Mami died one year ago today. It feels surreal. 365 days have passed.
Mami was one of a kind, and a year later, the pain of losing her is still fresh, still raw, still difficult to process. There's not a day that passes when I don't miss her voice or wish she could've been here to witness something or other. I don't cry every day any more, but at the slightest, unexpected trigger, I still feel the grief encompassing me. And that's what grieving is -- an ache that usually stays on simmer but can boil up to the surface without any warning.
I want to honor my mother's memory today by wholeheartedly thanking the people who got me through what was the most difficult day of my life.
My siblings. I can't imagine having survived my mother's death without my brothers and sister to accompany me through the grief journey we've each experienced this past year. Louis, Diana, Jorge, I know Mami would be proud of how connected we are, and how much we genuinely enjoy being together. I count among my siblings my loving (former but forever) stepsister Patty, whom Mami helped raise (especially through adolescence), my brother-in-law Larry, and sisters-in-law Roe and Sinyee, who've been part of my family for so many years.
My husband. How many husbands love their mothers in law? Mine did. They were great friends. They could laugh endlessly at a joke and even bicker like the oldest of friends. I know my husband can still hear my mother's voice say "Ay, Hans!" in his mind on a regular basis. My husband has had to put up with a lot this year, and I can only say it's a testament to our marriage that we've managed to rise above all of my mood swings, disregard for domestic duties and my moping and lounging around the house.
My friends Jen, Madeleine, and Lourdes, who dropped everything to rush by my side, make me lunch, get in bed with me and cry, and show me that it's possible to . My countless dear friends from around the country who called me right away upon hearing the news, especially my life-long friend Ruth Ann, who spent many a night in my house and actually knew Mami.
My three children, who hugged, nursed, cried, and cuddled with me after learning they had lost their Abuela.
My mother's best friends Cacha and Tully, who had known Mami since birth, for reminding us that Mami was an amazing, unconditional friend.
My friend Chris, who brought Delia home safely, so I wouldn't have to get in a car to pick her up from preschool.
My close community of online friends, particularly those on LiveJournal, many of whom I've corresponded with since 2001, who sent me the sweetest of emails and comments after I posted about Mami's death.
And all of you Urban Mama readers, lurkers and commenters alike, who've read my cathartic ramblings this past year. Thank you for providing me an outlet to share my grief.