Another hard day at work, though it’s as much mental as physical difficulty. Yesterday I felt ready to snap at everyone, and simple problems (someone removed signage I had put out the day before, meaning I had to do it again) made me feel unexpectedly angry. A coworker noticed: Are you okay? (I’m not, I wanted to say. I’m not, and I don’t know why.)
This morning, driving to work, I listened to Scott Simon talking about Anthony Bourdain’s suicide. Yes, everyone’s talking about it, has been talking about it since it happened–and that’s fine. It’s good to remind one another that we are here and supportive. But I realized that this anger I’ve been experiencing feels less like anger and more like trauma.
On Wednesday, I had coffee with a friend from graduate school. It turns out we live just five minutes from each other. We’re planning on starting a poetry group. Our conversation also ran the gamut of catching-up: her spouse died just a year ago, and my long-time partner died quite suddenly at the tail end of 2014. As I told my friend, I tried initially to write about the experience, but soon just pushed it all into a box that I don’t wish to open.
Reader, I found him.
There is no way to hide that image away in a box.
And when the news and social media is suddenly flooded with talk of the sudden and untimely death of a famous person (or two), of course it makes sense that my mind and my body would react this way. The image of my dead husband floats into my dreams and into my waking. How could it not? It’s so simple, I didn’t even see it. Didn’t connect that what I am feeling is trauma.