Friday, June 14, 2013

The Single Life

"Remember, Red, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things. And no good thing ever dies."

- from Andy Dusfrene's letter to "Red" Redding in The Shawshank Redemption

I was listening to The Shawshank Redemption the other day as background noise.  I've seen the movie dozens of times and could wax rhapsodic about its many many qualities if that were the point, but because I've seen it so many times, I can listen to it as background chatter and not really let it get in the way of what I'm doing.  It just fills the dead air that sports talk radio can't anymore because I can't stand the thought of listening to mean-spirited morons criticize the Penguins.  Maybe I'll vaguely be aware of what is being said because I know the dialogue backwards and forwards or I'll look up to glance a scene I am particularly fond of or moved by, but mostly it's just droning on somewhere in the back of my brain and I'm not paying any attention at all.  Which is why I was particularly caught by the line above jumping out at me.  Like someone turned up the volume at that moment so I couldn't miss it.  It cut through all my concentration on my work and that one line insinuated itself into my head.  I stopped what I was doing and looked up at the tiny screen and thought to myself, "What a bullshit line." and looked back at my computer and went back to work.  Probably at that moment I knew I am in a really dark place.

That's why I haven't spoken to my husband in the two weeks he has been in Texas.  I know people are wondering and speculating why, because I've been asked a few times.  I know it strikes them as odd, cold maybe even, because he's down there to see his brother for the first time since his accident and it was going to be a hard shock.  Greg loves his brother above all else save his daughters.  This will undoubtedly be the second hardest couple of weeks in his life - harder than burying his dad in some ways.  Because his brother's still alive and needs him and now, tomorrow, he's got to get on a plane to come back to a place far away from his family.  So, as his helpmate, I should have been available to help him through the ordeal.  Well I know myself well enough to know that's not how it would go.  Instead it would lapse into a conversation about how, of our six major appliances, three of them are broken in some way, and I'm trying to figure out what I can rig to work, live without potentially, or have to break down and figure out a way to pay to fix them.  I know I'd work in there that we have carpenter ants or how the puppy, in her boredom, has destroyed this, that and the other thing because I can barely find time to walk her, let alone take her running at the dog park, which she got so used to.  And I'd probably slide in there somewhere how, when Steeler tickets go on sale tomorrow, I won't be buying any and how bitterly disappointed I am over that.  He doesn't need that crap.  He's got his own issues to handle, so I sincerely believe that the best, most supportive thing I can do for him is to give him space to deal with them.

Conversely, I speculate that he hasn't called me to lay at my feet the trauma he's gone through because he likely senses that I've got my hands full.  Or so I've figured anyway - that and he just hasn't had the time to worry over checking in with me.  Trying to spare one another's feelings by making sure we're talking periodically is small potatoes to the larger, harder issues he's undoubtedly been coping with.

But, whatever the case, I can tell you this:  I've got one minute to get logged into work and then fall into coping with keeping the puppy occupied enough not to destroy things for the next fourteen or so hours until the workday's done.  I can't actually worry over much more right now save to tell you that I'm beginning to wonder if Charlie Sheen had it right when he said that hope is for suckers.  

No comments:

Post a Comment