[cancer|personal] Yesterday I had another meltdown

Yesterday, I had another meltdown. This one was slow and quiet and all the more poisonous for that. Crying jags and panic attacks at least pass after a while, and are readily understood by Lisa Costello or anyone else who happens to be in range at the time. Undirected resentment and sullen silence can be mistaken for a lot of other things, none of them very helpful.

It was a difficult day in some ways. I ran into an intractable Quicken problem generated by my bank switching online banking platforms. (See my previous post about being a strange attractor customer service issues.) Email correspondence passed at some depth about the search for a clinical trial that might prolong my life a bit more. I spent time focusing on my funeral arrangements, including a tense conversation with Mother-of-the-Child about that. There were parenting issues. There were minor misunderstandings with the people around me. Lisa at one point confided to me that she’d be feeling a certain kind of emotional sensitivity for a while to come. My response was, “You mean for the rest of my life?” That didn’t sit well with either of us. Mostly, there was and is me dying of cancer.

That last one? It never ends.

So by yesterday evening, I was feeling strung out and unhappy and pissy and strange. A chance remark pushed me over the edge, and I did not recover until this morning.

It’s so damned hard, being careful of my own emotions and others. The people around me don’t feel free to express their negative thoughts for fear of upsetting me. I don’t feel free to express my negative thoughts for fear of upsetting my loved ones, family and friends. We all dance this strange dance of toxic consideration like elephants on ice, slipping and occasionally crashing.

Last night I crashed. I want to tell myself to get over it, but that option is long gone. I want to apologize to Lisa, which I have fully. I want to not feel this way, but that option is long gone as well.

Frankly, I’d rather have the screaming and the tears, then get over it and move on.

9 thoughts on “[cancer|personal] Yesterday I had another meltdown

  1. Gayle says:

    I’ve gotten the advice that if you sit in a closed car in the garage — you can scream and yell as much as you like to get it out of your system without bothering anyone. Me, I prefer to put the saddest most clich√© ridden movie I can find and cry out the toxins/toxic sentiments. Your mileage may vary on these ideas.

  2. Jeff P says:

    You’re a good man, Jay Lake.

  3. Mike C says:

    I know you’ve said writing fiction has been extra hard to impossible–but do you think you might be missing that as an essential emotional sandbox?

    1. Jay says:

      Mike, absolutely. It was a big part of my coping for years.

  4. homa_bird says:

    Meltdown city here too in my world. Just found out my grandson has another mass, which is pretty much a death sentence. My daughter totalled her car. she’s ok, but there are broken hearts scattered here and there tonight, I see. Does it help to know that?

    1. Jay says:

      My dear, others’ suffering is never better. I am so sorry to hear this.

      1. homa_bird says:

        Oh, I see how that sounded…didn’t quite mean to suggest another’s suffering is “helpful”, I was a couple of shots of whiskey to the winds and kinda generally wondering out loud re the age old question: does misery love company? which I think yes, it does sometimes.

        Felt very comforting and comforted here at “Jay’s Place”, where there is no shirking, or shame, and i felt free to speak of the bad news, even before I told family: I think because it feels like family here, because you treat us all that way, thank you…

        1. Jay says:

          I am very pleased to provide a good virtual place for such a hard thing in your life.

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