There have been a lot of thoughts I have shuffled through lately. There are memories that are so stark and other memories that when brought to mind are difficult to believe are real. I have to think I have always done that, selected memories for my collection and sorted others into the discard pile. I think the only difference is that I realize it now.
It reminds me of becoming aware of a noise that has existed in and around me for a while and suddenly I focus on it. The refrigerator, the clunk of the water pipes, a ticking clock whose voice suddenly , annoyingly comes to the forefront. Unfortunately the silence is loud too. A particular silence is overwhelming. There is a voice whose absence shouts at me.
We are doing the best we can. I say that a lot and I don’t even know what the means or how to measure that! From early youth I was conditioned that you were supposed to stay busy. I enjoy being busy with things I like. I am easily distracted when the project or activity is not something I don’t like. Things I used to like to do are not as interesting as they used to be. So at a time in my life when I expected to be settling in with those things I do best, I find myself searching again. And maybe that was the way it was going to be anyway and because I was not “this age” yet, I did not know.
It is a sad convenience that I have something to blame it on. Other older people who spin off into eclectic interests have to make up their own excuses.
I probably have lost some of my inner censor. The outspoken aspect of me is more outspoken, my anger is less tempered, my reaction less veiled. I probably misuse the phrase “life is too short” to justify some of my more obnoxious behaviors and attitudes.
For the past three weeks I have revisited a lot of things concerning the day my son died and the things that happened afterwards. I have been very miserable. I know there are records filed here and there concerning the accident and medical records that documented his condition. I know that some who participate in the sport of climbing have worked to try and educate others concerning safety. I know the park has done their best to inform and remind climbers of the risks they take.
I know that accidents still happen and families are left to muddle through as we are. Young people try out risky behaviors because they are young and that seems to be a part of that time of life. I know. I have talked myself through all of this again. I saw and felt it coming and there was no where to run.
If the wash of it were only to hit me, I might be alright with it – but those who depend on me still – suffer through my moods and tears. I can’t go into a cave and hide till it passes.
We are here with the rest of the world. Our spouses, other children if we have them, sisters, brothers, parents are all out there too depending on us in ways great and small. And I don’t know about you but I am still tired and so are they. There is a friction that builds up – static electricity of a sort that discharges at random. The good face we are tying to put on around each other is as thin as eggshell.
Bad habits got worse with them too. The things that frustrated me before frustrate me more. I expected them to change for the better because of our son’s death. But they didn’t! And sadly, neither did I. Not really. It takes energy for that effort and I just haven’t had it. Oh I’ve changed, but it is for the worse.
Depression has made every physical ailment hurt more and arthritis is setting in insidiously. Plantar fasciitis has developed in my left foot. I eat without thinking and my mid section is thicker with harmful visceral fat. We have had months of rain which has required more creativity to be active and I have failed in that creativity. And all of this probably would have happened anyway, but the terrible grief I live with seems a great scapegoat.
So why am I talking about this? I don’t think I am alone in this. We – everyone on this planet are involved in greater and lesser degrees with a struggle of coping with life on this planet. I read from the news there are places being torn apart from within and yet we are simply dealing with the weather.
I am not going to tell myself that it will all be okay. I won’t make myself any false promises. It will change – one way or another. Other problems and concerns are coming. But for today-what about today? I know for sure, without a doubt, I really am not alone.
We are all struggling. The problems may be different and where we are on this road of grief but we are here together.