I feel blessed to have known her and loved her as a friend, and unfairly robbed by her untimely death. But something I've known for a long time is that when somebody you love dies, the relationship doesn't end.
We still think about the person, talk to the person. She's visited me in m dreams, a couple of times now. I often hear Sid's voice in my head, chortling over something, or small and sad, or filled with energy and passion. I often see her freckled face before me, her eyes twinkling with mischief, or quietly reflective.
|My cat, Metaphor, aka Stinky. |
Cuddling up to the Sid blanket I am constantly using on my couch.
So, how do I mourn Sid, honor her, and keep her in my life, without it crossing over to the creepy-and-obsessive?
|Luke from Olive's Bistro cannot contain his amusement|
at my goofy-maroon hair.
For example, I went to my stylist, and asked, could she put a patch of color in my hair, that would be (close to) the same color as Sid's beautiful, burnished copper hair?
She said, since my hair is already blonde, if she added colors XYZ, it would come out the exact color I was looking for.
My hair did not get the memo.
I imagined how Sid might have spent her birthday, the first since she and Greg parted ways. She might have gone to spend the weekend with her parents, or her sister (or both).
Or, if she stayed in town, and seein' that we were both working women, we might have gone out for a (nonalcoholic) drink at Olive's, or perhaps caught a movie. Possibly Silver Linings Playbook, given our mutual interest in mental health issues (and Bradley Cooper being super-hot not a drawback).
In fact, on my birthday, last June, Sid joined me to see a matinee of OC87 The Obsessive Compulsive Major Depression Bipolar Asperger's Movie. One of these days I'm going to write a review about it.
Personally, I was surprised at how UNhot Bradley Cooper was in Silver Linings (though still a very fine actor, as was Jennifer Lawrence), and could not help internally SCREAMING that I wished I had Sid around to discuss this movie with.
I picked a particular theatre chain in which to see this movie, because I have a holiday gift card with a few dollars remaining on it, so why not use it up? But when at the movie box office, I could not locate said holiday gift card.
|Talking of askew, I could not even take |
a decent photo of the place.
|Olive's Street entrance|
|Stephanie's bouquet, because Sid loved lilies.|
Should be in full bloom today.
This is the "askew" of which I speak. And as I sat at the bar in Olive's, and watched Luke in his respiratory misery, I thought, Sid would be laughing about this. Not in a mean way - Sid was never, EVER, mean - but just at the askewedness of something meant to thank and comfort those who loved her, causing those who loved her this tiny amount of discomfort.
I think this is how everything feels, in a grief state. Even when things are going okay, even well, there's the sense of things being askew.
Because the person we love is not where s/he belongs.
Somehow, we have to come to be at peace with the askewedness of the loved one not being with us, without becoming totally askewed, ourselves. Somehow we have to find peace with having a piece of our hearts, our lives, missing, with that askewed feeling, without ourselves crossing the lines to depression, angry vituperation, or blame.
In Silver Linings Playbook, Jennifer Lawrence plays a young woman who (spoiler alert!) was having sexual difficulties with her husband, possibly due to her own depresson or bipolar disorder. After her husband is killed following his shopping trip to Victoria's Secret, ISO items to spice up their sex life, this character overcompensates by becoming hypersexual with everyone in her office.
|My watermelon-tini.Truly, a lovely drink.|
But, I asked for another kind of drink, originally,
and Luke did not have the ingredients on hand to make it.
|Susan and Peter.|
Among many people loving and missing Sid.
For sure something Sid would be doing, would want us all to do, is continue to fight for awareness about the problem of hoarding.
As the show Hoarders and Hoarders: Buried Alive enter the new season, know that hoarding, and its horrific effect on children forced to live in shame and squalor, has not magically vanished just because Sid is no longer battling against it. Some say there are as many as 15 million hoarders in the USA.
All it takes is a quick search on the 'Net to pull up dozens of stories. Here's a few:
- Looking at these pictures, you can't even recognize the kitchen as a kitchen
- Pinned under debris for two days
- How many birds does one person need?
- How about dead cats in the freezer?
- Hoarding neighbors can mean rats in YOUR yard
- Hoarding Will Get Its Own Spot in the DSM-5
If you love Sid (or hate hoarding), please, talk to people about it. The more people who understand this is a very real, very serious mental illness, the more hope that someday, there will be effective treatments for it.
Have things ever been askew for you after a loved one died?