Friday, December 16, 2011

Journal 101 Another

"Rage would be beside the point for the same reason. Instead, I am badly oppressed by a gnawing sense of waste. I had real plans for my next decade and felt I’d worked hard enough to earn it. Will I really not live to see my children married?"
--Vanity Fair, "Topic of Cancer", September, 2010

I read today, sadly, online, of Christopher Hitchens' death, from esophegeal cancer, the same kind my father had, the same time line, a similar experience, I'm sure, to what our family went through, and then the finality of death, even though you're waiting for it; never not a surprise.

My sister emailed me a couple of weeks ago to tell me she was having a bad "Dad" week, like he had just died, not like six months had passed. I tried to offer reassurance, but it's tough. Family members often don't grieve together--it's too sad, it hurts too much, you're too busy putting up a front of being strong and together to let yourself go limp in their presence. My sister and I did share a couple of warm, lovely summer nights on her back deck, wine a-plenty, letting ourselves do just that. But for the sake of our mother, we play it strong, we tough it out.
I haven't had a bad "Dad" week this week, but the marking of the six-month anniversary, his ashes still sitting forlornly in my apartment, the sudden realization Tuesday night that I hadn't spoken to my father in six months, (obviously, but nothing is ever obvious about grief), and the thought that I hadn't been able to "hear" his true voice, before it was affected by the cancer and the treatment, for about a year. His strong, often sarcastic baritone, telling me the latest on current events, his estimations unaffected by popular rhetoric.
Sardonic. That is the word I would most closely associate with his voice, his tone. Not directed at me--directed at an imperfect world, one that often provoked his mild criticism, his worthy opinions.
I think that's what I miss most right now.

As always when his spirit hovers near, I dreamt about him that night, and the following night, after having a bout of unnecessary self-pity (many suffer far more than I do) about not having both my parents at my wedding ceremony coming up in early January. In my second dream, he was at my wedding, which was being held, in the odd world of dreams, in a school, and he was dressed to the nines, waiting patiently for the ceremony to start, as he didn't have alot of time, that much he communicated, in that way that we communicate in dreams--without speaking, without speech, we seem to (in my dreams anyway) to transmit what we need to, somehow. Things are just understood--even in the most confusing of scenarios.

This post is clunky. It's lacks depth, it doesn't have alot of 'flowers', news to report, graceful pictures to post.

But it's what I have to say today.

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