Thursday, January 13, 2011

Still life with moonlight

You know, when I was driving out to my parents' house the other night to pick up Betty, I started thinking about my dad.

Well, first I started thinking about the police, because I was driving a little too fast down this one road in their neighborhood.

It's this street that has 25 MPH posted for half of it, and then it changes to 35, but it's hard to go only 25, and my parents had both gotten tickets for going like one mile over. Seriously. And so if you were ever driving either of them down that road, they incessantly reminded you of what a speed trap it was.

Betty still does this. Truth. You can try it.

So I was careening down this speed trap in my Civic at oh, about 30 MPH, and I could totally picture my dad telling me to slow down.

And then I started thinking, what if I did get pulled over? And what if I recognized the policeman as one of the ones who was so helpful with my dad?

Which made me start to cry. The combination of the crisp, chilly dark, and the road, and the hypothetical same policeman just triggered me.

I got this visual of myself standing outside on the second floor balcony of a motel with a couple policemen. The EMTs were just getting ready to carry the stretcher out to the ambulance. They told me not to look.

I was wearing a periwinkle fleece. The location and the fleece meant it was 2007. I remember that I liked that fleece, and that it looked good with my eyes, even as red and puffy as they were.

The fleece. Isn't that a stupid thing to remember?


  1. Nope. Not stupid at all.


  2. There is nothing stupid about what your mind holds onto about such a pivotal, harrowing moment in your life. It's your mind's way of processing the pain.

    Big hugs to you.

  3. I'm sorry this image appeared and led to tears, Lisa. The little things remain in memory, too and I hope a happy memory comes along that warms your heart or makes you laugh.

  4. Talk about interconnectedness...

    I watched Sunshine Cleaning this morning (it was new to me and I recommend it) and the sisters are talking and the conversation goes something like this:

    Sister 1: You want to know what I remember from Mom's funeral? My shoes. I remember they were too tight.

    Sister 2: You know what I remember? That you wouldn't take those shoes off. It drove me crazy!

    What Keenie Beanie said? Ditto.

  5. The brain is a weird and wonderful organ. How it connects things together is fascinating.

    *hugs* to you my friend.

  6. not stupid at all. it's kind of comforting, in a way.

  7. Not stupid at all. My brother died when I was on vacation with my then-boyfriend and his family. I remember my mom calling me at his parents house when we returned from the trip so I couldn't be alone. My bf's mom then gave me a chicken patty sandwich since we hadn't eaten dinner yet. To this day even seeing the frozen chicken patties in the grocery store makes me tear up.

  8. I remember putting on mascara and not wanting to wash the mud off my heel.

    I'm sorry you're hurting. Thank you for writing this blog.

  9. Not at all. I started to cry getting ready for work the other day when I realized my stepfather would never meet my boyfriend. They totally would have gotten along. Sadness and memories come to us at weird times. I think it is the journey of grief. Hugs to you.

  10. No-not stupid in the least bit. Sorry you have to hurt. Give those boys of yours some hugs. :)

    Feel better, Betty!

  11. monique esselmont1/13/2011 9:19 PM


  12. Ah so sorry Lisa. These things just jump out at you sometimes when you least expect it, huh? Hugs to you.

    (I've been here reading but been crap at commenting...)

  13. Remembering that fleece and being able to place yourself in the moment is really healthy actually.

  14. Yup. It's the minds way of dealing with stuff we shouldn't have to deal with. My cousin was killed in a car accident and his funeral was December 31, 1999. I remember thinking "Damn. I had such a pretty dress to wear on NYE." I couldn't deal with the real tragedy, so my mind did something else.

    HUGS to you!

  15. no, that's not stupid at all honey. hugs to you.

  16. When my dad died, I was in Disneyland with my family. I still remember the smell of the hotel room and examining my tennis shoes as I got the news from my Mom.

    White Keds. With a smudge on the right toe.

    We don't forget these things, LG. They help us to anchor in something, anything, that feels concrete.

    Big, warm hugs to you, lady.

  17. Jess - Hugs to you.

    Keenie Beanie - I suppose that makes sense. Hugs to you.

    HKW - Thank you - so very sweet.

    lacochran - Wow. That sounds so very real. I can totally imagine it. I will have to check that out.

    vvk - The connections are bizarre and fascinating. Hugs, friend.

    Hillary - Thank you, lovey.

    Tia - Oh, I'm so sorry. I could see how that would be burned in your mind, and could imagine myself making the same kind of association.

    S - Thank you for reading and commenting.

    Stacy - I'm sorry about that. The knowing you'd have liked people to meet and that they never will is so painful. It is the journey of grief. What a pretty way to put it. Hugs to you.

    kayare - Thanks for the good wishes! Betty is doing much better. And everyone has gotten lots of hugs.

    monique - Thank you, my friend. Big hugs to you.

    Miranda - They do. They sneak in sideways and knock you over. You know grief.

    I've been crap at commenting all around. I know how life goes.

    Lisa - Is it? Thank you. I like hearing that.

    artichoke - Thank you! Hugs.

    cla517 - Oh, I understand that reaction so very well. Hugs.

    brookem - Thanks. Hugs to you.

    Stevie - I can completely understand that. Thank you for sharing.

  18. No. Not stupid at all. I remember a whole lot of things from that day that I wish I didn't, but I do. And weirdly, the woman that took the 911 call from when my Crazy ex-roommate tried to kill herself? She lives across the street from me now. SO WEIRD.

    Such a time for remembrance.

  19. I'm sorry about this.

    The mind is so fascinating.

    Do you know what I remember from the night my father killed himself?

    That I had just been happy.

    How weird, huh? I still see myself there, standing, smiling from still playing, when the police were at the door.

  20. Hugs's all bittersweet though isn't it? Our brains are so amazing...those strange little things that go thru our minds during those stressful and terrible moments are probably what keep us sane at the time and even later on. And they make us remember our vulnerability. That can be sweet, sad and wonderful all at the same time.

  21. Always, always little inconsequential things will trigger memories, Hopefully in time the memories will be of the happier moments not the last moments. ((hug))


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