the nicest thing.

November 15, 2014

puttering around to tidy the various piles that are my life, i found the rabbit slippers i made for maureen.  i remember when i gave them to her, she said it was the nicest thing anyone had ever done for her, and that made me both happy and sad–i was happy that i could do this thing for her, but so sad to think that this gesture on my part would trump anything in her life to that point.  granted, they were awesome slippers and i did make them with love, but we were barely friends at that point, it was just something i thought would be nice to do.  i suppose that’s when i started to think of us as becoming real friends.

anyway.

bunny slippers.

i’ll hide them in another stack and get on with the day now.

birthday.

November 14, 2014

today was my dad’s birthday, november 13.  i always thought that was sort of an awesome, dashing sort of bad-luck birthday.
some years i miss him more than others on his birthday;  this year, following so closely on the heels of the anniversary of maureen’s death…well, whatever.  better to focus on the positive and not just dwell in the grief, but it’s getting harder and harder to relate to my dad now that he’s been gone so long.  i don’t know how he’d feel about my life now, and that charming self-defense mechanism of poor memory has deleted so much of my childhood that it’s hard to dwell there, either.

a little adrift, i guess, and floating toward the weekend.  time marches on.

1947 librarian vocational film–seriously, this is exactly how i feel about my job!

not yet.

November 10, 2014

today i spent some time with a friend and then went out to dinner and drank a pitcher of margaritas with another.  i thought it might be time to clean out my email inbox because it’s been a year now and i should be able to file some things away, but i guess i wasn’t thinking about how much it would hurt to read those emails again.  how do you decide what is important to keep when someone is gone?

i read the email she sent me at 9, responding to my stupid email about finishing a book and wondering if she wanted to come have a “julie cooper date” with me for halloween, or if she wanted to just stay home or do something different;  then i read the suicide note and the practical details notes about the things she wanted me to take care of for her after she was gone.

i’m not ready.

i made it through the anniversary and i thought it wasn’t any worse than the regular grief i have every day, but i was wrong.  this is worse.  or just as bad, at least.  i don’t think anything could be worse.  it’s just grief and loneliness and missing her so fucking much.

sometimes i feel like i’ve made too much of this–like i could–and i’m pinning all my other social dysfunction on grief.  i don’t want to eat out on the story of sadness, but i’ve often felt that going out and not speaking of it or going out at all is just too much.  i know i’ve spent this year in some suspended animation and i know no one looks at me and says, “oh, her best friend killed herself.  that’s why she’s so sad.”  it’s been long enough that most people probably don’t think about it unless they’re reminded, and that’s fine.  i shouldn’t be there, but it’s okay that they are.

today catherine reminded me that i’m not alone in this.  said that when they were with me last week on the anniversary, it was on purpose.  they didn’t want me to have to be alone, but they weren’t going to mention it unless i wanted to bring it up.

maybe i should have brought it up.  i don’t know.

i mention it cavalierly while it cuts me open inside;  i say “what can you do?”  and “so it goes” and try to work the gallows humor that sustains me in public.  i spend a lot of time wishing that someone could save me from this sadness and loneliness and grief, but what could they do?  what can i ever ask of anyone and feel that i am entitled to expect?

but that’s more about me than about her, so i feel that much worse for my selfish grief and i wonder how long it will take, how much i have to drink, how long i have to pretend, how far i have to go before i can feel less broken.

that’s what i say to myself, over and over, though i know the power of self-talk and how bad this is.  my mantra, when i think of maureen, is “i am broken, i am broken, i am broken.”  i try to act like i mean it when i tack on the end–

“but i can be mended.”