“One for A SOLITARY MAN”

It’s true – I went to the movies last night and saw, A SOLITARY MAN,…  by myself. Bada bum.

I go every week, it’s something Susan does for me. Yeah, she’s pretty great.

Speaking of Susan, she just posted on our blog with a beautiful discussion/essay on sympathy and time. It was a fascinating read for me. To wonder and think and progress? toward something positive – in my grieving process in relation to my interactions with others…   hmm… well — as a topic – it just barely exists for me.

I am more or less conscious of who knows about Will and Tiger in my life – and I make an effort to mention them to those that don’t. Also, when mentioning them is a natural part of conversation, I try not to miss the chance to say their names (or refer to them). For instance, the other day at work, I went out for a team lunch. Simple enough. We made all the necessary small talk with a smidge of work stuff to assuage the guilt for the free lunch and fill the voids in conversation. We’re not really friends — they’re co-workers — if we’re not talking about work, there tends to be a fair amount of silence. Anyway, it came up about how I was running the Brooklyn half-marathon that weekend (I wasn’t bragging trust me- I am very humble, and not at all vain, in many ways I’m sort of a perfect human being, so I never brag). Okay, so, it came up, I don’t know how. and someone turns to me and asks, “why do you run rather than sit on the couch?” (because isn’t sitting on the couch more comfortable) – It was a joke – it was light. My response? The truth, I just said it, “Running helps me deal with trauma.” WHAM! Translation: “hey everyone – don’t forget – I had two sons die! Are you gonna eat those fries? Have you ever seen a dead baby? How dare you make small talk while I’m sitting here suffering! Ketchup, please.”

But here’s the thing, and – I have to qualify this by saying – maybe I haven’t thought about this enough – but — what I was thinking last night in that (really pretty bad) movie with Michael Douglass was. I feel so alone in my grief. For me – it is a solitary place. I don’t invite people there. I feel the need to honor my sons – and to be honest in my interactions with people – but – for the most part – everyone is entitled to a little sneak peek now and then – the rest of the time – forget it. This is my pain, my thing, when I think about Will and Tiger – it’s not that I want to keep it to myself – it’s more that I don’t think of anyone else – no one else exists.

Special, longer looks, are reserved for Susan. (or evidently -members of the Pregnancy Loss Support Group. I’m still shocked by my behavior there).

I don’t know. I don’t even know my point – I feel lonely I guess – I feel like the loss of Will and Tiger – their absence — this pain — my inability to include anyone else in it — has pushed me away from people (as if they weren’t far enough already).

Somehow – in spite of everything I’ve said – when I was at the table with a group of parents that have been through the same thing – and the time was set aside to talk about our children and loss — I don’t know — it opened me up. I felt like I was really with people.

Unfortunately, the Pregnancy Loss Support Group program lasted 6 weeks. Hmm – what to do with the rest of my life?

This post is so unclear and sloppy — there’s a writer’s voice inside me screaming bloody murder right now – oh well – he can get in line.

Congratulations

When I came into work yesterday Marlon was back.

He had missed a few days as he and his wife had their beautiful baby boy. (I forget his name)

Everyone was gathered around the pictures — I did my best. “He’s so cute.” Actually, I think I did alright — Even did my usual bit about, “who’s the father?”

Fathers always offer a polite laugh at that. There must be something that compels me to say the same stupid joke every time I see a newborn. – Someone must have  laughed at it once. Now I’m like the skateboarder who just keeps trying the trick over and over and I’m totally shocked when I fail to land it. Surely those guys must have landed this totally awesome, kick-ass move once in their lives. – Now, like me – unable to let it go – they look like idiots over and over.

Whatever – so I wasn’t funny – at least I looked – at least I offered something for everyone to laugh politely about — instead of saying, “wow, he lived – that’s shocking — it’s a lot like the opposite of what happened with Will and Tiger.”