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20 December 2014

Day 35

Seven weeks since my sixteen year old daughter died in a traffic accident.  I haven't gone a day without crying.

Friends and family are gently seeking to "socialize" me-- get me out and around people. 

I have, kind of/sort of, gotten used to tearing up without warning.  Sunglasses and/or an escape route into privacy are my best tools.  Earlier in the week, I grabbed a tissue and muttered under my breath as I wiped my eyes, "A lot of Gabriella in the air today."

I am trying to focus on other things.

I need people.  I need relationships.  I need to get out of my own mind, out of my own inner dialogue.  It is nice and orderly in my mind, and I like it; but I have a heart that needs to be fed by contact with others.


I begin psyching myself up for the upcoming Christmas break and holidays, starting (more or less) with Friday night.

Here is how that went...

AUSTIN, 5:28pm:

Friday night and I am coasting-- or trying to.
Office party tonight, friend's birthday party tomorrow night.
Pleased that I have:
* one reindeer antler on my car (found in road-- symbolizes both Christmas and that I have been in battle!)
* one Rudolf nose (also found in road-- different road-- same day) which my Yoda Christmas ornament hanging from my rear view mirror is currently wearing, and
* a string of white "Advent Lights" draped from sun visor to hand holds across ceiling of my car-- and which drew a laugh from a passing APD officer on my way home from work today.
Just loaded rowdy "Christmas" music on my iPad.
One light day of work left (Monday) and then I disappear into family for few days.
Drinking coffee, now, after five in the afternoon, to shift to a more casual schedule that allows for PEOPLE in my life. I like people-- from what I recall.

AUSTIN, 9:27pm:

So, arriving for the school's office party, wearing my best grin, best suit, flashy tie, I get out of my one-antlered car (with reindeer-nosed Yoda) and overhear four teachers energetically getting out of a pickup truck when one proclaims, "Party time!" with something of a roar.

Intending irony, and teasing about the normal harried quietness I usually see of the teachers arriving at the school, I answer with my own low drawl (which I usually mask, but lapse into when I am tired-- or sad) not far from as "the Stranger" in the Big Lebowski would say it, "You don't know how often I hear that... in this teachers' parking lot... at seven AM... Monday through Friday."

It was a good attempt, and got the laugh and the grins which I was mining for. Two steps later, a hug, and, "I am so sorry, I heard about your daughter... etc., etc. etc."

All. The. Way. To. The. Door.

You know that smell, probably burning calcium, when the dentist is drilling on your tooth? If a moment had a smell, that was probably it.

"Sometimes you eat the bear, and sometimes... well... he eats you."

I swear, as I table-hopped for the next hour, I never heard so many stories from so many parents with tales of their fifteen or sixteen year old daughters at Christmas.

Okay, I get that they see me and it scares them; and so NEED to talk about what a precious treasure they have. But...

Damn bear.

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