Losing my mother feels so different than losing my father six years ago.
It's strange to me, since I feel closer to my mom (though not exceptionally close) than I did to my dad. But everything is different.
First of all, I've been through the loss of a parent before. I think the first time around, it rocked my world view. This time, I had a better idea of what to expect, in terms of my own reactions.
Secondly, my world has changed. I'm a parent now. I wasn't really one to fall apart even back then, but I did withdraw from the world for a few months. This time around, I don't have that choice. I have Calliope, and I have to be fully present each and every day with her. (Well, okay, occasionally I'm a little less than fully emotionally present, but that's been rare.) Along with Calliope comes forced interactions with other people, like her nanny, her nanny share buddy, and nanny sharing buddy's mother, who has become a very close friend. So I've lost the ability to hole up like a recluse.
That's both a blessing and a curse. I'm engaged in the world... but I'm also not really doing the work of grieving. And then when you throw in the stress of TTC'ing... and lice... and worrying about Calliope's limp (non-existent today!) and her peeing all over the house (also much improved)... there's no energy left over for grieving.
So I just keep pushing it away.
I remember, when my dad died, reading something how you can think about grief as something you take down off the shelf for ten minutes, to roll around in your hands and touch it experimentally, and then you put it back up on the shelf for the next day. That made a lot of sense to me. Controlled sampling from small plates of grief.
But I can't figure out how to do that this time around. It feels so big and ignored that I don't know quite where to start.