To see the previous post My Mother Paola Volkova -Unpublished Mother Loss Memoir Part 2
The first few months after your death I spent in a fog. I did not notice the people around me. I stopped wearing a watch. Time had no meaning. All I knew was when the alarm went off in the morning, I had to get up to go to work. The clock on the PC in my office informed me that it was time to go back home. At work I forced myself to note down urgent tasks to do for the day and made myself do them. Otherwise I could easily spend the entire day surrounded by a fog, a thick white smoke. I saw nothing beyond it. Back home in the evening, I bought cold chicken and readymade salads for dinner until my husband politely pointed out to me that we had been eating the same food every day for the last few weeks.
I’m jealous when I see mothers with their daughters on the streets. It makes me think that I will never be able to go with you for a coffee or a movie. Help you to sit down or put your coat on. I also think how happy they must be together.
When I have first realized that I could not remember your face, I was so embarrassed that I could not admit it even to myself. I could remember your voice and gestures, how you placed your bag onto your knees and opened it to take out your Bobby Brown N6 powder case, which gave your skin a slightly tanned tint, or your machine to measure blood-pressure. But I did not remember your face. It was covered with a mist. Then one day a friend of mine, N., from Chicago, sent me a book by C.S Lewis, A Grief Observed. It described the sorrows of the author grieving his wife. He wrote that he could not remember his wife’s face and how it appeared at times suddenly as a glimpse. After all it takes time and experience to understand the strangeness of grief.
Tomorrow I’ll put one of the scarves you gave me, the one with the tiny violet flowers. You gave them to me knowing well that I did not wear scarves. I have recently realized that it was your way of saying that I would look more elegant if I wore them. So I’ll give it a try.
The other day I was in the shopping mall. I was looking at the spring collection of clothes, when I suddenly realized that I was looking at clothes for you. I was going through the racks of different items thinking which color and cut would suit you best. I ended up matching a white T-shirt with a light-violet zipped hooded sweater, thinking that it would have looked good against your slightly tanned skin. I wondered if I could have actually found myself at the cashier desk paying for these items.
After your funerals my husband announced that from now on, the time would be counted in P.P, “Post Paola”. On May 18, the day of the ceremony, we were 2 months and 5 days P.P..
Next post My Mother : Paola Volkova – Unpublished Mother Loss Memoir on Tuesday April 28, 2020
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