I don’t know if it’s all those illegal cigarettes I smoked last night that lead to my chest feeling rather tight…but my heart feels rather heavy.
At times I wonder if I am just being ‘sterk gevriet’ (stubborn) as I deal with this absence of my father. I swear at times it’s as though my heart is pounding against my ribcage shouting ‘lemme out!’ Breathe…one, two, three, four. Find your balance five, six, seven and eight. The entire lockdown experience has been like this. Each day, each moment, remembering what matters and where love is found and to give it to those who need it. And learning how to accept it in turn.
It’s easier to write, to allow myself to be distracted. Or to dip back into my past, find a memory and linger in that place where I didn’t need to reach for words to find safety. But we humans….we were not built for safety, let’s be honest. Risk, adventure, mad or bad romances, grand emotions that lead to wonderful music, the rock and rollness of it all. Or perhaps that’s just me.
And men are just weird. Since my father died I have been hit on so many times and in so many different ways. Some men don’t care when I say I have no space on account of my father’s death. ‘Just give me a chance, try me out…’ This was actually said to me! Instead I will just lie and say I am in a committed relationship. Well, I am in a passionate relationship – with my damn self, thank you very much!
And then my daughter called and told me a bunch of weird stories. So much so that I ended up howling with laughter. She wants me….wait for this…to be her wedding singer. She wants to walk down the isle to Fergalicious! Can you imagine that? I wanna drink whiskey and laugh when you get married girl. Not worry about singing and music! This kid then started singing one of my own songs back to me so badly I could not stop laughing. Small mercies. Little kindnesses, her call was needed.
It also occured to me how I lie to myself. Allow me to explain. People come in and out of our lives. Some have a profound impact. And while the gods are merciful and never leave us without, there are some people whose influence, kindness and ways of being cannot be replaced by anyone. No matter what is said or done. At the end of the day they are so special and wonderfully unique that life is filled with slightly less magic when they are not around. What can one do but honor their memory? I am not only speaking of my father.
We face losses every day. Some are needed and others not, we think. There are times when we can’t make sense of what’s going on. When we fail. When we don’t recognize what’s right in front of us – good or bad. When logic no longer is enough, when we need to step back, sit down, shut up, speak up. And…breathe, one, two, there, four…and hope that it all makes sense when we wake up… five, six, seven and eight…