grief: an evolving process

Over breakfast, I read the first chapter of a book about what it’s like to be a person who works on dictionaries. “This is interesting,” I thought to myself, and bought the whole book. And then I had the sad thought that if she was still alive, this was totally a book I’d have recommended to my mother – I grew up in a house full of books, with one ever-growing section dedicated to books about the odd corners of the English language.

I shrugged, and sent her email anyway. It felt like the right thing to do, even as I was caught by a brief wave of utter misery and loss. I haven’t felt that for a while but it’s still there.

She showed up in my dreams last night, too. She was driving. We were on a highway through the middle of nothingness, going up and down its hills and overpasses, and navigating snow and slush with an aplomb I find rather absurd in a woman who lived almost her whole life in New Orleans. There wasn’t much conversation that I remember. Just the drive.

zuckerberg says it’s your birthday

Lounging around late at night, putting off going to bed. I load up Facebook on the tablet’s browser.

Facebook wants me to be very excited that two of my friends there are having birthdays. My timeline is full of notes about that and about things people posted on their pages wishing them a happy birthday.

I cringe a bit.

And then I go to my settings there and try to make sure Facebook will never tell anyone what my birthday is. I think it won’t. I should just delete that info from there. Oh look you can’t. I think I’ll change it to the creation date of Peganthyrus on Furrymuck.

Is this a normal reaction? I dunno. Birthdays have been weird for me ever since my father died on mine.

actually now that I think about it I’m seriously tempted to change it to that on every site that does that kind of thing. I’m close to a half century old, I think I’m allowed to start lying about my past now and then. And maybe I’ll be able to think about using it as an excuse for a party; I could use one in the middle of winter.

suicidal ideation annoyances

Ugh. Why is the part of my brain that keeps on muttering “your mother is dead, you feel like shit, kill yourself” over and over again the first bit to wake up and the last to go to sleep. Being up and doing other things drowns it out but it's always there first thing in the morning and last thing at night and I'm getting tired of its helpful reminder and suggestions for how to deal with the situation. Yes thank you for your contribution little depressive self-harming thought loop, it has been noted and considered; your suggestion of suicide is not one we care to consider any time soon despite your continued persistence. Now will you please shut the fuck up.

another year gone by

The first thing through my head in the morning is “I should deal with those life insurance policies on Mom except wait I still haven’t gotten the death certificates what’s up with that”. This is going to be a long forty-fourth birthday.

Then I check my email. Every computer wishing me a happy birthday via email is like a little knife in the gut because it reminds me there won’t be a phone call from her.

Yeah. This is crap. I’m going back to sleep. Maybe I’ll feel better when I wake up again.


Later. I looked at those life insurance policies. Another year or two of runway for getting this whole ‘comics’ thing off the ground as a viable career. Maybe more, I didn’t try to untangle their descriptions too deeply. I’d rather have another decade of her around to see it.


Once again, I am celebrating Thanksgiving in my traditional manner: by making sure there is food in the kitchen on the day before, and not going anywhere. It is, perhaps, slightly lonely in the way being alone on big FAMILY TOGETHERNESS holidays are, but it’s infinitely preferable to “having a strained conversation with my grandmother over tasteless turkey”, or “having a shit-ton of my housemate’s friends invade the already-overcrowded house for half a week, then staring at a kitchen full of the dishes said housemate can’t be bothered to clean up for a month”, which is the entirety of the “Thanksgiving celebrations” that I’ve been forced to endure in the past. Supposedly it can be fun if you actually spend it with people you like spending time with, but I’ve never had that happen.

An acquaintance had invited me to a party at her house this year, but she’s moved way down by the airport, and I really don’t feel like spending an hour on the bus, plus another coming back, for the vague possibility of having a good time. I dunno.

Feh. I thought I was past the place in my life where these wintertime “huddle with your family” holidays made me feel alone and friendless and reminded me how utterly lacking I am in the skills to change that.

Well I guess at least I’m thankful today doesn’t mean I’m gonna be seeing a mountain of dirty pots and pans that don’t fit into the dishwasher and that nobody in the entire house can be bothered to clean up. Man. Mood like this, maybe I should see if I can find a torrent of Cerebus and read the whole saga today, in a celebration of the mindset that sees the title character dying alone and unloved.

So I guess in summation, fuck Thanksgiving, fuck Christmas, and fuck Valentine’s Day while I’m at it, fuck Black Friday and Cyber Monday too. And fuck me for being nervous in social situations and being terrible at cultivating and maintaining friendships, while I’m at it. I’m gonna go blow a few hours playing a stupid fucking videogame until my eyes bleed now so I can let this unexpected pile of misery and hate subside.

also while I am lashing out: fuck everyone who’s going to get pissy at me for daring to mention my ex-housemate’s love of cooking and hatred of doing the dishes, if she’s so wonderful and defendable why the fuck couldn’t you ever get off YOUR asses and clean up after her. Oh and the hell with it let’s just let it all out; fuck my ex-boyfriends for deciding living with her was preferable to living with me. And if you’re reading this thinking “well I guess I know why” then fuck you too and the horse you rode in on, just to cover all the bases.

…I woke up late and haven’t had anything to eat yet. I should have some breakfast. The world generally sucks a lot more when I’m hungry. So one more: fuck my body for its crappy design that just makes me pissy and irritable and emotional when I’m hungry instead of raising an obvious HEY FEED ME flag.

edit. Also. Fuck me of last night for leaving a mess in the kitchen and not noticing that the dishwasher had every single one of the bowls I use for breakfast in it, waiting to be cleaned.

edit. Also fuck me for whining about a holiday that celebrates eating too much and then going out to buy a lot of crap. Especially when I keep on looking at myself in the mirror and seeing about ten pounds too many.