Reasoning with Madness
"This is a barbaric yawp, and it will be sounded over the roofs of the world."
As I sit and attempt to work from home, waiting for the painfully slow work laptop to determine when it will access the network remotely, I listen to music, watching the dark grey skies float through the bizarre spring air and wonder what all this is doing to me.
The apocalypse is no longer a future event, it is now. I am not sick with the virus, yet. My father has not acquired it. None of my family. We are sheltering in place. Stocked on food for a little while. I have arms and plenty of brass in case this gets really ugly. At least I'll go down guns blazing protecting myself and my family. My job, like millions of others, is in a state of limbo in a way that horrifies me thinking of what happens if none of us find our way back to real work. I know these are not the most rational thoughts, but when one even peeks at that jackal of a president and how he's treating this, it's clear that we have no leader and are on our own now. It's not hard to imagine we're totally and utterly doomed.
My mother's death hangs in my head draping around it completely like a long curtain, a tapestry of sorts. All the memories from childhood, from young adulthood, adulthood and most recently, those six weeks when she faded away in front of my eyes, cruelly, unnecessary, due to shockingly poor medical care, something that hurts to even say during this unprecedented time, where I do indeed see doctors and nurses as the new class heroes. But not the ones who let my mother die. No, they are monsters and I fear they will let far more people just die when the waves of this virus comes crashing down on everyone. I fear for their patients. I will not go into the specifics here. I don't have the stomach for it and it's not the time.
I don't know what's next. The start of 2020, I was planning a wedding with my fiance, who said yes just before Christmas. I was building a new era of a marketing department for a company that I love and respect. I just got back from a sunny and wonderful trip to California. There were good plans in the works. We built wedding playlists with songs for my mother to walk me down the aisle and dance with me to. We were just starting to do well the two of us, not just emotionally and physically, but financially. We were going to go on trips with our dog. Visit friends. Build our family and home. I was recording music for one band and practicing with another. My parents were alive and well, just a quick drive out of town to visit. My sisters were slowly getting better. My nieces building their lives out. There was a path of sorts we were all on. We had a bit of a roadmap to where the future was headed.
Now that's been blown to pieces. There's no more paths. There's just chaos, confusion and darkness. It seems the gods have abandoned me. Abandoned my family. Abandoned the world.
And I shift between pure all-encompassing sorrow and grief that cripples me, mentally, spiritually, emotionally and physically and furious rage at how this all happened and continues to happen. I can't think straight. I can't see past the moment I'm experiencing. Those now hideous Buddhist noble truths and the first 4 phases of the grieving process thrown in a blender with a pound of my heart for flavor.
I feel selfish in my pain, as I know there are so many others who are in worse shape than I am. There are people going through immense stress and suffering. Countless stories exist, and mine, in some ways is so cliche and pathetic. Who am I to feel this way when there are nurses working 24 hour shifts with no masks, taking care of the dying who are passing their death to them, to take home to their families, who aren't working anymore, who are in the same place as much of us wondering if they will lose their house and everything they've built?
It's moments like this where I would end with some positive twist, some meager, yet poetic attempt at optimism. It's Friday after all. There's a new Pearl Jam album out today. There's other things I know I should be happy and grateful for. But I'm not. Not today. Not now. I want to feel this blackness. This death. I want it to envelope me in it's cold cocoon. I want it to take me with it. Take me far from this place. Where we are eternal spirits without fear, without pain, without suffering. I want to be there right now. Not here. Not anymore.
I hate this world now and all the people in it. Including myself. I hate our ignorance and our inability to transcend this physical reality any more than we have. That we've not yet learned the tricks of immortality all these years into our time. We are still pathetic and weak and stupid and mean. And in the end, none of it really matters anyway.
This is not a cry for help. This is not a warning. Do not fear for my safety. I am not a rash person like I was when I was dumb and younger.
My anger will keep me alive. I have that inherited survival mechanism that my mother had. I won't die without a fight. I have fought my entire life. It is my nature.
But today, I don't have much fight in me. I am weak. I am broken. I am butchered into thousands of pieces. I'm sure, this too, like all things, will pass. And I guess that's all I can hope for on this overcast, chilly spring day. Until then, I will remain functioning as best I can in a world that stopped making sense a long time ago.
Who Am I?
I am Ahab.