Sunday, March 2, 2014

Death, Dying, Endings and Me

It's been a strange day.

I have been living through this grief process shit now for over 2 years.  On June 13, 2012, my mother was diagnosed with cancer.  She died on June 12, 2013, one day short of a year from that diagnosis.  One day short of a year to make decisions, know that the end was more than likely imminent, and get "her affairs in order."  Except she didn't.  In the midst of dealing with the fact that I can't call and kvetch or bitch or cry to her, I am having my guts ripped out dealing with the twisting in the wind of her estate, her dilapidated hoarder house, giving away her horses, discovering that her belongings were stolen, house broken into repeatedly, memory disgraced and disrespected, funeral not paid for, and the grave has no headstone.

Deep breath.

For the past three weeks or so, my dog has been eating less and less, and becoming more and more lethargic.  Today my dad paid for a vet visit with his vet for my dog.  Our vet four days ago told us it was a "sour stomach" and nothing was wrong.  My dad's vet says that it's elevated calcium and liver enzymes, and most likely parathyroid cancer.  Either we do an expensive blood test or we watch him get weaker and weaker and die.  So we did the blood test.  And now we wait a week.  And then go from there.  I want him well, but failing that, I want the absence of pain for him.

Meanwhile, I look at another sentient being who has given me absolutely nothing but unconditional love and watch him approach death.

I know that to live is to eventually die.

I get it.

This fact does not make it hurt any less.

And of course, life conspires to cry along with me.

A week ago I received Ariel Gore's memoir, The End of Eve and just finished it today.  I am bereft with sorrow for her, and reliving my own mother's illness and death, making the inevitable comparisons.  Intense writing at its best, this is a talented author's masterpiece.  She has always written in such a way that I felt her words, but this hit me on another whole level.  Highly recommend it.

Right now my life is full of changes.  It has been an overwhelming couple of years.  In the midst of all of this, I have discovered I am living a life I hate, and basically I want to escape being myself.  I am discovering what I really want to do, but also what has blocked me from it - an insidious self-hatred that poisons everything I do.  I am tired of trying to analyze its source.  I am more interested myself in the psychic surgery to remove its roots.  Failing that, I look toward the ultimate escape.

To answer Mary Oliver's rhetorical question, what to do with my one precious human life?

Fix it or forget it.

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