SEPTEMBER SURRENDER: DAY EIGHTEEN
What I’m Letting Go
It was not a good night last night. My father and I tried to get my mom to go to sleep early while watching the Yankee game. I laid down next to her while she was under the covers, trying to work on yesterday’s entry while she just kept talking. It was endless words that weren’t words coming out of her mouth, speaking about people I didn’t know, whose names I could not understand. I fell asleep for thirty minutes at one point. When I awoke, she was still awake, still speaking, saying words I just couldn’t grasp. I don’t know what happened but all of a sudden her mood turned on a dime. She was getting increasingly frustrated with me not understanding her, so she decided she’d go downstairs to ask my dad about it. I knew he was working and didn’t want to bother him, so I tried to stop her from going.
“Get out of my way, you idiot,” she said, grasping my wrists, attempting to wrench me out of the way. She has never once called me an idiot, nor has she ever grabbed me. I did all I could to try and not take that personally, but I finally had to relent and bring her downstairs to see my dad. That means two flights of stairs for a woman who is not so strong on her feet lately. My dad was happy to see her, as he did get some of his work done, but as soon as he took her upstairs to go to sleep, the anger started again. My dad realized he was fighting a losing battle, so he brought his iPad upstairs to monitor her and try and convince her to go to sleep.
I was downstairs writing, trying to get the entry out before midnight while hearing them argue upstairs. I kept going up, convincing my mother the best thing for her was to go to sleep. She agreed, but wouldn’t fall asleep. I was drifting in and out of consciousness when I heard her come downstairs, trying to look for something in the kitchen, telling me there were people she needed to go see. This went on and on until 4:30AM when I gave her one final visit upstairs, telling her to please go to sleep. I informed her that she didn’t take all her medicine the evening before, because she poured water in the bowl of pills my dad gave her, so we couldn’t know which ones she took, and which ones she didn’t. Eventually she and my father fell asleep a half-hour later, and I was out until 10:00AM.
This is apparently what my father goes through every night. I just finally got a look behind the curtain.
It’s a hard pill to swallow, but my mom isn’t getting any better. It’s a slow, gradual decline into getting worse. And I’m finding it harder to find ways to help her. All my dad wants is a prescription-strength sleeping pill to give her when she gets like this, which I can understand. But at the same time, we need to make sure she has the best quality of life she can have. I pray every night that she feels okay, and it saddens me to think that those prayers are going unanswered. I think what I need to let go of is thinking that a miracle will happen overnight and everything will be fine. Not back to where it ever was, but fine. Maybe it’s just not possible. I don’t want to think she’s too far gone, but I don’t know what else I can really do. It was a miracle when she gave birth to me, it was a miracle she took care of me and my father all these years. Perhaps we’ve all just missed the boat and grown our trees as high as they’ll go. I don’t want to think this, but at this point, I have no other choice. Just like it’s useless for me to sit around waiting for that text from someone, anyone, to come, hoping it will all work out might just be my wide-eyed idealism talking.
No one knows the future, so I guess we’ll have to wait and see.
What I’Ve Discovered
I’ve written ad nauseum about how sometimes I feel like I don’t get the attention or credit I think I deserve. I don’t need to rehash it here. Besides, it’s all just insecurities playing themselves out, right? What else could it be? I think back to my time as a kid. I remember watching a video from Christmas Eve night, where the whole family would gather at my aunt’s house to celebrate. I must have been around three years old. The entire party seemed focused on me and what I was doing. I know it’s always cute when cute kids act cute, but it was like I could do anything and everyone around me would be amazed. This isn’t a bad thing, as I remember a very happy childhood. But it turned into me seeking out attention, not quite acting out but acting sad so people would look at me instead. I even remember doing this at my kid cousin’s birthday party. It was his day, and I wanted some acknowledgement. Perhaps I used up all my attention-points in my childhood and don’t get any more as an adult.
But since I always look at both sides of the coin, maybe it’s a miracle ‘no one’ is paying me any mind these days. Maybe it’s just what I need to happen in order to fulfill what it is I need to do. I’m still sticking to the carnivore diet, and have the clarity I need. Why get distracted when there’s so much for me to do? My apartment looks like a bomb hit it. There’s still remnants from my New Hampshire trip on the floor, not put away because I’m too lazy to do so. What in the world would being the object of someone’s affection do for me right now? We’re more than halfway through this month, to where there’ll only be one quarter left of 2022. I’ve got to make it count, and it’s okay to do it on my own for just a bit longer.
What I Hope to Find
But what happens when I actually do get something I want? Something I’ve prayed for over and over again? Is the chase over? Will I hate it? What if it just is not worth it? What if I get skinny and I can’t maintain it? Will I get fat again? Will whoever I’ve attracted want to leave me? What if all the things I’ve thought about over the past howevermany years never come true and I’m left to die alone with nothing but my words to keep me warm at night?
The things I think may be unfounded from time to time, but it always feels like I have to acknowledge them to let them go. I don’t want to live my life in the “what ifs,” I need to be here now. I feel I’ve gotten much better at doing that over the years, but there’s a lot still lingering that I’m certainly cleaving to that just hasn’t served me in ages.
I’m hoping I can find the balance between what constitutes the ‘one big miracle’ I keep thinking is coming, versus what I create with living as best a life as I can. I don’t feel like crying my way into getting what I want anymore. All this praying and feeling desperate to fill whatever void is inside me is just getting old. I want all that behind me so I can focus on my true passion: writing. It’s never been clearer to me over this past year that I’m meant to be here to share my words with you. In what exact capacity I’m not quite sure yet. But that’s what it is, and that’s what I’ll continue to do.
It’s a miracle that we breathe involuntarily. It’s a miracle when two people find each other and fall in love. It’s a miracle some of us can even get up in the morning. They’re all around me. It’s easy for me to be a downer about it when I don’t see growth happening in the direction I wish it would. But that’s still no reason to give up on anyone or anything. My day in the sun is coming. I may just need a little more water in order to grow properly. I need not thrive in the shade anymore. Time for a little more sunlight so that I may really shine.