Tuesday, September 7, 2010

For Crying Out Loud You Know That I Love You

Last week slammed in.  Hard.  Very, very hard.  Brick wall, concrete floor, falling from the top of a skyscraper hard.  Mortality took center-stage as we said good-bye to one of our beloved cats, Angel Daughter Number Three's bed mate and best friend for over ten years, Max.  He was part Maine-Coon, and part dinosaur whenever we had his very unmanageable coat shaved skin close.  He worked his way into mine and Angel Daughter Number One's hearts in the restroom of a Petco where we brought him to see if he was friendly.  He was sweet as can be.  We brought all seventeen pounds of him home on that day.  He was a two year old full-grown cat who had been relinquished to an animal rescue organization by his previous owner.  His first home was only a pit-stop on his journey to find AD3.  When they bonded, it was true love.  

Next, my dad and step-mom unexpectedly lost a dear friend of over thirty years to lymphoma.  Very sobering reality, as my step-mother told me that she will never again complain about getting older.  Losing an old friend is like losing a part of ourselves.  But that, unfortunately, can apply in both death and in life.  Sometimes friends actually choose to die away from us.(A story for another day.  Maybe.)

And finally, but almost most shockingly of all, Angel Daughter Number Two lost a very old and very dear friend suddenly.  He was twenty years old. 20.  Two decades of life and only beginning to become a man.  But who knows what he might have become if he had more time.  More time to grow, more time to learn from his mistakes, more time to evolve.  Grief brings with it insurmountable anguish and pain.  It crashes into us with a thunderous blow.  But it also brings along with it unanswerable questions.  Questions that those of us who are left behind are forced to contemplate for the rest of our own lives.  And sometimes, shrapnel.  And fallout.  And guilt.  So, I comforted and listened.  Hugged and cried. Faced anger and resentment.  Talked to my daughters about the fragility of life and what we leave behind when we believe that our own actions do not have a major effect on anyone else.  How one action can set off another, setting off another, and so on, and so on, and so on.  It is difficult to hear, but even more difficult to be honest about.  And it is very difficult to accept when you are only twenty or sixteen or even forty-five if you have never really thought about it before.  That is why I must pass along what I know to my own children.  Because age should bring along with it perspective, but when you are sixteen or eighteen or twenty, the benefit of perspective is a difficult concept to bring into focus.  The corners are muddled together with the vaporous edges of teenage angst.  And although the despondency is both very real and very justifiable, there must also be perspective.  So there have been a lot of tears.  A lot of tears.  And "You just don't understand"s.  And blundering through the barrage of mixed emotions that accompany grief.  I am watching my twenty year old make her way through this daze of loss, anger and sadness.  There is not a whole lot that I can do.  I have said everything that there is to say through the sheerness of some slightly veiled honesty.  Now Father Time must take over.

So after the week of every other day sad news, we got in the car and drove out to Palm Springs to see my dad.  Our youngest daughter drove out with us and then AD1 and AD2 drove out separately to meet us there.  Unfortunately, AD3 had already made plans to spend the weekend with her boyfriend and his family at a BBQ cook-off in Reno, so she was not able to come.

Having a major distraction from all of the heartache and frustration was something that we all needed.  Seeing my dad always makes us happy.  We live about two hours away from each other which makes it difficult to get together on a regular basis, but when we do, it is always a good thing.  I must admit that even at forty-eight years old, I am a daddy's girl.(but don't tell him!)
And so are they.

*My youngest kidlet having her picture taken by her Pop-Pop.

The weekend brought us into the circle of family which, when done right, can be the safest place in the world.  And when done poorly, can be the most insecure place on earth.(I have been to both places and still float back and forth between the two realms.)  It also brought me back to my restless and stormy days as a seventeen year old girl.  When the world was a very arduous, angst-filled place and music filled in for words unspoken.  Thank you, Father Time.  But for today, I will stop here. And soon enough, I will take you here:

To the land of Rock and Roll.

The twenty-something masseuse from the spa who turned me into jello, asked me what we were doing that night.

"Going to see Meatloaf in concert."

"Oh, you're going to have meatloaf for dinner?"



Catherine said...

I am so sorry about the loss of your kitty and of your friends.

How wonderful to have a loving family for supporting each other though.

Warm thoughts,

Renee said...

So much loss ~ whether a dear friend or a dear pet, grief is a process isn't it. I am so sorry to hear of the sadness that enveloped your week. Your children are blessed to have you there to wrap them in love and understanding. We all need that in times of sadness. So true that it takes time to move through it all.
Always enjoy the photos you share of your angels...

Laura ~Peach~ said...

so sorry to hear of the losses hugs and prayers. and I LOVE meatloaf!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh, sweet Debra that is just too much sadness. Reading of all the losses brought tears to me. I am so sorry for the loss of dear, sweet Max and the dear friends. I am glad you spent time with your dad to get a break from it all. Hoping your painful hearts mend and feel better very soon. Sending up prayers for you all dear lady. Warm hugs to all!

Something Happened Somewhere Turning said...

Meatloaf...how fun. Lois and I were just explaining to the girls about the Rocky Horror Picture Show.
I am so sorry to hear about Max. These animals are our family members and it always hurts so much to lose them.
I am also sorry to hear about the other sad news that happened and the sorrow it brought to your family.
My best to you and your family.

Laura said...

sending you love sweet angel mamma.
shana tova...it will be, it will.

Joy Palakkal said...

Have Great time..

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