Thursday, March 6, 2014

Journal Entry - Dec. 22. 2000 (The Loose Fish Examines the Past)

It is Friday and Boojum, my cat, and I are curled on the fainting couch, listening to Mozart symphonies. It's a gray day in Blue Lake, CA, but the gas fire is cozy. The Christmas tree cheers me. My chest is heavy with the melancholy of Christmas, (my annual malady), but Harry died on November 25 of this year and the world is never to be the same.

It seems now there should be a course offered in grieving. I clearly don't know how. I fear I will come apart, like a jigsaw puzzle, dropped from a table, if I allow myself to feel. Anything. I'll scatter and never come together again. I call Sonny "Harry" (his real name) now because it helps keep him a bit distant from me. It hurts just a little less with the formal "Harry." Even though the more intimate "my Harry" resides there, than to say Sonny.

Oh see? It undoes me, I lose composure, just talking about it.

There. The movement of the symphony ends. A new movement begins. Boojum chews and licks her paw. Life goes on.

I have been in Blue Lake for five months now. I am hardly here at all yet. I've moved like a tourist through the public streets. It is only in my private house that I am at home, shuttered with Boojum from the world.

The process of flying apart or at least the fear of it, began before Sonny died. It started when I got sick myself and lay in a bed for five months with noone to care for me. The child in me gave up all pretense of responsibility and courage, went into severe withdrawal from the world. Sonny, sick for years with diabetes, went into the hospital for kidney transplant (which failed) and amputations; Erna went to Florida to tend her ailing father; Gloria, already in her 80's, couldn't climb my stairs; and Valerie, my business partner, was busy tending her work and mine. None of them were to be blamed, doing exactly what they needed to do, but it made me finally understand once and for all that I am truly alone. Not just some alienation neurosis, but ALONE.

This is not a oomplaint, not self-pity. It is an awakening, a "knowing" without doubt that nobody is going to "save" me, help me, keep my life from ekeing out of me-- but me. And I know I am truly free. All else chains me to people. Gratitude, indebtedness, codependence, illusions of intimacy that don't really exist. A string is pulled and the puzzle breaks apart...just like that.

A voice inside says "find a safe place and do what you want to do." Not what I should do or could or ought to do, but what I WANT to do.

Oh, dear. The future (albeit not terribly long) looms. Mozart lives. Let's hope I shall. RIP, dear Harry. You were so good to me, always. I loved you so dearly.

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