….not in the Starship Enterprise, and there’s no Captain Kirk…
Yes, I am Guilt Tripping. I’m capitalizing because this is not medium sized guilt tripping. This is Capital Letter Guilt Tripping, put you in timeout facing the corner guilt tripping….And why, you ask?
The last time he came to visit me, it was Labor Day weekend. The majority of the visit was pure lovely. And then it ended with a fight. The fight was my fault. And then the rest of September was rocky. And now it’s September. I want last September back. I want a do-over. Life has no do-overs. All I have now is this regret. I wronged him! Is that why Scripture says, ‘Do not let the sun go down on your anger’? (Ephesians 4:26) Maybe that’s one reason. Hell of a way to learn.
October was great, relationship-wise. The ship had righted itself. Our anniversary came, October 3rd. That last weekend we had together, we didn’t spend nearly enough one-on-one time together. Again, my fault. Guilt guilt guilt…I didn’t know he was about to die….
I suppose if I had known, me and his mother would have been in each other’s way trying to play nursemaid….But I swear to God, I would have crawled over broken glass for a chance to do it. And yet, I’m sure there are plenty who lost their loved one the slow way who’d trade places with me…
Lord have mercy. Even one day of warning….I wish…Wishing does no good, but I still wish…
And I tell myself, It’s not my fault, that he died. It really isn’t. I haven’t had an attack of the guilts in months. I guess Labor Day coming up is a trigger now. Trigger, trigger, trigger…is all of life a minefield now?
I try to think of last year’s Labor Day weekend and my heart is heavy, and it burns. I can’t write about it. Not yet, at least.
There is wailing to the very soul of the world…
If all the plagues of Egypt hit,
that would be the tenth part of what I feel.
Locusts have eaten up my soul.
Lord have mercy, Lord have mercy,
Lord have mercy….
There’s a wrongness to the roots of the world,
The world is out of joint,
Off-kilter, balanced precariously
On the edge of a dime;
It has lost all rhythm and all rhyme;
It lists like a ship, and I’m seasick
Will I never get my sea-legs?
Oh cast me overboard like Jonah,
Or dispatch me like Jael with her tent peg…
I’m lost and I’m tired and I have too much time
That I lug like a ton of bricks.
I miss seminary. I miss the services (except matins). I miss classes. I miss having intellectual discussions with my classmates and their wives…I miss the community…There are things I don’t miss, too. I know I couldn’t keep up with it right now. But I miss my people, and I miss the last place that felt like home. If that makes any sense….And my beloved Nelson is buried not far from there….
I have a place to live, but no home…I miss having a home. Although I never lived with him, my home died with Nelson….Where he was, was home. I told him so, and it was true. And it still is.