Stress? What Stress?, and I’m Still a Hot Mess

Holmes-Rahe-Stress-Inventory.jpg

My score was 360.  I don’t know whether or not to find humor in that, or to resort to despair.

I think I will find humor in that.  Despair is easy, and I don’t like taking the easy way out of anything.

If I would have to look back at the past year or so, if anything I am less stressed than I was a year ago, but the types of stress are different.  At this time last year we had finally closed on the loan, the summer-long cleaning, renovating and moving disaster was almost done, and I was moving Jerry into the house in Marion.  In retrospect I think I knew he didn’t have much longer to live.  In some ways I feel bad that I spent so much time doing so much work when he wanted my constant attention, but I didn’t have a choice given the time constraints I had.  Most of last summer was spent divided between two residences- and I wasn’t able to take off work to do anything.  It took a divine miracle that I was able to somehow get it done.

In some ways I wonder if moving him up there- taking him out of his natural habitat so to speak- hurried up the inevitable.  He made no bones about absolutely hating being in Marion.  But in other ways I can’t help but to view his passing as a merciful end.  I don’t know if this is how you’re supposed to feel when someone dies after years of being terminally ill. Is it supposed to be a relief?  He had been ill for many years- not just physically, but he was also deeply injured both emotionally and spiritually beyond my sorry ability to mitigate or repair.  He was a suffering and tortured soul, and there wasn’t anything I could do to fix that. I still feel bad that I couldn’t- as if I have failed.

I do feel guilty to some degree about all my failings with him.  I let his irrational behavior and alcohol abuse wear me down.  I wasn’t as patient and understanding as I could have been. Whatever love I had for him at one time had long since turned to regret and pity.  I felt sorry for him, but not in any way close to him. As the years went by the distance grew.  I spent almost 20 years in a sort of limbo, dancing around his rages and avoiding his scrutiny.

In a weird kind of way I almost feel guilty because I am not heartbroken and weepy. I just don’t have that kind of mourning in me.   Is it too healthy to pick up and move on, and even to breathe a sigh of relief?  I think maybe I got a lot of the mourning out of my system over the years as Jerry’s behavior issues and then the inevitable fallout from his illnesses chipped away at any affection I had for him.

I stayed because I said I would.  Not because I wanted to. Had it not been for Jerry being ill, I probably would have left him at some point because of the alcohol and the rages, the things that happened behind closed doors that well meaning friends and relatives never see.  I stayed more out of pity than anything else.  Does that make me an evil person?

hallmark card

Jerry’s sisters aren’t very thrilled with me, I’m sure.  I have no reason or desire to stay in contact with any of them after their behavior at the funeral. One didn’t even bother to show up, as she claimed 45 miles was “too far to drive.”  I drive that far each way every day to work, so I call bullshit on that.   I personally think she was pissed because the funeral director declined her request to view his body, even though he had requested NO viewing and direct cremation, and I honored that wish.  Even if he had not specifically stated no viewing, I would have insisted on no viewing anyway.  He had died in the night and was sleeping face down when he died.  When I found him, he had likely been dead for an hour or two, so the blood had pooled in his face, making him a rather bright shade of purple.  I am an iron guts, and even I declined to take a peek at that.

One sister disrespected my son by stating that he wasn’t really part of the family because he wasn’t related to her by blood, while the other was scanning about for valuables to take home. So I really don’t have a use for any of them.  I don’t need their drama.

I choose to live and let live, and to step away from the past.

On the brighter side, my illustrious hillbilly neighbors are always entertaining.

across the street

This place has been messier than this, if that is imaginable.  I think their dryer must have taken a puke. It’s bad enough that they drain the washer out of the bedroom window in the front of the house (and yes, this is the front of the house- the back is even worse) and the health department has warned them about doing that for the longest time, but to hang one’s laundry on the front porch is just a bit gauche.

This is the same pack of governmentally subsidized, poorly tattooed and morbidly obese individuals who were setting off hundreds of dollars worth of fireworks over the Fourth of July weekend.  I had to call the cops when their bottle rockets and other assorted incendiaries were landing on my roof.  I don’t want to be the buzz kill, but it’s bad enough when a.) I have to get up at 5 AM to go to work, because Monday, July 3rd was a work day for me, let alone when b.) it’s also midnight, and on top of all the racket, you’re landing flammables on my house.

My question is, you have money for fireworks, but not for a dryer…or a garage door?

Priorities, priorities.

Speaking of priorities, I am enjoying more road trips and fun activities on the weekends than I have for a long time.  Sophie got to sit in a GT car at the races on Saturday- I had never actually seen GT races or Indy car races live before, so this was a good time.

sophie gt car

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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