I just realized that I missed "the date". It's been eight years since my mother passed away, and this is the first time I actually sailed past the date, remembering it only a few days later.
I believe last year I was moody, and couldn't figure out why - but then, as usual, I remembered.
Maybe it's because my dad is usually sick this week, physically. He gets so upset and depressed, still, that he actually makes himself physicially sick. Even last year, only months after his remarraige, he was sick, again. I knew why, although he didn't say.
Every year we gather. My brother, my father and I. That is all that's left. An orphaned bunch, missing the glue that we all once depended on to connect us all, the fourth person that made us the typical American family - who made us complete.
This year was no different, except that I don't believe it was conscious. We gathered for an outing last weekend - a time for fun and laughter - only before we did it to forget, or to ease the pain of being alone with our thoughts and memories.
This time, it didn't occur to me that it was that time again. I didn't realize that we were gathering again - out of habit now, and not out of a sense of feeling loss, or as a distraction to the sadness.
And while I'm glad that we're all moving on, finally - I can't help feel a bit guilty that I forgot her this week. And I'm afraid I won't remember to tell my girls are very cool their grandma was, and how much she loved them, even though she never knew them.
After nearly 8 years though, I finally put a picture of her up in my house. I could finally bear it. So, there's hope :)