(this is annie)

Christmas Eve

This afternoon, I hopped the 31 and the double-deuce to go to Cafe du Soleil. On the way there, the bus was stopped at the crest of a hill, and I looked out at a man about my age. He was waiting at the corner for someone, intently looking down the street for him or her. Something about his face looked mildly forlorn and incomplete, so I assumed he was waiting for his sweetheart. The bus resumed motion, and halfway down the next block, I saw his identical twin — same furrowed brow, same pattern of thinning hair — running toward the man at the corner. I'm not capturing the scene perfectly, but it was a cinematic moment that I wanted to write down before it slips away into the dusty recesses of my gray matter.


It's difficult

...to find the time to write. I have been guilting myself a lot lately about it, too, which only creates a dirty snowball of bad feelings. I always thought I'd be a bit more accomplished by now, and New Year's Eve always slaps me around a bit: another year gone without reaching this goal or that goal, made worse by the knowledge that I didn't really try to reach it in the first place. I'm taking some time off next week to work on writing, which is such a luxury.

2008 was not the worst year, but in some ways it was the most challenging. In September, my dad fell at the grocery store, and he hasn’t been living at home since. He spent the first week in the hospital, and we all thought he’d be going home. Instead, he was sent to a nursing home, where he had a seizure and began hallucinating. I flew home and spent most of my time next to his bed, watching him grasp the air and wonder how he’d lost so much weight so quickly. When I visited him at the nursing home a few weeks ago, he’d regained most of the 20 pounds he’d lost, and he could walk again with help, but I still spent much of the time blinking back tears. His memory is slipping, his hands are twitching more, and the idea of a limited and lost future is is depressing. I always knew I would lose my dad at a relatively young age, but now that it’s no longer an abstract concept, it’s harder. I wish there were something sanguine to say, and I do put a smile on my face when I talk with him in person or on the phone, but it’s for him, not me.

The silver lining to this dark cloud is that it's nearly effortless to make my dad happy. He isn't severely depressed about being in the nursing home (I think he enjoys the attention from the young nursing assistants) but I know he gets lonely. How can he not? So I call him, or send him a postcard or sneak him some of his non-alcoholic beer, and he's so happy. If this is how our last years are, I'm all right with that.


say hello

    it's anniet at gmail.


© 2009 avt

custom counter