Steve Hutchison (foomf) wrote,
Steve Hutchison

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one year later. Part one of two: Second Thursday in January.

I was awake until about 3am last night, insomnia from the narcolepsy ... I had taken a nap, not sure how long it was, on Wednesday.

Today I woke at 8:45, stumbled around a bit, showered, shaved, ate, started reading my journal friendlist.
For no particularly good reason other than synchronicity, ozarque has been looking at death and dying and how we deal. Very good reading, but also very intense. For no other particularly good reason than synchronicity, I happened to have the TV set to the Logo channel because they had an article on the Flag Project, which followed a show about a mother dying and her (gay) son's, and unspecified daughter's, reactions to that. I assume there was a lot of drama, but what caught me was how much she looked like Penny at the hospital, and that her eyes were open when she went. Penny's eyes were closed, because she was settling for a nap, and I believe, praying about the upcoming days, and the uncertainty and hard work of physical therapy to keep her able to move... we were so hopeful, it's pathetic. I still think it was the right thing to do.

This morning, looking for something else, I came across a note Penny wrote me in 2003 in April, saying about how hard it was, and wondering whether suicide would be "better for everyone". We talked that out at the time; she was really fearful because of the long unemployment and how she wasn't feeling more energy yet (only 4 months after her radiation treatments, of course she was tired). She was so much more hopeful once we got out of the house. I wonder sometimes if there wasn't something especially bad about that house, and I regret moving out of the Olympic place. I think it would have been so much better if we could've extended a greenhouse-room and the kitchen, reclaimed the garage... the main problem was the horrible, horrible people next door and their inability to recognize small things like property lines and right and wrong.

Maybe if we'd stayed it might've gotten better. I dunno. Timberlake was so beautiful at the right times, and so not-beautiful at other times. At least the stairs wouldn't have been so big a deal forever.

I got to work at noon. Feh. Michael wanted to know if the timing was bad, since this week, all week, I've had trouble making 10am. I hate what seems like 'trading on grief' but frankly, this has been so intense at times that I'm surprised I can focus on work at all - and I did identify the problem that was causing the web carbook to fail on my installation, which means I can get on with the work of finding out where it populates the prices, and put in something different. It would be even more amusing if I could find out how to input characters while the mouse was over that part of the frames, so the salesmen could use their old, popular method of simply entering the option codes instead of mousing around.

Enough work geeking. I got home - it was very cold outside, but sunny so not ready to snow - and took a nap. I was tired from all the half-rant, half-conversation, half-prayer, half pleading I was doing on the 8 minute drive home - slower than usual, gratia traffic, but early enough to avoid the people who think the narrow bridge at the bottom of the curve between two hills is OK to traverse at 40 mph when it's posted 20.

I sorted the mail, found a late Christmas card from John and Edith Prouty, with a nice felt christmas ornament inside, and a family newsletter that is, as with all family newsletters, utterly self-absorbed, and rightly so, but I still had to give a nasty look to the closing lines: "We pray that this has been a year of fond memories for you as it has been for us." Uhmmmyeah. Form letter. Can't be helped, unless one were to save a bit of space at the bottom for a personalized, handwritten note. Which eats up time, and they were, as attested by the letter's contents, very very very busy all year.

After that, and tossing the bulk of the bulk mail, I decided I would take a nap, with the idea of some intentional dreaming, maybe to see Penny for a bit. I found myself suddenly screaming and moaning and howling into a pillow for a while, not able even to come up with words, and then was exhausted enough to fall asleep, and slipped in and out of dreams. A bunch of general gibberish stuff that was in the 'memory filter queue' waiting to be ground out, after which I was aware that I was deeply asleep, partly curled around the place where Penny used to sleep. She wasn't precisely there, but it was warm, and I drifted around consciousness until I decided that I was awake. Cats were stomping around in dissatisfaction over the state of their food dish (it was full, but it was food they'd spurned yesterday until eating it when they thought I wasn't looking) and I wasn't moving. I was feeling the pounding of blood in my legs, and then later, in my upper body, and then in my head, and perhaps if there had been a reason to move, I would have, but there was none.
It was warm, I was curled around the not-space where Penny was not, and the tension was gone completely.

Some time after that I took a deep breath, and got up, and somehow it was only 6:45, only an hour.

I roasted some broccoli and warmed up a normal-person serving of the pork shoulder that's been in the fridge, clear-simmered last week, still quite tasty.
Somewhere soon, I'll have to put on Outside Clothes, go grab my pack of 'wakey' drinks from the car, and bring them in the house, as it is below freezing outside and they will gladly burst if I let them.

Tomorrow, potluck at the church, AND, I'll be trying to get to the Smith's place by 8:30 in the morning, which means waking up by 6:30. I no longer have the wherewithal to stay awake overnight, nor do I think it would be a good idea, really, given that tomorrow is the calendar anniversary.

People in the discussion on death are asking some of the same questions - why do people refuse to say 'died' or 'death', why do people prefer 'passed' or 'departed'?

I have no problem with 'death' when used clinically. My faith, however, and by faith I do not mean some wishy-washy feely-weely emotional surge that comes and goes away, because it has to endure those emotional surges just as strongly as any physically-evidenced belief does, my faith says that Penny is alive, as God is alive, and for that reason, sometimes I will say "passed" or "went ahead."


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