Jakey Jake. We’ll leave the light on for you.
A very tough day. It started off innocently enough with my early morning cry, a trip to shul to say kaddish and back home. In the afternoon, things shifted into profound sadness and emptiness. It is like a wound that starts to heal. A soft scab forms over the gash, and you think it will be okay. Then something, a word, a thought, a glance, rips the scab away and the hurt is just as painful as when first cut. “The first cut is the deepest”, they say, and this is the first cut over and over again. Shabbat will always be difficult, I could barely get through the blessings. We are commanded to be happy and joyous on Shabbat. How in the hell do we do that now? We did have some laughter during dinner, as if we were in some strange limbo for a moment, but always lurking in the shadows is the agonizing emptiness. And now, the house is quiet. I went outside to look at the star. And the tears flowed again. How many tears will I shed? An ocean of them, I am sure. Good night to my dear friends near and far. I wish you all a Shabbat of peace.
Anger and sorrow, frustration and satisfaction, happiness and anxiety cannot exist simultaneously, but rather by turns, first one then the other flicks on and off. The rage is supplanted by heartache, pain by flashes of joy and remembrance, anxiety by acceptance. But somehow, all are contained within me right now, and I never know which will come to the fore at any given moment.
Saturday night. Two weeks. The individual days drag on interminably, but the time has slipped by so quickly. How is that? Life is like that. Day by day, week by week, and suddenly years have come and gone. Sitting with family and friends, remembering, trading stories, laughing for a moment, things seemingly normal for a brief time. Holding the truth at arm’s length for a few hours. Groping to forge the new normal. We have a long way to go with that, but tonight we got a glimpse of what it may look like.
Originally posted on Facebook January 11, 2014