The second birthday without Lauren. Another year older, another year since I've last seen her, hugged her, laughed with her.
Despite all attempts otherwise the black crows started circling a few days beforehand. I filled the days with friends and family but still the void was there, unescapable.
I guess, if I had to compare, it was easier than last year. I didn't have a direct comparison to the year before when Lauren was here, because she wasn't. But just writing that makes me feel a bit sick.
Life is solidly Before Lauren, With Lauren and After Lauren. And that makes me sad. I thing back to birthdays With Lauren, mine and the kids, and I was so happy and content. I still have plenty of happy moments, but the contentment is gone, possibly forever.
I did have lovely birthday moments, plenty of fun with friends and family and I definetly savour them more as I am aware that they are fleeting. I relish every small laugh every hug every kind word.
Birthdays are a natural time for reflection I am so busy now, of my own volition. I'm unable or unwilling to sit still. Birthday give time to pause, and into that pause floods the feelings and memories. I need to make time for them, time for Lauren, to sit with those feelings and allow myself to immerse with them, but just for a short time, Too long would lead to drowning,
As always the lead up to the day, the event, was more traumatic than the day itself. Although I felt untethered beforehand, my actual birthday was a lovely day of family, football and food. I feel blessed to have so many people around me who love & care for me and I hope to never take that for granted.
The next big hurdle looms, December. But as I get through each landmark date I get stronger for the next.
Time moves on, irrelevant to our feelings. We just have to seize the moments as the flow though our fingers.