Monday, Aug. 29, 2005
The images leave you shell-shocked. There's been no accounting yet for the cost in human lives. A million people have been displaced and are homeless for who knows how long.
Obviously this isn't news to most of the people reading here. CNN referred to Hurricane Katrina as the US's tsunami. I hope that the cost in lives lost isn't comparable to the Indonesian disaster. Obviously the path of damage doesn't reach multiple countries (unless Mexico sustained damage from the hurricane, and I haven't heard anything to that effect.)
I haven't heard from my friend D and her family. They fled New Orleans and headed for Mississippi. They were supposedly going to the northeastern portion of the state - which was subsequently hit by tornadoes. I've talked to other friends and no one has heard from her since before they left.
Here in a much drier Arizona, I reached a walking-away point in my own life. I couldn't handle any more. I went to help 00 move and using reasoning I can't fathom, she determined that it's my fault she has nowhere to move. I asked her to stay with me, but she refused. I offered to store her things: she refused. She also told me to "get the fuck out of my life. I don't ever want to see you again."
It isn't the first time, but it is the last. I didn't say anything to her, didn't scream back at her, didn't argue, didn't do anything to provoke her.
I already suspected she was doing more than pot, and her behavior certainly supports the idea. Years after the fact, I was experiencing flashbacks, even though I never did drugs. I flashed back to time living with 00's father, when he was doing every drug in the book. He was irrational, paranoid, cruel, verbally and physically abusive... all of the things that this child exhibited, with the exception of the physical abuse. I am enough bigger than her that I don't think she would attempt to hit me, though to be honest I probably wouldn't have even noticed yesterday.
My friend M spent on the order of $50 for gas for her truck to help 00 move. 00 apparently decided that for trying to help her, it made both me and M bitches. God knows 00 slung the word around enough times. M asked me later what the child expected us to do, given that she refused help and went into a screeching, foul-mouthed diatribe on how I only cared about my friends. Then, for good measure, she threatened suicide. Again.
M's son committed suicide a few years back. M knows a whole lot more than I ever wanted to know about that particular horror. She later took me aside - after we left 00's - to tell me in no uncertain terms that no matter what happened, nothing 00 did was my fault.
I walked out of the house to retrieve something from my truck and 00 slammed the doors behind me, locking me (and M) out. She then used the cell phone I gave her (since, after all, I never do anything for her, am only concerned for my own selfish needs and the needs of my friends) to call her brothers and sisters and grandparents to tell them how I'd verbally abused her, etc. Which meant for the next three or four hours, they all called, emailed, and IM'ed me to tell me what a piece of shit I am, too. My oldest son verbally reamed me, telling me that nothing in my life is more important than my daughter, and it doesn't matter what she says to me or does to me. My whole family believes that they should be able to say whatever they like to me, to take whatever I have and that I have no right to say a word about it.
I drove away for the last time. I don't care about the possessions or anything else. (There were a lot of the things at 00's that belong to me. I just left them. She can have them, burn them, take them to the dump. I. Just. Don't. Care.) I didn't bother arguing or answering their accusations, just let them say whatever they wanted, as usual. It's not worth it to try and defend myself. I let them blame me, scream at me, swear at me. It's nowhere near the first time. I learned long ago that it doesn't do any good to reason with them. They believe what they want to believe. Best to just let them go on until they're done, then hang up and turn everything off - phone, instant messenger, whatever.
I like my job and like where I live, but I think it's time to start looking for something else, somewhere else. I am crazy about T and he says he's equally enamored of me. I hate the idea of walking away from him, believe it or not. But honestly I feel like I've become just another demand on his time any more, anyway. I have a pretty good idea it would be a relief to him if I packed it out and went elsewhere. I get conflicting information there - kind of like, "he loves me, he loves me not, he loves me, he loves me not." I just skipped the daisy and its petals, which I stomped into a pulp a while back in one of my better moments.
Much as I grumble, I have to concede that in this case, for this man, it might actually matter to him if I dropped off the face of the earth. I think before I make a decision I will talk to him - provided I can get ahold of him, which is supremely iffy.
I have a lot of thinking to do. I am not sure where to go from here. I just know I cannot do this any more.
Before - After
In the grander scheme of things, no soul can truly be replaced. Each one of us has a place in the universal tapestry. We each contribute our own color and texture. When one thread is snipped too soon, it distorts all the threads around it. Other lives can unravel and tear. If the wrong thread is ripped away, the whole fabric of life becomes dangerously fragile.
- LeiLani, aka Radiogurl aka Bright Opal (1957 - )