Three Years Later
There isn't a day that goes by that I don't miss her. Today I miss her a little more.
I received a text shortly after my Saturday shift start that said had a stroke. Mom kept telling me to just wait until after she met with the neurologist. For some reason, I just couldn't accept it. I just had a feeling that I needed to get home...now. I called my boss. She gave me permission to to leave early and then come in late on Monday.
I ran home, haphazardly through some clothes together (I could always borrow clothes from Mom if I needed to), grabbed my cage of nesting cockatiels and hit the road. I never could have known that in less than 12 hours my life would be turned upside down.
Dealing with seeing my dad in that condition and knowing things did not look good should have been the worst thing I had to face that day.
Before the day was done:
1) I saw the most terrifying thing I have *ever* witnessed
2) Was 100% certain I was going to die. I don't mean that metaphorically. I was sure I was going to not survive.
3) I survived being picked up, chewed up and spit out by an F4 tornado...in a rental car.
4) I watched in horror as my mom didn't survive the F4 tornado in her car
5) Was in total denial that mom was dead, because if Amy and I were okay, and really a merciful God would not take her away from us with Dad in such bad shape.
6) Spent over two hours, on the side of the road, covered in debris, looking at my mom's car, wondering how I was going to tell dad, and how the hell we were going to make it through this.
7) I moved out of the way when my sister attempted to drag he scumbag taking pictures of mom's car (with her still in it) out of the car via the window. Had she reached the car, I would have let her beat the hell out of him. (In my defense, the Highway Patrolman moved out of her way too. It was my Aunt who stopped her.)
7) Saw with my own eyes the completely destroyed Township Building and Lake High School
8) Had to basically be forced to check myself in to the ER
9) I learned that it isn't so easy to wash safety glass out of my hair.
10) I ended up staying in a maternity ward room and wearing scrubs because all my clothes were covered in debris.
The hardest thing I have ever had to do is tell my dad our mom, his wife, was dead. Dr. Narra couldn't promise me that alone wouldn't kill him. I can't even begin to tell you how terrifying and horrible that felt. I can't even begin to put that feeling into words.
Things were really bad for a while. Life wasn't easy, and I thought it would never get better. It of course did. Many things have changed since then. Some were bad, but others have been really good. Yes there are still bad days. The nightmares still happen. I can't watch tornado coverage on TV. I used to love storms. Now I am not so much a fan. There aren't anxiety attacks when the storms come through, but it is far from my favorite thing. I am angry that she (and also my dad who we lost a little over a year later), is missing out on our lives. There are so many people she will never meet. She won't be there for all the moments in my life your mom is *supposed* to be there for. She isn't there to call when Mark's girls are driving me crazy, and I have no idea what to do. She won't be there if/when I get married. She isn't there to call when I just need to talk to her. It sucks. It isn't fair. And it is perfectly okay for me to say that. I no longer regret surviving. However, I still wonder why I was able to walk away and she wasn't. I don't understand so many things that happened that night, and I it sucks to know I probably never will.