I guess it’s been half a year or so since I last blogged, and it’s not like I was writing that frequently before that. To be honest there didn’t seem to be much point to write anymore, as any navel-gazing was going to lead me to think about Dad, and I didn’t want to go on and on about him, post after post.
He was probably the biggest supporter of my blogging and photography and other hobbies. It’s not that I wrote for him, or took photos for him, but with him gone, there also goes one of the few people who really cared about what I did. Sometimes to the level of emailing me a photoshopped version of my photo because it was too dark (rather than, you know, just telling me it was dark so I could edit it when I got home from work). I miss being frequently annoyed at him. I have so much free time now.
Dealing with grief has been really strange, since this was the first big one for me, though I have had good friends die too. I’ve been observing myself go through it as I go through it, wondering why I can’t get over things in a linear fashion even though I’m well aware that’s not how it works. I saw a therapist, months ago, who told me to stop being so hard on myself. Since my mother, stepmother and a number of others were telling me the same thing, I didn’t see the point in paying to hear it again. I should instead find someone who will say “yeah, go beat yourself up about this, you’ll feel better after; will that be Visa or Mastercard?”
Holidays are hard. Anniversaries are hard; every time the 24th rolls around I think, “it’s been x months since Dad died”. Father’s Day fucking sucked. I wanted to scream at all the commercials, though it was so soon after. There is some comfort in the fact that Dad was never that into Christmas, so I won’t miss him in particular then, any more than usual. That’s the hope, anyways. I almost always spent Christmas with Mom, though last year I tried to make Murphy’s Law work in my favour by being at his place (so that it wouldn’t be the last Christmas with him and I would have spent it with him for nothing, as it were; I don’t know, it made sense to me a year ago). I’m hoping for a good Christmas this year. I think I deserve it.
My stepmom gave me his slides and negatives from his life-before-her, so I was scanning things and putting them up on Flickr, though I need to get back to it and be more methodical. Dad never really talked about his childhood (other than to comment how he was learning Latin when he was my age, what are schools teaching kids now, it’s all gone downhill, etc.) so it’s been interesting to finally see pictures from it. I think it’s good I have a project, though it is hard in its way too. I’m looking at pictures I’ve never seen before, of a time he rarely mentioned, and I’m realizing how little I knew him, really.
I created a tumblr of pictures he took of my mom frowning, because I thought it was odd to keep seeing these single photos of her standing by herself, in front of something, and not smiling. It makes me wonder how their marriage lasted 10 years. But unfortunately at least half of his slides are of bloody plants. All the rhododendrons you’d ever want to see plus ten times more. Bit silly since I’m sure you can find identical ones now, while I will never be this cute again.
So that’s the sort of thing I’ve been up to, when I’m by myself and have some time. I don’t think I’ve been overly sad or having trouble coping; it’s just that when I ruminate, it’s often about him. After a while, grief is what happens when you’re not busy.