Monday, September 30, 2013

Stephen King's Circus

It happens every single time I park at the gym.  Every single time.  Turning off the engine sends a rush of quiet where even my inner dialogue stops.  All distractions gone, stillness settles and I can't hide anymore.  There's only so much to keep you busy on the dashboard of a minivan.  The tears start as yelps being swallowed hole in my throat until a few sneak past and land on my lime green Danskin shorts.

Jimmy is still not here.

In grief you feel like you go through these seasons of hell but then you get your lost one back.  Obviously nonsense but that doesn't matter because in real life --alive life-- that's how it works:  you get sick then you get better.  A marriage breaks down then you get a divorce.  Your kids backtalk then they have to call you Pretty Mama 10 times in a row.  In your alive minutes all suffering is rewarded with something better. 

Grief is not that way.  It is this endless circus on the inside, only the kind of circus Stephen King would write.  Demented ringmasters whipping at angry elephant paws to make them dance, stir a pot of noodles, do the dishes, feed yourself, smile at the people who don't know your world has lost its original compass, its only muse.   Thin acrobats go dripping from one rusty trapeze to the next, sometimes with only one apathetic bent knee because there is no rush.  They know it's going to be a while.

Your gut aches so much that rings of fire don't sound so bad with their singe and release, singe and release.  Numbness, after all, is what you're after.

The tears come again and I am clutching my "J"  necklace, trying not to break it. 

Jimmy, what the $%@# happened!?  Why did you have to go now?  Can you hear us down here?  How will there be Thanksgiving and Christmas without you?  Jimmy, I miss you so much.  What are you doing there?  Are you still here at all?  Can you hear me?  Am I making it harder to go to heaven by missing you?  Jimmy.  Jimmy.  Oh Jimmy I can't believe you're gone.  It's not right.  Nothing feels right since you left.  Where is your voice, your laugh, your 2 am Instant Messages on Facebook.  I need your kiss on my forehead.  I won't let it be forever, G*&dammit.  That can't be gone forever.  You suck, you know that?  You really suck for leaving us all here without you.  Mom got a tattoo, Jimmy, with your initials because she's trying to numb too.  It worked but only on two inches of her wrist.  It's numb alright and now she wants me to do it.  Maybe I will.  Jimmy.  I miss you so @#!%& much, you have no idea.  Jimmy.  I will save all the dogs for you.

And I squeegee the bridge of my nose, flick the useless tears away, and start my car again.  I'm not ready to start caring about this crap yet.  I'm just not ready to care about kettle bells and cellulite.

So while a few minutes alone in the gym parking lot really sucks, that's ok because the alternative, this insidious Stephen King circus is no picnic either. 


Lesley UK said...

I wish I had an uncle Jimmy in my life, he is gone from this time,but he is still there looking after you. You have wonderful memories. Please spare a thought for thse of us in families, who have no such closeness. You may have lost your beloved Jimmy, but you had him caring for you in life, and you know he's still with you, So spare a thought for us who have no such wonderful memories Blessings to you

OSMA said...

You are right, Leslay. Not until a few years ago did I really understand how lucky I was to have the relationship I had with my uncle. He stood in for a dad and a big brother in many ways, even after I grew up and moved away from home, and started one of my own. Believe me, I understand how fortunate I am to have those memories and feel like a schmuck if this came off indulgent. It is but I use this as a place to sort through messy things without dragging my family through my stuff with me. I will shut my pie hole for a while so as to pay respect for what I had, still have, and hope to have after I pass too. I will stay here, sparing a hope that you will have a special person care for you the way Jimmy did for us. It makes you believe in angels on earth and in heaven too. I want you to experience that more than I want to wallow. Love xoxo and thank you.

OSMA said...

Sorry, I misspelled your first name....Lesley. There. :)

Lorelei in AZ said...

I love your blog. Sometimes you speak right to my heart. So sorry for your heartache. Please take care.

Cristie Ritz King, M. Ed said...

Here is my two cents. Feel free to punch the screen because you might just be hating my two cents. I get that too.
What've I've done when it all seems to big to live another day: find him here. Find him in your boy's face, which looks so much like this picture to me. Find him in the music. Find him in your girl's spunk. Find him in places of you you've never thought about before. Make a game of finding all the places in your day where he still is. Then wrap yourself in him a shield against the grief. It doesn't make it go away. It merely quiets the circus so that sometimes you can hear other things.
I love you. I wish I could take some ache from you.

Cristie Ritz King, M. Ed said...

What've? What the f?

OSMA said...

Lorelei (I love your name, btw), thank you. I've now worried my family and am considering removing this post but something tells me you understand this isn't how we feel alllll the time, it's just how we process when we can feel it. Thank you for letting me know it was ok to press publish this time when it reads like a diary instead of a public blog. I often forget there's a difference.

OSMA said...

Cris, I love you too. Why aren't we still roommates? Marriage schmarriage. You've experienced so much more in the way of impossibly close losses and while I hate that for you, I do trust your advice. Love what you said about looking for him and finding him. I did that for the first four months. It's this fifth month where I feel like enough is enough already. Just a phase. Time to go back to trusting he is here, in the faces of his family and the funny bones too. None of us compare but Abby is getting close ;) xoxo

Andrea Mowery said...

I think this is a great place to process your grief and for that I hope you can continue to do it, and that it helps you. You have such a gift with words. Please know that you are helping others with posting your raw emotions.

OSMA said...

Thank you, Andrea. I also find it helpful to read another's take on grief, happiness, depression, mothering, whatever. What you said is what I hope to accomplish in processing "out loud" as well. It won't feel right for everyone and that's ok too.