I woke early this morning, after a restless nights sleep. Granda was on my mind because its his birthday today (7th Feb). We were fortunate to grow up with all of our Grandparents and I loved them all equally, but I had a special bond with my Granda. Sadly, he was diagnosed with liver cancer and died the day before his birthday (6th Feb) in the year 2000. Although its been 20 years since he died, it triggered memories I didn’t want to see. So, I got dressed and headed out. As I walked up the hill, I stopped to take a photo of the water cascading down the hill over the rocks. I thought about how much I wanted to share the beauty with my Mam, knowing how much she would appreciate it, which triggered other memories. I didn’t want to look back, but it felt like the past was walking right behind me and I was struggling to stay ahead of it.
My body may have been sitting in the Big Love Cafe, but I was back in the UK, reliving the moments. I recalled seeing Granda’s birthday cards, that my Aunt and Uncle had brought back from the hospital. There were splodges on the card I had sent him and I wondered if they were his tears. An image that still breaks my heart to think about. Although my parents and I went back to the UK, we never got the opportunity to say goodbye because he died a few days before we arrived. I wanted so badly to see his smiling face and hug him one more time, but instead I seen his lifeless corpse in a coffin.
And that’s when I began to unravel …
Visions of Mam, Dad and Christie on their death beds. Memories of our parents final weeks, days, hours and moments. There was no escaping the past because it was right there swimming around in my mind, as if I was watching it on a TV screen. I tried to fight back the tears, but the fluid just oozed from my nose instead. The only place I could find privacy was in the toilet, so I shut myself in and silently cried as the images relentlessly persisted. There was too much going on in my head and heart to be able to put on a mask and go on shift. So, I returned to the Cafe with blood shot eyes, to tell the cook that I couldn’t be there today. The look of genuine concern on his and my fellow vollies faces told me that I must have looked as bad as I was feeling.
I decided to go to the Garden of Enlightenment because it was raining and knew it would be quiet. When I got there I took off my soggy shoes and socks because I needed to feel grounded and tried to meditate, but felt too tired to focus my mind. So, I picked up the phone and called my sister. I tried to tell her how I was feeling, but I couldn’t get the words out because I was choking on my tears, so I hung up.
I recalled my conversation with the Nun yesterday, who commented again about the complexity of my grief and I was cranky. Why the fuck does she keep reminding me how fucking traumatic it was? Why the fuck does she want me to remember how fucking hard it was? She keeps talking about getting under my words and I know she means the pain I’m still sitting on. Well, here it is. The images I keep trying so hard to push out of my mind keep returning to be seen. I know its because emotions are still attached to them, but I’ve already felt these feelings before. So why do they keep coming back to be felt? Will I ever be able to watch the story unfold and not feel the sorrow? Am I gonna be haunted by these memories forever? How can I heal from something that keeps replaying in my mind? Who the fuck holds the remote control to my thoughts?
When the flow of thought and emotion finally calmed, I called my sister back and we talked for over an hour. While we were talking I noticed the face of a whale in the tree in front of me. His kind eyes and gentle smile was comforting.
“Whales are associated with compassion and solitude. Knowledge of both life and death. When the whale enters your life, it may be time to closely examine where you are, the actions and emotions that have brought you to this point, and what you can do to alleviate existing drama and unrest and find peace.”
Well, that’s part of the reason why I’m here !!!
After our conversation I wandered back to the vollie house, which was busy. So, I had a long hot shower, then locked myself in the bedroom. I cried and slept most of the day because I wanted to feel the closeness of another human being. I wanted to be held and touched, but I was alone.
Why do I keep finding myself alone in these moments of vulnerability?
Why don’t I have someone to hold me and tell me everything will be OK?
When I finally had the house to myself, I opened up the door to let some fresh air in, lit the incense, put on some shamanic music and picked up my drum. I wanted to rip off my clothes, stand out in the rain and howl at the heavens, as I felt a primal rush of energy flowing through me. Although I crave the tenderness of love, I wanted to fuck and be fucked. Urges I haven’t and cant fully satisfy, so they continue to be suppressed. I’m abstaining from many things, mindful masturbation included, which is having an impact on me. On days like today the path to so called “enlightenment” is a fucking struggle.