I’ve been looking forward to this weekend for what feels like a century. The days at work seem to be expanding outside of their allotted times-pace and what should only be five instead feels like 20.
Again with the exhaustion.
Compounded by a trip out on Thursday evening to watch a live streaming of Ian McKellen in King Lear – a play I’d neither read nor watched before, so it was quite fun to not know exactly what happens. Spoiler: everyone dies. I guess I should have guessed that as it’s called a Shakespearean tragedy.
It was great to get out for a bit of adult time, but I was not really on form having just learned that afternoon of the death of my uncle. He was abroad in Spain on holidays and had a heart attack while swimming in the pool out there. I’m not quite sure how long he was dead before they discovered him, but apparently they had managed to restart his heart, but not really resuscitate him in the true sense of the word and they switched off life support last Sunday.
I guess the details aren’t important, but somehow I feel sadder when hearing them.
He was alone, away from friends and family, in a strange country where they didn’t know who he was – no ID. Though I suppose his passport must have been nearby?
No one here even knew anything was wrong until he didn’t arrive in as expected on a flight. It was more than a week later before we (his nieces and nephews) found out. He was a priest and didn’t have any children. Just two siblings and only one of those had children. He’s (was?) my biological father’s brother, but we saw him much more growing up than we ever saw of my father.
I remember when my paternal grandmother died. My mental health was not great at the time and I still harboured a lot of resentment towards her for events during my childhood. I probably piled on feelings that didn’t belong on her plate, though I reckon plenty was deserved where I placed it. Mainly I was having enough issues with my mood emotions and mental health that I couldn’t face seeing that side of the family at the time.
This time ’round I’m strong enough to go to the funeral, but also I want to go, because I will miss this person in my life. It was only in the last year that we’d really reconnected after a long silence – mainly due to me being crap at keeping in contact as opposed to any real reason.
It’s strange to me to think back to my own experience of childhood compared to what it must have seemed like to the adults in my life. Time passes much differently for children. I think of my nieces and nephews and of my own boys – all growing up so fast – and their time as babies doesn’t seem so long ago and not all that much has changed for me since they came into the world. But for them it’s a literal lifetime. It’s everything that’s shaped them. I might loom larger than I think. Or smaller.
I think of photographs. A couple of years ago my sister got some old photographs from this now late uncle, of us all as babies and small children. We don’t have many of these because my bio-father burned all the photo albums when my mother left him. (Yeah, that definitely reinforces that she made the right decision.) So these were precious artifacts from a dimly remembered past for us. But while he probably loved having them, I wonder what his feelings were about them. I wonder did he even realise what they must mean to us, or were they just more recordings of time that passed at a different rate for him.
My emotions are riding high these days what with the combination of pregnancy hormones and exhaustion, so my easy tears are flowing with even less reserve than ever before. I think it’s going to be a tough few days and I’m expecting the uncovering of difficult feelings to come. But I’ll have my siblings, and my mother I guess. I don’t know what our role is going to be in the grieving process. We’re probably the closest thing that he had to children – especially my sister and her kids who were especially close to him. But then I know hardly anyone else on that side of the family.
Oh hey, I see what I’m doing again. Speculating about the future. Well, time’s up on that – I’ve had my space to speculate. Now I’ll just wait and see.