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Your blog is amazing. I may not comment on it every day- but know I am reading it everyday, think it is amazing, and so is the author!