I decided today that I’d be a little more serious. Ok, as serious as I can be. Which is never without a snort or an eye roll or two. I just can’t be totally serious. Like turning down an apple martini. I just can’t. Can’t can’t can’t.
I have a hard time talking about the tough stuff. It’s not for the reasons you might think though. I make no apologies for the fact that I’m a snarky asshole. That’s just how I roll—my coping mechanism. Frankly it’s those in my life who hate my sarcasm and my potty mouth, who are the ones who created the necessity for the coping mechanism to begin with. So they can suck it. You breaky, you buy. Am I right?
I want to be clear. I’ve totally forgiven all the douche canoes in my life. Ok, mostly totally. There’s the contractor working on the house next door. He’s just an idiot. And a steaming pile of pig shit. Which is a bad combination. It makes people want to hurt you. Like the send-the-flying-monkeys kind of hurt. But I digress.
My brain can be a dark place. But I get it. We all have our shit—past shit, and present shit. And we’re all coping the best we can. There are just times that other people’s coping-shit dribbles over and fouls your Cheerios. Because, well, you know what they say. Shit flows down hill. I’m learning to keep my Cheerios on higher ground. Unfortunately my higher ground is covered with humor and snark, which is also steeped in my own coping shit. Which overflows and dribbles down hill. Life is kind of a never-ending circular flow of shit, huh? Which sucks if you don’t care for shit.
But, all that aside, it’s difficult to write about the really tough things sometimes. You know, the painful stuff. The stuff that punches you in the gut and doubles you over in pain, and your skirt blows up and everyone can see your underwear. And you’re not wearing your good panties, and haven’t waxed in a while. You know, like that kind of tough.
Regretfully, when I write about that stuff, it’s tinged with my snarkalicious shade of black, and feels like I don’t care. It can sound callous and unsympathetic. Though I guess that’s what coping is all about. Building up that thick skin as you go, in order to make it through the shit storm. I guess that’s why I don’t write about my mom’s illness and her death so much. The last thing I want to do is to seem like I’m trivializing my mom—her life, her battles, and everything she was to so many people. My mom was 98 lbs of badass, wrapped up in the sweetest little five feet of lady there ever was. Second to none. And impossible to replace.
So it’s not that I don’t care, mom. I just can’t write about you yet. There is so little humor in our journeys through your last few years. There were those nuggets. And the laughs were sublime. But the sadness is still too deep.
I would love to hear how you guys write about the really hard stuff in your lives without sounding insensitive, or worse yet, unbearably maudlin. How do you even begin to approach it?