Saturday, June 24, 2006

sick and tired WARNING: contains dickensian childhood interlude

Well I'll be dipped. I'm sick.
No, not like that, you bad potty person. Ok, well, fine, like that too, but what I mean is, I have germs.
No, not those type of ....never mind. Just-onward, ok?
In all the recent activity I plumb missed the fact that I have a rip-roaring cold going. Yeah! No kidding! I just thought I was having really bad allergy symptoms, so I loaded up on the Sudafed and forged ahead. Yesterday morning is when I began to suspect something more might be going on, when the chills and fever situation began. But everyone else around me has been sniveling and sneezing and bitching and moaning too, so it just seemed like same shit different day in that matrix.
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Now that we have the deciding factors in the Playboy of the Western World situation buttoned up I cannot help but return again and again to how this all stands in stark contrast to how my grandmothers care was handled.
And being roughly the same age as my parents were when they dealt with that situation I understand it even less.
All of these people were in their mid forties . Not stupid inexperienced kids acting on impulse.
There was no lack of money. No issues of diminished capacity. No physical debility, no lack of options, no unforseen circumstances that dictated their decisions.
No excuse.
I went to therapy for this. I spent five years, two times a week, never missing a session, dealing with this shit, and I dealt with it head on, as is my style. And the big events, I moved past them.
But now when I consider it in the abstract, as someone my grandsons' age, stuck for the next eighteen years with people that steeped in emotional illness and hate-orI think of the group of them deciding the fate of a helpless, sick old woman...in a family that despised women, that misused them in every way imaginable...it's straight out of a purple, lurid horror-thriller.
And it was. It really was.
Can you understand that? IT REALLY WAS THAT BAD. It wasn't just me not understanding or taking things wrong or whatever excuse.
Not even in the abstract.
Theres no way you can look at what went on and come up with any explaination for it other than the perpetrators were simply warped, evil people who got a great deal of satisfaction from being warped and evil.
You think I don't believe in good and evil? I believe in it even more now than I ever did when I was a devout Catholic.
What they did, they decided to do. They thought about. They planned.
How in the fuck do I ever get clean?

13 comments:

  1. I hope this doesn't sound too trite but the fact of you dealing with a similar situation better then it was dealt with before has got to be an improvement and therefore be a good thing?

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  2. You are clean. And yes, it was that bad. I believe you. You aren't making things up or not understanding or taking things wrong. It was that bad.
    But. It was not your doing. These were not your decisions. As a child you were helpless to do anything, to change anything about the situation. And that's the hardest part of it.

    If, when we're children, terrible things happen to us or we're forced to witness terrible things, we take on responsibility/blame/shame for these events. I don't know whether its because we're not completely our own person as children - that because we still feel part of our parents/family group we feel we share responsiblity for their actions. Or, maybe its because knowing that something is wrong we feel we must stop it even if we don't have the power to do so.

    Whatever the case, we blame ourselves. And, no matter how much therapy we have and how well we deal with it and get over it and move on with our lives, there will always be trigger situations that bring these feelings back to the surface. You've been revisiting a trigger situation.

    However. The sins of the fathers are NOT visited on the children. Not in your case. You've just proved that (if you needed to)

    Billy's right. The fact that you dealt with a similar situation so much better, with so much more consideration and love and compassion for the humanity and dignity of the person involved (and we know this - we've read it!), proves that you are not to blame for the way your grandmother was treated. You knew right from wrong, good and evil then. You know it now. From the sounds of it, the people who had the care of your grandmother didn't know or chose to ignore these things. But you did. You do.

    The pain of knowing how your grandmother was treated won't ever go away. But, your knowledge of it and your actions in a similar situation means that your child and grandchild didn't/won't grow up with these same feelings. You broke the circle.

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  3. I think Hendrix is so right.
    After the delight of reading your previous post I was left with this feeling:
    "What a great family they are (when families can be so tough)and imagine how my life would have been if my Mom had been so powerful and determined."

    As they say over this side of the water: "You've come a long way, Baby".
    x

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  4. The bottom line to all this is: You're not them. You're brilliant witty mature and about a thousand times more popular than they will ever be. Can they say they have twenty people reading their mind dribble?
    You are not them. Remember that.

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  5. Karma Baby, one day, somewhere/sometime people will have their come-uppence. You ARE clean its just those people left you dirty memories. They can't touch your grandmother now and she's smiling at you. Light a candle and have a chat to her.

    BTW, did you know you can make Crystal Meth from Sudafed?

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  7. I don't know if i believe in karma or fate or stuff, but i can't help but feel that you've been given an opportunity in the form of the Playboy to show yourself that you are not your family, to do things now as they ought to have been done years ago. HC is right, you are clean. Your handling of your father-in-law proves that.

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  8. I don't get ill. I think it's because my body is so disgusting that germs take one look/taste/smell and decide to contaminate somebody else.

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  9. Yo FN , My peers have said it all .You have emerged from a stinking pile , smelling of roses , enjoy what you have now , you have worked hard for it and I think its what your grandmother would be mighty proud of you

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  10. billy: well put, and entirely correct.
    hendrix: even weller put. you sound unfortunately familiar with this sort of thing. i hope i'm wrong. if not, i am so sorry.
    ara: oh geeze. thank you.
    now come on, y'all are making me all misty.
    noshit: you are smart. and right. and have a cool avatar.
    ratty: (i like that image, but shes probably too busy doing all the gardening in heaven to spend much time watching me, i hope!) *snif* oh? really?* snif, snorkle* crystal meth?* checks precipitation, adjusts flow of solution* really? wow. whoda thunk, huh?
    cb: thank you. that is how i feel...and the contrast is so stark it really horrified me. because, you know, i'm not really losing any blood or anything here..just making phone calls and visits, doing a little research, buying groceries, shit like that.I won't get lost in the situation again here, but still, they couldn't even be bothered to do that and had a giant fucking cow over what they did pull out of their asses. oh crap. anyway, thanks.
    bf; it is because you are so devastatingly sexy that the bacteria and viruses hesitate, they respectfully back away from the glory that is you. (you are such a guy.thanks.)
    beast: you rock. XO. ok, ill adopt you. your name is now beast macgillicuddy-heifetz IV. go to your room.

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  11. That stuff was extremely powerful, but they didn't destroy you or drag you over to their dark side. You live in light and love, and that's clean.

    Of course those memories won't go away. But you enrich a whole lot of lives now, and that's clean too.

    You entertain and move a whole bunch of readers you don't even know, and who take a keen interest in your and your family's welfare.

    I'd say, from the way you write, that the shit in your childhood has made some rich manure, even if it would have been better not being made. You're your grandmother's creation, not theirs. And she was clean too.

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  12. I can't comment to say, except for the change of players/time/place, I know exactly of what you speak. Maybe why we both bow at the alter of Neil Young?

    I am glad you have this opportunity to do for your father in law - I hope it brings you an immense joy. You've got a lot of love.

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