Missing my mum and sister is part of who I am. I used to think it would go away or that it would get less painful but it doesn’t. It maybe less frequent and I maybe able to cope with it better as I grow but it hurts exactly the same now as it did when they died. It’s very lonely. It’s very hard for many people to comprehend. It’s something I don’t remember me without.
I get mum envy. It used to make me cry. When I was just doing my shopping and I’d see someone with their mum arguing or laughing and joking. I’d try not to cry then and there. I’d go home and just miss her, want her to be there, wish she was there and then admit defeat because she never would be there. I get sister envy too. Every time I go on Facebook I see her friends are having babies and doing things all 34 year olds should be doing. They’re all still here but all I see is whats missing. My sister.
I’ve stared at pictures of my mum and sister, I have spoken out loud to them and I have begged them to come back. I have fallen asleep hugging pictures of them because thats all i have left. People often say that I at least have memories. I was 9 when mum died. She was ill for 6/7 months before she died. I remember cutting her hair off with scissors because the chemo was making it fall out, I remember her chest being an open wound. I remember asking her to live till I was at least 18 and fully believing she could and would. I remember crying myself to sleep almost every night because she wasn’t there. Now I’m and adult I still cry myself to sleep from time to time. I long for her presences, her love, I just want my mum back.
I never learnt as a child how to tell someone I needed help coping with my mums death. Apparently it’s quite common that kids want to protect their family members by pretending they’re fine. That’s what I learnt to do. I learnt to smile at the right time, to say I was fine at the right time and I learnt to lock my door and cry, alone, always alone. The problem with this is that as the time goes on the wall you have to built to hide pain, to stop the cracks from showing, to stop the pain seeping through that wall has to get thicker and tougher. That wall mustn’t even show the slightest sign of weakness because if it does the whole thing crumbles.
I’m only human so guess what? There have been times when the whole thing has crumbled, when I have felt I just can’t cope on my own anymore. Those times have been with boyfriends or guys I have been dating. There is something about the intimacy of those relationships that weakens my defences. There is also part of me that longs for someone to share the burden with. There is part of me that would just like to not have to cry myself to sleep on my own, there is part of me that would like someone to not say anything but to just be there. I want to change the script. I’m not a child anymore. I don’t want to protect people I just want to be me.
The times I have crumbled have gone very wrong. I guess that’s why I find myself still single. When I tell people that I miss my mum and sister it seems to make them run a mile. I used to do it in a crazy irrational way because it was so raw and I hadn’t dealt with it so people running from that is completely understandable. Now I can explain how I feel eloquently and I can do so without expecting or needing anything. I have found that in response I’m normally offered some advice and then that person will just back away. I guess I understand because their attraction is to a confident, strong, independent, driven, tough and cocky me. Then suddenly they see a side of me they didn’t know existed, a bit they weren’t expecting and a bit they don’t want. For me showing my vulnerability emotionally takes the most strength and confidence and if they can’t appreciate that then they are not for me. Honestly I long for someone to say to me that they aren’t going anywhere. That they will support and love me regardless of the fact I miss my mum and my sister. I’m sure one day I will find that person and until I do I’ll keep being me.
What I have come to realise is that searching for and looking for that love, support and care outside of myself doesn’t work. I have spent the time since my sister died changing myself and working on me. I now realise there is much more work to be done. In fact I think working on ourselves and continuing to learn about ourselves is something that never stops. I also realise that throughout the years there is one person who has been with me through everything, myself. I know that sounds a bit obvious but sometimes we forget because we are so busy looking outside ourselves, we are so busy looking to other people to make us feel better we forget we can just do it ourselves.
Self love, self respect, self confidence and self belief.