Where have I been, huh? My last post here was over six months ago and told you very little about what’s my life is like. The truth is that I’ve been avoiding you. We’ll get to why in a little bit but first let me get you up to date. Six months is kind of a long time.
After Mom passed away, Kristin and The Bear split up. That is their story and definitely not something I’ll go into detail about here. This is the kind of thing that made me not want to write here. It felt like if I couldn’t tell you that my insides felt beat up over this, that maybe you didn’t need to see pictures of my cats or hear about how good “The Picture of Dorian Gray” was (<< very, very good).
Kristin then moved in with Dad, losing both her partner in crime and her home. Though they sounded a bit like the Odd Couple somehow they made it work. My sister put her life on hold and Dad slowly started to see what a world without Mom was like. This living arrangement went on for as long as it could and then quite a bit longer. Thanks to some huge-hearted relatives with mad packing skills, Kristin helped Dad move into assisted living. It was hard. These things pretty much always are.
Before Momo, our Mom’s mom, passed away she told me something. She had just handed me a necklace that I likely responded to in a lukewarm way. You know, because I have limited social skills. She said “If you don’t like that then you go ahead and give it away, too. Don’t hold on to it. When people are gone you keep all their stuff.” Momo and I never talked about feelings. Unless these feelings involved temperature or hunger. This being so out of the norm, it has stuck with me. I remembered it as we packed up the home that Mom and Dad had shared. If you’ve ever lost anyone you know that their belongings become sacred. I’ll admit to grabbing a few pairs of Mom’s pajamas for myself though I knew that I wasn’t going to wear them, simply because they were hers.
Kristin wasn’t off the hook when Dad moved. She still found herself feeling that she should be spending every moment with him. He’d lost a lot and somehow I think she thought she could make up for it. She knew better but that doesn’t stop you from trying. If it did I don’t think that I’d have spent as much money on therapy. I’m not kidding. She couldn’t stop him from falling though. Parkinson’s is a wicked and horrible disease, don’t let Michael J. Fox tell you otherwise. Dad took one too many tumbles and he was no longer safe in assisted living. His residence said that they would need him to move to basic care. For those of you following along at home, this means the nursing home.
Nursing homes have definitely changed since my grandparents spent time in them but they are still places that few genuinely want to be. When you look around and realize that this room is the last stop on your journey the walls get very close and the days get very long. Dad continues to impress me with how optimistic he can be but this isn’t how I want the world for him. His wife is gone, his mobility is curtailed and he can’t even burn his own food anymore.
Life has been good to me. I don’t have anything to complain about but I have still stumbled. The emails, phone calls and letters that go unanswered are testament to this. Depression and anxiety have followed me all my life. They are the legacy of the brave women who went before me and I’m trying my hardest to make a life for myself for which they would be proud. I have never blamed Mom or Momo for the trouble I have getting up the hill. In fact, their examples told me that there is definitely a point in trying. And I’m trying.
I’d like to use today’s post as a small, late but heartfelt apology to those I haven’t contacted. I realize it’s frustrating for you. I wish that I was currently holding up better but I do see that there is hope. Part of what has made it so hard to reach out is that I’m completely out of practice. The guilt of disconnection makes it tougher to cross that bridge.
There are happy things going on in my life. Before I could start telling you the good I had to be honest about the bad. I just wasn’t ready to do that yet. I’m still not sure how much of what I’ve written here really belongs on my blog but I need to start sharing again. I wanted you to know.