I have a jar full of daffodils on the table, just like I did at this time last year.
Down all the streets of my park-like neighbourhood things are blooming: banks of snowdrops, little clutches of bright purple and yellow crocuses, the first starry yellow of the thousands of daffodils my neighbours plant. Spring is starting and I miss her. I miss her with an ache in my arms and my chest, just as I did this time last year.
It must be all these signs of spring. And the knowledge that her little brother has now outlived her. How can that be? I wonder. My two mysteries: the one who has left me, who is the memory of a soft weight in my arms, a cool cheek against my lips, slender baby hands resting against a still chest; and the one who squirms and rolls and who day-by-day grows bigger than his sister, who, whatever happens, will always now have been here longer.
I am having a hard week. I feel beaten down. I feel alone and lonely. I feel old. I feel sad. I feel scared and I feel anxious. I am so tired.
It is the start of spring and all the associations I have of spring and her. It is the feeling of living on borrowed time, the sense that having passed 29 weeks and 1 day, we have entered new and more dangerous territory. It is the endless grind of bereavement, the year and a bit of being ground down, of bearing all that weight, of carrying on and carrying on and carrying on.