I’ve lived away from home for five years now, including university where I came home during holidays. And home was always my home, but it adapted to being somewhere I visited rather than somewhere I returned to. Since mum died though, the house has stopped feeling like home and more like a frozen time capsule that sends me back to feeling 14 when I walk through the door. It makes me uneasy, sad and lonely when I walk through it and realise my mum isn’t sat at the desk playing online scrabble and asking for a hug. When I realise my bedroom now has a lodger in and we sleep on the sofa bed. When one of our three cats has died, and the other two are old and sleepy instead of the kittens I remember them as when I’m away. I can’t actually think of anything harder right now than coming home, and it won’t ever get easier. This house won’t be ours much longer, but it doesn’t really feel like it is now sometimes. It isn’t home if mum isn’t here.
We had a second Christmas today, with my side of the family. My aunt, uncle, cousin and her boyfriend came over for a Christmas lunch cooked by my talented sister, and we ate and played games and drank and talked. There were two people missing, and whilst it wasn’t uncomfortable or sad, I’d remember at times and feel like my stomach had dropped suddenly. My mum and my grandma were both here last year, and not this year, and I guess it’s meant to get easier but it hasn’t yet.
I said before in the last post that sometimes, coming home is the bravest thing you can do. Today felt like that, and it took all my strength to even make it to 8pm without falling into bed and crying. We didn’t get in until 1am, and I feel like I’m jet lagged. Tomorrow it’s been a year since my mum died, and I don’t want to acknowledge it. I’d rather pretend it wasn’t happening, I don’t want to talk about her and cry about her and think about her, because once I start to feel I start to hurt and then it doesn’t stop. Maybe the bravest thing I do tomorrow is get up.
Over and out.