Seeping Weeping

It’s Sunday morning, with the sun reflecting off the roofs and trees making every thing look golden Especially framed by the blue sky. Another sonatina of church bells went through it’s drill. I was wondering what was significant about 8:50 a.m. at that church.

The 15-year-old had meekly woke me up. He was pretty grumpy last night but had overslept and needed me for a ride to work. I made him some sandwiches to bring to the pool, and we jumped into the car.

I am having a hard time driving. It’s really important to be focused when you drive. I find my mind wandering and my brain admonishing me, “Pay attention. That was a stop sign. You need to look both ways. Yes, the light was RED.” Normally, I drive and it works just fine–the past few days I need reminders.

When I woke up on Friday, I didn’t know where I was. Really. I was agitated, searching the room to to find a clue to my whereabouts. I was able to verify that I was in my own bed. I don’t think that I have ever been so bewildered in the morning. Even after alot of travel, I always knew where I was. Not Friday, though.

I can do tasks. I can even do them in order. But I feel a bit disconnected. That’s the word that describes me, disconnected. I looked it up. There are two parts, one is detached and the other is incoherent. I am feeling a bit of both.

My dad was 86 when he passed on June 15th. It seems like it makes sense that old people move on. I was feeling like I had a handle on it. My sibling admonished me for my bare statement to the caterer, “My dad is dead.”

Sib: Don’t you think that’s a little too direct?
Me: That’s what he is.

I have been looking at my feelings in third person. Always analytical, I was looking at myself from the outside to see how I thought that I was feeling.

But feelings are not thoughts. I told the 12-year-old that they just are, and that you just have to accept them. You can’t judge your feelings.

I guess I am learning that I need to make way for my feelings and to experience them. They are not satisfied to be viewed clinically. Mine are organic, and like some certain force are elbowing my rational self for some room at the surface.

I guess I am more vulnerable when I drive. I better be careful.

Remember the Good

Disbelief, shock, sadness, horror, grief mix together in thinking about the murders at Virginia Tech. And the 32 victims who family, friends and strangers mourn, 32 innocents.

The people identified by Va Tech to date are Ross Abdallah Alameddine, Christopher James Bishop, Brian Roy Bluhm, Ryan Christopher Clark, Austin Michelle Cloyd, Jocelyne Couture-Nowak, Kevin P. Granata, Matthew Gregory Gwaltney, Caitlin Millar Hammaren, Jeremy Michael Herbstritt, Emily Jane Hilscher, Jarrett Lee Lane, Matthew Joseph La Porte, Henry J. Lee, Liviu Librescu, Partahi Mamora Halomoan Lumbantoruan, Lauren Ashley McCain, Daniel Patrick O’Neil, J. Ortiz-Ortiz, Minal Hiralal Panchal, Daniel Alejandro Perez, Erin Nicole Peterson, Michael Steven Pohle, Jr., Julia Kathleen Pryde, Mary Karen Read, Reema Joseph Samaha, Waleed Mohamed Shaalan, Leslie Geraldine Sherman, Maxine Shelly Turner, and Nicole White.

These are the people that will be remembered by their loved ones. But the rest of us, those who don’t know them, will forget their names. They will become, for most of us, “the victims” or the “people who were shot.”

I don’t know if there is anything that we can do about that. But there is one thing that I have decided to do. I refuse to learn the name of the man who took their lives. I won’t let him become part of my memory. I won’t let him be like murderers before him–people who ruthlessly killed hundreds in Oklahoma City, boys and young men in Chicago, or our brothers and sisters in New York, D.C., and Shanksville Penn., on September 11, 2003. I don’t care if they are “infamous“–they have more of our brain space than they deserve.

I am very angry that NBC–followed rapidly by their disrespectful media siblings–have given the wicked shooter time. I can’t stand that they promoted his pathetic tapes, pictures, ravings. I am not going to be an accomplice to his narcissistic desires for people to know who he is.

I don’t care about him. I don’t care to know about him. I don’t want to aggrandize this shooter. We don’t have to give him what he wanted. Leave him a place in the history books, but just call him the shooter.

The names, the histories, the hopes of the victims are what we need to remember. Google them. Find their Face Books. Learn about them. Leave the shooter in ignominy.

You can leave your condolences here. My thoughts and prayers to the entire and extended Virginia Tech community.

Talk Therapy

I am getting confused over the word anniversary. So I had to look it up to try and figure out why. And it worked.


  1. The annually recurring date of a past event, especially one of historical, national, or personal importance: a wedding anniversary; the anniversary of the founding of Rome.
  2. A celebration commemorating such a date.
    American Heritage Dictionary

I usually think of anniversaries in the second definition. The celebration part, especially. So talking about the 5th “anniversary” of the attacks on 9-11 seemed a bit odd.

And talking is alot of what I have found myself and others doing. Maybe this is a D.C./New York thing, but folks that I know have been pouring out what they were doing on that day. Where they were when they heard. Reliving the clutched stomachs of seeing the second tower crumble on live TV. Calls and emails trying to track people down.

In some ways, the memories seem more vivid this year than on past “anniversaries”of this bad day. The parade of others’ memories on TV, radio, Web and print do not cut any less deep. I can be back on September 11, 12, 13, 2001 in less then a second. Fighting back tears and still not understanding it. I don’t know that I ever will.