The interesting part of this for me is that I happened to watch Oprah today. I usually don't get to see her show, but I got home early and caught it. Nate Berkus was on (it was a re-run) and he was talking to a mom who had lost her son. She told him how special dates (his birthday, the day he died) were terrifying for her. Nate (who I have never really paid attention to before, but have now fallen in love with) told her that after his partner Fernando died (in the Tsunami of 2005) he dreaded his upcoming birthday. When Fernando's birthday came and went Nate didn't feel sad. I've searched the Internet for a video of that conversation, and I did find this. (I spent a lot of time looking, so humor me and read it.) For those of you who aren't going to humor me, here's a snippet of what he said:
"What I really realized for me was that the date actually doesn't have any power. The memory had the power," he says. "When I decided that I wasn't going to just automatically be sad in August and just automatically be destroyed in December, all of a sudden August and December weren't scary to me."- Nate Berkus, Oprah.com
I think it's not just a coincidence that I happened to see that today, and then later realize the 8th didn't effect me.
My initial response was to feel guilty, but a split second later I thought, "Why?" I am not forgetting her. I don't love her any less. I'm not going to feel bad that I forgot about a day.
I am moving on, but I'm not leaving her memory behind. At the same time, I'm not using her memory as an excuse to hold onto my grief.