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When Anniversaries Collide

My birthday was this week.  This week also marked the first anniversary of the crash that killed five cyclists and injured another four.  There were fundraisers, memorial rides, and a memorial service.  It was not an easy week.

I wasn’t ready for my birthday.  I wasn’t ready for it to be June.  I’m still settling into my new house*.  I just wasn’t ready for May to be over.  I needed a few more weeks of May.

But here we are, into the double-digits of June.

So it was my birthday.  And I was sad.  I purposefully didn’t open Facebook all day.  I was saving all of my birthday wishes until the evening.  I wanted a big burst of serotonin, not just dribs and drabs.

It helped, but I was still sad.  I was thinking of our friends who were about to mark the first anniversary of their grief.  And that made me remember how it felt the first year after Sofia died.

My birthday isn’t going to be the same for a while.  Like Sofia’s birthday, I know each year will become a bit easier, a bit less jarring.  But I suspect a year from now will be another hard week.  And probably the year after that as well.  Sorrow will be in Kalamazoo’s ether.  I’ll take some deep breaths.  I’ll do some yoga.  And I’ll cry.  And then I’ll stand up and take another step forward because life is not static, no matter how unready we are for it to be June.

*Oh, right.  I forgot to mention that I bought a house.  Surprised?  Me, too.  It wasn’t completely planned.  Then, knowing my rent would be going up again, I decided I should look.  I found a nice little house in my parents’ neighborhood.  And now I’m a homeowner!

P.S. I’m very proud of myself for not snapping at another parental unit when I picked Anna up last week.  Big sister was being overly affectionate to little sister.  You know the situation.  “I was just trying to give her a hug!”  Anna stopped and stared at the two of them.  Parental unit (I think it was grandma) looked at Anna and said, “Don’t you just hate how annoying big sisters can be?”  I had to bite my tongue.  All I wanted to do was to snap and say, “Her big sister is dead.”  But I didn’t.

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