The Day After


The day after the funeral is the hardest.

The people who gathered to say goodbye and pay their last respects go on with their lives. Relatives that you only get to see when someone dies disappear until the next time. Family acquaintances give you one final hug and tell you to stay strong.

There’s leftover food in your fridge that you have no desire to eat. The scent of the beautiful flowers from the people who cared about your mother but couldn’t be there in person remind you of the funeral home, triggering tears to form in your eyes.

But what doesn’t? Even the sound of the birds singing outside makes your heart ache, while silent tears run down your face.

There’s the first true realization that there won’t be another morning wake up call, her loving voice on the other end checking to see if you’re awake yet, if you made it safely through the night.

There’s a sense of loss so deep, it’s physically painful, like someone sucker punched you right in the gut. You struggle to take a breath, just like she did at the end.

You try to distract yourself by watching silly videos and reading, but what you really feel like doing is screaming up towards heaven that you’re not sure how you’re going to survive this, praying for signs that everything will somehow eventually be alright. You’re seeking anything to take this hollow feeling away, this desperate soullessness.

You contact all of your people until one of them answers. Then they let you ugly cry, snot running down your face and almost close enough to reach your cleavage, hysterical and struggling to find the right words to express how utterly devastated you are, that you now have to find a way to keep on living without your mother.

Without your superhero.

She was more than just my mother and my best friend. She was the glue that held my small family together. She was the comforter, the mediator, the strongest, most genuine person that I’ve ever known.

And I honestly don’t know if I possess that same strength, because right now I’m just so lost without her. I’m scared that I’ll scatter into a million pieces and blow away into the sky, closer to where she is now.

And only she would truly understand how I long for her embrace.

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8 thoughts on “The Day After

  1. Look for her in your dreams. I thought the last time I would see my grandma would be after she had passed away and I was left staring at her, without breath. A week later, she showed up in the most vivid of dreams, walked over to me and hugged me. I asked her if she was okay, and she said “Okay? Hell yeah. I’m better than okay.” And that was the last time I saw her. But it was the most comforting thing I have ever experienced. Unlike any other dream I have ever had. Your mom is ALWAYS with you. I truly believe that.

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