Stop Work Order

April 4, 2010

I spent a good part of Friday night face down on the floor, crying. I drank two beers, started talking about how I was going to commemorate my father’s death date this year, realized I had already missed it by 3 weeks and lost it. I got myself together, but then realized that I needed to not do that and excused myself to the bathroom, where I promptly pressed my cheek into the cold tile and cried my eyes out.

We had decided to go out for the first time since we’ve been here. Just us, to this bar with some art up. I was drinking Delirium Tremens and she was enjoying a breakfast stout, we were circling yard sales in the classifieds. The bright idea was to start attending Alanon meetings on the anniversary of his death. I really liked this idea.

I mean, I still have a good portion of his ashes in this house, somewhere. And I’m OK that I dont have a strong leading as to what to do with them. They can wait. Last year, I variously ignored, anticipated and avoided the anniversary of his death. I kept putting off looking it up. I mean, I looked it up with a couple of days to spare, but then forgot it when it actually rolled around. And that’s OK, too. It’s not like I don’t have 40 years to practice remembering the day he died.

I still couldnt tell you when it is, though.

The bartender there was the lady that cuts my hair. Or, who has cut my hair twice. I told her why I was crying and she was very supportive and thoughtful. Explaining, from experience, that the date your father dies actually has very little real-life significance. I mean, of all the things that happen the day your father dies, why would the date be among the most memorable?

“But we went out to dinner for your brother’s anniversary! How could I forget?!” I wailed at my wife. “It’s OK honey, you don’t have a family to remind you,” she said.

The other thing is that I think about him everyday. And I thought about what I was going to do differently on the second anniversary of his death every other day. I actually wanted to do things differently. I had two big reminders, too. Her brother’s death anniversary is just two weeks before my dad’s and my mother’s birthday is one week after. Fuck, Friday afternoon I was fucking filling out a grant application through a foundation at my agency trying to get his funeral bill paid off.

So, yeah.

Typically, I am, if not in control of, at least aware of the machinations of my mind. The pulleys and pistons of the mind are vast and uncharted, full of the clicking and popping of ancient mechanisms.

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3 Responses to “Stop Work Order”

  1. Nicole said

    Ah shit. I can so relate. I can’t forget my dad’s anniversary because it’s on ST. PATRICK”S DAY, if you can believe that. But I keep thinking I should DO something or FEEL something, but really I spend the whole day thinking that and then just eventually crying from the exhaustion of it all. And I think about him every damn day too. It’s hard. And I’m sorry.

  2. dina said

    “The other thing is that I think about him everyday.” That is all that really matters my friend.

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