Friday, October 31, 2008
I guess I thought of these lines for the obvious reason, I've been crying a lot lately. This morning I was bawling and called in to work a couple of hours late because it's my fifteenth wedding anniversary, and Halloween, and while I'd like to go out and do something fun, I just don't have the heart. I feel like curling up under the covers with a couple cases of hard liquor and not emerging until I feel better, which might be a while. Right now, I'm thinking vodka, tequila, and maybe a decent Scotch, just for variety.
Of course, I'm still hurting from my mom's death, and the legal/financial mess she left behind. And the problems NSA and I have been having don't help. And the fact that I really dislike my job, but the economy's not doing so well and I'm afraid to quit. Fuck.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
I left early the next morning. From San Diego to Seattle, passengers were sparse, I had a row of seats to myself. Not so on the flight from Seattle to Anchorage, and while the guy next to me was clearly in a chatty mood, my teary face didn't encourage conversation.
I arrived at my final destination in the late afternoon, took care of some necessary paperwork, and went to see my mother. An old friend of hers was already there, keeping vigil with candles and incense. The morgue is located in the old part of the hospital; a small, locked, unlabeled room containing two horizontal refrigerators, some filing cabinets, and various bits of office equipment. It also allows access to the telephone room, a fact that I'm sure the poor repair man resented, since he had to contend with the two of us and my mom just to do his job.
She looked kind of beautiful in the candle light. Her eyes and mouth were closed (something I was worried about), brow smooth and hair sleek. Her expression was peaceful, seemingly slightly concerned, like maybe there was some small matter she had forgotten to tell me about. With the overhead fluorescents on, she was, I guess the right words are deathly pale. Except for the beds of her fingernails, which were slightly purplish, strangely dark. I sat and talked to her for awhile, not because I was sure, like her friend, that she would hear me, but because I needed to, and because it felt like the right thing to do. I told her I loved her, and that I hoped all of her questions were answered.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
And then 9/11 happened, and the path got really dark and twisty, and Americans grew afraid and suspicious and demanded protection pretty much at any cost.
I made some bad career choices, NSA was in a car accident and became disabled, a close friend's eldest daughter was diagnosed with leukemia. There were some good moments, and the 2004 race gave me hope, only to be dashed with that same smug, smirky face. Things trudged along, getting slowly worse for the majority of the country. And then when the economy is tanking, the Dow bouncing like a Superball, my mom faces a crisis of her own. Barring any miracles, I know what Mom's outcome will be, I can only hope the nation fares better. It might sound strange, but when I see the micro reflected in the macro, I feel like maybe change on a larger scale will help me personally, too. Like maybe a leap of faith taken with an honest-to-goodness idealist is exactly what America, and I, need. I guess I'll just have to see.
Monday, October 13, 2008
Emotionally, I'm glad I was able to spend some quality time with my mom while she was still cognizant and continent, I'm glad I spent the extra week. I don't know why I initially thought one week would be enough.There wasn't a lot left unsaid between us or anything, so we watched movies, listened to the radio and chatted with lots of friends of hers, an exhausting amount, really. Until she was spending more time asleep than awake, and, when she was awake, pressing the button on her morphine pump frequently. I hated leaving, but I couldn't afford to stay, and there wasn't much point really. We've said our goodbyes.
The really sucky thing is that, other than the cancer, she's in pretty good shape. Her heart is strong, her blood pressure is better than mine, so she might linger for a while, which isn't what she wanted at all. But unfortunately, there's not much that can be done about it now, so we're waiting. Waiting.
Thursday, October 9, 2008
So here I am blogging when there's so much else that needs doing, but I want to share, need to share, I guess. Pardon my grammar and coherency, both are liable to fall by the wayside.
- Having to leave my mom while she's still alive is causing me a fair amount of guilt, even though her condition deteriorated greatly while I was there, and before I left, she was spending most of the time asleep. I keep reminding myself that she's surrounded by friends, and she never lived her life to please anyone except herself.
- Not having been back for a long time, I forget how beautiful Alaska is, how heart-stoppingly gorgeous. And how much it feels like home. I'm also tempted to forget how long and dark the winters are.
- I realized that October 23rd will be the thirteenth anniversary of my little brother's death, and I don't think my mom will make it past this date. October, which used to be my favorite month, is pretty much going to suck forever after this.
- Some children actually inherit stuff when a parent dies. I'm inheriting a lot of personal memoribilia and some debt. Turns out, my mom no longer owns the land she wants to be buried on. Oh, and I'll get a yellow 1987 Chevy pickup too. Sweet!
- More guilt in that I had to take two of my mother's sweet kitties to the local shelter. They are healthy and and adorable and will be kept until adopted, but I felt so fucking bad that I coudn't keep them myself, and I couldn't even explain to them what was going on. I'm more than a little pissed that none of Mom's friends were willing to step in and help out.
- I have a vicious cold, which is understandable considering the long flights and the fact that I lived in the hospital for two weeks. Mom's in the hospice room, which is better appointed than a regular room, and family and friends are welcome to stay the night. That's one thing about small towns, it seems like it's easier for people to be accomodating.
Well, it isn't over yet, and there's definitely more to tell, but that's all I can muster for now. I went back to work Monday and am still cleaning up the mess from when I was gone. Sheesh!