Saturday, October 29, 2005

Surviving The Trick

My guy and I have been together for over eight some odd years now. Our love of New Orleans (warts and all) has always been an intregal part of our lives together. I can list every milestone of our relationship with the geographical location of where it happened. We keep track of special dates usually by knowing what we had for dinner to celebrate. Living in a city so full of options from music and dining to shopping and socializing was something we never took for granted. Even with the evident flaws (fubar public ed, crime, out of control corruption) we loved it true and defended it to anyone who dared to put our sweet NOLA down. The thought of ever being away permanently never seriously crossed our minds. We've both turned down very lucrative opportunities all because they required moving away from New Orleans. When the topic of ever leaving came up we'd agree that it would take something really major to drive us out. That major event came and here we are. It's taking a little time for us to get used to it all. That's not to say we're completely unhappy because in truth we're not. He and I have always dealt well no matter what mess we've found ourselves immersed in. Trust me - we've been in plenty.

I think if we had ended up someplace where we could hate things it would actually be easier. We could complain about our surroundings and compare it's shortcomings to New Orleans. If it were ugly or unfriendly I wouldn't have to wrestle with the guilt I am now. Everytime I find something here that makes me happy I get a wave of sick dread that reminds me of NOLA's current state of being and the vast loss that has occured. It's throwing my emotions way off balance. Like I've said here before - I feel this bad and I'm one of the very very lucky ones.

Tradgedy and quick life changes is nothing new to me. I roll with the punches pretty well and have been raised with a sense of survival no matter the odds. Bad stuff happens and it is an expected part of life. That is when it happens just to me and I can keep it to myself. However, when something horrible happens on such a large scale that changes not just my way of life but a mass of others - that's a whole new ballgame all together. Grief is hard to move past when it surrounds you and is shared by so many at the same time. It can't be suppressed and remains raw at the surface instead. It makes the journey back to normal a very rough road.

The worst is the never ending feeling of helplessness. I could donate, pack up care packages and help out in all the ways that I have and still feel like I haven't even made a dent. I'm too overwhelmed by it to even be depressed. It's a huge struggle to find any sort of balance. At some point I'm going to have to get back to my usual pace. There's work to be done both client based and my own art designs and I'm not yet tackling any of it. It's just too much to deal with. Yet I could no more ignore what has happened than I could forget my own name. It's woven into me and the only salve I have is the little bits of help I'm able to offer. Like a selfish child I want it all to be better. Now. Instead change and improvement will only come with time and effort. There is no quick fix. That's a harsh realization.

It's the weekend and Hallow's Eve is upon us come Monday. We're going to make a special go at really getting involved with the festivities. I think my mamma is coming to watch the kiddos while ma and pa get out for a few much needed libations together tonight and we have trick or treatin' to prep for. Both girls are cheerleaders this year but the eldest has to go to school monday dressed as "what she want's to be when she grows up". This week it's a librarian so we're going to head by the thrift store and pull together a cute get-up for that. We also have an awesome pumkin to carve and I want to take a stroll through town to shoot good pics of all the pumpkin/scarecrow displays that are on display all over downtown. It might actually turn out to be a nice holiday weekend. A welcome change.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

New Orleans, for the most part, won't be the same as it was before Katrina. Some of it will be and some of it will be quite a bit better. The rest of it will be different. She'll have lost many more good citizens than bad by the time she's rebuilt. The good citizens will be replaced mostly by other good citizens but they won't have the knowledge or reverence of the New Orleans I knew just two months ago.

One other thing: Priority One for the State of Louisiana should be putting New Orleans back together again. Nothing else matters as much as that. I really think that pettiness from surrounding parishes and, especially, rural lawmakers will hurt that process.

Rob
CrabAppleLane

11:57 AM  

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