Monday, January 19, 2015

Surrealism And Strangeness

I can't say much today.  If you'd like to avoid sad things, just go ahead and skip today's post.  I'll be back tomorrow my usual bubbly self.  Classes start tomorrow and I'll have plenty to say about them.

This morning I attended the funeral of a newborn, which is a sentence no one should ever say.  The baby was born full-term on Wednesday but was declared dead an hour later.  It was a horrible tragedy and one that the three-year-old older sister doesn't quite understand.  She has been apparently alternating between completely distraught and the kind of carefree happiness that only comes from successfully pretending the event did not occur at all.

My family didn't go; it was just me.  I drove almost an hour to get to the cemetery, which is ironically about ten minutes from the college I'll probably attend in August.  I was late because of traffic, but I was there for most of the service.  Afterward a lot of us stopped by the family's house to visit and have lunch.  I offered my services as child minder, house cleaner, and all-around task assistant for the rest of the semester, saying that I know in a couple months everyone else will have sort of moved away from offering to help but the help will still be needed.  The mother seemed very grateful for the offer and said that she thought her daughter would probably need someone to play with a few times in the next couple months.

It's a nice day out, a blessing for a graveside service and perfect for the 45-minute walk I took this evening to try to recharge.  I haven't cried much, but I've been thinking about the family constantly since I heard on Thursday, and I'm still kind of in a shock reaction.

This day feels completely separate from the rest of everything, like these 24 hours don't "count" on the calendar.  I know they do, but it's been sort of a day of surrealism and strangeness.  Maybe if I get some sleep tonight I can feel in the swing of things tomorrow.

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