I'm afraid I don't know what he looks like any more. (The pictures are all two years old now. And he was changing so fast.)
Doctors talk about deferred pain, where pain does not manifest itself precisely at the site of the injury, but at some other place nearby. The pain that I feel from his absence is all deferred. It is everywhere because there is no one place where it can be.
A constant nameless ache. 'Can't get comfortable. No matter what I do.
Constant anxiety that there is something I have not done, that I could do, to make this pain go away and replace it with the presence of my son. Constant anger at the people who have allowed this to happen, who have encouraged it, or just apathetically turned away.
Then I worry that people will think I am an angry person, because that is used against me. (It's what she said, I can't control my anger, while she does things that only merit anger.)
I'm exhausted all of the time, even at 3am when I can't sleep, even after sleeping 10 hours to compensate for a week's short nights. Exhausted by dreams I can't remember. I am exhausted by the energy it takes to sleep, to wait, to be patient, to hope, to survive. I am exhausted with the effort of trying to appear normal.
Turn the music up, so it gets a little quieter.
Some of these posts worry me. I don't want to come across as whiny. I don't want to look pathetic, reactionary, difficult, dangerous, weird. I want to look normal (whatever that is, even if I'm not). I want to look strong. I want to look like it's all under control, that I've got it together dude, and everything will be alright, one day, soon, please. Please.
But I am so tired. I want you to read this stuff and feel helpless anger too, to know that I am right to be angry, you would be too. Rage is the only appropriate response, there couldn't be any other, but it is also the most disallowed. What does this do to me? I'm not like this all the time. Really, I'm not. (Yes, I am.)
They say that anger turned inward becomes depression. Oh yes, it does, it really does. My hands shake a little, I can't seem to get a good breath.
I am worried for him. I want to know how he is. Really, how he is. To know. Not to be told by someone else, not fobbed off with a two month old school report. I want to sit with him. I want to look at him, read his eyes, his face, as he tells me how it all is. I just want to be in the same room as him, to breathe some of the same air, then I could catch my breath, my hands would still shake some, but I'd not care. If I could only watch him play, oh God, if I could laugh with him.
If you could hear inside my head you'd clap your hands over your ears to protect them. Or scream with me.
But I'm getting on with life, really I am, serenely accepting the things I can't change, courageously changing what I can, wisely knowing the difference. Really, that's me. Fully in control, biding my time, mostly, although perhaps a little tense today. That's what I look like, I think. Every day. Don't I?
Here, come in a little closer, there's something I want to tell you.....
I HAVEN'T SEEN MY YOUNG SON IN TWO YEARS! HOW IN GOD'S GOOD NAME WOULD YOU FEEL?
How in God's name would you feel?