2010-05-17

Letting go of the past, one document at a time

I have two small accordion files of checks to go, and Tucson and Chicago will no longer exist. There will no longer be documents in my possession, other than resumes and related documents in my disability application file, relating to my having ever lived in either city. By the end of the day I will have shredded the last of them. I've already thrown out all my letters received and all my other mail, newsletters and such; I hadn't looked at any of them since 1994, when I moved back from Chicago, I wasn't going to suddenly start doing stuff with them now, especially since when I started to I just ended up crying. My father and grandmother both died in 2001, and reading their letters would just remind me that they are no longer here, just as reading mom's letters remind me that she is now in an adult group home.

Going through the house, sorting things and deciding what to keep and what to get rid of, so little that I choose to keep; I'm not really all that attached to things, I find, which given how much money I've spent on things over the years is unexpected. The books are going to be the interesting project, that and the shop. Deciding which of my books I'll actually read again, and thus might justify keeping, against the ones that I don't see using again, no matter how much I had to have them at another time. Do I see being a reference resource for anyone, as at one time I was, or will my hermit existence continue, with no one using my resources other than myself? And those that I determine not to keep, how to dispose of them to their best advantage? Or can I afford to concern myself with that question, and instead just take them to Powell's and other stores, and what is not taken donating to thrift stores, or just recycling as of no interest to anyone at this time.

We've already given all the jigsaw puzzles, except for a few that my sister is keeping, to Goodwill; I haven't' worked on a jigsaw puzzle in over 15 years, growing up they were a family activity, we had so many 1500 piece puzzles, lovely and complicated, spending hours an evening working on them together, my hording pieces, my sister leaning over the table and obscuring pieces with her hair, mom trying pieces that to everyone else obviously didn't fit, dad being very intense and not happy with pieces being horded or obscured, and Beth and dad insisting we couldn't look at the picture on the box, that we had to put the puzzles together without that aid. There were a couple I might have liked to keep, but before I realized they were going away they were gone, and really, when would I work on them? Jigsaw puzzles aren't something I do by myself, they are a social activity to me as a result of my upbringing. And I wonder about my collection of games, which do I keep on the off-chance that I'll become social again, with folks who would want to play them? And even more important, which of them will I be up to playing?

As we deal with mom, I keep having the thought, "How long until it's me?" My disability claim had to do with my mental functioning, reliability and the ups and downs of my abilities, and my increasing fear of trying, of taking risks, of being able to react appropriately to challenges and stress. Of fear of interacting with people, being afraid that I won't be able to do so at an acceptable level, that I'll be a drag on those around me, which does my friends no little injustice. But I've always been feral, under the surface, insecure, although for many years my success spurrec me on to overcome this, but as I perceive myself to be declining, I draw back into myself, back to how I was as a child, alone because I didn't have the skills to interact, because my mind betrayed my, being damaged at birth. I've done so much better than anyone thought I would, some of my doctors didn't see how I would make it to adulthood without being institutionalized, and it was close, closer than I like to think about. And how much I owe to my mother's persistence, her not accepting the negative prognosis, but constantly searching for other possibilities, wanting the best for me. And now she's deteriorating, memory betraying her, , showing everyday that wanting to help others is central to her very being, as her memory gets worse and she thinks she's on staff at the group home, thinking she's helping when she's a client, they like her, they humor her, I talk to her on the phone and I cry, cry for my mother, for who she was and who she is, my mother, whom I dearly love and can no longer help, other than talking with her and being her son, who loves her very much.

Given typing through a wall of tears, my touch-typing is very good.

My sister is under so much stress, dealing with mom, and me, at this time, as well as having been working on growing her music instruction, trying to get more students, working on a website just before all this started, not having it up as she can't focus on that now, I don't know what we'd be doing if not for my sister, Beth, I couldn't do what she's been doing, I'd just freeze up and break down, now she has to care for her mother, and try to set things up for her brother, and I fear that the day will come where she'd having to look into my care as well.

Not what the heading indicated this would be, this has been very much stream of consciousness.

On a cheerier note, I've gotten quite the collection of bookmarks now, reaching back 40 years some of them, and there are many more to be gathered in from my books, and one can tell, to an extent, where I've lived over the years, based upon the bookmarks, although there are stores that I'd think I'd have bookmarks from that aren't showing up so far, but there are many more books to go through. And some of the stores where I know I had many bookmarks are only showing a couple, but as stated, many more books to go through.

And in a bit I'll feel better. As I've commented before, at heart I'm a very cheerful person, which is a very good thing.

1 comment:

Meg said...

funny, I still have the e-mail you sent to my bradley account when you got your ham license

Maire