This year there’s a particular sense of the unresolved, the resurfacing of stuff buried, and it’s haunting me.
Something about suddenly losing a brother I chose has done something to me as I recall my own brother and the suddenness of losing him.
When a current trauma triggers feelings of an older one, the shock to the system is compounded.
So I’m pensive. I feel sadness, anger, and confusion like I did 15 years ago.
How the hell did this happen?
What could I have done differently?
What should I have said?
I couldn’t speak at Jimmy’s service.
Didn’t want to. I was too angry to pray.
I didn’t have that luxury for John’s. I was front and center for the whole thing.
Put your head down and grind it out.
“You’re so strong, Johnny. I’m amazed at how much you just take on yourself and keep going.”
Yeah, let me tell you. At one time I thought of that as a virtue, maybe even one of my superpowers. But there’s a backside to every blessing. It doesn’t matter how much any of us can take, there comes a time when one more thing is one thing too many, and what you could once carry crushes you.
I’m crushed. Probably crazy. Definitely not awesome.
As I live in present grief, that which is residual and unresolved reminds me that it never left.
It weighs heavily on my shoulders.
I can’t take off the old cloak so that I can wear the new one.
I wear them both these days.