November 15th 2010

Amanda Bussman
4 min readNov 14, 2020
Disney World (April, 1996)

It comes in splashes. The things I remember from 10 years ago. Incoherent bubbles of thought that overtake a solid moment and make it hard to breathe. The echoes of that day are something I have a feeling are going to haunt me for the rest of my life. Memories that are easier said to shake off than actually done.

My sister’s stupid “Live Forever” ringtone. My cousins perfect basketball baby bump. My sister sitting in the drivers seat questioning how to tell the kids. The incessant beeping of hospital machines. The soft voices of the nurses that made me so angry.

They’re flashes of that weekend.

That chilly Saturday afternoon getting out of my ASL class and going rollerblading with those perfect, vicarious and clumsy kids. The high school musical giggles. Listening to the Jonas Brothers. Pure oblivious bliss.

We had no real clue in that moment that the entire world was crumbling into unfixable pieces.

She was my mom.

My mama, my sunshine, my puzzle piece.
She was supposed to be there when I graduated from college, when I met a boy, when I figured out my mess of a life. I was supposed to be able to run to her with questions and confusion, everything that goes along with growing up.

It wasn’t supposed to end when I was twenty years old.

A decade has passed now since I’ve heard her voice. A decade of changes, accomplishments and heartbreaks. The rotation of people in my life isn’t what it was then, hardly anyone remains now that she knew.

A decade changes our lives in ways that we never expect in the moment.

They tell you that there are 5 stages to grief.

They say that you experience these five different emotions and then you accept it, you learn to heal, you find a way to live with it.

What they don’t tell you is about the scarring that it leave behind.
The way that a certain scent can trigger their laugh, a familiar looking sweater can make you do a double take, or how much you might crave the taste of a home cooked meal.

They don’t tell you that there are moments you’ll still hurt so badly that it feels like the event is taking place…

Amanda Bussman

If you're looking for a writing coach and someone who is working through generational trauma, you've come to the right place. OH! I hope you like Taylor Swift!