When you died people assured me that time would help. And it has. No wait actually it hasn't. Actually, time can go somewhere.
I remember watching the clock in the hospital room. You know, the giant digital one on the wall I can only assume is there to determine the exact moment a baby is born. Or dies. Or is born having already died.
I remember being so confused watching the minutes pass. One after the next, so seamlessly. Like nothing had happened to warrant the whiplash that would forever become my life. It was almost laughable, as if sixty seconds were enough of a pause. As if you had never been. As if I'd imagined you.
Someone told me that time would help. Life will continue, Nora. Give it time.
Only that's the thing, I didn't want to.
There's this saying that time heals all wounds and I used to believe it. Now I see that time is no equalizer. Time heals nothing. It complicates and deprecates and separates, and we assimilate, and time gets all the credit.
Once a year I get out all your things and I hold them, and I smell them and I run my fingers over them and I think about the time that's come and gone and all I've missed and all I've yet to miss. And it hurts exactly as much as it did two years ago. I can assure you that time is no antidote. No goal. No cure. Time does nothing for the pain.
This pain mocks the time. Waves, like some passenger on a train and all the while I'm sitting just beside. And we pass the time like offerings, until the pain grows blunted and the time becomes the thorn. Until it's time that hurts the most.
And it won't stop treading and heaving and laying days between us. And these moments are filled without you here, and I can't believe it.
If there is a constant in this life it is time. Time is the vow and time is set. And when you die it is time who doesn't care. Time that persists and makes promises it can't keep. Time is what you wish for and what you can never get back. Time is the bell and the break. Time pays you no mind, and I can't forgive it.
One day, I hope to hold you with all other things. I hope to hold you when I'm holding your receiving blanket and not have to place one down. I hope to hold you with pink dresses and manicured toes and ladybug swimsuits. I hope to hold you with other baby girls and still be able to breathe. To keep my whole heart and mind open in those moments. Open and present and full, with all the pain and the love there together on the line.
And on that day I will know the truth. That all the numbers will have changed, but it was me who did the moving. It was me who made the promise. It was me who never stopped.
Time can offer its suggestions, I'll allow it. Try this way or that or the next but it won't matter. I could have died when you did, or eighty years from now and time will not have won. It will still be your face on the wall.
Say what you will for the time, it will pass. Forward. Onward. Next. But I am your mother and I assure you,
Time's got nothing on me.