Tag Archives: loss

“Stay with me, my blood”

Have you ever felt like holding yourself together is all you’re capable of? I’ve been holding myself tightly, arms crossed over my always-sick stomach. What if I let go and I just…crumble? Fall to my knees, sob, and just howl my anguish. I’m afraid that if I let go of this fucking pain, it will destroy me. I won’t get back up. So I don’t let go. I try not to think. I push my thoughts aside however I can. Of course I’ve cried, probably a million times. But something about this pain, these tears, feels different. This pain tastes like eating hot coals, one after the other, until I burn up from the inside out.

You know that game we surely all played as kids, where we pretended the floor was lava? That’s what my mind is like these days. I’m balanced on the tiniest of throw-pillow islands with boiling, steaming red grief surrounding me. I’m burned no matter which way I turn, and so I stay on this pillow, stuck, raw and blistered.

I keep picturing myself like this:

I sit in a lawn chair in the middle of my house while strangers wander around talking quietly and judging my things. Someone asks, “How much for this chair that caught your daughter when she fell asleep standing up after claiming she wasn’t tired?” And I say, “That chair is not for sale STOP TOUCHING MY MEMORIES I’ll take $50 for the pair.” And so it goes until my home this house is empty except for me and the past.

The guilt is eating me alive. At the same time, I’m screaming in my head that this isn’t my fault. The irony: My mental and physical illnesses are destroying my life and there’s nothing I can do about it because I’m mentally and physically ill.

My Grandma’s Room


When I was a little girl my grandma’s room was full of wonders.

On her bedside table, then as now, sat a small white lamp and a thick black bible, well-worn even then. How many uncountable times did my grandma sit on the side of that bed, slowly turning brittle pages, seeking comfort, or peace, or giving praise?

My grandma’s dresser was no dainty bit of vanity. Made of heavy wood with drawers down both sides and carved doors in the center, it was strong and beautiful and I swear, those doors called to me. To be allowed to sit before that chest and hold a lap full of silk, the faded ink of love letters, the glitter of glass beads, and all those memories, her memories, in my hands…

My grandpa’s wardrobe was taller, more imposing, less accessible. But when he swung wide the big double doors, even a child could see it was full of dreams. Medals of honor and badges of war – curious jewelry to a child – shared space with carefully rolled papers and a violin. His maps to castles in the air.

On my grandpa’s nightstand, then as now, sat a small white lamp and, nearby, a guitar. How many uncountable times did my grandpa sit on the side of that bed, strumming with nimble fingers, seeking comfort, or peace, or singing praise?

My grandma’s room is much the same, then as now. It’s in a new house and some things have changed. My grandma still sits on the side of that bed. She still has that old black bible. My grandpa sang his last song this year, and now I sit on the side of that bed, finding comfort, seeking peace, and, as I look to those carved double doors full of memories and dreams, I give praise.

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