As if waking from a long sleep…

      8 Comments on As if waking from a long sleep…

Not about baseball.

I returned to work last week, after taking most of June off to be with my brother as much as I could in his final days, and then dealing with matters after his death on the 10th. There are, not surprisingly, a lot of things to do when someone close to you dies. Mom, Christina, Jen and I had to arrange a memorial, get Michael cremated, and start dealing with all of the stuff that collects over a life. And, of course, there’s the emotional side of things – grieving for a brother who was a friend, and realizing, ever and again in the little moments, that I can’t ask him what this is for, or where this thing came from, or any of the other things.

I’m also doing other things that I haven’t done in weeks. Last Thursday, June 28th, for example, I booted my iMac into Windows for the first time since April 21st. Since Windows is where a lot of my games are, this means I haven’t been playing much – I have Diablo III and City of Heroes on the Mac side, but my single-player games are mostly Windows.

It feels like I’ve been sleeping, in a way. Which is terribly inaccurate, since one of the signature themes of the last couple of months has been that I’ve had a hard time sleeping. In addition to the stress of Mike’s health (or lack of it, more properly) and then the memorial arrangements and estate stuff, I’e also been having back problems again, which have been giving me headaches and making it hard to find a comfortable sleeping position.

Which is not the sort of thing you spend a lot of time complaining about when your brother is dying. I didn’t feel – still don’t – that I have much of a right to complain. Mike didn’t, and he was in much more pain than I ever was.

I know that doesn’t mean that my pain is invalid or not worth dealing with, which is why I’m dealing with it now that I have time.

Wish me luck.

8 thoughts on “As if waking from a long sleep…

  1. Rachael

    Kevin, I hope you are taking care of yourself and your back. You have had such a hard couple of months! Let me know when you guys are getting ready to sell the house so I can finish up the yard, I keep meaning to go work on the pavers, but it’s hard to get motivated now that Mike’s gone and it’s so darn hot. For what it’s worth, you are not alone. I am thinking of you, Christina, and your mom all the time.

  2. Name (required)Deborah A

    Our minds and bodies are interconnected. I think emotional pain exacerbates our physical pain and vice versa. I pray you find remedies to comfort both types of pain. I’m available to chat.

  3. Cathy

    This is a long-term solution, not a short-term fix, but have you considered the Alexander Technique for back pain? The basic concept is that we all hold our bodies in inefficient and often painful ways. Through lessons, you learn to become aware of what you’re actually doing with your body, and through that awareness, learn not to do those things any more. I’ve started lessons recently to deal with my TMJ disorder and frequent, sometimes chronic headaches. I’ve blogged a bit about my experience so far.

    Whine away, friend. You’ve earned the right.

  4. Kevin Matheny Post author

    I was not aware of the Alexander Technique. I have some reading to do. I had considered (am considering) yoga – I know that Mike got a lot of benefit from it, and something about it feels right to me at this time. Not sure what, but something.

  5. Mom

    I admire your ability to describe both the sense of loss that we feel but also the search for normalcy. His life was cruelly taken and for months ours was interrupted and then altered irrevocably. Finding a way back to the things which give us comfort while still cherishing him and remembering all that he was to us is the hard task ahead.

    As you expressed so well, taking care of ourselves seemed low on the priority list when dealing with life and death issues. The need to be with him because he needed us was bigger than almost anything else.

    I hope you now can get relief from your neck problems. Michael and I have used acupuncture for successful pain relief. You might consider this too. I do wish you luck with this.

  6. Kevin Matheny Post author

    Thanks, Cathy. I’ll give that a look.

    Mom, I tried acupuncuture early on, and I think it made things worse – I got shooting pains and tingling during acupuncture, and some of that did not go away. Chiropractic was also a bad idea – adjusting a herniated disk turns out to aggravate it. For now, I’m sticking with Western medicine.


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