Been developing whistlin' in the dark to a high art ... .
Climbing back into my own life is becoming more than a notion. The process lasts about as long as it takes to push the new reality of life with Dorian out of mind -- lasting only a few minutes at a time.
The feature article on the newly-designated national park at the Port Chicago Naval Weapons Station in USA Today which appeared in the December 26th edition -- brought added attention to me and to my work. It rustled up old acquaintances from the past back into consciousness; a good thing. Many from across the country who sent emails of good wishes were from Seniornet, an online cyber-community that came into my life with discovery of the Internet during the early Nineties. I was again reminded of the magic of the online experience -- where we developed such deep friendships which had absolutely no basis in reality. We'd actually never met in most cases, and yet we'd touched lives more meaningfully than one might ever imagine. I'd almost forgotten that, and of how much I learned to rely on those friendships at the time. I'm sure that it was out of that experience that this blog evolved. I can't imagine how it could have happened otherwise.
Visits 3 times-a-day to the nursing home where Dorian is slowly recovering have become a part of my routine now. Both legs are now in full recovery but won't be ready for weight-bearing rehab work for another four weeks. The left foot has dropped and shows little sign of life at all (which is frightening). The surgeon assures me that 8 months to a year of work will take care of those fears and that she will walk again. Having her situated about halfway between our offices and my apartment makes our visits work out well. She is content with brief 30 minute drop-ins before she's ready to get back into her own routine, so I can't claim hardship.
It's the emotional effects that continue to be so wearing; the systemic difficulties encountered daily in dealing with planning for succeeding weeks of rehabilitation that shred the days into bites too small to claim hardship over yet too knotty to move through in any kind of order or resolution.
I'm sensing that all those years of training that we worked so hard to achieve for "Life after Mom" have caved in on themselves, and we've both regressed to her early years before that painful lifelong process was either realized or begun; we're back somewhere around age 4. I've slipped effortlessly out of a very adult "Mom as best friend" into "Mom as written by Neil Simon or painted as a Normal Rockwell cover for the old Saturday Evening Post." So much for objectivity. I'm not sure that there's enough life left in which to recover from this dramatic dive into maternal excess.
Maybe by next week we'll have both recovered enough to reclaim some maturity.
I'm just about as ready as one can be for the new decade to begin.
Happy New Year!