Thursday, April 30, 2015

Down to the bone

   It feels that way.  Like it can't get any closer, any deeper.  I'm embarrassed.  I wait and I try to find  something you will want to hear.  Something full of love and strength and inspire you a bit. That's what I look for - although your pain, concealed or expressed, comes into open hands. And I know you're not supposed to blog the un-bloggable.  But I keep failing at the first and the second is all I have to write.  Forgive me.

It will get better, I know that , you don't need to tell me - yet anything you say will feed me.

I'd been renting a house for 32 years.  Yes, I did.  I loved it, it was my home.  Cherished, cared for, clean and tidy. My god, the flowers.   A sanctuary.  And I've always needed one.  He finally showed up on the doorstep.  A sunny, warm June day. I knew it was coming, I knew it would come when the sun was finally here. I've waited and feared that knock for 32 years.  He said I had 60 days to leave, he wanted his retirement out of it right now.  $300,000.00 - cash - in 30 days and it could be mine, mine.  In 32 years he had only been there 4 times.  Just to look, no help.
Shaking , sweating , I said that I had just put my ira into it, so proud I had one. Money, please understand.  A new driveway, gutters, paint.  He shrugged. 60 days after 32 years, just a little more time?  He wanted what he wanted, now.  He shrugged.

Boxes and boxes, filling, lifting, filling, lifting.  An nowhere to carry them to.  So, so much left behind. No space, no time.  Space is a blessing, time is divine. Yellow damask Chippendale left on the curb, English secretary with all those sweet, tiny drawers.  Model replica of Palladio's Villa Rotunda, painstakingly made - wood cut with an elves saw, painted floors and plaster ceiling.  Look through the tiny windows into the 16th century.  At one time I had a lot of strength and time and too late now, I realize skill. A little money for some pieces, the Palladio, thank god.  I mourn them and many, many other things - but I take comfort, have learned to take comfort, in knowing that someone must have gasped, I hope they gasped and treasure them now, I hope they treasure them.   I lost 20#'s.

  45 days in and we found something.  Thousands of dollars to move to and in -  first and last, security. But I'm not secure.  Money, down to the bone.  It's lovely. (my beautiful daughter, the apartment whisper) It's a duplex, even better than an apartment.  Clean and spacious, a creek in the backyard. Smuggled in cat is in heaven.  We have 90 days to get out now - at least that's better than 60. They want it back too - they're old, it's nice, they'll be happy here.

30 days in, paint not dry yet but most boxes unpacked or stuffed somewhere.  My Mother is dying. No brothers or sister can or will find room for her.  Daughter and I strip the dining room. There's enough room now for a hospital bed.  There are good, good souls in Hospice, I never knew this.  But thank god.  Still it's 24/7 because I am her daughter.  So much pain between us, so much pain for her, laying in that bed. But unexpected forgiveness too.  She stroked my hair once, that made up for so much.  15 more #'s.  Food just doesn't make sense. I'm close to the bone.

She left some money.  It was her way of saying I love you. Blessings like that, and that one is a blessing, give hope.  She left me with hope.  That makes up for so much. Thanks seems so inadequate.  But that's all I have left, besides the hope. 

Death changes things. 4 siblings and no connection now.  It's to be expected, I guess.  It happens in a lot of families.  Especially when alcohol was the backdrop, the stage, the theme.

My beautiful, smart and a thousand loving adjectives daughter is struggling. It's so fucked.  So fucked that that gene gets passed on.  It will snarl one up with no discrimination.  It doesn't care about the adjectives - it only wants blood.  I don't believe in that whole "pray for me" thing.  But pray for her.  We're gonna' get separated now.  After two years of living together and trying together to beat this monster down, she has to go her own way and so do I.  We are both at the bone now.

She still takes her bipolar medicine - she says she does. But alcohol messes it up so much.  I take mine.  I crave it.  I hold it tight to my chest. It's giving me life now when the illness took away so much - from both of us.  I want her to have life too, but I can't give it to her.  She will have to find it on her own now.

I don't want to move again.  I feel so old all of a sudden.  I want someplace where I can stop for good, build another sanctuary.  But like I said, I have hope and that's so good.  It's another sunny day.  I'm going to go out to the beautiful creek and pet the happy cat.    I am at the bone but I'm skinny now.  That's good, right?

Love, Liv

And PS:   I'm reading, reading lots.
Maeve Binchy -Maeve's Times  - funny little stories she wrote when she worked for The Irish Times.
Katherine Mansfield's - Stories - lovely
Wm & H'ry - the letters of William and Henry James to each other - so loving
Alan Bennett - Untold Stories  - love, love his writing, so sensitive
Vanessa Bell - Sketches in Pen and Ink - stories of the childhood her and Virginia Woolf
and lastly
Leslie Maitland - Crossing the Borders of Time - a true love story

So that and walking, walking and walking sustain and nurture me now -   All good, proud of myself.