03 Jul Missing a Beat
I’ve been missing my mom a lot lately. I miss her often as it is but it has increasingly become difficult to manage the feelings most days. There is so much that reminds me of her and it’s hard to not turn a corner without thinking of her. Mostly, it has been intrusive thoughts of her passing and having flashbacks to everything that happened. It hits me in waves and stops me in my tracks.
Most people know by now that I was recently accepted into nursing school. Everything I learn reminds me of everything we went through with my mother. There were so many things cancer and professionals caused that was difficult to sit on the side and watch happen and feel so helpless that you couldn’t control or change anything. My mother deserved so much more and I was working hard, as an adult, to get to a point where I could help and give her everything. I’ll never not regret being too late with that.
This image, like all the others, came really organically and almost in a flash. I was sitting in class learning how to read an ECG. I remembered that when my mom came home the paramedics gave me a printed version of her ECG from the ambulance ride home. I kept it and placed it in a drawer. After my class, I went to my parent’s house and searched everywhere for it. It was nowhere to be found. Upset, I went home and looked for it there. Again, I couldn’t find it. I started to grow extremely frustrated and sad because, to me, that was a physical proof of my mother’s life.
Yes, obviously everything left behind, photos, videos, and myself included are all proof of her existence but this held a different weight to me. Remembering that I had her credentials to her medical records, I looked through her files and found scanned versions of several different ECG strips that were hers. Saddened that I didn’t have the original but satisfied that I had what I did. I looked through them and picked the one that spoke the most to me. I printed it out with gratitude and sat there thinking of a title.
All I could think of was missing her. Missing hearing her voice, seeing her smile, and hearing her laughter. I miss holding her hand and feeling her stroke mine with her thumb. Her calling me nicknames and telling me that she loves me. I just miss her more than anything in this world and it hurts. That’s when “Missing a Beat” felt right to me. A play on many things. Missing her heartbeat and the saying, “Don’t miss a beat.” both rang strong in my soul.
Creating is extremely cathartic to me and especially creating in a difficult time helps me to push through everything. I have a long way to go and the grieving never gets lighter. Some days it feels like it will never end and other days it feels like nothing has happened yet. Texting her, calling her, visiting her, and doing anything with her feels like such a dream and like I’ll be doing it tomorrow. All that I can continue to do is work towards healing the best I can in whatever way that looks like. Right now, it’s this. This is all I can muster some days.