Are you a bookmark kind of person, or a curling over the top corner of the page kind of person? Or, perhaps you’re a highlight, underline and scribble little notes kind of person like Evee is. Me? I’m actually a kindle kind of person right now. My kindle goes everywhere with me around London; I never know if I am going to be queuing in the underground for an age, or if I’ll see a cute little café where I can read for a little while on the weekend. But I just close my brightly coloured kindle case and place is saved. However you like to mark your page, the concept stays the same, no one wants to lose their place, or forget a particularly beautifully written part of the plot.
Bookmarks are something I have begun to carry around in my everyday life too (metaphorical ones, of course).
Over the past year, this blog has discussed in detail about how devastatingly overpowering grief’s presence is. Particularly when you are still learning the ropes to your new reality without your person. In those heaviest moments that seem to have no end, it is utterly inconceivable to even consider that you’ll ever feel a fraction of the happiness you used to when your person was alive.
But with a little time, you learn that yes, these tsunamis of grief do pass and the frequency by which they wash over you does in fact lessen. Evee and I are nearly 18 months into our grief. I don’t expect these waves will ever stop (we will never stop missing our mum) but we are always learning new methods to stay afloat for when they do hit.
So yes, back to my bookmarks…
My being was so extremely sad for such a long time, post-mum, that a lot of people (myself included) worried for my future happiness and health.There was no colour to my life or my emotion, it was simply grey.
Fast forward to present day and I am a lot more mindful of my feelings simply because I actually have feelings outside of my grief. Today I am able to recognise the colour in my individual emotions rather than being all consumed by the greyness of grief; and I bookmark it all. I fold the top corner down on moments of happiness, moments of laughter, moments of peace with a little mental note: “Remember this if you get sad”
- I spend the day in Oxford to celebrate one of my best friend’s birthday. Goodness, when was the last time we did this? – Bookmark
- The sunrise looks bloody beautiful this morning – Bookmark
- Evee and I spend a day at the Natural History Museum which leaves me feeling so inspired that I just want to draw everything- Bookmark and mental note :”Please never forget today.”
- I hear children talk about what they want to be me when they are older. They decide they are going to play in an orchestra together. I recognise the same innocence and enthusiasm that Evee had at that age and it makes me smile – Bookmark.
- I hear Colors by Black Pumas for the first time. What a song – Bookmark
And I do get sad, but I am equipped. When I am weathering a new wave of my grief and I feel myself start to spiral because how on earth will I ever be able to feel true happiness again (!?), I flick back through my wodge (good word, wodge) of dog eared pages and snippets of happiness. These snippets remind me of course I’ll be able to laugh again, because I laughed last week. In fact, I nearly cried laughing when a colleague sent me a funny and all too relatable gif of a Panda destroying a computer at work. I had to close down the window and walk away from my desk to compose myself and remain “professional” – Bookmark. (Please see exhibit A https://images.app.goo.gl/egBnBMC7GXAo763i8)
Grieving or not, life is difficult and can be so grey for everyone.
Be mindful of those little moments that weave colour into your everyday. Scribble little notes, underline everything. Bookmark it all. In no time at all you’ll have a whole collection of moments that add so much colour and life to your life.
“It’s a good day
A good day for me
A good day to see
My favorite colors, colors
My sisters and my brothers
They see ’em like no other
All my favorite colors”
I hope you know how well you are doing.