This morning I was checking my email. OneDrive sent a (very rare) email saying I had memories from "this day" to check out. I stopped using their software for photo backups in late 2019 so I haven't been on it in quite awhile.
So I downloaded the app and logged in, and instantly, I could see a thumbnail in an album I don't ever remember seeing, and I caught a glance at those mesmerizing eyes, her luscious, wet lips & the usual milky drool hanging out of the corner of her mouth, and she was half tipped in the photo with an anxious "help Mom, I think I'm stuck on this blanket" look. I remember taking that particular picture while we were still in bed, and she was barrel rolling to the edge of the bed until I quickly "saved her" and she'd let out her deep giggles, drool everywhere, and then she barrel rolled back over to me on the other side of the bed, over and over. I didn't get a video. I've said it before but I got so few videos and pictures of her because I was just living in the moment with her. I'd share the pictures but they're of Evee and I playing after a feeding, and I'm shirtless, obviously. So I'm keeping them to myself.
February 10th, my birthday was on a Sunday that year. The time said 10:43AM on one of the photos. The Super Bowl must have been the week before, otherwise we'd already be out of bed. (I'm typing as I think, sorry for rambling, I hope you're getting used to it)
Anyways, next to the 3 photos were a few screenshots, most irrelevant. Every photo from my camera was set to backup. (usually annoying to sort through) Except one of the photos was a screenshot of lyrics to the song "Friday, I'm in Love" by The Cure.
Oh my Gosh. The pieces left of my heart sank into my stomach. I didn't have cable for awhile when we first moved in. I had a few handful of DVD's and one of them was this romantic comedy that I had bought years ago, actually I think my parents may have bought it for me as a birthday gift because it was a Valentine's Day movie I had wanted to see. It has Bradley Cooper in it, I can remember that off the top of my head. (he's a cheater in the movie, what a waste)
This song, "Friday I'm in Love", I loved it before the movie but the song is in this movie, in some significant part or maybe a few times? I watched it with my son as a baby in 2013 and Evee & I rewatched that movie over a dozen times. I would dance with her in my arms around the room and sing the song and certain lyrics that were relevant to her "firsts" or to our life together…
"Monday you can hold your head
Tuesday, Wednesday, stay in bed"
"Always take a big bite
It's such a gorgeous sight
To see you eat in the middle of the night
You can never get enough
Enough of this stuff
It's Friday, I'm in love"
And I've listened to the song after she died and certain lyrics, or maybe just the song in general, made me kick it off the list right away.
But I spent my expectedly lonely, painful, empty 33rd birthday today in my bedroom, scouring that OneDrive for other things I may have missed, and listening to "The Cure".
I was so into looking through photos, trying to find more of her. I wasn't really paying attention to the lyrics or the song. I was just stressing myself out and seeing memories that still hurt to think about or watch. Hours went by with the song on repeat and then I took a break, my back was killing me, sweating profusely, felt like a panic attack was coming. Of course.
And I sat on the floor... (oh, I had her tub of belongings open too so I could smell her)
And then I heard the music and listened to the lyrics…
And Sunday always comes too late
But Friday never hesitates…"
"Monday you can fall apart
Tuesday, Wednesday break my heart
Thursday doesn't even start
It's Friday, I'm in love."
"I don't care if Monday's black
Tuesday, Wednesday, heart attack
Thursday, never looking back..
It's Friday, I'm in love."
Then the panic attack slowly started coming on. For nearly 3 years, when the sheriff's office investigator asked me to recall the days, the day, and the night leading up to her death and then to recall that morning; when Del (Bigtree) asked on my "Highwire" interview; when I told my story to legislators; all of the different types of interviews; to my therapist and my psychiatrist and everyone else… I just said that when I came back from the bathroom and walked into the bedroom, I did a funny little dance-type walk, and I was singing "some sort of song, like maybe, "time to get up". I watched my interviews, every time I describe that morning, it's just been this one brief, insignificant moment, right before I started screaming her name because she wasn't responding to it, and for 3 years I was unsure of what I was really saying or singing.
For three years, nothing came to me, it's really just been a blank moment, so short, just seconds, alone walking from bathroom to bedroom, so irrelevant, I thought, that I never focused on getting the memory back. Clearly, I knew I was singing something, I usually was.
Today though, I paid attention to those lyrics and the song for a couple of minutes, not even, and it all came flying back to me, unexpected, out of nowhere, my brain suddenly caught this, sent it flying down to my lower stomach to have to deal with. A sucker punch full of shock, trauma, & sorrow that I thought I was pretty used to.
It was a Friday morning, March 1st, 2019, and I walked out of my bathroom singing the exact phrase to the exact melody... "it's Friday I'm in love", twice, then I tried and fumbled on the other lyrics until I called out her name for the first time. "Eveeee"
"Eveeeeee time to wake upppp" "Evee?"
"EVEE!!" "EVEE, WAKE UP, EVEE, EVEE, EVEE."
"EVEEEEEE EVEEEEE OH MY GOD WAKE UP, EVEEEEEEEEE OH PLEASE GOD, NO"
I know all about serious trauma and true shock, state-dependent learning, your mind taking over and storing certain memories in your subconscious to protect you. Ha, I've told people over and over that my mind didn't store a thing.
Why wouldn't my mind protect me from the eerily vivid memory of still hearing myself screaming her name that morning? You know, when I'm driving and listening to music, putting myself through hell just to try and cry it all out, I intentionally put myself back there, and I scream her name just like that, in my car, all alone. I actually have a different voice, the tone significantly changes after this type of crying, this wailing which I have talked about before but the same sound of absolute horror in my voice is forever stuck inside of me, for the few times here and there when I punitively force myself to relive my worst, the worst tragedy, trauma, and loss that exists for a parent or any person. It's a self-advised healing technique I'm trying. (dry sarcasm)
From the study that is linked above:
"Whereas intrusive thoughts are defined as painful memories of the trauma, the yearning symptoms are defined as intrusive, unfulfilled wishes that the deceased person be present. Both kinds of symptoms may be defined as permanent memory states. With respect to PTSD, this manifests itself as negative sensory or cognitive-emotional content of the traumatic experience. Meanwhile, in PGD, the permanent memory states are the bittersweet memories of the deceased person and other related experiences, and their subsequent cognitive-emotional appraisals."
Why the song, why that moment right before? And why did it randomly come back today? I heard the song back in 2019, maybe accidentally after that, I don't know.
I was trying to ignore "getting down" today but I need to accept the fact that the anniversary of Evee's death is right after my birthday, and so until my "last official hurrah", the day most people look forward to celebrating every single year, mine went with Evee. She traveled mighty heavy to Heaven.
Needless to say, this is how I spent this year's birthday. Sick. Pain. Stress. Loneliness. My 4 best friends. Bawling so hard that I twisted a muscle in my side that will not untwist. I thought I had perfected my "YouTube chiropractor lessons".
And I feel a weight lifted after posting about my day and how it went. Because when you don't talk to anyone, anymore, and you're not as present and as open as many are used to you being, they want to know what's up, and it's getting pretty hard (and kind of exhausting) to answer the question "what's wrong"...
...when nothing is right.