I’m coming up on 16 years since I lost Morgan. It feels odd to no longer feel the sharp pain of her loss and yet to still feel the dull empty of absence.
The last 2 years I haven’t even realized why I was feeling depressed until it smacked me in the face and I let out a soft ‘oh’.
I’ve grown around and beyond the pain of losing her but it never goes away. I know that for some it does and those people feel like aliens to me. I can’t understand how they can look back on everything and just remember the happy.
Or all those loss tropes of you have one year then go out and find someone new. Doing a disservice to whoever you meet as well as yourself. If you aren’t ready, aren’t at least healing, then doing that isn’t what is needed.
As if grief is something you can change by shear force of will.
No one asks the person with a shattered spine to run marathons in a year. Yet with grief and other emotional and mental damage we are asked to shed those bonds. As if we aren’t human. As if our humanity has to be put on hold so that society who was only tangentially effected, can move on.
Well, fuck that.
But also, fuck this horrible empty.
The dreams that really get me are the pnes which aren’t scary during the dream. The ones which are so real that it feels like living a whole other life. A life entire, until something completely weird happens. It this case it was a hole cut into my skull and inside was a steamer trunk full of bloody leather waistcoats and bloody jeans, a 5 gallon orange water cooler which sloshed in a disconcerting way, and a little jar of vaporub.
I was frantic that there was this huge hole in my skull but these items filled be with terror. Not of the items, but that they would be found and traced back to me.
It was super weird. And there was some subplot where a mobster was trying to escape but his lover dies and somehow she had a kid after dying and he was looking for the kid and the description for the kid was to just look for the most unbearably romantic starry eyed kid which was remarked to be the least useful description.
And the mobster or the kid or the lover weren’t me. I was just watching this unfold.
And during the dream this was all normal and fine. But now I’m awake, and I’m left with a what does it mean. Usually its bits and pieces taken from my day to day. The vaporub was from a youtube video about a Genie from the South. The mobster was probably from a article I read about the show, The Sopranos. The rest of it…. Just what the fuck.
Labor day is the direct result of labor regulations. The 40 hour work week is the direct result of labor regulations. The minimum wage is a direct result of labor regulations. The ban on child labor is a direct result of labor regulations.
The laws which made these regulations are less than a hundred years old. In fact, they are 84 years old. We have sitting members of congress who are older than these laws.
The minimum wage has been gutted. What was intended as enough money for a person to live a decent life is now less than a third of the average expenses of a single person living alone let alone a family.
The 40 hour work week is a farce. With forcing people into the so called ‘gig economy’, that protection goes out the window. Because they are now classified as contractors and contractors set their own hours. Even though most contractors, in fact, have set hours they must work. Add in office workers who suddenly find that they are listed as salaried workers which means they no longer have to pay them overtime and we see that the 40 hour work week has become a thinly veiled farce.
As to child labor? Children are allowed to work for family businesses or as young as 14 with the consent of their guardian. While this is the most unchanged of the original law, it is still being eroded. Albeit at a slower pace.
84 year. And the systemic dismantling has been ongoing for at least the last 40 years.
That’s what this day is about. And any conservative that tries to sell you some other bullshit about patriotism or other nonsense, I kindly ask that you sit down and shut up. For once.
I hold with the maxim, “If you haven’t been to sleep, it’s not a new day.” This sort of tongue-in-cheek mantra is semi-necessary for someone who has insomnia as much as I do. It’s right up there with “Pain is weakness leaving the body”, for both being complete bullshit and yet oddly effective.
Our brains believe what we tell them. Especially with even a thin veneer of conviction. It’s why depression brain is so effective. I know it’s lying. I know that what it says is at the least an inaccurate representation. But the more it says it, the more my brain internalizes the false message. And to break those chains, it takes positive words. Words that you can believe which are, at the very least, neutral.
I substituted every time that my brain tried to insist that I would be better off dead, with I am loved. It worked though it took a long time and those thoughts aren’t gone but their power is greatly diminished.
That is my coping skill. I talk to my brain. To my body. And I try to flip the script.
Will it work for others? I don’t know. But knowing that there are different methods, knowing that there are different paths, has to help.
