Saturday, January 21, 2012

Nothin' but time and thinkin'

 Definition of LIMINAL
: of or relating to a sensory threshold
: barely perceptible
: of, relating to, or being an intermediate state, phase, or condition : in-betweentransitional liminal state between life and death — Deborah Jowitt>
from Merriam Webster. 
I have been thinking a lot about a lot of things. 

I have been thinking about time. 

Thinking of this juncture in my life, defined medically as the "liminal" space. I wrote about the Bardo which is the Buddhist term for the place where the spirit goes between lives. But this is different. This is the before the Bardo time. The liminal world is the place between life and death. Waiting to die, but living extremely fully. Now really, are we not all in this space? 

This time is where I am allowed bursts of creativity with ample ability to follow through; without the cares of working in an office, working being away from my home.  I have worked on projects I thought of doing, but never got around to. It's quite exhilarating. I have been able mess with my photos and drawing, edit my book, cook and bake, and visit with friends over tea or a G/T, and gasp! play Scrabble on a Tuesday afternoon. We had an open house, and people came, chatted, laughed, and hopefully, took some time out of their own liminal time. But given the nature of my live vs theirs, there is a perception I will go first. Maybe, possibly, probably. 

Shortly I will spend an entire day on a Monday with two lovely friends to play cards, drink pink wine and laugh, and cry as needed. We are going to Mexico. We are meeting Ken and Rosemary and the kids at Great Wolf Lodge for some cousin time. I am going to see Yo Yo Ma in May - a dream of mine, as I believe the cello is the most beautiful instrument ever created. 
I am doing things I always wanted to do, but not rushing about it. I imagine there is a ton of people out there braying with laughter at the picture of ZEN Kate, which I would fully understand. But there is now only time, and I need to rest between stops. I care to rest, breathe, think, act. 

I care not for the stupid waste of time shit that bubbles over to boiling point in most people's lives. Now don't get me wrong, we still pay our bills, make sure we pay our taxes, etc. But we don't care if plans get cancelled, dinner gets burned, the burnt out lights don't get replaced for weeks, we run out of milk, or we couldn't park in front of the house. 

We have our logistical ducks in a row. We are very much aware of the love we have as a family, and spend our emotional energy wisely. 

I have been thinking about my family and friends. 

Real, lovely, flawed, human, rich in love family and friends. Those who are afraid of what this will do to them. (I cannot answer that) Those who scream at the top of their lungs as my champions. (I thank them verily) Cooks, poets, drivers, tea-drinkers, steadfast facebookers. (I thank them verily too) Some pull away, some huddle closer. I know I am cheating family and friends - and even more so, my husband and my children. Sometimes, I feel guilt as the person with the cancer. But it is here, it bloomed inside, and I have done everything humanly possible to make it go away. I have plans to send birthday cards to those whose birthdays I know. So tell me. I love my friend love. 

I have been thinking about death. 

We all die. We all live in liminal time. We should all have wills, and cemetery plots. It makes perfect sense. Hope for the best, plan for the worst - an event planner's creed. I have begun writing lists, notes, advice for the children as they grow - it's called "legacy" writing, as suggested by my psychiatrist. We read books about telling the children, dealing with grief, etc etc. I visit with the lovely Dr.X, my palliative care doctor - who cares about me, and my pain. Apparently, I have lived with too much, and as it affects your psyche, so now I am on pain meds. And whoa, the difference. I am choosing music for the funeral, and thinking of readings, and what food to order for afterwards. It is calming to do so. It helps me immensely, as it is pro-active, and somewhat soothing. 

I am at peace, for the most part. I cry a lot. But apparently the release in spurts over time is better than the breaking Hoover Dam approach.  

 You can see how this would be problematic. The low seep approach is actually better, as all good gardeners know. In the morning is most beneficial, but I can't control that. It comes when it comes. I really have to buy some waterproof mascara. 

So, now I am going to stop thinking and go eat. Lamb shanks in a cinnamon, garlic, honey braise with smashed potatoes. Yum. 

xo KO


Anonymous said...

When I read your post I started thinking of retirement as being that intermediate state. Curious. What you are now doing and planning to do could from my "aged" perspective be your retirement (albeit it somewhat a bit too early). It made me wonder just what I am waiting for??!! More to ponder as I head off to a (starting to smell wonderful) dinner of filet mignon, green beans and .... (always a surprise when it ends up on the plate but always good. Plus the wine...yum guess you figured out that Fred is the resident chef and wine guy).

You have given me more food for thought ...carpe diem What else is there? Lynne

Carrie Snyder said...

Just want to let you know that I'm reading along with your journey, and that I think of you often, though we've never met. You have good things to say. Thanks for sharing them.