Thursday, December 4, 2008

I'm not that strong...

... at least not Star strong.

It was one of the things Roger really liked about me.
He loved the way I could handle things on my own.
How I could deal with my own stuff.
I was independent. I could take care of myself.

Once when I ran out of gas, I called Marlyn who lived close by and we completely handled the situation. I was even able to laugh at myself.
No damsel in distress call needed. He loved that about me. I was not like his previous girl friends.

Sometimes he said I even needed to lean a little more on him and on other people.
And I was trying. I was getting better.
It's hard for me to depend on someone else.

But now, I'm not that strong person I'm used to.
I'm not Star stong. I am so weak in my eyes.
And its really hard for me to accept this new person.
I have the paranoia that is really annoying.
I suspect everything and everyone.
I have the irrational fears that make everyone look like a criminal and there is almost always going to be some sort of crime around me. Or some outragely obsecure situation.
Nor can I handle more than a few tasks per day without getting really stressed out.

And I definitely can not handle any bumps in the road.
This was proven once again by a little hiccup on the way home tonight.
I knew I needed gas but I thought I could make it to my exit on the way home. According to my car's computer I had about 33 miles.
Not a problem.
Well, on the way home there is a detour.
I beep on my horn to signal to the world that this is not acceptable. This is not part of the plan.
The detour takes thirty minutes to get to and get around except I don't make it all the way around.
In probably the worst section of Orlando, my car stalls.
This is the area of town that a few years ago I saw a lady expose her breasts as she tried to get a "job."
I'm out of gas.
F#&%! F#&%! F#&%!
I lose my head.
I start crying.
People are blowing their horn at me.
I can't remember what the hell to do.
I finally put the car in neutral and hysterically phone Courtney to help me since she had just been at a concert with me.
A random lady stops to help me push my car, she walks with me to the gas station across four lanes of traffic, pump the gallon of gas, and then helps me put it into my car.
At the same time, a policeman also shows up to make sure we are okay. He watches our cars as we get the gas. This lady completely takes control of the situation. She was Star strong. [Thank God for random acts of kindness.]

As I drove home, I thought how I'm not the strong person I once was. How people think I am but how I think I'm not. This is not me! This is not the girl I'm used to.
There are so many days where I just want to crawl up into bed and have one of my friends hold me while I cry. Actually I want this about every day for the past couple of weeks.


Crash Course Widow said...

I saw threats, death, and destruction--not the possibility of them, but the absolute certainty that those things were going to happen to me after lightning had already struck once with Charley's death--everywhere in those earliest months. I remember very clearly driving down a rural highway about 3-5 mos. after Charley died and following a semi truck with an open load full of 2x4s. The ends were hanging off the back of the truck bed with the red flag hanging off the back to show it was a potential hazard, and all I could think and see as I followed it was how, if that driver slammed on his breaks, they'd come flying into my car and spear me, obviously killing me. And I practically had a panic attack meltdown just following him, even when he never tapped his brakes the entire time.

You feel so fragile, vulnerable, and scared in those earliest months. The world you'd once thought was safe and predictable is now gone, and you're overwhelmed with all the images and stimuli that lightning can strike anywhere, anytime. You feel threatened, weak, terrified. I remember being scared every time I accidentally took a corner too fast that I'd go flying off the road, smash into a tree, and be killed (and I'm so sorry for even mentioning the parallel to you, with you and Roger being IN a car accident)...and Charley's death didn't have anything to do with a car.

Some things just become really loaded and terrifying in grief--perhaps even more so because we have so many expectations that we should be able to go back to normal, back to the Old Star, and react like we always did in the past. If it's any consolation, what you're describing sounds perfectly normal for what you're/we're going through.

Hang in there, and be gentle with yourself. And try to cut yourself a lot of slack. It's hard, I know, but beating yourself up for a normal reaction doesn't help any. You're facing the hardest things imaginable, and none of the old rules apply anymore....


Jenny said...

I am so sorry! I just found out yesterday. Ian was reading something on facebook and sent me your blog. Email me offline and we'll catch up. Sorry I've been so out of touch- have been in my own little world these last few months. Lets talk soon