Friday, February 13, 2009

For a few weeks after Karl died, I had frequent little panic attacks. I would think about him and my heart would just race. It wasn't incapacitating, but sometimes it did scare me. I'd feel like my heart was going to explode - the physical sensation was like somebody hitting you on the back when you're coughing, only from the inside of my chest. It felt like that; like my own heart trying to thump it's way out of my chest.

I mention it now because I had a very short episode tonight. It's been months now, almost six, in fact. At first it made sense. I literally didn't know how I was going to live without him. It's hard to explain how I felt about him. I often said we were two sides of the same coin. We complimented each other, and completed each other - the warp and weft of the fabric that was us. When he died, I felt frayed, severed, halved...

In the months since, I have lived without him. Life is different. I smile a little less. I laugh a lot less. My life is beautiful, and meaningful, but I'm still numb in corners of my soul that I didn't know had feeling till I lost it. You don't think too much about the inside of your cheek till the Novocaine takes effect, and you can't stop chewing it because it's swollen to the size of a small planet.

Karl left behind a lot of parts of himself in me. I was rocking Elliot the other night, and he was fussy, and out of nowhere I called him Zanzibar. I think I even said it in the silly, Grover-esque voice Karl would use with the baby. I startled myself, because it didn't feel like I said it so much as I heard him say it. "Oh, Zanzibar, why the fussin'?" Sometimes I hear him in my head, sometimes I don't hear it till I've said something out loud, and it's not my reaction, but his coming out through me.

The last two weeks, for some reason, have been rough. I think about him a lot more. I miss him a lot more. Maybe the numb parts I can't seem to quit picking at are the parts of me that he took with him when he went. Maybe it's not so much that he was the warp, and I the weft, as we were each both, and I have to learn to function as the thinner fabric left behind when half the threads disolved. It's just hard when it's chilly - the wind gets through more easily when the weave is loose.

sniffle sniffle, ah-choo.



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