For the past couple of weeks, I've had a feeling that the initial shock of Poppa D's passing has started to wear off. The strange, insulating numbness that allowed life to continue on with only the vague notion of loss appearing intermittently at the periphery of my life is starting to give way to sudden disruptions of my usual routine with the crushing weight of my loss, the Dotytron's loss, and the Big Yam's loss. I feel like at any moment, the ground shifts beneath me and an event, a thought, will leave me crying at my desk the way I did today. For a while, life continued on with relative ease, as if we just hadn't seen him for the usual amount of time that we'd sometimes go between visits. I took for granted the safety net of the comfortable knowledge of his existence, fuzzy and indistinct like the out-of-focus crowd in a photograph, but still a presence in that mass that could be called into sharp relief if only I wanted it so.
Lately, lately I know that wanting it so won't make it be so. And it makes me so very, very, very sad. I'm sad for the Dotytron, for Momma D, for Ehmdo. I'm sad for the Big Yam and finally, I make room to be sad for myself - for the sadness I feel because of the sadness of these other people. The Dotytron and I will sometimes just start crying together or he'll come down with red eyes or have to stop a task because something reminded him of his da'.
I think this is contributing to my general sourness about the holiday season and the emptiness of the gift buying. I just don't have the mustard for it. I feel like I can't face going out and shopping and trying to come up with something thoughtful and personal to give people. I just don't care. I care for the kids (because as hard-hearted as I am, I'm not so hardened as to want to deprive children of wonder and joy), but I'm also not into kids with their epic, toy catalogue wish lists and short attention spans and disposable mentality. The glut of plastic, branded crap makes me feel physically ill.
I want Santa to give us a do-over on this past year. A chance to take all the good stuff and enjoy that without the too-numerous funerals we attended this year. When it comes down to brass tacks - would I want to erase this year? Ultimately, I guess not - we've come out the other side and the conventional wisdom seems to be that the bad stuff is part of life too. I guess I just want a bit more of my innocence back. Not all of it - but more time thinking that Poppa D was going to be around for a long, long time. More time thinking that he would be able to pick up the Big Yam from daycare and take him to do white-person-grandpa stuff. Just...more.