Saturday, June 12, 2004


Yesterday I turned on the TV during lunch time to eat leftover sushimash and thought oh I'll just veg out on some stupid talk show or soap opera crap then get back to work.

But what was on the TV was Ronald Reagan's funeral. I usually avoid such things. These are private moments, says I, and really none of my business. But there it was, and I watched.

I have no feelings about the man. Never have... I remember when he was shot, and I hear about Reaganomics or Trickle Down Economics, (usually spoken with a sneer) but other than that I really don't know much about him, let alone have had any chance to develop any feelings toward the man.

I cried.

And Cried.

Then cried some more.

It felt like I was crying for Reagan, for his family, for America somehow, but also for every funeral in my own life and everything sad and lonely in the world and for beauty and sadness and grief and death and life.

I thought of May in The Secret Life of Bees , who would begin rocking and singing "Oh, Suzanna" anytime anything sad happened. She'd write down her pain on a piece of paper and go wedge it into the wailing wall she'd built out back. She absorbed other people's sadness - had no "normal" boundary between her own self and others' sorrows. Right then, that's sort of how I felt.

It crossed my mind I might never stop crying and then what? I'd lose my job and my life would fall to pieces and everyone would think I was a case and I'd get put in a mental institution and my cats would go to whomever was willing to take care of them and Kevin would be a semi widower and my friends would quietly slip away and I'd spiral into darkness and despair, mumbling nonsense and dripping tears into my coffee...

But I did stop. Just like I always do.

It was a beautiful funeral. I'm glad he got a good "send off".
I'm glad I randomly turned on the TV and I'm thankful for seeing some of the ceremony and for the brief grieving - for only God knows what - that it allowed me.


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