February 16, 2010

Tuesday Confessional

You may or may not have noticed my absence from blogland last week.  It was mainly due to a family tragedy. My uncle died unexpectedly last week and we packed up the kids and headed down south for the funeral. It was incredibly sad.  This uncle was not terribly old, was not sick and was adored by his wife, children and grandchildren.  And this is where my confession comes in:  I avoided thinking about the whole thing at all costs.

It is my defense mechanism. When faced with seemingly unbearable pain, I do every thing in my power to ignore it. I remember as a teenager sitting in my grandfather's hospital room, making up stories in my head, just to take me somewhere else. And this weekend, I spent most of my thoughts on life in a small town.

On the way to the funeral we spent the night at my brother in law's cabin. It is in Fillmore, Utah. This just happens to be the exact center of the state of Utah, and also an itty bitty little town.  I loved it.  I fell asleep dreaming of  huge yard with a garden, a mini orchard, chickens and maybe even a goat.  In my mind, I sat on the back porch of our old, but remodeled home, and watched my children play on the swing set. I could almost smell the grass in the sparkling air.  And the pie baking in my country kitchen.

I did that instead of think of my aunt, alone now, and how she must be feeling. I did that instead of wondering what she would do, now that he is gone. I did that instead of wondering which of his grandchildren are old enough to remember him.  I did that instead of letting the flood of emotion overcome me.

Sometimes, fiction is easier than reality.


Anonymous said...

Sorry for your loss... I can only imagine how hard it must have been to be thinking good things while others were hurting.. But think about it.. We do it daily by avoiding to think about the hunger and poverty in the world... So just don't beat yourself up!

Kristina P. said...

Rachel, I am so sorry to hear about your uncle. I have been fortunate in that I haven't lost many people close to me.

Melissa Bastow said...

I know what you mean - if I stopped ignoring things I think I would turn into a puddle of emotional goop. And not in a good way. I'd be a very disfunctional pile of goop. Too many hard things to deal with. Goop is bad.

As a side note: my best friend from college was from Fillmore. And I got a really ugly speeding ticket in Fillmore county once.

Rochelle said...

I'm so sorry for your loss, it is never easy to lose a loved one. Best wishes.

Liz @ Sugarplum Creations said...

I'm so very sorry. I can relate to your defense mechanism. It's mine as well. So much easier to ignore it than to feel such pain.

just call me jo said...

I imagine your aunt must be doing some of that same avoidance. It seems healthy to me for a while at least. Death and loneliness is almost more than can be dealt with at times like this.

Sher said...

I'm so sorry for your loss.
I understand that you need a distraction from the grief.
A similar incident happened in my family a few years ago...my mom's youngest brother passed away unexpectedly. He was only 39 and left behind 5 children between the ages of 5 and 18. It was really hard.
hang in there!

Lourie said...

I did notice you lack of posting. I am sorry to hear about your uncle. I know what you mean about not dealing with pain. My thoughts are with you and your family.

Loralee and the gang... said...

So sorry about losing your uncle. It's those types of hard things that make you "check out" of reality, as I like to say...as long as you can still function is day to day tasks, it's all good.

Cosette said...

I TOTALLY relate to the country house fantasy. I have it all the time.

So sorry about your uncle. I just heard today my favorite uncle is really sick, so your post hit me hard.

The Damsel in Dis Dress

Dede said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your uncle. Deal with it the way you must, and don't feel like it's wrong!

I despise Fillmore:-) My husband totaled my car there on his way home from Disneyland WITHOUT me...nuff' said!

Michelle 2021 said...

I'm so sorry about this. Surprise tragedies require some emotional gymnastics to pounce through until you can find a safe place to land and totally lose it.

I can see you in a big remodeled country house surrounded by growing things.

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