Not your standard issue late twenty-something's blog.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Death be not awkward

Sorry, kids. I'm on a death kick.

My boyfriend's roommate's dad died suddenly and without warning over the weekend. The roomie is a very private guy and although we're very friendly all I could do was say "I'm so sorry" and offer to talk. I wanted to say: "I don't know how you feel but my mom died without warning so if you ever blah blah blah" but all I could do was hug him and, well, be awkward. Because more than being sad or tragic or anything else, death is awkward. It's awkward for the people who experience the loss and the people who love those people. Awkwardness, like death, comes to us all. When faced with mortality, we all stutter.

My boyfriend doesn't want to know how my mom died for fear it might make me emotional. I tell him it's okay and fourteen years has made me used to the idea if not too thrilled about it. He says let it happen naturally. I want to deal him: it's death talk. It's a stilted monologue. No matter how casually I say it, you will feel bad for me to some extent. You won't know what to say. You'll be scared I'll start crying. An intrinsic part of me that has largely shaped my insides and the way I perceive absolutely everything will be lost to you until you deem yourself, not me, ready to hear it. And there's nothing I can do about that.

My dad has a hard time standing and sitting these days. As if sleeping in adult diapers wasn't humbling enough, my dad will shortly go the way of my grandmother: needing a supportive arm on either side to move him from couch to dinner table. From dinner table to bathroom. From bathroom to bed. Well, maybe the diapers will take care of some of that. He has taken to sitting in folding chairs without cushions. Not comfortable but infinitely easier to move from than his plush couches that I immediately fall asleep in when I visit his Battery Park apartment. In his new rental in Florida, he bought himself a gorgeous couch that he will probably never sit in. When I voice concern and disappointment for him, he's so calm: "It's not the end of the world, Kad." And somehow I just feel worse, realizing that the day will come when I will be okay with not being mobile. How do you make your peace with that? Going up and down stairs now, I feel the twinges in my knees, worse on rainy days and I fear what the the next forty years will bring to my damaged joints.

On a happy note, having a problem taking a dookie at work. A cleaning guy was waiting for me to exit to do his midday cleaning in the ladies room. Nothing like having a small Mexican wielding a mop to put the pressure on you to take a quick dump.


Blogger John said...

The only time I have ever been awkward hearing about your mom's death was when it was linked to your wiggity wiggity wack teen years. Not even a family torn asunder is an excuse for paying money for a Starter jacket. Had we met in 1992, we would have been sworn enemies, K.

And who's your new boyfriend, the Angel of Death? Was he a rebound from your breakup with Jersey City's Angel of Douche?

Kick it all you want Kath, but tell your friends if you're getting down. Or I'll pretend you're still a Third Base aficionado and kick your ass so hard you'll *have* to wear your pants backwards.

2:48 PM


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