Angry & A Wake

3 Mar

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I sound like a damn schizophrenic in in these blog entries.  A shitty and depressing entry, followed by frivolity, followed by stupid, followed by numb, then angry, and depressing again.

…Look, I’m TRYING.

…It just feels like the second I get a foothold here, I slip and plummet to the bottom of the goddamn pit again.  I’m exhausted from the effort of basically getting nowhere.

…And tonight is no different.

Currently, I am sitting on the couch with two fingers of 12-year-old Jameson in a glass, neat.  This is my part of a “wake” in Grandpa’s memory, having missed the gathering and mourning with everyone else.

…I am alone, and frankly would rather be at this point.

I’ve done Month-End, eight hours of work, was emotionally side-swiped and launched into a total pissed off rage with nowhere to put it before three and a half hours of rehearsal, and now I’m finally home and having to deal with it all.

Mostly, I am very angry.

…And let me tell you why.

After having spent two sleepless and anxious nights trying my best to figure out how to give condolences to a man I don’t know and haven’t for quite some time now…because it was my blood duty to…because according to birth records, I call him, “Dad”…after beating myself up with guilts I promised years ago not to feel responsible for, because it is the parent’s job to be the parent and not the child’s.  Because after 14 years, it suddenly seemed important to understand what is REALLY important and what is not-so-much in times like these…because tonight I feel betrayed by him.  Again.  And because for reasons I will never know…I was surprised by it.

I am angry.

Because he has hurt someone I love.

…Me, I can take. Him, I can’t.

My father’s practices of hypocritical proselytism under the tent of a faith born of acceptance and love, turned long ago sick with man’s influence of judgement and hate, has always been a major contention with me. Most of all when I got out from under it, having been raised with the blinders it encouraged, and saw the preachings and prejudices for what they were.

…It took me a long time…most of my young adulthood, in fact, to realize the difference between actual love and acceptance, and “the other thing.”

It seems really simple to those not born drinking the Kool-Aide. But for the rest of us imagine it like this: You are born being told that “this” is “blue.” You were taught this from your roots, before you even had words. And you grew up with this knowledge for most of your life. Then one day you meet a person who swears “blue” isn’t “blue” at all. It’s actually “red.” And this concerns you because first of all, how DON’T they know “blue” when they see it, and why do they keep insisting it’s another color entirely with so much fervor?

…And then you meet another person who sees it like that. And another.

…And suddenly you begin to wonder, to actually doubt for a moment, the solidarity of your education in these matters. I mean, they seem to feel so very deeply about this matter. And they have reasons, they have issues, they have people they know who it has actually affected…lives that have been changed because of it.

…And all you have as your excuse is, ” Well…but I was taught this.”

Sometimes there comes a moment when this is just not a good enough excuse. It usually happens when you PERSONALLY find yourself in a situation being affected by it. And there you really have to stand there a second…over the course of however long the ultimate struggle is…and reeducated yourself to the fact that not EVERYTHING you were taught was correct…that sure, there are ground-core beliefs you will always hold true, but that this one…this one has to change.

…Because you suddenly realize that it is the right thing to do.

…So you begin to embrace “red.”

…And it changes you for the better. Because it was a choice YOU made, for the reasons YOU had, and if it makes being a human and living with them a better experience: so much the better.

…Now since my 6-day-a-week childhood church-going habit, I have changed a great deal. Rather “heathen” now. Obviously. But I do still have faith in the things that are my core of importance. And I pay them heed. There IS a level of “sacred” even in those fallen from grace.

…But that was a “red” I chose long ago, as well. And I’m still perfecting it. Which is, I think, the point. Keeping growing as a human in a liquid state, not cast in dead stone, unwilling to budge an inch, even for comfort of a friend.

This is where my anger came through tonight. An outrageously inappropriate cornering of a person I love, on a day of his loss, by a man who so bitter with the years of stone religion in his heart, that he could find nothing better to do than preach at and judge, damn to hell, and speak ill of a person, his lifestyle, his choices, his very core and sense of self…who has never done him an ounce of ill, nor wished to. A man who decided that speaking shame in the stead of love, and grotesqueness instead of acceptance was a more godly thing to do, than a hug of support in the sharing of their loss together.

…This is the man who might have raised me.

…And I thank God, tonight, that he did not.

…It took me long enough to pull out of those years of hatred-and judgemental foundation as it was. Imagine had it been allowed to seed further? Imagine if I were standing beside him today seeing “blue” because it was the only color ever taught me, with no encouragement, no support, no friends and other family to help me grow and learn and question these prejudices?

…Imagine if I were the one yelling at my brother, whom I love, with all my heart and guts and pieces…as if I had any right in the least to tell another who to love or not, what to feel or not, how to live or not?

…Imagine if I never learned the color “red?”

All I can say is, “Thank God that I did.”

…And shame on the man too closed-minded, who hasn’t.

…And slainte in a toast of remembrance to Grandpa. To my family in their remembrances of him, and to my Puff, whom I love and support in all his joyful perfections.

Just the way he his.

~D

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