And, if nothing else, even if at some point in the future I fail in my battles, maybe if it helps someone else…it’ll have been worth it.
But that’s just me. What I feel. We all must determine our own path and finding it, walk it.
Tired of being affronted by their lack of compassion
Tired of the blindness they exhibit of their own hypocrisy
I’d prefer it of they were cynical in their reasoning rather than impassioned
Because at least then they would know that they are manipulating their reality
At least then they would know that what they do is to further their goals without regard to the human cost
Instead we have individuals who on any given day would be giving to charity and being kind
All the while frothing at the mouth over some perceived injustice where someone who is has less than them somehow makes them impoverished
As if the poor have some kind of leg up because they are getting help
Meanwhile they have figured out how to never pay taxes. So that their money doesn’t help anyone but themselves. So that they can keep crying that other people who don’t deserve it are getting ‘free’ things.
Its sickening and like watching the corruption of the human spirit in real time and I just don’t have the strength to be outraged.
I wish humanity had not shown how thoroughly it has failed. How this nation has failed.
But there’s nothing left but the too tired flailing of someone without power begging for people to care
Even as my own capacity wanes
Is it weird to miss that heightened state of alertness? That paranoid hyper vigilance which comes from trauma?
Because, I miss it. It was the one thing that made me feel power over my anxiety and depression. The thought being, at least I can see what others can’t. Can know what others don’t. Be aware of the world in a way that few are.
I know why I lost it. I spent alot of effort to no longer be constantly aware of every little thing. And I’m not saying it’s gone completely. When my anxiety flares or when I’m in a genuinely unknown or scary situation its back. But in my day to day, its gone.
But still, is it weird to miss one of the things which defined you? Which you used in proactive ways? Even if it was harmful overall.
It may be odd. It may just be human nature. To miss what was, even if what was, was harmful.
The nicest thing you can do for yourself is to forgive yourself for the missing of deadlines. Forgive and try to do better. Because once you have failed at something you’ve set out to do, it’s too late. That iteration has failed and all you can do is move forward. It’s trite but still true.
I know I’ve been missing a few of these. My brain feels empty. My heart placid. Without the roil, without the sturm and drang, without the churn, it’s hard to write anything. I miss the passion. The surety of purpose. The faith in hunanity.
When we have strived for so long without forward momentum, there must come a time of reflection. A time to reevaluate goals. Part of this process must be the deep examination of motivation towards your goal coupled with the cost of achieving that goal. Because, make no mistake, there is always a cost.
And if the cost is more than you are willing to pay, then a course correction, however minor, is in order. It’s not necessary to tear or break anything. But it neccesary that kindness and honesty be the rule. We owe, at least to ourselves these traits. Even to an enemy or opponent, these are owed. Even if the action is dire, honesty and kindness can play a role.
It should be acknowledged that these twin virtues are for yourself. In acting on a course correction it is easy to hurt or cause hurt. If you move with kindness, you will know that it is the least amount of change needed to make your change and to cause the least damage. If you move with honesty, then you will know that the action was neccesary.
And the neccesary thing is the hardest ethic to adhere to.
We all leave the lives we’ve led for our own reasons.
Sometimes, it’s the only thing we can do to give ourselves a chance for a better life. Sometimes it’s to persue a happier path. And sometimes, it’s just time.
All in all, it’s best to just go. Life isn’t waiting on your decision. It’s rolling along without you. And while waiting may position you better. Especially if you are young. The sooner you take the path that puts the decisions, no matter how hard or unhappy or lonely you feel, into your hands alone…the better off you’ll be.
You can’t move forward with all the things you desire if you yourself is trapped in your own life.
If you died tomorrow, what would you miss? What are the top 10, top 20, top whatever? Before it devolves into food you like, what would you miss? Without social or societal obligation, what is important to you? Because, I can almost guarantee it’s not work. With the exception of a few of us, work holds no more significance than a(hopefully) nonawful way to make enough money to live.
Is it family? Is it your lover’s smile? Will you miss music? Your cat? What is really important to you? Where should your focus be while you are alive? Where are your priorities and are you spending the time needed on them? Are your goals iin the bone or are they fleeting priorities of the flesh and blood life you are forced to live? What are we doing here?