It begins

guess this is a small taste of what it will be like when I finally hear that my dad is finally dying.

It is way too early in the morning. I am holding myself back from going into flashbacks, feeling/seeing my father running up the stairs behind me, looming viscerally behind me as a I write.

Today is the day my mother will get the letter I sent. To paraphrase my friend Butterfly, who counts the reasons why you shouldn’t screw kids, this is the reason why why child rapists are abominations. I know the word ‘abomination’ gets used too lightly, to describe gay people or people who violate religious holiness rules for eating or clothing. The word as I am using it now means something like putrefaction, rotting flesh and violent death, the flayed soul of Voldemort with a side order of acrid and foul smell, and it just begins to describe the edge of the horror and sacrilege against Life Herself of men who rape their children, who rape any children.

This morning I wake up too early thinking that I don’t have enough money to continue therapy (I probably do), that my mother will commit suicide by car accident when she reads my letter (she probably won’t), that ‘oh THAT is why I ate so much chocolate yesterday and wondered if I was PMSing’ (again) and why I’ve been feeling like my marriage might be ending.

My wife has chronic pain, and chronic sleeplessness, and is understandably quite cranky and fussy, alternating with a kind of shut-off stoicism. This has bee going on for about five years.  Most of the fun things we used to do together are off the menu, and what’s worse, she wasn’t doing much to solve the problem so there was no end in sight. The acupuncture/traditional Chinese medicine is helping her, and because I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, it feels safe to experience how hopeless I’ve been feeling about my future with her. We were just married 2 years ago, and have been together for eight, and I’m stuck between two things that hurt too much to face square-on –  the idea of divorcing and the idea of spending the rest of my life like this. Perhaps this is another part of the inner me that is emerging to sunshine from winter, this awareness of a bit of pain I had frozen since I thought it had to be ignored.

How do I separate all that from the growing feeling of doom that my mother will be reading and reacting to the letter today?  I don’t. It’s all of a piece.

How do I protect myself over the next week? I’ll be screening my calls. My mother will just have to deal with her reaction to this on her own, and I’ll have to fight the urge to look after her, to retract, I tell myself firmly. I’ve got enough to deal with. I told my wife I could use a little extra TLC this week and why, and she told me the best she can do right now is stay away from me, since she’s just unable to not be cranky. I forgive her, because I believe she’s in as much pain as she says she is, but thinking of it brings tears to my eyes.  She’s not a survivor. I’m seeing a survivor friend tonight who does get it and I’ll be busy today.   That will have to be enough comfort. I’ve made do with less.

I re-read my last post about the emerging sprout and it gave me hope. The Goddess is helping me wash away what is already dead, and nourishing what is holy and intimate, soulful and good, with rich moist soil and gentle sunshine. Even in my panic, I know She is there.

Against that certainty, I have the cold, resigned stillness that is my standard way of coping, the antithesis of the sprout. I realized I have gone cold not because I could feel it, but because of the picture that I was drawn to to go with this post, a stone grave-angel. Martina McBride has a song about a concrete angel that fits the picture and feeling as well. [video] [lyrics]

Goddess, grant me Serenity, to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, and Wisdom to know the difference. Blessed be.

0 thoughts on “It begins”

  1. Another beautiful post that brings tears to my eyes. You’ve been preparing this sacred ritual dance for the grave of a parent who has not yet died, and you’ve written a letter from your heart for your other parent who is also alive. You are asking the person who you have committed your life and love to be supportive, and even nice to you during this tumultuous time while you await the horribleness of waiting. It is okay to be upset by your partner’s reaction, and also shows the beauty of your heart that you are able to empathize with her position at the same time.

    Your mother will be okay. If she was able to be okay while this horrible stuff was happening to you, then she had better be okay with reading your writing about it. It is the very least she can do as your mother. You have done nothing wrong here. You wrote a letter that has the absolute truth in it, and had you grown up in a place where your feelings were validated from the start, you would not be up early questioning these facts.

    Your truth is beautiful and honest, like buds that are starting to grow. Spring is coming.

  2. It is a brave thing for an adult survivor to expect their parent to be an adult and to take care of themselves. In so many ways, we have done that job and in so many ways we have been the ones to suffer when they refused to be an adequate human being when we are little and vulnerable.

    Good and healing thoughts to you as you go through this process.

    Kate

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