Tuesday, November 26, 2013

To Spite My Face

You can never not see your nose. See? It's right there. You see it now, don't you? And once you notice that it's hard not to see it all the time. Just there like that. Being your nose.

This is where shit gets weird.

Because that's kinda' sorta' why I haven't been blogging. I've been too busy noticing my nose. Except, of course, substitute "my nose" with "thinking about my mom" and there you have it. Here's the thing: when someone you love dies, the world lets you grieve for a nebulous amount of acceptable time and then at a certain point everyone expects you to move on. Gently, sure, not callously, but quite frankly...there is oil to be changed and people to be gossiped about, somebody has to send the Netflixii back, after all (not a typo but the plural of 3 Netflix discs, i.e. Game of Thrones Seasons 1 and 2, i.e. medieval fantasy porn, i.e. King Joffrey sux dragon balls). So yes, I've been doing all this, acting like a perfectly normal person amid a perfectly normal world all the while obsessed with my nose. My nose being the fact that my mom is gone. I don't talk about it all the time during my day, at work, to the grocery store cashier, but it's there, my nose, and I see it. I am thinking the whole goddamn time my mom is gone my mom is gone my mom is gone. Because once you realize you can never not see your nose it is there. Just like that. Out of the corner of your eye, in the periphery. A part of you. And you walk around seeing your nose and even noticing other people's noses and you wonder why nobody is talking about any of it, all cap-locked and shit. CAN YOU NOT SEE MY NOSE? ALL OF US, WITH THESE UGLY LITTLE APPENDAGES ON THE FRONT OF OUR FACE LIKE THAT? PEOPLE YOU LOVE DIE! MY MOM IS DEAD. WE ARE ALL GOING TO DIE!

Hardly the stuff of a blog people want to read, non?

The thing is, this blog has always been where I've gone to write about whatever the hell I want to write about but it's been hard lately to navel-gaze when my nose is in the way. So here's the deal: I'm just going to keep writing. Whatever that means. Maybe it will stink (too much? The nose analogy?). But I don't want to cut off my blog to spite my...yeah, totally too much with this nose thing. But it makes sense to me, so.

On another note, not entirely unrelated:
Lately Ozzy has been infatuated with grocery bags, preferred toy of cats and kids. I am thinking about stuffing his stocking with Trader Joe's bags. I have also stumbled upon this fabulous little life tip: if you're ever afraid of someone, nervous around someone or just really angry at someone, picture that person wearing a paper bag on their head and it magically dissolves the edge of the feeling. Try it. I double dog dare you.

Shit. There's my nose again, lit up by the glow of the computer screen.


Cathi said...

I've been thinking about you lately, keep talking about your nose all you want - there is no time frame for grief! I just lost a very close friend of mine this morning, so that nose thing is gonna be with me for quite a while too...thanks for making me smile despite everything going on. xxoo

A Perfect Gray said...


thank you.

Karen Smith said...

Just keep writing. And there`re no rules. x

Anonymous said...

I've been staring at my nose for 4 straight months, and it wasn't even my mother. I don't know where the end is, but trust me on this, there is no forcing grief to hurry its course. She deserves the time.

Book: Wild by Cheryl Strayed -- you will belly laugh through your tears, and also feel like a warrior of sadness compared to this woman's journey through grief.

If you're worried about being sad when you have kids, I'll tell you this:

When my Grandpa died, I was in 4th grade. I came home from my first week of school and my mother was crumpled into a corner of her bedroom, it was the first time she had ever crumpled in my entire life and I didn't even know moms were capable of crying. My sister and I went in our room and shut the door, we stared into each others eyes and decided to make our mom a milkshake. Her face was puffy for months, we understood. It's okay for moms to be sad too, we would remind each other. She taught us the power of love that year, and we just loved her harder for it.

By the next summer, her face wasn't puffy anymore, and we could tell stories about grandpa and she would smile. That was the most important part, she said.

Even though it scared me, I could feel my own little heart growing three sizes in that moment, like the grinches. Looking back, it was one of the most supreme moments of bonding in the trajectory of the love between my mom and I, to understood how much she loved her own dad -- I learned so much.

This is family. Sending yours big love.

- Emily (just a long time reader)