Joe bought me a little bottle of champagne the first night we were home. Eva was born four days prior, and was well taken care of at the hospital an hour away. Although a little celebration sounded fantastic, I ended up not drinking it that night because my bed sounded even better.
I then decided to save the champagne to commemorate Eva’s homecoming. But she came home in a teeny plastic box instead, and that didn’t seem like a celebration.
It sat in the fridge for months reminding me Eva never came home alive. Joe didn’t know this little internal association I had with the bottle of champagne. He offered it to me and I told him why it was still there. I saw his expression change, as he understood.
The other night I got really overwhelmed with the fast pace of life, feeling out of control and anger set in. Not the best time to have a drink, but I did. Without much thought, I popped that champagne and chugged it in haste. And then I bawled in a mess on the kitchen floor.
Darn those little visible reminders that taunt us. I still wanted to commemorate something with that bottle, in a way I guess I did. The utter lack of control and overwhelm we’ve experienced this last year. I’m not proud of it, but I think it’s the only way that trigger was going to go away.