03 February 2016

drama queen

Yesterday, after I had done the slow crawl to my GP and back, after she had told me in her gentle voice to come to my senses and just rest for as long as it takes, while I was waiting in front of the microwave (never do that, R told me a long time ago, radiation and all) for the milk to heat up for my coffee, I could feel it coming from wherever it usually hides inside of me, the thing that we all have buried somewhere, and don't fool yourselves, you all have it, the thing that defines our existence, that makes us vulnerable and human, that in a flash can destroy all of our carefully fabricated order and meaning, yes, that nasty fear of death, I could feel it rumbling in my intestines, painfully expanding my chest and creeping up through my gagging throat into my head where it started to swirl around and around, with its booming hiss: what if this is it, are you ready?

And my eyes exploded in angry tears and I banged my fists on the microwave, shouting no, no, no, not yet. Piss off you bastard.

And then I had to clean the spilt milky coffee and before I knew it, I had washed the kitchen floor and only then did I start to rest for as long as it takes.


  1. We DO all have it. We have the luxury of being able to bury it and deny it, but it rears up for all of us, doesn't it? I'm sorry you're dealing with it now.

  2. It is a terror beyond the worst anxiety. Washing the kitchen floor was probably the best solution to fighting that terror. It anchored you, distracted you, calmed you. And I am glad you took the time to rest afterwards. No drama queens in this post.

  3. Yes. We have it. All of us. Except maybe for a few saints but I doubt even that.
    I was talking on FB with a very old friend of mine last night. He's recently been diagnosed with a type of cancer and it's hit him hard. His whole life he's been a sort of Invincible Being and has lived a crazy sort of life, pushing the envelope in every way and he's now facing the fact that maybe he's not invincible at all and it's very difficult for him to accept this.
    None of us knows how we would react if faced with dire disease until it happens but I think it's there in us all, just as you so beautifully wrote about- the fear of death. How we would deal with it is a complete mystery until we have to.

  4. I wonder about such a scenario often, facing my own death. Sometimes I think I will be very brave and eloquent. Other times, I think I will crumble and smash things. Maybe both. Yes, rest for as long as it takes.

  5. Cry, shout, bang, rest. We're all in this together.

  6. Have been quiet because you've given us so much to think and feel about with your honesty about your experiences, and my mind stopped churning out responses for a few days. Last week during yoga class, I had the frightening experience I have had occasionally in yoga classes as well as while getting massages. What happens is that I become so relaxed that my body thinks that it is dying and sends me messages that bring up terror about death. Suddenly, instead of being relaxed and peaceful, I feel terrified and alone. As I was driving to meet some friends for breakfast this morning, I remembered this song that George wrote and sang as he was facing death:


    Now I'm thinking about Warren Zevon's song where he talks about trying "to find the other side of goodbye."


    Thinking about David Bowie putting together a last album of songs.

    I'm remembering my Richard saying that on some days he was not afraid of dying, but that on other days he was too frightened to think about it at all. I used to wish that I would die. Not anymore.

    Sending love to you, Sabine. As I was reading your post about Imbolc, the light was shining in me and outside, too. Thank you for the song by Luka Bloom.

  7. My aunt who died at age 95 told me that one night in her dream her brother came for her, and she started to go with him and then she thought, wait, not yet, i'm not ready, and he said ok, and she woke up. She was in her 80s when it happened. I can say without any doubt whatsoever that when she did eventually die, she was truly ready. I have always thought since then that we can declare ourselves not ready, as you have, and it counts. It counts for something. I believe that.

    Sending love and wishes for everything your heart dreams to be so.

  8. And yet here you are. Welcome back.

  9. I wish i could get my house clean and my finances in order so nobody has to muck with it when i'm gone.