And now I’m going to have to eat my words a little bit. Well, not eat them, because it’s not that what I just wrote earlier about being grateful is wrong or untrue (nor are any of the things I’ve written about gratitude in this process). It’s just that there are these awful feelings that exist right alongside of the gratitude. I’m learning that that is OK. As I’ve told some of my fellow grieving mothers, it is OK for us to be grateful for the universe and yet hate it at the same time. It just has to be.
Because here’s the thing. I am grateful that Hudson’s spirit has had such an impact on the world. I’m grateful that so many people know about her and will remember her. But I’m only grateful for those things because this is my reality. In this reality, Hudson is dead, and I can either recognize and be grateful for the goodness that has come out of this awfulness, or I can crawl into bed and never get back out. Those are my choices, as I see them. And the second one is not an option for me.
But in the world I want, the world I long for, the world I still have to wake up from sometimes (even as I sit here writing, I sometimes look at what I am writing about Hudson and am struck again, and again, and again, by the mind-boggling fact that she is GONE)… in that world, none of you has ever heard of Hudson, or me, for that matter. No library books have been donated in her name, no bracelets are being worn to help share her story, no funds are being given in her name to a hospital and a school and a national park, no acts of kindness are being done on her behalf on her birthday. In that world, none of that exists, because in that world, Hudson is still alive and there is no need for any of this. In that world, I’m sitting here right now putting up pictures from her birthday party and her visit with Santa—I’m putting up pictures of ANYTHING that happened with her after May 13, 2010. In that world, I’m not sitting here writing, crying, and wondering why this happened to us and when this pain will ever soften.
Some days it’s harder than others to find that One Good Thing. And even when I can find it, I sometimes still just want to curse it, because goddamn it, I don’t want the One Good Thing. I want Hudson. I just want Hudson.