I started to retell our family story in June last year. By August, the chapters had stopped flowing for several reasons. Firstly — the 31st of August is Brens death anniversary. August is a difficult month to get anything done. Secondly, I have arrived at one of the early points of devastation in our story – the diagnosis. Lastly, life is busy and chaotic. And the unexpected deaths of two beautiful family friends have left our family, friends and community heartbroken.
It has not been a time for writing.
Now sitting here in a quiet house, the first day of a new year, I’m taking a minute to collect my thoughts and put some words down. Maybe word by word, I can get in flow gain.
This New Year was very different for me. I am sure many of you have experienced one like it already. It was the one we (Bren & me) jokingly looked forward to from when the kids were toddlers. Our two 18 year-olds had their own New Year’s Eve/ New Years Day plans (as they should at 18) so, it was my first solo NYE / NYD morning — ever. It wasn’t good or bad, it was just very different.
So how will I greet the new year now it’s here? The hard part is over, really — and I don’t mean the year that was, but I hope that’s the case too. I mean passing over the threshold of the old year and entering a new one knowing another year is here that Bren won’t be in. That being said, I choose to greet this year respectfully with a grateful heart because I am still here.
I know it will be a year full of highs (the first of which will come on Jan 8 when my littlest flower girl Torz marries the love of her life Bradles) and, I hope not too many more lows. No lows would be perfect. I hope 2022 is a year of happiness and healing. In saying that, I know I will experience everything it has to offer, with a large part of me missing. And sadly, I am not the only one who will do that.
If you are coping with loss and grief of any kind right now and putting on a brave face for the world to see – be gentle with yourself and rest where you can. Being OK is exhausting.
So here’s my cheers to 2022. I look forward to moving through this year with purpose, one step at a time among my family, friends and community. I will carry those I love who are no longer here, in my heart and memories, as I go. I know some days the weight will be heavy, and others lighter. No matter what, I will make the most of each day as is it comes.
May the year ahead bring comfort and peace, good health, happiness, an abundance of love and much laughter — to all.
It’s a New Year!