Thursday, August 28, 2014

at the forefront

Here I am, in Starbucks, in California, living a life that is safer and easier than most of human life has ever been since the dawn of cavemen. The internet would not say so, but when my daughter dreams of England long ago I think of heads on chopping blocks, religious persecution, rape uncontested and terrifying kings and queens and papal violence through the word of God. When she went through her Little House on the Prairie phase I thought of Indian warfare, scalping, raping, cutting off of noses, roasting people over fires- of the white people who insisted, beyond all reason, to insert themselves into Indian land and claim it as their own, despite the death of not only the men, but many many uncounted for women and children, lost to history, burnt to their ground in their log cabins, and the deaths of the Indians and their families, murdered and raped also, children also. History is littered with bodies of innocents and warriors alike, and todays life is no more evil or terrifying than it ever was, except for possibly that the expectation of safety has created such a wall between us and the threats to our life and well being that are still present that we are shocked by it in a way that didn't exist before.

At times I look around me and feel so insulated I can barely breathe.

When Mr. Curry is ill, it feels as if there is no room for us. As if we live inside of a commercial where everyone has white teeth, good hair, mischievous children and gophers in their yard while we stumble on set, barely making it and in tears, therapist in tow.

Now, he is well. He has been well for a few months now. Navigating this is an hourly job. I am hyper aware of his facial expressions, body language and the way his half shaven beard does or does not cut across his jaw, the way he pushes his hands into his armpits when he talks, the way he looks inward, or at me. When I see him recede, the smallest wave pull itself back a foot or two- I panic. I break out in a sweat, my arms ache, a stone in my throat won't swallow, I am nauseous and terrified. 'This is it, he's leaving again, he's going to be angry soon, very angry'
repeats in my brain like a bell rung during the Comanche moon, when attack is imminent. The hour passes, he moves forward into his eyes, and I am exhausted.

Post traumatic something. Love hurts. Fear based decision making. Co-dependant. Isolated.

So sweetheart, it's OK, he tells me. I see he is there in his face, present in his jawline, mouth, and his eyelids are not sagging with effort to hold up the human body, bipolar being so draining and exhausting that at times he walks with his head tilted downward. Sweetheart, he says, and I am almost all there. I love him so much, he is my best friend, he is my partner, my walk mate. I am almost all there, but part of me, it recedes.

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