Right now is a weird time for me. I’m in a new location, Texas with the cows, really huge horned cows, without access to friends in town, trying, really trying to make some friends here but my people are harder to find now I’m older, and my father died. After two weeks in ICU, we decided to let him go. His death was easy. A whisper of breath, a silence of the machines, the falling into himself that was disastrously elusive in his life. I was grateful for the mercy.
Coming home has been not so graceful, not so grateful, to end up – not so quiet – as I hoped.
I have been loud. Effectively loud. BECAUSE. The doctor, hospital, and funeral home could not coordinate the death certificate.
“Yes, he died,” I told everyone.
“I was there when the machines stopped. A doctor stopped by and declared him dead. What, you can’t find the doctor? Did he die too?”
“What do you mean – it’s been two weeks. Dad’s dead. Where’s his body? Where’s the paperwork?”
Yep. I started out professionally cool, then curt, throwing around some of my degrees and threatening with the barrister cousin, days later I became loud, yelling under my breath and finally, into the phone. By some mysterious power, and no one will tell me what kind of power, my father’s body made its way to the crematorium. I need to see my hairdresser for the extra grey hairs.
The yelling continued; upon my return to North, North Dallas, I found out that my classes had been canceled or I had been replaced. Yes, that lovely national organization, espousing religious values, gave my class, the one I trained for over two months without pay, to another teacher while I was away tending to my family. They didn’t tell me. I had to write an email and wait for their response. A pox on them. I mean frogs, boils, and locusts on their facility.
(Truthfully, I expected to stumble with the class initially; I had been upfront with my supervisor telling her of my inexperience but a willingness to train. Still, a pox on them.)
With all this distress, I have restarted watching horror movies. Finished with the big shark extravaganza, I watch vampire movies in the afternoons. I don’t know why it helps, but it does. Perhaps bloodsuckers, like the sharks, have some profound, blocked message about grief or suggest a clue about my internal state. I don’t know yet – stay tuned.
The panic attacks at night come and go. Nightmares, full of people I love attacked by a faceless murderer, rouse me out of sleep multiple times a night. This rite of passage, being without parents in a chaotic and alienating time, emphasizes how alone I am in this world and the importance of connections. Some days, I enjoy the revolting troll stalking me on Facebook and my blog. Easy enough to block her and report her to the authorities. Should I send her a thank you note for the opportunity to feel powerful? A pox on her, wait, someone already poxed her!
So, let’s all get connected. Maybe not gracefully or quietly but gratefully. Sending lots of love to my friends and supporters. Say hi below! And send job leads …
(Image courtesy of morguefile.com. Thank you.)