Fun Fact #22 – Loss is inevitable
It’s Thursday afternoon, and there is absolutely nothing that requires my attention.
It’s a weird feeling; having nothing to do. But its also refreshing.
This past year has been difficult for everyone. But it’s been especially difficult for me, which is insane because this should have been the happiest year of my life.
- I’m finally going to graduate college, that’s something I NEVER thought I was capable of doing.
- My husband and I bought our first house together.
- I’ve got the coolest kids.
- I found an amazing job working at a foster care agency.
- Financially, I’m OKAY.
But somehow, none of that is enough.
SOMEHOW, no matter what seems to be going right in my life I can’t find a moment to enjoy it. Its like my thoughts are flooded with all this trauma and negitivity, and I’m drowning.
I can’t catch my breath.
My grandma passed away last October and there’s no amount of money, or anything that will bring her back. There’s nothing in this physical world that replaces or even distracts me from the immense pain that comes along with losing her. Regret? Hopelessness? Loss? Sorrow? Suffering? Peace? Anger? Hatred?
I can’t think of a word that makes sense or even describes the way that I’m feeling. I know that death is inevitable, and that it happens to everyone at some point in their life, but I cant shake this feeling. It’s different that any kind of loss I’ve experienced, and I’ve known more than a handful of people to die. In fact this past year I’ve lost two friends tragically. I think about them often, and who they would have been. How they would have turned out if things were different, who they used to be and the loved ones they left behind. But nothing hit me harder than losing my grandmother. I think about her everyday and sometimes the pain is so overwhelming that I cant get out of bed. I haven’t been myself this past year, and I know that. With every happy moment, there is a lingering sting of sadness that follows.
I hate myself for not spending more time with her, or trying harder to be in her life. But mostly I hate my uncle for forcing the distance between us. He was… and IS a terrible alcoholic. After foster care, I tried to rebuild relationships with my family, but quickly found out that the toxic lives they lead were too painful for me to endure. I only have my sister now. I tried for everyone else, I did…
But I don’t think I tired hard enough for my grandma.
As much as I wanted to be able to help her, pull her from his stark cold grasp. I couldn’t do anything. Because she wanted to be with him, her son. (my uncle)
She felt like she needed to take care of him, even though she couldn’t even take care of herself. I get it, I do. It was her first baby, and she loved him so much that she wanted to be there for him no matter how terrible, or drunk or stupid he was. I get it. I just had a hard time accepting that, so I distanced myself from them both. For years they would come in and out of my life until I finally just stopped going to visit them all together.
That’s a choice I have to live with for the rest of my life.
Knowing that I wasn’t strong enough to put my feelings aside and see my grandmother before she died.
I remember the day she died. I remember it vividly.
It’s plagued me since. This past month has been especially difficult because I know her birthday is coming up… She was born April 7th, 1941.
After she died, my uncle threw all of her things away and emptied her room within two days. He wouldn’t let anyone save or keep anything of hers, and the weeks following, whenever I would come by to visit, he would be completely smashed-drunk. Passed out on the ground inside his living room. Shortly after she died my sister thought it was a good idea to get our family together at his house. That was a disaster.
My oldest brother tried to stab me with a knife, it took both of my other siblings to hold him down and disarm him, holding him back until the cops arrived. Four squad cars later, guns drawn and lasers aimed. They took him away in the back of a car and I haven’t seen him since.
The sad part of everything that happened is that, in the process of losing my grandmother, I lost my brother as well. Yanno what’s even sadder? I don’t even hate him for trying to kill me. He’s struggled with his own mental illness for years, and after going through what we went through as kids, and then going into the Military and struggling as an adult… I know deep down that he was lost a long time ago, he hasn’t been my brother for a long time. I used to idolize him as a kid. Now, we are complete strangers.
This past year I’ve struggled a lot. I keep telling myself I need to get my shit together, be a positive roll model and just suck it up. But I’ve dealt with loss my entire life and frankly, I’m fucking sick of it. I’m tired. I’m exhausted.
The last memory I have of my grandmother is bringing her spaghetti, leaving it in the fridge and kissing her forehead goodbye. I didn’t know that was the last time I was going to see her. I guess we never know when the last time we see someone will be. All I have left of her now is an old sweater, two china dolls and one picture. We never even had a funeral for her because my uncle spent the money on booze and refused to have a ceremony. One day she was here, the next, it’s like she didn’t even exist.
Anyhow, I stopped working. Which sucks, because I finally found a place I fit in…
But, I haven’t been myself lately, so I started talking to a therapist, left my job and started making candles. I thought doing something productive would be better than doing nothing at all with my time, especially since I find myself drowning in my thoughts when I’m left alone with them. Maybe one day I’ll learn how to love myself again, I think right now I’m going to spend the next few weeks, playing video games, making candles and just learning how to exist without suffering.
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