A Flash in the Night Sky3 July, 2011
I’ve been up all night with a sick cat and a security catastrophe but, though I am physically exhausted, the joint stimulation of Mirapex and Strattera has left me unable to sleep. I’m sure by mid-afternoon I will be capable of dozing off, but until then I will suffer this bizarre wired-exhausted feeling, being high and low simultaneously.
Along with exhaustion, I am feeling painfully homesick. My brother had a barbecue at his house yesterday. Present at this barbecue were the combined kin from both the Songs and the Johns. With myself as an obvious exception. A great time was had by all present. There was food, family, and lively discussion (I purposefully avoided the cliché completion of that trinity of schmaltzy Fs). People felt complete. In the words of the attendees, “nothing could have made it better” except maybe “a yacht.”
I don’t know what to feel when I read stuff like that. I’m ecstatic for my brother and thrilled with how his life is coming together. No one deserves this measure of happiness more than he does and I begrudge him none of it. But there is another part of me, a petty and bitter part that I would just as soon excise than acknowledge, that wants to post: What about me? Wouldn’t having me there make it better?
Now, I know that they would say yes and they would truly mean it; this is why the thought is petty and bitter. And what reeks of wormwood more than anything else is that despite knowing this, I still feel like everyone’s lives are truly complete without me. I have become a distant thought and a memory of times-past; I have ceased being a present force and influence. My parents transition into retirement without me being there to help. My brother and sister-in-law form bonds that will hold their new and extended family together without my presence. My nephew grows-up barely knowing who I am.
You see, the person I was, the son/brother(-in-law)/uncle, is, in a lot of legitimate ways, dead. Hell, I don’t even legally exist as that person anymore! Aaron is gone and their lives are continuing, moving forward, growing new tissue around the hole that Aaron once filled.
And me? I am on my own some thirteen hundred miles away becoming someone else. I am learning who I am, what I like and am like, developing a personality, taste, and style without them around to impact this development. In a foreign environment forged and influenced by strangers, losing my sense of connection to my past, alone and shivering I will suffer the pangs of birth into this world every day for the next two years. I am so far from where I was and so disconnected from those who knew me, that each day seals me off a little more from a family that functions well without me.
On the East Coast my marriage has ended and the world has shattered as easily and surely as a well thrown stone ends the warmth and security of a greenhouse. I have lost the family I had knit from separate wholes and suffered the emotional equivalent of being drawn and quartered. And still worse I am seperated from my given family and am hurtling down, falling ever faster and farther away from them. I am a meteorite, a hot, brilliant flash in the night sky burning away to nothing in the friction of the atmosphere. I want to see my family again before there is nothing left of me they recognize, before my regeneration is complete and I become a stranger to them.