I don’t want to talk about this out loud, not really. Or maybe I do, all the time. I don’t want to be rude or ungrateful to anyone, all the people in my life who are there for me, and are supporting me through this pregnancy. I accept all of that with love, and I’m so grateful. But none of them is my mom. It’s always going to be hard. Every new thing starts it over again. My baby shower will be lovely, but it will be sad too. There’s no way for it not to be sad. It’s okay for it to be sad, and that doesn’t mean it’s not also happy.
I read this book, Rosalie Lightening, a graphic memoir by Tom Hart, about losing his daughter. Talking about the process of creating the book, he said:
“I felt that, to get some sort of understanding, I’d have to put everything into book form. But, you know, you quickly realize that you never ‘understand’ what happened. Instead of understanding, or something as trite as ‘moving past it,’ the best you can do, I think, is integrate the facts of what happened into your life — stop trying to deny it…”
It’s this integration that I’m trying to do. That’s what I did with making the cancer comics, and with these pregnancy comics too– all of my work in a way is trying to integrate my mom’s death into my life. I’ll never “get over it” but it can become part of my life in a way that isn’t breaking me apart every minute. Instead of struggling against it I’m struggling with it, in it. Does that make sense? It’s still hard, it’s still sad, terrible, tragic. But it has to be part of beauty too, and life.