I’ve written several entries since my last posted one at
Thanksgiving. That day, the day of my last posted entry, I was able to see the
positive-by no means making me an optimist- but at least a realist for the day.
That day, I was able to stay away from the negativity- the dreaded ‘why me,’
‘why teddy.’ That day, I was able to acknowledge through the toughest year in
my life, through the most unimaginable loss, through the sadness that will
follow me every step of life- that even after all of that, I still had a lot to
be thankful for. My husband, our families, the kindness of true friends, great
bosses and employers, the generosity of complete strangers, sometimes Tuna, and
last but certainly least, my Roycie Noodle. 
And I’m so glad I was able to get that post out- capture that very real
moment, because it got ugly after that.


I was on my way to the cemetery and stopped at a red light
when I looked in my rear-view mirror. I watched like a creeper as a woman, a
beautiful mother, giggled with her beautiful young son. They were singing and
dancing- and unknowingly stealing the small amount of happiness I still had
left in my heart. I wrote two pages about that crushing moment. Two pages on
how tough the holiday are for those that have lost someone. Two pages on the
dreaded ‘firsts’. Two pages on painful memory triggers- how you eat an
English muffin and think of an English muffin- and how I eat an English muffin
and think it was my last meal before I was told he was going to die. Two pages
on how you look at a sweatshirt and think it’s a sweatshirt- and how I look at
a sweatshirt and think that the last time I wore this my son was alive, that he
touched it, that part of him are still on it. 
Uplifting right?


Well, I held on to that post and some others- that one, in particular, was very tough for me-
and I knew it would be tough for others- especially at Christmas. It was a very
painful ‘why me,’ ‘why teddy’ moment-or who am I kidding, at two pages, more
than a moment. So I held on to it –maybe to post at a later date- but not at
that time…. it didn't seem right. So instead I “celebrated” Christmas faking my
happiness as usual- and doing a damn fine job I must add. Because that’s what
the toughest of tough mothers do- we fake it. We fake it because it’s our
heartache- our tears- our loneliness- and if we didn’t fake it- we would never
make it. If God really does only give us what we can handle- he doesn’t only
think, but he knows I’m a badass. I’m a superhero’s Mommy and world renowned
badass- Mary Badass Fish aka Teddy’s Mom.


And this badass got through Christmas- without a mental
breakdown. I was truthfully proud of myself. But on my way home from my
in-laws, I checked the status of another little menkes boy. I had missed two
updates- so I started with the first….his mother had been told her little boy
was going to leave her soon, and the second…he left.  And there it was- my mental breakdown. Not
only did I cry, but I sobbed- for hours. I couldn’t fake it- the pain came
rushing back – like the day I was told Teddy was going to leave us- like the
day I watched him take his very last breath. And suddenly I was back in my
rear-view mirror again. How could anyone be happy when another mother lost her
little boy- on Christmas Eve nonetheless- when her son, and my son, were gone?
But then I saw her- that badass mother. I watched her fake it as people came up
to her in church- as people hugged her- as people probably said stupid
insensitive things- as people silently thanked God that it wasn’t them- that
they weren’t the ones kissing their child goodbye. I watched her fake it as she
gave the eulogy and said goodbye to her superhero.  She was a badass- an amazing one- and eight
months after saying goodbye- I’m not okay- and neither is she…but we will make
it- both of us- we will fake it- and we will remember our sons- cause we are a
couple of badasses that have found each other- and we are just getting warmed
up. That gives me some my happiness back.


In my rear-view mirror I see a smiling Royce- smiling a very
familiar smile. I also see Teddy and his buddy TJ flying high- superhero high.


I love you to the moon and back Teddy Fish. I will never let
anyone forget you.