Karl (louderback) wrote,
Karl
louderback

2006.045 Trials

Today's Movie Quote: "You measure life with a ruler... and a bathroom scale."

         I had a "good" day today. I quoted that because good is such a relative thing for me. I did accomplish some things I've been hoping to do for a while.

  • I cleaned off the hall table and set up a "mail station"
  • I placed 10 lights beside the front walk to provide some lighting and a modicum of decoration
  • I cooked a dinner of steaks, potato casserole, and green beans, with a lettuce salad
  • I called my rep at the Wolfner Library and got my books on tape squared away
  • I comforted a friend who has lost her husband for the second time in 20 years
  • I cleaned the entire kitchen to within an inch of its life (except the stove top) oops!
  • I ran the dishwasher twice
  • I did a load of laundry

         On reflection it is not an impressive list, but for me that was an incredibly busy day. There's a lot of weird stress in my life right now.

         I'm still feeling dissociated, as though I am watching myself do things. Someone called it an "in-body out-of-body experience" yesterday. I think that describes it reasonably well. I am becoming more concerned about this as it shows no signs of ceasing. My pdoc and tdoc both assure me I needn't be concerned. Yeah, like I'm going to believe experts, right? It is uncomfortable and enervating for me so I am going to continue to rant about it, OK?

         My friend Lorna from California (an acquaintance from the middle '70s) and I have been in contact via an annual phone call and an infrequent e-mail for around 30 years. We were close back in the day, might have been in love save for circumstances… blah, blah, blah. She married long ago and had quite a happy time for ten years only to lose her husband to cancer. Some six years later she surprised herself and everyone who knew her by marrying again, and being quite happy› again. She mailed me Saturday last to tell me that husband number two was dead of cancer. She phoned me Monday afternoon and we spent some time chatting. She phoned again this afternoon and finally said the things she wanted to say and cried the tears on which she had been working. I said the things I say. I don't know what else you can do at such times. Lorna is a delightful person. I am sad that twice she has found love only to lose it. People look so far afield for tragedy and drama. It surrounds us and we dismiss it.

         My daughter in-law phoned yesterday to cancel our planned dinner together (she was coming to dine with me at my home). She has been spending a bit of time with me while her husband is away. We have been talking about their plans to start a family after he returns. It seems that now, while her husband is away in the military, she has received (through an agency) a letter from the daughter she gave up for adoption eleven years ago. She is completely at a loss as to how to react. She kept tabs (per agreement) on her daughter for her first five years. She and the family are known to one another. Her daughter has always known she is an adoptee. Questions are many. Opportunities for answers are few. I have tried to comfort my daughter as best I can. Her husband will be home in only a month or so. They can sort it out then. Until they can do so together it behooves her not to do anything rashly. So who is going to listen to sensible advice under these circumstances? I hope things go well, however they develop.

         In my own particular little circle of Hell, I am dealing with the loss of yet another friend. The people I've known for the longest started dying off about ten years ago. I lost another last week and can just now really think about it. Joey lived near me in my youth. He was a smart kid, into his music lessons, always wanting to talk about the philosophical BS that most kids don't want to get close to. Of course, I delighted in the same BS. We lost touch for years, reunited, lost touch again, and repeated several times. Joey and I haven't been "close" in any sense of the word for over forty years, but who can surrender the friends of your childhood without pangs? Those childhood friends help teach the most fundamental, and perhaps inflexible, lessons that eventually make you who you are. Joey and I learned how to think together, how to argue, how to rationalize, and be rational. Teacher & student we helped make each other who we are.

         More or less in Joey's honor I watched Peter Pan and ruminated on the foibles, follies, and faults of childhood, and on its grandiose glory. There is an ache, I think, in every man who has ever come to know that he is growing old that nothing can assuage, a nostalgia for a life he never lived and which he would not have lived given the opportunity. We all have regrets, but we have to be old for them to begin to matter.

Tags: friends, illness
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