Some days are tough. Very tough. The days when you are torn into shred by the pain and grief. When you want to reach out and hug and wail like baby, when you just want the world to end. When you yearn for the human touch, when voice is not enough and yet it is the only solace you have. When the words get lost in the lungs and you clutch the cell in your fist shut, your blurry eyes , tears streaming down your cheeks, unable to utter anything. When you swing between being a woman and a being a mother and feel helpless and defeated in both roles. When phrases like “hang in there” or ” this too shall pass” sound so hollow, for they don’t lessen the agony one bit.
When you feel the burn at the back of your neck and behind the ears, a throb at the temple, head heavy as boulder , eyes nothing but overflowing pools of hot liquid. When your cheeks, and jaw hurt as if you have chewed on something hard for a long time. When “moving on” seems like biggest hoax. What doesn’t kill you doesn’t make you stronger , it cripples you. It is intensity of the disaster that matters. The deluge of grief that opens up so many wounds. It makes distances grow manifold.
Last two days have been a chaos especially the Easter Sunday brought sad news that broke the floodgates and it all just flowed and flowed. All the pain that had accumulated for sometime slipped quietly into the new one and it became a lethal cocktail of emotions. All the parts of me that were vulnerable , opened. I still do not really know which was the dominating pain- of loss, of not being with my sons or my own unmet desires and loneliness.
Death is always brutal realization of how fickle everything else is. A few days ago a little pup brought warmth of love and filled the empty lives of my boys with something to hold on to, to cuddle and care , to watch over and look forward to and they were ecstatic. I said a little prayer of thanks and hoped that my absence would finally not loom large and trouble their hearts. The pup would occupy that vacant place at least in some way but destiny has been cruel to us. We have not yet finished our quota of hurts.
Joe passed away early Sunday morning. A very brief illness evening before and in the morning he was gone. Sometimes there are no words which can console a heart lashed again and again and again by life. Each Love creates its own theory of pain.
Do you know how it feels to bury a baby you have fed and bathed and cuddled next to you? Do you know how it feels to someone who himself is just a kid? Can you even imagine the pain that slices through the very core of a boy who brought the baby home, made him a part of his own self, shared his energies, his love, joy, sorrow, everything with the little animal companion. I do. Been there done that and to see my boys go through it just left me numb. We tried to put up a brave front, said positive things to each other and in silence of our heart we scream in agony. We broke down , unable to bridge the distance between us and finally our brain shuts off. Sometimes we the live just because of the stumbling breaths we exchange. There is disquiet of quiet all around. Once the first deluge is over , there is a complete disconnect. One wants silence.. complete silence.
I disconnected. Put everything on mute and my heart longed to connect . Just for a while. Just with you. To be there. For a short time. Just as it longed for the boys. Loneliness cuts deep. It swallows you completely. I guess that is the way it IS, to be there and let it take over. To feel it, observe it, endure it. Loneliness shelters in this unconditional hurt. You curl in and feel safe in its nets.
I buried my face in the pillow and wept. Tears heal. Then I opened the curtains and gazed at the night sky. Eyes dry and swollen , sleep as usual hiding somewhere as it afraid to enter those burning gaping spaces. Night sky is soothing. I guess its darkness repels the darkness within. Somewhere between those two darkness I drifted off into an unknown land carrying the unbearable weight of all that can go wrong and has gone wrong.
We are all connected, through love, through loneliness, through pain and even from a distance one reaches out in the darkness hoping to touch some other hand. We are designed for many things but loneliness is not one of them. Yet it came to me slowly and steadily. Circumstances brought it to me unasked. Now I guess I have become accustomed to it and sometime even seek shelter in it, appreciate it. It helps me still myself. To listen to my body. It’s aches and wants.
I decided to go some place quiet today. Sit sometime in silence. The church I visited was closed. Another sign that one must endure and not escape. The taxi driver was sleepy and we almost had a brush with death twice. I hurt my right arm. Bruised my middle finger. It turned a deep shade of blue-green.
The heat was unbearable. Throat parched and body drained with exhaustion I looked vacantly stared at the passing terrain.
Now the night has come, something is still tugging at my heart But am gonna be alright. Damn it. I am still hanging between silence and words. Guess its time to let it flow. Let the body relax and let the pain ease out.
Joe baby, where ever you are , know that you are remembered , loved and terribly missed. RIP.