Monday, February 27, 2006

Stumble Then Crawl

I've been up for hours which wouldn't be a bad thing, if only my normal escape hatches were working. Normally i'd have my face buried in a book- any book written about anything. I know why. I know it's in part the "need to know more about everything". I also know a huge part is the need to distract myself. If I focus on the words then I can't possibly focus on the dreams. The moving pictures that play over & over behind my eyes even once I wake. If I study some brand spankin' new topic & absorb it, it keeps the disturbing things at bay. At least usually.

Tonite I have been less than capable of that. The walls feel like they are moving in on me and the silence is lethal. I want to leave and just walk but I haven't been successful at finding my way out the door either. There is no safety net, there is no retreat.

I'm stuck in death's waiting room. There's no escape and there's no way to speed it up either. A friend from childhood has been ill for months and finally rge doctor sent him home to die the other day. If he makes it a week without any treatment it'll be a miracle. The "treatment" wasn't working anyway but somehow you delude yourself into thinking that as long as a person tries to get help, hope might be in sight. I don't blame him for giving up & when he did the doctor didn't offer any possible positive outcomes if he kept plugging along.

We all knew better but hoped for something different.

My last thoughts did not & were not intending to imply that everyone who suffers deserves it- not at all. We've all known people who were awful & then suffered just as we've known someone wonderful who suffered as well. The point was, who or what decides. Is it all in the hands of fate?

My friend is more like a brother than my actual brother has been in decades. So I'm stuck in that horrible spot of jumping when the phone rings. Relieved when it's not his number on my caller ID, then wishing that it was.

Anticipating a loved ones death is like standing atop a cliff with your toes dangling over the edge while someone has their hand on your back, ready to push you. There's no way out. You are going down. The only uncertainty is when. It's imminent, but those final seconds feel like days.

How many times can your soul die?
Your heart can die a thousand deaths
For with every false hope
Of a promise for tomorrow
It is resurrected.
Alive, alive and again capable
Of suffering and dying
Just as so many times before.
First it throbs and aches
And fills with darkness.
Then it begins to fall
Down deep into your stomach,
Where you can feel its weight.
There it slowly breaks apart
Piece by piece
As the moments of its life
Haunt your mind.
The pieces are absorbed
And ravage your soul,
Infecting it, too, with this darkness,
Deeper than hellish night,
Until it gasps for the fading light of life
Surrenders and finally
Retreats
Ad mortem
Until the next false hope
The next promise
Is presented.
But the soul, the soul is not
So strong, so resilient
Once the soul is damaged
There is no hope of recovery.
The damage spreads like a virus
And death is slow and imminent
And eternal.

15 Comments:

Blogger The Rev. Dr. Kate said...

So much of what you write is full of religious imagery. You seem to wrestle so often with the quesions of good and evil and whether or not there is ultimately some faith in the universe or God or the Divine or fate- however you choose to name it - that will save your soul and makes sense of the pain. It would be very easy for you to let go and fall off that cliff - rather than waiting to be pushed. So, I guess the question I would ask you is: what keeps you willing to stand on the edge of the cliff? The soul is more resilent than you think - and the willingness to engage suffering is how it becomes so. You have had more than most to deal with - how can your soul not feel the weight of what your head and heart carry? Underneath the deep grief you expressed so eloquently, is anger. A person wiser than I once wrote, " We should not make light of our power to rage against the dying of the light - it is the root of the power of love." By whatever name you call it, there is a love in the universe that suffers with us and that is suffering with you (and your friend)now. No external force can save your soul, Bobby. Only you can do that - and as it is with most truths that stretch the limits of the language, the answer will be a paradox. I think the wounds you carry in your soul will be the way you save it. All the rest of us can do is be there with you while you struggle. Keep whatever faith you can - and take it one breath at a time.
Kate+

6:59 AM  
Blogger Jules said...

It sucks in these kinds of circumstances, and I feel your pain here. Nothing triggers my anger and rage more than being able to do nothing when someone is suffering. My deepest sympathies for your friend, and for you having to wrestle with this.

7:04 AM  
Blogger Axe said...

Anticipation of something bad is a soul killer, Bobby. Accept it before it even happens, then know that most of the shock is already absorbed. It sounds a little depraved, but its an effective mind fuck.

