I don’t think ‘style’ is quite the right word but it will do.
There are all sorts of styles….
- of breathing
- of living
- of dying
- of grieving
- of laughing
- of hoping
- of loving
And each person’s style is unique, sometimes chosen, sometimes accidental, but always, always, very personal.
Let’s take grief, for example. My own for Anthony’s slow decline into the fog of Parkinson’s disease/Parkinsonism and dementia has taken a few U-turns. No, no – that’s not right – it is I who took the U-turns.
I know this is going to sound terrible, but I have gone through phases of not wanting to see him; getting him home only to find it impossible to lift him, and becoming angry; wanting the wheelchair taxi to come early. Can you imagine the guilt?
But of course these emotional transitions are not just mine; they are his too. In the 18 months since he entered the nursing lodge, Anthony has had to get used to hands other than mine undressing and showering him, meals that I didn’t cook, unfamiliar blankets, surroundings, people….
This is my grief, my guilt, my love, my style, my Anthony, and, despite the private/public paradox of my blog, it has never been a cry for help.
- Do not try to rescue me
- Do not worry about me
- Do not try to get me out-and-about
- Respect my privacy.
I love Ants in a past/present way, that beautiful figure of male virility, running through the paddocks to get the cows in and yelling, ‘Jules, RUN!’
We were friends for years before our relationship became serious … and now we are friends in that original, platonic way (despite his occasional innuendos).
And I seem to have fallen in love all over again which is quite weird until I realize that Anthony is the only man I have ever loved in that falling-in-love way. It is the same for him.