Monday, July 5, 2010

Looking rather tattered, I emerged for the last day of our long holiday

Holidays this long are usually not as welcome to residents in a HUD complex as they are to the workers who need them to recuperate, especially if it is a paid holiday. I am going to try to swim today even if it is still a trifle cold for Phoenix in July (104 degrees). Our 110 regular summer weather has held off this year, which is not bad to take, but just not what we are used to! Except for that one scorching 114 degrees we have had unusually cool weather. It will be interesting to see what the rest of the summer brings.
Sat out in the patio late yesterday afternoon where it was very comfortable. I watched several residents cavorting in the water and chatted with two older residents, one of whom just moved in. I try to make my way down to the patio to talk to any of the still living out there before I resort to a spirit dialogue, if needed. I have always turned to spirit dialogues for comfort after becoming partially disabled. When one foot feels like it is in the other world, you are able to access those who have passed a good deal easier, although I always felt uneasy with their accessibility and still do.
I did get a chance to see Barbara, the widow of the man who just passed in here a couple of weeks ago. I gave her a hug and she told me he did not suffer. I came home and did a spirit dialogue connecting to my good friend Bob who passed a couple of years ago from having cosmetic surgery on his eyelids. He was a good friend of Clyde's and he assured me Clyde was happy to be in therapy to restore the use of his legs to him. In his case, it may take some time as he had gotten too heavy and his legs were shriveled. Bob joked he was never going to live down having passed to the other world from cosmetic surgery to make him look more attractive to the ladies. He apparently felt so good he was even out fixing computers laying on his back when the doctors told him he should be resting. The next thing he knew he was on life support. I will never forget how Clyde cried when he was told in my presence that Bob had died. He thought he was going to be okay. Everyone was shocked.
I used to play pool with Bob all the time who would have been the complex's best pool player if his eyelids had not drooped. When he was managing the computer room I used to go in and talk to him all the time. He was so easy to talk to. So we had a good chat.
I asked him how our mutual friend and my former neighbor Karen was who also passed not long after Bob. She died from a heart attack at around 52. She had her first heart attack and was the first one I ever heard of who got up out of ICU and left the hospital after having a heart attack. I told her anyone else would have been too terrified to do such a thing!
Too much damage had been done to her heart from diabetes which had not been diagnosed and she had another one. Her sister took her cat Freeway, her constant companion.

So you see in the Westward Ho there is a highway to the hereafter used quite often and there must be hundreds of ghosts of those who resided here coming to visit from time to time. I think you do return quite often to the last place where you spent many years of your life.
Some residents give little thought to a hereafter, but their conversations can get very limited if they do not think they have a future! As far as I am concerned, they concentrate too much on their aches and pains.
But I found it so difficult to find people to talk to and still do that I required visits from the spirits to keep going. Contrary to what you might think they want us to live a long active life and will do everything they can to help, including giving you pep talks if you think of faltering. I do think those who spend unhealthy hours contemplating suicide would benefit from talks about what they expect to gain by such a waste of life from any source, people here or spirits from beyond who must surely fly to the side of the afflicted ones who threaten to take their own lives when the going gets rough. They must feel really alone, when as far as I am concerned there are many to help lift their spirits if they had a little faith.

I have just been thinking from years of study of crime that those who are the victims are often thrown into years of dealing with the fallout, if they are not out right killed. If the perpetrators are named and arrested then the victims are likely to spend years waiting for trials, testifying, and recovering from what was done to them, and from being the publicized victim.
I tried to avoid this by never naming the molesters or talking about what was involved, but now I am finding myself going through that process when I finally decided to tell the whole story before I passed. I find there is no avoiding the fallout once you start to talk, or start to publicize your memoirs.
Which gets to be quite a disturbing process, but I think one of the main reasons you do it is to try to prevent future such crimes from happening. I have chosen to talk about the role my father played in my years of enforced silence just so men like him will feel warned. People keeping silent have always encouraged those who have trouble being honest to their wives and children.
Unfortunately I encountered similar attitudes as my father's at the University of Utah, which convinced me even more that I had to break the silence of so many women, sometimes just because they are too naive or too insecure with their own perceptions of what is hidden. My reactions to such very nearly got me killed in a psych ward where I was incarcerated by the University psychiatrist. This made it all the more imperative that I tell my side of the story.
It has taken me a lot of years to get to that point. I had to spend my depleted energy just staying alive first. But I could not wait too long either.
What has dismayed me about doing this is just going through the fallout. Exposing my point of view and indeed looking to publication for these memoirs. Right or wrong, I must get these memoirs out there. Even if I have to stay in exile the rest of my life.

1 comment:

Paula said...

Awww Gerry you don't look tattered. Cute outfit. Hope you get or got to swim today. Wish I was there to swim with you or maybe just float on my back.


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