I should know...

7:31 AM  
Blogger VDOFan said...

My sympathies to you and you fiends and their family.. I am sorry for what you are going thru. I wish you weren't so sad.. on the verge of madness.

hugs Janice

7:47 AM  
Blogger Selena Marie said...

I still, not much like I used to, believe in a Higher Being,even though,my wonderful Mother,Dad,and Baby Sister died of horrible cancers. My 2nd oldest Brother,and Cousin(survived Viet-Nam, both almost killed there) came home, getting their lifes back in order again,were killed,at different times, each by a drunken driver!My brother was only 29yrs.old, and my 1st Cousin, only 26yrs.old! I am not looking for sympathy from anyone,nothing can be done about these Awful Circumstances! All these Tragedies happened within 15 yrs of each other. The closest was my Dear Mom and Precious Sister,4 yrs. apart! NO ONE in this life is Perfect,including my wonderful family,but they all were Caring,Loving People,who were Taken Away Too Soon!! I feel Sad for your Friend, and you Bobby, but I Don't Understand Why Good People Suffer so Much,while Rotten,No good Bastards have nice lifes,etc. I just don't understand Life,Karma,whatever,anymore! There's a book out called "Why Bad Things Happen To Good People!" I guess you just can't Fight "Fate",no matter how much you try!! Sorry to have Babbled on so much,but the pain and sorrow I feel,is unbearable ,at times!!Take care,Bobby.

7:52 AM  
Blogger jen said...

this is the kind of time when your coping skills really get a workout; reading and other harmless destractions become lifelines, as do good friends who will listen and hurt right along with you. it is the kind of situation for which the phrase "slog on through until you can lift your head again" was made.

8:08 AM  
Blogger Unrequited said...

Dear Bobby,
These recent posts have been difficult to read and even more difficult to respond to. I really do feel your pain.
I hope that you have had the time to let your friend know just how much he means to you. A chance once more to celebrate his life and your friendship is a comfort if not now then later.
Tell me about your friend. When death is so pervasive sometimes it helps to remember the living done.
Or we can just be. Sometimes words are possible but it's a comfort to just "be" in the presence of someone who truly cares.
I've lost so many dear people, good people and their deaths and suffering were not kind or fair.
I don't believe that the life you've lived fortells the death you'll receive. Life just isn't fair. But the life you've lived will certainly be present in how you accept and live out your death.
Whether you believe there is more to follow or not.
And the grace and dignity and yes even the fear and humility I have seen with those I love have given me comfort and strength. Even though the circumstances of their deaths may have burdened me with bitterness and fear at how unfair life can be.
So Karma, yes, not in the way or cause of death but how one experiences it.
Take care Bobby. Please be with your friend and then come back and find solace in your friends.

8:41 AM  
Blogger Shadow of a Joke said...

scary, sounds like what I'm going through

9:16 AM  
Blogger kacey said...

It's awful to be in that position. I was there when my Dad got sick and all I could do was watch and wait and dread.

The only thing I can say is, if your friend is up to the company, be there, talk and listen. I know it sounds lame, but just being there, so your friend isn't alone will be a comfort for him/her.

And, we'll all be here for you, to offer what comfort we can.

9:26 AM  
Blogger ann said...

Bobby, this is a beautiful and moving post and we share your pain and anxiety. We have all been there so we know what you are going through. If I could put my hand through cyberspace, it is there in yours.

lotsa luv ann xxxx

9:42 AM  
Blogger Riccie said...

Someone once told me when your soul is raw and bleeding, it is growing. I thought they were full of crap then, and sometimes, I still think do. Sometimes it just hurts to be human. I'll be thinking about you.

10:05 AM  
Blogger madi said...

I wish I could help you somehow, I wish I could tell you not to worry so much cause everything will be alright. But I can't. Anything that I'd say would probably sound too artificial.
I'm really sorry about your friend.
I wish you could confort your soul somehow.

11:39 AM  
Blogger Nicole Wallace said...

But when the wave of grief sweeps over you...

Will you drown, love?

And if you are in serious danger of such...Who will save you?

2:26 PM  
Blogger Isabella Manning said...

His friends, Nicole.

Anything you need Bobby. But you know that.

I just think that maybe you need to hear it now.

2:52 PM  
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10:29 PM  

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