01 January, 2009

not knowing

Dear Girlfriend,
Leaving Arizona,
I think it's a movie title...
in any case it's done. 
I've gone from desert to snow drifts.
Relationship, stepping back in time,
seeing events from new perspectives
new points on the map.
Not knowing what will occur
how it will feel 
what will come up 
and how to stay detached but authentic.

Witnessing my parents devotion,
and their transition from here to their next places
is both an honor and a practice.
The dual nature of our interaction 
and the not knowing if the process of walking through these memories
is beneficial or destructive:
these half remembered facts and impressions.
Watching the shame, guilt, and pain surface and disapate..
I attempted listening to the tapes,
but it's too soon.
Too intimate, too vulnerable,
too naked and exposed: 
like bare bones drying in the desert sun.

How to include this part of my world,
this family of origin, historical world which keeps on spinning
and rocking and aging.
I help my mother shower and dress, 
but not too much.
Resisting the urge to do it for her,
protect her, 
rescue her.
To literally speak for her until her mouth is healed
and her voice returns.
Assuming it will return...
I watch her struggle to communicate,
passively forcing her to ask for what she needs.
I dance around to find the balance between enabling and empowering.

The irony of observing my father, unable to hear, 
and my mother, unable to talk, 
attempting to communicate, understand and to interact.
Spending time with my Dad, away from my Mom,
knowing how she cherishes her privacy.
Knowing that talking
and listening tire her.
And that she hasn't been slept for three days...

I watch my Dad move through the world 
he has created for himself, 
his routine become ritual.
His safety net, his need for companionship.
His desire to please, to apologize, 
seeking absolution
and redemption.

They truely live one day at a time
one meal at a time,
one ambien,
one nap,
one shower
one hour in the sun.
Trusting that what is,
will be more than enough.


1 comment:

Style Expert said...

I definitely understand the influence of your parents' relationship on your relationship. It definitely impacts your preception, whether negative or positive.