Today is a hard day.
I vividly remember the Sunday before the fire. It embodies everything that was normal before the fire. Dan and I were in my classroom, he studying up on the Substitution Method to take his test Tuesday, me finishing up decorating and planning. Because I was a special education teacher, I wouldn't have students in my class that first week as we needed to get some baseline testing. We were excited for his cousin's arrival. We would be meeting them downtown for dinner and then heading to Lewis Black. It was normal, lighthearted, exciting. I felt like everything was coming together (teaching, baby, life).
The next morning I would wake up and be excited to be at school. I can remember walking down the hallways talking to the other staff members, anxious to share my knowledge, my enthusiasm for kids. It had been a long couple of weeks, though, and I needed a massage. I called the place in Bown Crossing and scheduled for that afternoon. It was the most relaxed I had felt in months.
I remember nearly every detail of those last 48 hours. That was before.
Instead of coming together, though, everything disintegrated. Teaching is now a distant memory. Our home is fading further and further into the recesses of my mind. Normal is now fatigue and dizziness, empty walls and bare cupboards. Normal is hoping I can get out of bed in the morning and that I won't need a nap. Normal is walking into my house and thinking "What the F-" (excuse my language). "How did we get here?"
I am anxious for this year to be over. I am ready for August 26th. A year ago will no longer distinguish the old normal from the new one. It will just be a part of our lives now. It's the end of the inferno and the beginning of the ascension.