The Blessing Of The Unremarkable Life
3 years ago my mom died. I had just begin writing again, joined a writer’s group and really thought I was about to make a breakthrough – – and then mom got sick and after three grueling months of sitting at her hospital bedside, I lost her.
10 years before that, just after I got married my father fell ill, his brain tumour had returned and this time it was inoperable. 4 years of slow, excruciating pain and suffering, he was gone. 9 months later my brother was killed in a car accident.
Would you like to hear about my freakish birth and delightful childhood?
The majority of my life has been me, reeling from one life tragedy to another, having the air punched out my lungs as my feet are knocked out from under me. Every time I metaphorically “got up” and tried to regain some semblance of normal, I’d be dragged to knees again by another loss.
I turned 40 end of 2017 and suddenly realised I was running out of time to get my act together and live the kind of life I chose instead of the shitty life experience I kept getting handed.
So I got myself to a gym. A private joke really. If there is something I have never been able to stick with, it was exercise. Me at a gym was ridiculous to even imagine. But if I could do THIS, I could do any damn thing I wanted. By April I had been exercising consistently for just over 4 months – -I had done it! I had beaten my lifelong procrastination and my ADD to start and stick with a great new habit. Not only that, it came with some great benefits. My scoliosis felt better, less pain in my back and my mind felt clearer and more energetic.
So next I tackled something I cared deeply about that had been left behind after my mother’s death – – my writing.
I set a goal of writing 2 hours a day every day. If I could get myself to a gym regularly I could do this. It was hard but I did manage to do it. Day after day, week after week, a few months of writing under my belt it felt like the scar tissue of my heart, was loosening and I could finally realise my dream of maybe writing a speculative fiction novel.
Let me tell you something that you may know, if you’re parent. There is a way your child can call out to you that will stop your heart cold. 2 years ago, my son shouted for me with panic in his voice. There was blood in the toilet from his pee and if he was scared, I was beyond terrified. But we went to the doctor, we got all the tests and they sent us home with some anti-biotics and a wave, telling us there was ‘nothing’ to worry about.
Roll on 2018 and when Ethan got his third bladder infection this year, I knew there was something not right with this even if the GP couldn’t see it. A urologist, blood test, urine tests, ultra sound later and we’re told there is a “shadow in the bladder”, they need to do go in with a scope and check it out.
I received this news 3 years, to the day, that my mom died.
And I’m angry.
I’m so damn full of rage and venom I could breathe fire right now. I wish I believed in a God so I could scream at him, “How DARE you! Haven’t I paid enough for whatever sins I must have committed in a former life!?” “Haven’t you got someone else you can pick on for a while?”
I just want a boring, average life and I want my child to be ok, I really don’t think that’s too much to ask for. The Universe can go fuck itself at the moment because I’m so done with it’s bullshit.
‘Not fair’ doesn’t even begin to describe this situation, and I get it, life is horribly unfair, it’s a well known maxim – but fuck that, it shouldn’t be! It feels like any time I make any effort to get back on the road and live a normal life, I get side-swiped into oncoming traffic. What the actual fuck is going on? Why!
Also, why not me? Let it be me, take me, hurt ME — I’ll stand in an open field and let the lightening strike but for the love of all that is good in this world, please leave the few people I hold dear in this world, alone.
I’ve always berated myself to not sticking with things, for not living up to my potential or even being a proper grown up. But as I look back over my life to date, I realise that’s been patchwork of crisis management and badly coping with the fallout of post traumatic stress. Holy shit, who has time to exercise, eat right, be a career woman and follow your creative passions when your life is a Grey’s Anatomy- marathon, tragi-drama.
I renounce it all, I give it back– take it. It may make good fiction but it SUCKS if you’re living this nightmare. You can have this story, I want another one. A boring, unbelievable book where all the characters live happy lives and they get everything they ever wanted. I’m so ready to jump genres and try something else on for size.
Let Ethan be ok, let me get back to my ridiculous gym and my silly writing. Let me worry about whether or not we have milk and bread again and lead a thoroughly unremarkable life.