I have gone out of my way to avoid the parking lot of our doctor's office for two years and two months. I'd park on the other side of the building and walk the long way to get to my appointment. As I approached the glass doors to the dreaded parking from the opposite entrance I'd avoid looking at one specific tree. This tree marked the spot where Jeff died in my arms. Under the branches of this tree, in our family car he took his last breaths.
I did not think I'd EVER be able to enter that parking lot again. So every time appointments were scheduled, only to be attended late because of my pathway of avoidance.
A few days ago the kids and I were running so very late for a visit with our doctor to deal with a run of pinkeye through our house. I sped like I was competing in the Indy 500 only to be stuck in a line-up behind an accident. I had planned to park in our now usual parking area to maintain my avoidance of the scene of our loss but as I screeched around the corner, I was suddenly struck by just how silly this was. I was going to be even later for an appointment because I was afraid. Afraid of what? The worst had already happened in that lot. Was I afraid I would relive losing Jeff all over again? I already do this on a regular basis. Was I scared that I would have a panic attack, not be able to breathe, lose the plot right there in the parking lot? I didn't have this luxury. My kids were with me. I am bullet-proof when my kids need me to be strong for them.
So, in a split second decision I faced that lot down. I didn't park in the exact spot as I had that day in March 2008. But I parked nearby. I grabbed Liv's hand, picked Briar up and ran for the doors. To anyone watching I would have looked like any other mother late for an appointment. They wouldn't have known of the demon I had just conquered. My triumph was unnoticed by anyone but me. My visit to that lot was so very quiet and quick - so unlike the day Jeff died.
I visited the scene of the crime. I'm okay. We're okay. We'll live. I will never forget or enjoy the memory of that day but it can't hurt me more than it already has.