It’s not always by any means, but there are times lately that I feel like the loneliest person in the world. True, I’m sure in reality I’m not. But how disturbing and ugly the feeling is.
I know it’s got to be rooted in my mother’s and my uncle’s deaths. The feeling can hit me at the most unexpected and routine of times. Last night, it caught me as I was briefly alone, washing up some dishes.
I can only describe it as feeling like walls closing in, trapped with nowhere to run. I felt like I wanted to smash the dish I was holding…. and then smash the next I could grab, and the next…. My outlook and feelings are made worse, I’m sure, by certain years-long “living” family frustrations (on both sides of the Atlantic) that I have been unable much to influence (forget about resolving them), or even to get away from, idiocies which show no signs of abating, and, indeed, seem worsening.
I accept that the deaths of close loved ones will bring you down for a while. However, I’d heard from a bereavement counselor that it’s not uncommon to feel the loss even harder some 3-6 months after the loved one has died and the rest of the world has “moved on” – but you haven’t yet. Obviously I’m about there now chronologically.
Perfectly normal references to upcoming UK Mother’s Day (March 6) are getting on my nerves. My uncle’s birthday is coming up rapidly too, which is bothering me as well.
Having fun usually makes me feel bad afterwards, as if I feel I shouldn’t be having fun, as if I shouldn’t ever have fun again. I’m tired. I’m frustrated. I get teary at the drop of a hat. I’m often short-tempered.
A sense of futility can feel almost overwhelming. It will lessen, I’m sure, with the passage of time. However, for now there are moments – that can stretch for minutes to hours – of feeling an emptiness in which I can’t help but think that living is pointless.
Bereavement: another life challenge, and an especially tough one. A decent author who writes what I do should at least make full use of his to try to help others get through theirs. However, before you can you do have to manage your own successfully.
That’s perhaps my best hope: writing helps me fight back. I find I can lock myself away, let loose on the pages, go somewhere else in time and place, and worry about others and their lives and troubles. This blog helps, too.
I suppose I should look at it this way overall, and I’m trying to: I do have “somewhere” to run to after all. I can “escape” in at least that figurative way. If the pain and sadness make the new book that much the better, I guess at least something “good” will have come out of all of this since October.
Thanks for reading.