A Series… A Struggle… A Black Hole

I don’t know what it is or why, but I am having a terrible time coping with everything that has happened to me and my family. The last couple of years are maybe now finally hitting me… the move, the end of a six-and-half-year relationship, the disease. When I moved to Phoenix in January, I felt a tremendous amount of relief: I had done it. I was here and ready to help my parents get through this—I wanted to be the hero. I wanted to save my dad and give him peace. I wanted to protect my mom and find her the care that she deserved.3509199828_22e65ca353

Nearly six months later, and I feel like a reactive child. I don’t know who I am. I feel insecure about my life-choices. I cannot say what I want or need to make me happy. I am a disappointment. I feel lost and utterly alone. I am ANGRY. My breaking point came Friday night. Nothing was satisfying me. Not 30 Rock, not a book, not the heat, nothing.

The only thing that came naturally to me were my tears… it was the first time in a very long time that I just balled.

I am finding it increasingly difficult to do anything. I don’t want to do anything. I am completely uninspired. Unfortunately, no one will rescue me. I am my own savior. Fuck. I can’t escape myself no matter how much I want to run away.

You know what’s wrong with you, Miss Whoever-you-are? You’re chicken, you’ve got no guts. You’re afraid to stick out your chin and say, “Okay, life’s a fact, people do fall in love, people do belong to each other, because that’s the only chance anybody’s got for real happiness.” You call yourself a free spirit, a “wild thing,” and you’re terrified somebody’s gonna stick you in a cage. Well baby, you’re already in that cage. You built it yourself. And it’s not bounded in the west by Tulip, Texas, or in the east by Somali-land. It’s wherever you go. Because no matter where you run, you just end up running into yourself. ~ Paul Varjack,
Breakfast at Tiffany’s:

I keep running into myself no matter what I do. I need to be alone. I know it’s selfish and terrible, but I can’t do more for her (or anyone else) if I can get my head on straight.

2650112070_4d7f89da05I am tired.

I am angry.

Reactive.

Illogical.

My actions and inability to feel in control makes me want to puke in my mouth.

I hate not feeling in charge of my life.

I am being driven to the brink by a disease whose face resembles my own mom’s.

How do you reconcile that love and that hate?

Who is she?

I don’t remember much of my mom before her disease took over her mind and body. I have been asking friend’s to tell me who she is and what she was like. This is my new series: “Who Is She?”

Below, my girlfriend Chanette from high school (now a mom and wife) shares her memories of my the woman I call mom:

“I will always remember Kathy’s mom as the devoted Catholic who was sweet, soft spoken and cared for others. As teenagers I loved to go over to Kathy’s house because it was so different from the environment that I lived in. I had 5 brothers and sisters and never any “quiet” time. Going over to Kathy’s house was like going to Disneyland for me. I always envied that she was an only child who received her parents undivided attention, had her own room and all the “quiet time” that her little heart desired! Whenever I would be over at Kathy’s house studying or even just hanging out her mom would “stop by” wherever we were to see if we needed anything to drink or eat. Like any teenage daughter Kathy would grumble that we were fine and busy. Kathy’s mom seemed to take no offense to her teen daughter’s response and would come back by 15 minutes later to ask the same thing. I thought, “Wow, you are so lucky to have a mom who dotes on you like that.”

Not saying my mother was any less. The fact was that my mother had five other kids vying for her attention besides me and so no one got the doting that most only children receive. None the less, I was envious of Kathy at the time.

To me, Kathy’s parents were always so different in their personalities. Her father was more of the quiet, reserved type that I was always afraid of disturbing when I was in their home visiting. Whereas her mother just made you feel welcome from the time that you set foot into their home. She was a very open and warm hearted woman who made you feel comfortable. Always asking me how my family was and how school was going showed me how much she cared. My grandmother attends the same church as Kathy’s mother and was on the prayer line with her for several years. When I asked my grandmother what she remembered about Kathy’s mother the first thing she said was “she always had a smile on her face and was friendly to everyone she met.”

As I have grown into an adult I have learned to appreciate my large family for what they are and what they provide me with, a huge support system. Yes, I never had my own room growing up and yes, there was never a quiet moment in our house other than the middle of the night. But if my mother was diagnosed with dementia or any other disease I would not have to deal with it by myself. It saddens me to see Kathy going through this alone. She has no one else other than her father to share the heartache of losing her mother emotionally with, which I know is hard for her. Hopefully one day, Kathy will remember the wonderful woman that her mother once was and all of the good times that she shared with her.”

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>>Caged: http://www.flickr.com/photos/36041246@N00/

>>klaus kinski saviour III: http://www.flickr.com/photos/annamalina/

2 Comments

  1. You are not a “disappointment” and your character is admirable. You are brave and human. Perfection is unattainable and only through God can we be made “perfect.”
    I’m proud of you for allowing yourself to finally (outwardly) grieve as it’s simply another step in the healing process. You’re no longer “numb,” and that’s okay. Go with it, but don’t allow it to conquer you. Allow it to make you stronger and, if anything, more vulnerable. The toughest things in life are the things that often mold us into better people in the long run and you will come through this an even better Kathy. Hang in there, I love you and I’m here for you. (Happy hour is Tuesday!) -just words.

  2. six months ago you jumped out of the frying pan and directly into the raging flames. you’ve hardly had time under “normal” circumstances to make all the adjustments of moving, break-up, etc. please please please be kind to yourself. you are unbelieveably courageous to have taken ANY of this on. “baby step to the elevator (from What About Bob?)…baby step to your own personal space…baby step – baby step. even if there are more stumbles than steps. you’re still on your feet. wanna fly to Michigan and sit on my porch and drink wine?

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