5 years ago today my mom, Marcia Goldstein died of Multiple Myeloma. On the death of her anniversary, I like to write about the shit I'm going through, in the hopes it might help anyone else who's going through shit too.
I'm not exactly sure how this started, but someone decided that we should celebrate stuff in our lives based on 5 year intervals.
- "Happy 5 year anniversary to the lovely couple!"
- "Happy 5 years being sober, you former lush!"
- "Happy 5 year college reunion! Congrats on not living in your parents' house anymore!"
- "Your business is 5 years old and you're not yet bankrupt! Congratulations!"
We seem to celebrate everything in our lives in segments of 5 years, 10 years, 20 years, and yet the one thing that we don't celebrate at all? Ever? Someone's death.
- "Happy 5 year anniversary of the worst day of your entire fucking life!"
SomeEcards doesn't even have an e-card for this...believe me, I checked.
And no, I don't think it's actually something that *should* be celebrated, but also it's just weird. It's weird that in every other aspect of my life, 5 years of something...really, almost anything, deserves a cake, or a card, or goddamned bouquet of helium balloons. And to top it off, I have the odd situation of having my wedding anniversary mirror my mom's death-a-versary. I've been married for 5 years (hooray) and my mom's been dead for 5 years (boo!). It seriously brings new meaning to the phrase: good news/bad news.
My sister sent me two mp3's a couple of months ago. They were voicemails that my mom had left her that she managed to save from her cell phone. I stared at them for 3 days in my inbox. I opened her email probably 7-10 times each of those days, looked at the files, hovered my mouse over "download" and then clicked out of the message. I hadn't heard my mom's voice in 5 years and I wasn't sure I wanted to hear it again. I wasn't sure what sort of door that would open for me. I wasn't sure if I would cry. I wasn't sure if I *wouldn't* cry...and then what that would mean. I wasn't sure if I would hear her say my sister Robyn's name, and then feel sad that she wasn't saying my name instead. I wasn't sure if her voice would sound exactly as I remembered...or if it would sound strange to me. I wasn't sure if I would listen once, and then never listen to them again. Or if I would play them non-stop...every day, again and again. I wasn't sure.
And then I just said fuck it.
I downloaded the files, hit play and there she was.
"Hi Robs...it's yer mom..."
Exactly as I had remembered. There she was.
And she sounded happy, and her voice was strong, and her words were clear, and there wasn't cancer and sickness and hospitals dripping from everything she said. She sounded fine. And my sister was probably fine at the time. And I was fine, and my brother was fine, and my dad was fine, and maybe even on the day she left that message it seemed like everything was going to be ok.
And of course I smiled, and I cried and I hit "play" a few times so that I could make the moment last. I wanted, even just for just a few minutes, to remember a time when I got messages like this too. When I had a mom I could call on the phone and laugh with, or cry with, or even be bitchy with as I counted the moments until I could get off and get back to watching Beverly Hills 90210 or some shit. Back when things were ok. Back when I thought she might get better. Back before everything changed.
5 years ago today.