7.26.14

July 27, 2014 § Leave a comment

i told my dad: so just leave now. or maybe: when that day comes, go ahead and go. but i’ll cut off the relationship. and i’ll be very angry. and i won’t want to stay in touch. when he said that after my mom died, he would rejoin the seminary and renounce his earthly family.

i know i am dreaming about g. i try not to stand in the way when waves of grief overtake me. i cry in public, sitting in my car in the bank teller line or on the bench as x plays on the jungle gym. it’ll pass if i just let it happen. grief like he’s dying. it feels like he’s dying.he’s not going to get better. it’s too hard, and there’s nothing that works. i know that’s the story spun by his illness. my story, triggered by his illness, is this: i’ll always be left. if i love someone, that person will leave. if i love someone, that love will make the person leave. it is my love itself that will make the beloved withdraw, ambivalent. my love is disgusting in its excess. my love is painful to experience, as the imminence and inevitability of abandonment. this is the story. this is the story. as soon as i type it out i feel my chest constrict into panic, my eyes burning.

so i try to change the story. i sit in front of my altar where i have placed the candles i once bought for myself when i moved to the little house in west sacramento, finally alone, finally on my own. there is the clay sculpture of the dark skinned ocean goddess, her skirts flowing with jellyfish, her arms bearing coral. there is the ceramic box cradling two origami swans that my friend sat folding without thinking at a meeting once. the requisite virgen vela. a streamlined wooden figurine of mother mary–different from la virgen–with eyes downcast and hands folded in prayer. a gift from my mentor, my surrogate grandmother. i light incense and work on changing the story.

 

of course he wants to die; he’s depressed

many people face this situation–disability, unemployment

there are always things we can do to get better

i believe in the possibility that things can get better

and so i pray:

 

may i be fearless in the face of loss

may i be courageous

may i be curious

may i be kind to myself

may i stay open and tender

may this suffering awaken

warriorship

 

and when you are gone

i still have my writing

i still have my daughter

my family

my work in the community

i have a chance to breathe

and not to worry

until you return.

 

it doesn’t make the grief go away

it doesn’t change the reality of loss

but it changes my relationship to it.

it doesn’t make the fear go away

yet it cultivates a fearlessness.

a friendliness that greets and bows

and says, yes, please come in,

i know you.

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it really freaks me out

July 27, 2014 § 2 Comments

if i think that you are withholding comfort or validation.

to have an intensity or pain or need that causes the other to back away. that causes distaste, avoidance.

to be a pain or bother.

to be the source and agent of the other’s

avoidance.

it really freaks me out.

i am the teetering dime rolling

on thinnest edge

of black hole simulation

in a science museum,

spiraling down into a self

dysregulation. i can’t stop it

and i can’t take space

because i don’t have those boundaries

because i need you to regulate me,

individuate me,

to reassure. when you don’t

or you won’t

because really

who could

i am stuck,

i stick

to you

reaching out

to a shadow

in high tail, a horizon

that always retreats.

neither fully attached

nor fully discrete:

abject. liminal.

i know it

but that doesn’t mean

i don’t freak out

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