Wednesday, May 31, 2006

blowing the dust out of the pipes

With any luck, this post will clear a few blocks out so I can get back to posting about things not quite so heavy.

I've been trying to get this up for days, but my arm hasn't been tolerating anything longer than a few minutes of typing at a time (I need a secretary! LOL). Because it's been written over days, it's choppy, and it's actually two separate entries being posted out of sequence so that it makes better sense to me (have no idea what it will do for you, though).

The Long Weekend

(written Monday night and yesterday)

Well, the Monday wasn’t so grand…but the Friday, Saturday, Sunday part was great. Lots of time with TheMIG relaxing, knitting, watching dvd’s and TiVo, snacking, strolling down the beach (well ok, TheMIG was strolling…I was in the wheelchair, so drop the “st” because I was only doing the “rolling” part).

MyFK was with his dad for the weekend. I love MyFk more than life itself, and I missed him terribly (well let's be honest, it took until Sunday before it got terrible)…but I am always much better positioned for mommy-duty after a little R&R. I read Gift From The Sea 10 years before having a child, and it kind of stuck with me.

Not being a huge fan of holidays in general, typically I only pay attention to the “long weekend/extra day off” aspect of Memorial Day. Period.
I don't do anything to commemorate vets.
Shitty, I know.
But actually, this year was a bit different.
This year I lit a candle in honor of surviving vets.
For their suffering, and how it shapes their futures.


No background story?

(written over days a week or two ago)

I really need to write about something that probably wont make sense without a ton of background story….except I really don’t want to write the background story. But I guess I have to, for context.

In 250 words or less (?--I didn't count)…regarding my car accident and my subsequent life as an amputee:

Recovering from the phsycial issues of a traumatic amputation and the subsequent process of learning to do life as an amputee has been hard work.

But the physical healing pales in comparison next to the emotional healing required, in relation to the time of the accident itself. That healing has not just been hard work. It has been an absolute fucking nightmare.

I can't talk much about the accident itself and how it happened, primarily because I don't remember it.... but also because of current litagation.

I can tell you this, though....after the impact, I was trapped in the car for about two hours waiting for someone to see me and rescue me. And I was awake. And it is those two hours that I have been struggling with coming to peace with ever since.

In rereading that last paragraph myself, I see the words, “waiting for someone to see me” and there’s where my issues with healing this trauma begin.

I wasn’t exactly just sitting there waiting for someone to see me.

I was trying to break out of the car.
I was trying to find my cell phone.
I was trying to find someway to make noise or be seen from the roadway.
I was begging.
I was pleading.
I was bargaining with God.
I was screaming and completely hysterical.
I was confused because I was sure I wasn’t supposed to die like this.
I was thinking about my loved ones.
I was watching the sun come up.
I was watching the cars pass by.
I was feeling parts of my body begin to die in an effort to protect other parts.
I was scared.
I was cold.
I was so very very alone.

I don't mean to get overly dramatic about this...but this is honestly how this experience went down. And this is the shit that I just can’t seem to be done processing.

I am ready to move on. I have been therapized, I've been hypnotized…I’ve talked about it, I’ve journalled about it, I’ve danced about it. I've worked through the required stages of grief about it. Trust me, I'm not the type of person who like to wallow in their shit. I don't mind doing the dirty work.

And I recognize that this event will always be a part of my life story, in some way.
I understand that this event does not "define" me, but that it will always be part of my "definition".
But I really have had enough with the actual effects of trauma.

And it seems no matter what I do to come to peace with it, like the proverbial peeling of onion...there is always some new fucking layer. I've dealt with, and am dealing with axiety, insomnia, depression, flashbacks...yadda yadda.

But here’s the new current layer.

Global sadness.

I was hanging out with a bunch of folks from Dandelion DanceTheater after rehearsal a couple Fridays ago. We were chatting and ended up having a discussion about physical pain, and the myriad of ways in which it can be treated (lots of people in the healing arts in this dance company).

Eric, who is a practicing Buddhist, talked a bit about how one way of looking at pain is to not have it be “MY pain” but “THE pain.” And how if we all come from the same source, and we are all interconnected. Life is a shared experience. We all come from the same source.

This made sense to me on some level, which was good. Wow. Not MY trauma. THE trauma. I'm not so very very alone after all! This is comforting.

At first.

And then I started to think about the time trapped inside the car.

I have often said that I would not wish that experience on anyone. And I mean it. Not even my worst enemy. It was horrific. It has changed me, permanently marked me, and in my opinion, is a deeper scar than the many I now have on my body.

But if we are all of one mind from one source, then that was not MY fear. Nor was it MY coldness, MY hysteria, MY lonliness. It was OURS.

I have been in a deep state of sadnesss about what this all means. Over the past few days I have found myself just breaking out in tears.
I’m sitting here with the a very acute awareness that somewhere on this planet, right now, at this moment, there is one of us experiencing THE fear, THE panic, THE feeling of dying, THE coldness, THE lonliness….and I can’t keep from crying. And there are people who aren't actually experiencing those things, but are witness to it.

I can't understand why there is so much suffering.

I understand the need for dichotomy in life. I get all that. I get that you in order to appreciate the hills you must understand the value of the valleys.

But that much suffering?? WHY??

I am absolutely wrought with empathetic sadness right now.

Nobody should have to experience this or bear witness.



I originally blocked comments to this, because (hear me loud and clear please)...I'm reallllly not in the mood for sympathy.

I do NOT, however, wish to disallow space for people's feelings, should they feel they need to share them...about the general issue. Have at it, if you have something to say.

Love & Light~



Anonymous said...

This feels entirely selfish, but I feel the need to make some kind of connection by posting a comment, even though I have no words yet that fit my feelings. But acting normal at the office after reading this post is proving difficult.

strangelittlemama said...

I totally hear you on the global sadness. Watching my mother die made that happen for me and I re-experience it often.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Like the first commenter, I fee like I want to post just so that I can connect somehow. It's not a sympathy thing, either, don't worry. I can remember a betrayal by someone I loved that cut me to the core emotionally, and I think frequently of how many others have felt the same thing. THE pain is not unusual or uncommon. And I truly don't understand why that is. Mine is over for now. Somebody else's is just beginning. It's why I have such a hard time with some movies. My husband will tell me "You do know that's not really happening, right?", and I just keep thinking about the fact that it does happen to someone. Every day. I am really open to suggestions about how to deal with this sort of feeling, so if you hear anything that helps, please post!

Gimpy Mumpy said...

"I understand that this event does not "define" me, but that it will always be part of my "definition"."
I love this quote from your post. May I link to it on my blog? I too feel this way about my disability and the accident that caused it.

I also find that people, no matter if they are total strangers or people I've known awhile always want to bring up my injury, how it all happened...the long story. Do you get this too?
I guess I'm great filler for parties, but do people ever realize what it's like to have to relive a traumatic experience over and over again?

ann said...

I appreciate you posting this - it certainly has given me something to think about. I have never heard of the idea of "the pain" - I suppose then that it is "the happiness" too ...

Gray said...

The isolation and loneliness of pain and fear is terribly toxic. Your global sadness concept is very evocative for me.

Thanks for another post from deep down inside.

I hope that your arm adopts a friendlier attitude soon.


InkyW said...

the way you write makes me feel things that really i just put away most days. i am grateful to have found your blog. thank you.