Thursday, June 6, 2013

phase 2

He died May 22, 2013.  I became aware that he was gone at 5:20 in the morning.  For the next week, I woke up around 5:00 a.m. every day...Today, I did eye integration therapy with my wonderful wonderful friend/counselor...and I felt John with me.  Around me...really, draping his arms around me.  smiling.  His face right behind my eyes.

I found strength years ago from a friend who hated people.  He beleived I was smart and capable and good.  I learned to believe that, too...Until I didn't anymore.  And then when I found it again, it was when I was alone, and it came to me through chasing down kids who swore like sailors and teaching them that their tiny baby sisters with perfect brown complexions did NOT hate white people; working in a shelter where a teenager attacked and threatened me with a broom for hours before support came while I tried to stay calm, to calm her, to get all the other kids ready for bed and the only reason she didn't beat the shit out of me was the other guy working the shelter that night...I don't think I ever had my heart in my throat longer than that day...yet, I still lost it again...life and trust and hope and relationships seem to do that to me...do they do that to you, too?

I found it again, when I was alone, teaching my very own class of 10 year olds.  Far from anyone I knew, far from family, near the water (that often helps me, being near water)...and I found him then.  And for the next 12 years all he wanted was for me to keep it.  He encouraged me to keep writing, to try trampoline, to dive, to sky dive, to travel, to announce in front of hundreds (literally) while he set himself on fire, to find ways to own pain that went back to early high school so that I could also own letting it go...

You simply cannot control, or take responsibility for, what other people will say or do...as a child who lived through verbal castigation, I not only have triggers (what some call a tendency to over react), I also have a keen sense of waht others are sometimes feeling.  And a sense of responsiblity to find a way to keep the others in my life from feeling anything bad because when they feel bad it seems to come back at you two-fold...but that is not who I am, at my core.  And I would like to stop trying to function from that sort of mindset...I fear that will be easier said than done, but at least I know what I would like to try to be working on...

"The year of no judgements"...sounds attractive...comforting...there is no "right" way to go through this.  There is no guide book.  There are no straightforward answers.  I will screw up.  As will pretty much everyone involved, at one time or another, in one way or another...

Sometimes, I feel like you just need to watch the rain fall.  Forget the umbrella and closing the windows.  Just let yourself get wet.