Friday, August 21, 2009

The Long Goodbye

Yesterday I finally booked a ticket back home for the internment of my parents' ashes and I was kicking and screaming the whole way. We've had the date set for quite a while, but I just could not get around to confirming a flight. Then, as I searched for fares the past few days, I became crabbier and crabbier, lost sleep at night, and yet could not pinpoint why I was feeling this way. Then it hit me--it was all about the ticket, and the ticket was all about this final step that I do not want to take.

The past month has been one in which I've really tried to snap out of it. My parents were both diagnosed in the summer of 2007. My mom passed away in March of 2008. We had a memorial for her in June of that year. My dad followed her this past March, and we hired the same tent, rented the same chairs and invited everyone back to the house again in June. So, in August, I started organizing my life, picking up unfinished errands that had stalled out two years ago. I framed some art that had been collecting dust in my spare room. I bought a scooter to get around town. And I started back to the gym, which has been more difficult, in some ways, than the rest of it. Last night, my trainer was trying to figure out the puzzle of my right arm, which doesn't want to lift in a straight line and instead goes off to the side every time. She wondered if I had an injury. No, I insisted. And then, in the middle of another set of reps, I burst out laughing. "I broke my right clavicle," I explained, wondering how I'd forgotten that painful injury. The mind plays powerful tricks on us.

Now we have this final ceremony, and on Halloween, we'll have the estate sale and the material part of this process will almost be over.

And here I am, blogging again, even if my parents are no longer here to read it. Or to scold me.

Meet the Oklahoma dozen

A few weeks ago, I spent 24 hours in Oklahoma, where I met up with Tim Racer from Bad Rap to help with assessments on a dozen dogs that were confiscated earlier this summer as part of a large federal investigation. We're still keeping most of the details under wraps until the dogs who passed arrive at their new foster destinations. But in this clip you can see the whole group of dogs, just after we arrived at the facility.

For more information, visit The Sula Foundation.