The moment the word CANCER enters your world; nothing is ever the same again. Someone who has experienced cancer described life this way; there is the BC-before cancer life and then there is the AD-after diagnosis life. If you have never had cancer touch your life this concept is beyond comprehension. Cancer changes everything it touches. If you are the close immediate family it affects you too. You are what I call “co-survivors.”
The death of a child has two stages as well and they are almost the same as cancer. They are BD-before death and AD-after death. I have said it many, many times before but the “ME” that was BD died the day that Heather died. From the moment AD I became a new “ME.”
For the new me, October is a very difficult month. Many things factor into this being such an odd time of year. Heather began feeling better and her blood levels had raised so that she could once again begin driving her car. Of course after not being allowed to drive for 6 months she was thrilled and would drive herself to the family pizza place that is a mile from the house. Our family went to see and meet Amy Grant and I was busy with all the details with The Ball. It was the first time in months that we finally began to feel like life was back to normal.
Then Heather died and October became the halfway point. I cannot explain why the 6-month mark is so important to me but IT IS. I get the feeling it always will be this way and it is okay and it is my right to feel this way. The horrible acts of the cemetery took place in October as well. Of course one more insult to an already devastating injury. October is just not a good month for me and I am not sure that it ever will be a good one.
A good friend of mine recently shared with me why they thought October is so difficult for me and the light came on. Not only is October all the things to me personally, but it is also the beginning to the holiday season. We begin getting Halloween with Thanksgiving and Christmas all added together, beginning in October. The holiday ads begin and everything focuses on the “family” holidays coming up. There are four major holidays back to back to back to back. It is the only time of the year where there is never more than 30 days from each holiday. The most important holidays of the entire year take place in a 4-5 week timeframe. Those would be Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. Everyone builds up to these holidays and they are the events that memories and legends and traditions are made of. These holidays are great and fun and wonderful except…when your child is missing. Her husband and children that should be crowding your kitchen, house and dinner table are all missing. In one moment, all my future holidays were damaged and they can never be repaired.
The fall season is difficult for many different reasons but mostly because it simply is. I have no other explanation than that and honestly I don’t need one.