Grief is such a shape-shifter. I continue to do well, to hover in a more peaceful place, and I am so grateful for that. But I find myself overtired, reactive and overstressed, emotional. I tend to get that way at this time of year as a rule anyway for some reason, but I have to wonder how much of it is some unconscious, internal effort on my part to muscle through and get on with life?
Joseph is gone. I can say it now without the edges of my world decaying and curling in on me. I will never forget the first time Joe spoke those words aloud and how just hearing them dissolved me. Now I can hear it and say it with some air of reality making it a grim ut solid truth. It no longer surprises my soul that he is gone. I can look at the moon again without that far away feeling of stress and worry that one of my children is unaccounted for. Where he is, is the worst a parent can imagine, but at least I do know where he is. For a long time I felt as if he had gone off on a journey without saying where and without appropriate preparation.
I envy people who are able to burrow themselves into a strong faith after losing their child. I admit though, most of them sound shrill and desperate to my ears. And I suppose they are. I desperately want to believe...I think I really DO believe in all honesty....but I am just so bruised from the rejection of all of our prayers. I always imagined if God said "NO" about something, it would be a booming, meaty declaration that would devastate in its intensity. Instead, it was more like a long, hissing whisper, like fingers of fog that come in and steal away hope, making it cling to a humidity of grief that leaves you cold and unsure of what just happened, the hairs on your neck standing on end as you look in stunned silence at the blue/gray hue that took life from the cheeks of a boy. How hard it was for me to gaze upon his dead body. I was encouraged to lay with him and hold him after he passed, and I to this day feel like a failure that I could not bring myself to do it, that in my mind, I was running down the hallway with a banshee's howl where I would thrust myself from the edges of earth and be swallowed. I turned away, turned on such numbness that it took months to really clear from my system, to the point that I wondered why I was not grieving much at times. I see now that I was, but in the moment it felt wrong that I was not hurting more. The brain only gives you as much as you can handle, and this loss has taken everything from me. I have had to rebuild, myself, my life, my relationships...silently, slowly, within the new definition of my existance. I have rebuilt enough to feel more solid standing in myself. But the sadness is a hollow shade of twilight, ever with me.
The Irish festival is this weekend and Joe and I will go on Sunday, hopefully meet some friends there, drink some beer. The Rennaisance Festival arrives at the end of April. I was almost too fat for my costume last year and its the one time of year I hate having short hair. I may try something different this year, rather than dressing as a pretty wench. Maybe I will go for a begger look or something more baudy, less prissy. There is still time for me to lose some weight before the event arrives. My hair is a lost cause. I try to grow it long but it just doesn't look good on me.
Jimmy Buffett tickets go on sale today and its our mission to try to score some this time. They are so hard to get! The weekend after this one I go on a grief retreat with Stewart and the boys at the same campground where Joseph would have attended leukemia camp. We shall see how that goes. I have found that wallowing around in my sadness has not done me any favors in the past, so this may be the last thing of that sort that I let myself attend, depending on how I do.
Statistics continues to go well. Its actually pretty fun. I found a website about nursing and I probably need to quit reading it. There are a lot of really unhappy nurses out there being really vocal and it makes me wonder if the bad conditions and treatment they describe is really something I want to bust my butt to be a part of. I am following my heart and the advice of good friends at this point and sticking with it.