Tash's post reminded me of how easy it is to get caught up in the bullshit of everyday life and how difficult it is for couples in our situations to communicate well. Taxes, taxing situations, too many to-dos and no desire to do them can turn a simple afternoon sour. Suddenly we're sniping and sneering.
Slamming doors. Seething rage. Eventually I realize that I'm not mad at her at all. Well, maybe a little, but the quiver and clench, they are not her doing.
That tension and anger, it's a force that fills me when I realize how impotent I am to change the past I hate, or alter the immovable fact I cannot stand.
All I can control is my perspective and my response.
I attempt to embrace calmness despite adrenaline and energy. Over and over, every day of my life now, it is an exercise in calmness. There are too many triggers that click and spark the gunpowder in my soul. There are too many holes that should be filled with moments with my son. I fall into those voids suddenly so I've tried to learn how to fly.
Most of the time I fall.
That's the pit in my stomach. It is the sensation of endlessly falling into another day that is filled with the absence of what I want most.
I fill those voids with anything I can think of and I try to stay calm even when I'm falling and all I can do is yell for help. Luckily Lu is strong enough to pull me back when I start to shout because she knows all I'm really doing is looking for Silas. Even when I'm yelling at her.
Inside I'm panicking because I can't find him and then I remember that I have to try and stay calm. Lu helps me like I help her when it's the other way around because quietly, silently, and straight out loud shouting we both know that Death is the enemy.
Worst of all: it is nothing we can fight or do anything about. This immovable fact. This hole that is a wall that is our son that is impossible.
That impenetrable barrier silences me when I get too pissed off about the daily bullshit that's easy to fight about. We'll argue about some dumb thing, some mis-communication and then that spirals deeper, past our petty disagreement to the true source of our sadness and anger.
Suddenly I see that we are sharing that space and my anger is gone. I'm not mad at her. She's my rock and my partner. Lu is my biggest fan and best friend. Whatever fight we're having it has nothing to do with what is really going on.
The problem is that what is really going on is nothing we can fight, not even together. There is us, here. There is Silas beyond reach. And there is his death between us all.
I fight against that every day, even without realizing it. By getting up and going out. By facing the day and whatever it brings. By attempting to excel at whatever is before me, in each action and step I am battling the enemy that could all too easily consume me. The Void, his absence. Death. I feel it in my stomach, in my heart, in my skin. But I brush it off, again and again, determined to live bright and true.
Still, sometimes I have to shout. I need to shout to get it out of my throat and still it sticks there, his death lodged in my soul like a vein coal. I trace it like a labyrinth, round and round, all the way down, calmer by the moment as I see that it spells his name and that I will never be without him, even though I will always be without him.
What calms you? Are you able to pull back from the anger and sadness of your loss when you turn that on the people around you? What do you do to fight against Death, against the absence of your lost child?