Wednesday, July 30, 2008

What's Happening With Me

Nearly a few months ago, I was informed by a specialist that the swollen appearance of my right cheek was likely a cyst, but possibly a tumor. "Tumor" scared me. At which point she said, "Ah, don't worry about it. We'll schedule some more tests and take it fom there."
(You don't just go throwing out words like 'tumor' as if it's no big deal. Not to me, anyway.)
Needless to say, I worried about it.

Some background:
Normally, I'm the 'go to' guy in the family. The one everybody goes to when they got an issue, big or small. (Talk to Gino. Go see Gino. Gino will straighten your shit out. Call Gino. What did Gino say? Gino will help you. Get Gino over here. Where's Gino?) Now you know why I find bliss in 'aloneness'.

I had one 'go to' of my own. Rarely did ever I needed it. But every few years, I would hand in my chit. Generally, news such as this would require a phone call or visit to my sister. She was always good for it. Making me feel 'safe' when I was aprehensive or fearful or overwhelmed. Her voice more soothing than anything I could hear from a parent or spouse.
Surely, most of what she had to say was bullshit. I knew this. But it didn't matter. From her mouth, bullshit was soothing, even if it was bullshit. I knew it was heartfelt, and that's all that mattered.
Her shoulders were willing. Her arms always ready. She would fight The Demons so I wouldn't have to. Big Sister was down for me no matter what. Always.
I didn't need her often, but I absolutely needed her then.

I drove home, looking forward to hearing the one voice that mattered say 'I love you'. I needed to hear that. And I needed it from her.

Dialing her number and getting a voice recording, I left a brief message and hung up, expecting a return call shortly.
Not five minutes later, the phone rang: Mary was dead.

I was being 'gone to'.
My own shit didn't matter any more.
And I had nobody to talk to about it, anyway. So I just buried it, and got on with more pressing matters.

To be Cont'd.


tully said...

Her words didn't contain any wisdom, but you still got your "shit straightened out" when you talked to her? So two things are apparent: the wisdom was coming from somewhere, and it wouldn't have come to the surface without having that conversation with her. The source of the wisdom must in some way be you- you are the one to whom it occurs, and Mary didn't share that wisdom. But the conversation was necessary to have it occur to you, and there are two things going on in such conversation: your knowledge and intuitions are shaken up and sorted out as a series of questions (warranted directly or indirectly by the questioner) have you reflect on what you know critically, and secondly her presence and voice reminds you that you are loved- that it is worth it to seek this wisdom because your happiness is worthwhile.

So does it seem to you that Mary's passing from this world makes this last thing impossible? My apologies for bluntness, but that is nonsense- you are still loved, especially by Mary. Your happiness is still worth it- it is the only thing worth desiring. The mechanics of the conversation can be replicated- you can always find ways to straighten out your shit when you know that it is worthwhile- that you are loved. The presence and voice of our loved ones is like a Post-It note reminding us that we are loved- that our happiness matters to someone else. The loss of a Post-It note isn't the loss of the thing to be remembered- just the loss of one way of remembering. There are other ways of remembering that love- that is in your control.

(My apologies if this is counter-productive or insensitive)

Jade said...

You did get the tests scheduled eventually, yes?

Leo Pusateri said...

Gino--gads... I see it's pouring where you are.

Please take care of yourself in this process...

May the LORD bless and keep you...

YOu will be in my prayers..