(Jostain syystä tämä tuli nyt englanniksi, anteeksi, tällä kertaa näin. Lukekaa silti, jos jaksatte.)
Last year, around this time, no, maybe a month later, everything started to happen. It had been an economically challenging winter for us, with us both being students and having no extra income, but oh, we didn't mind that mostly, we were happy and grateful for what we had; the love, the warmth, being together, that was what kept us alive, kept us going.
Then one morning she -- our little girl, our loved one, less than two years old at the time -- had difficulty getting out of bed. A couple of mornings later she refused to walk at all. A few weeks afterwards it took her three hours in the morning to get going; three soppy, tearful hours of us wondering what was wrong and her being unable to explain her pain. Discovering she had juvenile arthritis was a shock. It was unbelievable that she, a girl who had started to walk as a ten-month-old, who had always been so lively, so full of motion, was ill with a disease you don't really associate with childhood at all. I couldn't believe it, I wouldn't accept it.
A little later, it was May I believe, we were already past the stage of shock and anger, were able to accept what was happening. I remember her first day of treatments in the hospital so clearly, him taking a day off from work, where he had only just started, us borrowing our neighbor's car to get to the hospital, spending the little money we had on hospital parking fees. Us waiting for her to wake up, sharing an orange for lunch because it really had been the only thing in our fridge you could easily grab and put in your handbag for later, and me eating the remaining bits of my daughter's lunch when the nurse wasn't looking, oh, I was so hungry. Right around that time we also discovered some water damage in our apartment, it was quickly fixed, so quickly in fact I didn't believe they got to the bottom of the problem, and so began our search for another place to live in.
I remember it all so clearly, I can still remember how I felt when all this started to unfold, but today, as I looked at some photos (these, and these, and these, especially) back from the time when everything was still alright, I couldn't help it, tears came running from my eyes. It seems silly, really, because everything is so good now, so much better than on that beautiful May day which we spent at the hospital, hungry with no money, sad because we didn't really know what to expect. Silly, because everything turned out okay: I've graduated, he's got his work now, we have a wonderful apartment, much better in fact than the one we had before, and most importantly, our daughter is doing so well, having had no infected joints after August (coincidentally, that's when we moved out of our old apartment, I can't help wondering if there's a connection there, although, clearly, the meds must help too).
So why the tears? Why the hurt inside? I feel, I truly feel, that around that time something fragile, something soft and lovely, within me broke. What happened has made me more cynical, and harder, and I find it difficult to connect to that soft spot anymore, to enjoy life as it is. Oh, I wish to, I wish to find that little spot within me that I believe is the source of goodness, of happiness, but it's so damn difficult. The joy isn't there anymore, the joy that makes life the most wonderful adventure, because something blocks it, prevents it from coming out.
I go about our daily life, doing much the same things that we have done before, that I've always done with my little, precious family, but mostly I feel nothing. No, that's not true. I do feel, but not as strongly as before, I don't dare, I'm scared of the next uneasy phase that may be about to hit us, because with life, you never know. It makes me cry, thinking about this, and I can't remember if I've really cried since last spring, I don't think I have, I haven't had the time to give into the tears (of hurt, of tiredness, of the loss of innocence) waiting somewhere behind my eyes to pour out, because I've had to cope, I've had to keep everything running.
These are good tears, I think.
They're the tears of remembering,
the tears of feeling, feeling that love break through so strongly,
tears of letting it break through. Happiness.
Hope you have a wonderful weekend full of revelations, beautiful and good.