Burst into tears
We gathered in a circle and bowed our head to pray.
He began to pray, my eyes began to tear up.
Suddenly, I was overcome with being so thankful for what this year has given to my family as well as be so sad about what this year has taken away.
This was the first time in two years we gathered for thanksgiving meal with my side of the family. I was overwhelmed with the feelings of loss.
I miss my Nana and grandparents so much during the holiday season. Everything always seemed perfect when they were here on earth.
And now, now my families are separated. Death kills holidays and families.
Death kills the happy memories you had as a child growing up where you would get along with your family and just spend time.
Now you just try to have a normal holiday though there is the obvious void of the loved one missing at the table.
Tears filled my eyes during the prayer…I began to sob by the end. When everyone said Amen, I made a beeline to the bathroom. I couldn’t control my tears.
I was overwhelmed with emotion. I was angry. I was frustrated. I was sad. I was numb. I was thankful. I was completely lost.
My husband knew I lost it during the prayer. His hand got tighter and tighter as he could hear me trying to muffle my soon to be loud cry.
The sound of my breathing clued him in that I was having a rough day.
In the bathroom, I stared into the mirror with tears just rolling down my face non-stop. Trying to breathe and compose myself to go back out.
I couldn’t. I caught my breath for a minute. Wiped my mascara stained face and stared once again at myself.
You can do this, I told myself. You can breathe through this pain you are feeling. And then, my husband said I love you through the door.
I lost it. I just wanted to be happy in this day but there is so much going on. So much. Again, I stared and wiped more tear drops and mascara from my face.
Thanksgiving for me was filled with so many happy memories and I just prayed to God that I just want those memories made again.
But with a shattered family who are split due to the death of the matriarch in the family there is no more of those memories to be made. Now they are all made without her and without parts of our family.
And here I am, caught in the middle. Frustrated that I can’t heal my broken family. Wondering where I fit in with all the chaos. I would rather be outside it, but also inside it fighting for my family.
I finally wipe my tears. Take a deep breath and open the door to find my husband and daughter waiting with hugs for me.
I take another deep breath and walk to the dinner table.
Life shouldn’t be this complicated.
People shouldn’t die. People shouldn’t get cancer. People shouldn’t ruin their families with death of loved ones.
This year has been full of being thankful for opportunities to be reminded how human we are.
This year has had amazing days and shitty days. It has been filled with grief for job losses, to a friend dying by suicide to my friend’s dad in his last stages of life with cancer.
Sometimes the shitty days outweigh all the good that has happened. The good being that my dad though he broke his back at work was not more seriously injured. The good being my amazing husband became executive chef in his community. The good being I took a risk in applying and interviewing for a job I wanted.
Being thankful even for the horrible days because in those days there is a human who has to be reminded that being thankful for something horrible can be quite important for future understanding.
My tears went unnoticed by the rest of the family that was there. As well as all my emotions that were present. But in the tears that poured like rain out of my eyes, I am so thankful that I can feel my feelings and still breath in a day where I felt so much chaos.