I feel like cussing, but much less often. And there are these bouts of sadness… sort of a long deep sadness. And it isn’t so much remembering Ethan that takes me there, but really missing him. There will never be any more fresh interactions. We won’t build any more new memories… and there will be no more late night conversations or meals or reports from his life.
And I think I try to elicit the same kind of discussions from other people. And they just don’t do it. They aren’t as stubborn or as intelligent… and really when people start to get rude or when they lack a solid rhetorical base and the ability to defend a position… that is when I really want to call them out as rude assholes.
So I do think about Ethan all the time. It isn’t that there is not a day I don’t think of him… there isn’t an hour. Memories mixed with missing him…. And that long deep sadness takes over. There are days that are difficult. And sometimes there are predictable days… anniversaries, special days. All the days that used to be special and happy, now invite that dark heavy cloak. And then there are triggers… like songs or movies… or those surprise people in crowds- those aural hallucinations. And then there are the times it comes on, sometimes to the point of tears, for no reason.
And I can keep busy. I can distract myself. I can express myself. A can keep moving and it does seem to help. There are good days.
The overall effect is exhaustion. Some days I don’t want to go on. I actually count, calculate, how much life I have left (on average, like an insurance actuary.) And how I can break up those thirty or forty years into chunks. so I could make it through each one in little steps. I think about how to handle bad days… bad weeks. It isn’t that I am thinking of killing myself so much as looking forward to hitting the end of my journey. That last hill. That final stretch. And I ask myself what am I going to do today, tomorrow and for the rest of my life.
I was supposed to call Dan, who is recovering from heart valve surgery. I was supposed to practice kata… karate forms… I was supposed to do something. And I didn’t. I’m eating too much and too much of the wrong thing. I’m not exercising. I can’t focus. And I can’t see much beyond a few weeks. Occupy this time. Do something. Or sit and do nothing?
I think more about moving. About hiking or driving. About taking a road trip. About seeing Mt. Rushmore. Or even touring Europe. I think about calling Alan and doing some team building things. Or eating chocolate. Or buying a very sad and impractical car.
I have taken to looking at clouds… at seeing how the light plays off of them. At form and weight… opacity… and spacing. How colors change… how they move and fade and roll.
There are things that have to be done. I have to work on two houses. Paint. Decks. Moving wood piles. Railings. I have to go to work.
And all I want really is to spend a day with Ethan. I want an Ethanhug.
Sometimes when you feel like punching someone… like cussing… like throwing something away… I would settle for a hug.