Friday, December 08, 2006

Living in my head

"There are as many nights as days, and the one is just as long as the other in the year's course. Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word 'happy' would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness."
~Carl Jung

I don't consciously know what to say after such a silence, yet there are so many words that flitter, fall, crash and break against the walls of my head. So I will start this with no idea of where it will lead. I need an outlet and I should get back to being here regularly. I'm living inside my head a lot these days, in all the non-work moments. I'm reaching out now, I think.. being less than strong, in spaces where only folks who do not see me F2F and know me only a little and a few strangers, will notice. I've long ago judged this a failing of mine, this needing to always be and appear strong and capable; to be in control of self, if of nothing else.

I really, really like my new job. I may have found another home. I can see where there is the potential for many different days full of difficulty, but I project there will be a continued sense of having made minute, tiny, positive differences in the flow of things/life overall.

My perception of life right now still consists of wonderful highs, positive moments and direction for self followed by chaos, grief and sadness connected to the lives around me.

My father, who is in Indiana, is in surgery today- for esophageal cancer. They are removing his esophagus, reconstructing, replacing, doing what they can do to affect those horrible statistics....

This was sudden. I learned about the cancer last weekend. I learned that his hastily scheduled surgery (for emergency reasons) would be today, only last night. I am processing the waves of feelings that go in all directions, that crash around me, that one moment are distant as if it were someone else, in some other place, and in the next in my face, spilling down my cheeks, wringing my hands.

My sister's surgery is scheduled for December 19 and she has transferred to doctors up here at Revlon/UCLA Breast Center. Her surgery will also not be simple nor is the cancer confined to her breasts...

And I am alternately annoyed with everyone in my family (one of those grief stages perhaps?) for dishing out news in dribbles and pieces instead of telling me everything all at once. I process whatever it is, and then am told it is not just that but also something else and yes, they knew before, but didn't want to alarm me all at once. And then a little later they say 'well, I didn't want to tell you, but it is also this, too'... and I am left wondering what other 'too' thing will pop up in the next conversation.. and looking for numbness, distance. I know I need to continue to figure out what to do to support everyone, and in most moments despite my limitations to only by telephone for now, I think I am doing a fair job.

But always I wish I could say, puulllllueeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaase stop doling out bad news in tiny dribbles; it drives me crazy..... but I don't say it. I wander around in my head, watching me examining my reactions. Hopefully I am punctuating this correctly to explain --- me watching me, watching me.. I've picked up a second watcher somehow in all this chaos of family illnesses.

Speaking of family illness, I didn't previously mention that we had to take my husband to the emergency room with chest pain the day after Thanksgiving. He's fine now, it was just some angina which hasn't troubled him in a long time. Even with his history of heart attacks and trouble though, it was completely unexpected and a scare.

Did I tell you I really like my new job, how busy it is, along with so many things to learn, but how easy it is to mostly stay focused and in the moment... and how satisfied I feel at the end of the work day as I'm leaving?

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