Thursday, July 12, 2012

Burnout Factor

Me & my Aunt Eva, 1992

It has been days since I have written. I am not wanting to write; and I ALWAYS want to write.

I even missed my Hopeful Parents day on Monday (I will somehow write that post and put it up tomorrow, better late than never).

It's not just the busyness. I am always busy.

I am just seriously tired of what is running around on the hamster wheel of my brain right now.

I am tired of death and autism and special needs and medications and doctors and insurance companies and death and care-taking and dealing with medical establishments and death and clutter and real estate and paperwork and death and money (the lack thereof) and death.

I have had too many conversations about cemeteries and plots, about hospice protocols, about funerals.

My Aunt Eva is still with us for now, in that childlike state some people enter in the process of dying.

Annette says she has moments of playfulness and energy when she will awaken and smile beamingly at everyone gathered around her, lift her hands up by her face at wiggle her fingers, the wordless way one plays with a baby. And yet, she is the baby this time.

She speaks rarely, and sometimes in German, her first language. When Annette shared this I remembered something my husband had told me, of how his father, slowly dying in their apartment when he was a teenager, babbled away in the Yiddish of his childhood for the last few weeks of his life.

I'll be seeing Eva today. Saying hello and another possible goodbye. I'll be able to manage a long visit with my mother, too, as Ethan is off on a three-day camping trip, and thus I don't have to rush back to the city to pick him up at 4.

On Tuesday, driving out to Long Island, what is usually a fast, against the flow of traffic trip ground to a screeching grinding halt early on, in Queens. I figured there had to have been an accident, and there were, in fact, TWO on the Grand Central Parkway at the same time.

Eastbound, in my direction, it was just a minor finder bender, but a little further on, Westbound, was a major conflagration. Not just due to rubbernecking, as there was an emergency vehicle in the left lane of our direction, I passed so slowly that I looked over to the other side, just to see what the hell was going on that could snarl traffic in both directions so thoroughly.

And in that moment I saw a white sheet being lifted up, an outflopped arm - tanned, male, short sleeve blue uniform shirt - being placed back within, once again enshrouded.

I couldn't unsee it. It played over and over in my mind. A fatal accident. I tried not to take it as an omen. I was ever glad that I was alone, that the boys weren't with me, that questions did not need to be asked and answered.

Ethan is already a little over curious about car accidents, thrilled with the tale I told him of the near disastrous crash Dan and I were in on our honeymoon.

I have not yet spun for him the tale of the taxi cab fatality I witnessed, was a part of, one morning newly pregnant with him and his twin.

But it came back to mind a lot Tuesday, one tragically dead body calling up the ghost of another.

And really, could everyone just stop dying for a while. I want to write, think about something else for a change.

On Tuesday I made my mother promise to stick around until her 90th birthday in September. "We'll celebrate together!" I'd told her, as Annette, Trina, Mom and I munched on cookies from the Hungarian Pastry Shop I'd brought out with me.

"I'm planning to live to 100!" she'd reassured me.

A promise I hope she''ll keep.


  1. I write less and less as the weight of the world presses down (more and more? seems like that).

    I've never been good at the journal form of blogging - I feel like I have to say something specific for a post to be worth reading. And I don't want to say the same thing day after day: "Damn - this is hard. This living your life thing is HARD." So I look at a lot of design blogs and wish we had more money for decorating (ha!)

    So I guess I'm saying that I know how you feel. Perhaps a weekend at BlogHer will help! I so look forward to seeing you there.

  2. You definitely have a lot going on, and I hope you get a respite soon.


  3. I send you love again and again, Varda! One sandwich-y lady to another. Keep breathing, maybe have an ice cream without sharing . . . these pains will change some day.

  4. I'm so sorry, Varda. The more pressed and stressed I feel within myself, the less I write. The longest gaps in my blog are when I'm depressed. I hope you find moments of peace this week, within yourself and with your family.

  5. Do you feel thst the writing is therapy for you? It is for me. If I have no time or nothing to say I just don't write, but the urge always comes back after a few days. I'm hoping to get a break from death for a while, and I hope do too, and are still blogging about your Mum in 10 years time xx

  6. Accidents send chills down my spine too, even if everyone in my life is totally healthy; they force home the point that life is a pretty random series of events, and when the Fates decide to cut the thread... May I suggest, when you put the sour cream on your blueberries (earlier post of yours) that a wee whisper of brown sugar across the top brings it all together beautifully? Transplendent. Hugs to you, sandwich lady.


I am so sorry to have to turn word verification back on, but the spam-bots have found me - yikes!