Death and Dying

I’m somewhat of a control freak. I like to have my hand on things and it’s taken a LOT of personal work to learn to let go and let things flow. Death and dying really challenges all of that for me. I can’t control it and that leaves me scared and rather grief-stricken. I don’t want my loved ones to leave me, even when it’s the best possible choice—I’m very selfish that way.

This week has been full of death thus far. I had to put my beloved cat down Monday night after working a full shift at work—not how I wanted to end my day at 1AM—and it was the most heart-wrenching decision I’ve had to make in my entire life, I think. He was one of the few things in my life that I could depend on and I loved him dearly. I’ve cried more over Cleveland in the past two days than I’ve cried in the past two years..and I hate crying.

At the same time, a friend lies in ICU walking the road towards death. His body is irreparably damaged and it is almost certain that he will never function on his own now. His mother is currently deciding whether or not to end life support and it has really turned into a waiting game. I find myself curiously detached from the situation. Maybe it’s because I’ve had a very personal loss recently or maybe it’s because he and I weren’t close. I suspect it has more to do with my line of work than anything else—I have fostered clinical detachment as a means of survival in a field where death is the final solution to many of my clients’ problems and J’s situation is sadly not that different from many of theirs.

The anniversary of my grandfather’s death approaches as well and I always struggle with that. Out of all my biofamily, he was the one I was closest to and the one who accepted me at face value without any strings or criticism. He died an unnecessarily violent death and he is still unsettled about that. The worst moment for me was on a Samhain when he appeared and had no realization that he had passed. Talk about a shitty conversation to have to have with someone you loved. It still hurts.

Death is change and a new beginning but that doesn’t make the transition easier. As I said, I’m selfish and want what I care about here and not there. I guess I need to learn to reconcile myself with not getting what I want and learn not to be so selfish.

Enough with the thinky for today—I have so much work to do!

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~ by Alex on May 23, 2012.

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