Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Two songs. A post in two parts

1.  How did I get here?

At this moment I find myself in a coffeehouse in Topeka, Kansas, waiting for a friend prior to her open mic.

At this moment I find myself not crying over the loss of Kevin, but I feel like a walking absence.

In another moment I will cry and try to pretend I'm just wiping my eyes, blowing my nose. An everyday thing in a coffeehouse in Topeka, KS.

At this moment I am drinking tea. I am listening to REM playing over the cafe stereo. I am watching the man across from me talking to himself.

At this moment no one in the world knows where I am. If I close my eyes I feel like I am floating. I am, in many ways, adrift. Not all. 

One of my favorite bands is The Talking Heads. For years I loved the song And she was because it felt like it described my life so well. Now? Once in a lifetime feels more apt.

And you may ask yourself-Well...How did I get here?

Here. Listen.

2. I grieve.

When I was in college I experienced my first bout of major depression. I got through, though it was a near thing. Friends helped. A good crisis intervention hotline helped. And some music helped. The Peter Gabriel/Robert Fripp song Here comes the flood helped immensely; I am still here in part because of that song. I listened to it over and over in my dorm room, imagining what it would be like to let go and drown, what it would be like to choose to survive.

When the flood calls
You have no home, you have no walls

Since Kevin died I barely listen to music. Too much of it is too painful still, carrying memories and secret moments. As you know, music connects to emotion and right now I have more emotion than I can easily handle.

A friend reminded me of this song. While it doesn't represent all of my experience of grief it captures some of it.

the news that truly shocks is the empty empty page 
while the final rattle rocks its empty empty cage 
and i can't handle this 

Once again, Peter Gabriel speaks for me. Thank you. And if anyone knows how I could get a letter to him, thanking him via paper and pen, please let me know.

(c) 2014 Laura Packer

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1 comment:

  1. It's been a little over 6 months for me and I find myself experiencing a lot of down feelings...last few days...
    I was reading in my grief books - and I think people have posted about it on various blog --that it starts to sink in at 6 months
    how alone you really are. I had to have my husband's 17 yr old dog put to sleep last week.
    at the park this morning I was walking my 10 yr old dog and saw a woman i know who did not know poor
    17 yr Axel was gone. I had a sobbing meltdown telling her about it. I normallydo not cry like that in front of others...but I really lost it.
    Sort of frightening that grief can overtake me like that.
    Grief is sometimes like a tidal wave that overtakes you with
    terrible force & sweeps you up into black hole.
    Talking heads--always loved them. I just listened to "Burning Down the House".
    -Shell in San Diego


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