I knew this from psychology and child development, but the last year has made me realize the degree to which different realities can exist.
Chiron was written up in a local weekly newspaper for his wins in the Preemie Power competition with an emphasis on it being Thanksgiving. A coworker made a copy of the article and put it in the copy room. I then received an email from another coworker that was congratulating us. The crux of it was:
I read the article and just kept forgetting to shoot you and email and say: WELL DONE!!!!!
With the exception of the loss of Aurelia, this year's holidays should be a HUGE night and day for your family and household than last year's at this time!"Our realities are so different that I just didn't know what to say, how to respond or even to think. First off, the ability to say "with the exception of the loss of Aurelia" like it was just some small bump in the road that was worked through completely blows my mind. Seriously? I may need an outside perspective to see if this is as odd a statement as I think it was. "With the exception of the death of your husband, wasn't this last year great?"
Then I started thinking about this idea of theory of mind and realized that our realities are even farther apart. What exactly was she praising me for? The subject was "Kudos to You & Chiron". For his prematurity? For having written him up? I think the honest answer is probably the fact that he won and then the fact that there was an article written on it, but praise for it kinda strikes me as odd.
I know that she never "lived" in the technical definition of surviving unattached to anyone else, but she definitely was alive. It just blows my mind that someone who knows what happened and not just the basic details could think that Aurelia's death would ever make sense as an aside. And this is someone who is a good and kind person who does care about us. It's not like she said it with intentionality. I think that's really what blows my mind. That it didn't cross her mind at all that I would feel oddly about that statement.
My reality sometimes makes me think I may be slightly crazy.