no. (roses_rejoice) wrote,

Life as a Long Night.

For the record, i miss my dad.

No i ain't all grief-stricken and (mostly for the benefit of jerks who might read this who aren't my friends, are locked out of most of this journal, and get their rocks off fantasizing about what a boring/miserable/empty/worthless/etc. existence i must lead compared to their utterly Thrilling lives of chronick unemployment, substance consumption, deadbeattitude, and general malaisennui) yes i'm having a pretty good time right now, which is how i'm able to make a pubilk post abt this.

This weak i read some noose story abt how ppl who've lost a loved one often get all stupor depwessed around Xmas and feel pushed to be happy and in response some churches were offering "Blue Christmas" services, often on the 21st - the longest night of the year - so these ppl could come and be sad in peace. The thought of having to have a church tell me it's OK to be sad and make me do it in community with others who aren't my close fam/fiends makes me want to barf and lock myself in the closet. But if it helps somebody else cope i ain't knocking it. i know i have weird ways of dealing with my shit. like posting on this thang that a lot of other ppl can't be bothered with cuz taking five minutes might get in the way of their next regularly scheduled drunk.

But getting back to My Dad. i miss him every year around this time, because he got sick for the last time and died over these holidays, many years ago. i came home for christmas that year and he was wheezing with what i thought was a bad cold or the flu. it turned out to be pulmonary heart failure. he was dead within the week.

Like i said this happened a Long time ago and now it's like when you injure yourself and it heals but every once in a while when the cold wind blows you get a Pain there, where the injury was, where something was Taken out or had to be Fused back together. sometimes it's more pain, sometimes it's less.

About six years ago I met Someone who finally made me take a look at the past I'd been turning to the wall for a decade and even though i could only look at it through the bottom of a bottle for most of that year, it was still so bad i had to spend half that holiday in bed. it was Hard but it had to be done. Once I got the courage to take the first look, that's when it started getting better, after that.

So now it's just Normal Missing. To the extent that there can Be such a thing as Normal Missing. I feel especially bad that Dad didn't live to see all this lawya hand jive cuz he would of dug it. Big time. It's not so much that I didn't get it together till after he was gone, as it was that the whole shuckin' folderol didn't even exist then in its current form, and the whole storyline would have been different and probably a lot more boring.

Things happen when they're supposed to Happen, and not before.

I saw a post earlier on some other journal asking ppl to please reach out to them that are sad, that have suffered a loss of a loved one in any sense of the word during this Holiday Time. I'd go farther than that and say that if you see anybody who's in the Process of losing or Might be losing a loved one in any Way, shape or form, Reach Out To Them Right Effing NOW. Don't wait till it actually Happens.

My dad was sick for a lot of years. I was sad when he died but it was more like the culmination of a grieving process that started ten years before when he had a stroke and it became pretty clear he wasn't ever going to be the same guy he had been. No, he was not mentally disabled, thank God - it hit the physical part of the brain only. His mind was fine. But when you're 56 years old and you've already been through two wars, a back malfunction that almost left you permanently paralyzed for life, two heart attacks, and a stroke, and you have to spend the whole year in the hospital learning to walk, again, with the working limbs you've got left, it takes a lot out of you. There's also an emo component to strokes even if they don't hit your mind. My dad was lucky to make it through so much crap in his life, but the day he had that stroke, he started to die. When they decided he couldn't go to work anymore, he died even faster. In the end, as sad as I was, I was relieved he didn't have to take any longer than 11 or so years about the whole business.

During the whole time my dad was sick, the number of people who actually gave two po0ps about me and what I might be going through related to that regard could prolly be counted on one hand. In fairness, I know we were all pretty young and some people didn't know what to do or say about it, also that I myself minimized it. I did, almost unconsciously, seem to make friends with a lot of other ppl who had an ill or ded parent. I'm not sure if that was because I gravitated towards those people (who were usually a little more mature than the average dork with two operational young 'rents) or simply that in those days a good many people had their kids late and died early in grey gritty Factoryland so it was a pretty common theme.

When Dad died, a lot of ppl came out of the woodwork to say how Sorry they were, that I hadn't seen before and haven't seen or barely ever since. It's like some kind of conditioned social response, like the automatic "Happy Birthday!" wishes you get from ppl who couldn't care less you're Alive the other 364 days and 23.99 hours of the year, but man they're gonna get all kindsa Warm Fuzzies of Do-Tha-Right-Thingness from that thirty seconds they spent on that Happy Birthday - or Saddy Deathday - wish. Where were these ppl when Dad was actually still alive but very much not his oldself and starting to fade and a worry on my mind? Where indeed? Nowhere Man.

So if you can Be there for somebody who like I said ain't lost Somebody yet - and it doesn't have to be a Loss Unto Death, there are 50 ways to Lose Your Loved One as Paul Simon would prolly write now that he's pandering to the old fart generation - then please, by all means, BE THERE. But only if you're doing it cuz you really Care and not because five minutes of Being Caring is all your capacity can stand and it's gonna make you feel good for five minutes like heaving a buck at a homeless dude and then forgetting about it. And please don't reach out if you're doing it out of Guilt or (god forbid) you think being nice is gonna get you Laid or get somebody to listen to Your Own Troubles for five minutes. There are ppl who take advantage of ppl in turmoil and that just sucks. To some extent I feel like I was victimized that way and I blame myself for part of it, I let Myself go down, but it doesn't excuse the other person or persons involved who I think were basically just looking for a warm place to play Hide the weenie and Git. Boy did they knock at the wrong window. I was always big on love but short on ketchup.

Just good to each other. Try a little bit. OK? OK.

P.S. Today while listening to some guy tootle Tudor musick on a flute I got thinking "Death Row Tull" would be a cool assed name for a band. But when I Googled, I found out there was already a whole bunch of 'em. You know what this means, right?

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