Thursday, January 18, 2007

It's always a day away

I’ve been a grumpy bump lately, snapping, crying at the littlest thing, moping about like a miserable puke not wanting to do anything except play BrickBreaker on my BlackBerry. I was so excited when the final stroke of midnight finally brought 2006 to its bitter end, but January has royally sucked. Positivity (okay if negativity gets to be a word, why can’t positivity – screw Webster, I’m using it) has eluded me these several days, and I’ve been puzzled as to why.

Except that everywhere I turn there seems to be stress curdling and building up. There is so much that I don’t even want to write about here, because unlike before the big delete, when I wrote about everything, I can’t be as open anymore. Even writing this, the words feel stilted because of this censoring, but there is no alternative. I am weary of my life, though, and several of its crucial components. I feel like I am in a room full of chairs, but desperate as I am to sit down, every seat is bursting with thorns. I am strangled by the bad choices I have made in my past and cannot escape the ever strengthening hold they have on me.

At night, when I am trying to sleep, all of this churns over and over, and I whimper unknowingly until Steve wakes up and asks me what is wrong. How do I explain that it is the same thing as last night and the night before that? Instead I tell him he is dreaming, bite my lips in an attempt to prevent more sounds from escaping, and cover my head with a pillow with a hope that will somehow muffle my thoughts.

I have felt my agitation grow this month as Lee’s pregnancy comes to an end almost simultaneous to the first anniversary of the birth of my dead son. I find myself staring at her belly while we are at work, and I try to see through the layers of clothing, skin and flesh to the girl that kicks and flourishes within. My throat starts to close up as I fight the urge to warn her how all of this can be just fine, but babies die. My baby died! But she knows that, and I can’t say that. I know that everything will be okay for her, and maybe that is why all of this is hard for me. Because I knew everything would be okay for me, but it wasn’t. So I try hard to ignore what has happened and is happening to me. I keep our conversation lightweight and speckled with bits of advice now and again. But still as the days march on, she comes closer to giving birth, and Oliver comes closer to turning one in my heart.

I had a dream not too long ago that I got home from work to see Steve and Oliver there, just like it was normal, everyday. Steve had picked up Oliver on his way home from work. Oliver was 11 months old as he would be now, and as I knelt down in front of him, he let go of the couch and toddled over to me. His first steps. Steve and I marveled over him – so excited by his milestone. But then the phone rang. It was the doctor. Oliver had terminal lung cancer. I woke up crying, but for days after I replayed his first steps over and over in my mind, smiling to myself with pride, while trying to ignore the dire end.

I’m trying to pretend that I’m okay, with the thought that if I do, I will be okay – just like that. Today, I’m not okay. But that’s okay, because maybe tomorrow I will be.