The Next Chapter
The Next Chapter.
They all seem to run together sometimes… all these chapters of this book. But I have to know when one ends and the next begins. I’m doing all I can to balance the love that I’m feeling for my new life with my new husband in our new apartment – with the grief I am feeling for my family and the loss of my father.
Last week was hard. Hardest because in the midsts of everything, my mother basically laid down and was ready to die as the plans needed to be set in place for the wake and funeral arrangements. And who better to make those plans than I? So I had to act quickly and be the one who wasn’t going to cry and lament and just make the calls, arrange the wake and funeral, call SSI, call the pension company, call the credit cards… and organize. On the phone with the life insurance company, I was pragmatic and collected until she asked me in succession for his date of birth and date of death. I rattled off the date of birth as quickly as he did: “two twenty-two thirty-two” but when I started with the date of death… and was basically relaying the date for the day before I called… I let out this… sob… I have no idea where it came from and the tears just rushed forward… and just as quickly as it started, I reigned it in so I could take care of business – I said my apologies to the woman, and continued with my train of thought. And it’s been that way ever since. Whenever I need to grieve, I’m in the middle of something else. So I can’t full on grieve.
It came to a head at the funeral. For me… it always does. Right when the priest (if it’s a Catholic funeral mass) sprinkles the baptismal water on the casket as a symbolism of the baptism we receive when we’re born. I know that as a child when we’d go to Easter mass… and the priest would go up and down the aisle and sprinkle the congregation with baptismal water, I’d feel so blessed if a drop hit me… renewed, even. But when it goes on the casket… I just think… “he can’t even feel it… and even if the casket was open… he still wouldn’t… because he’s not in that shell…” And it gets me. Every single time. A single tear turns into full on cry. But usually, I’m able to get it together before the walking down the aisle… But this time I was walking behind the casket, pushing my mom in her wheelchair…… right behind the casket. I just lost it… I couldn’t contain the tears anymore and they came rushing forward. Everyone was worried about me. They didn’t want me to drive, but I insisted that I was alright. And I was. I just needed that release. The rest of the day I was alright – just tired… being up from 5:30 AM and shuttling everyone around, signing off on paper work… things of that nature. When I finally got back home, I crashed for a few and then Max & Robin came by with a huge bottle of Goose for us to share. They helped to buffer the time I would have spent alone (my hubby was at meetings and things) thinking too hard.
The last major thing on the agenda is to move me all the way out, so that Dominic can move all the way in. Mom is starting to lose it about how she’s all alone. But I can only move so fast with all that’s on my plate. But miracles have to happen and who better to conjure them up?
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