Saturday, September 7, 2013

Dead Body Drag

circa early 1990's

I am going to visit my mother. There are relatively few environmental details this time. I am sitting on the couch with her at her house on my grandparent's farm. We are conversing and with little or no provocation, I kill her. I'm not sure how I did it, but now it is done. 

There are no wounds, but her dead body is already beginning to decay. Briefly the story of Hektor comes to mind. In The Iliad, his body is dragged around the city behind Achilles' chariot in order to desecrate his spirit; the ultimate dishonor in ancient Greek times. I don't want to desecrate my mother's body or spirit, but I do feel this compelling urge to drag her body around with me. 

And so I make a leash and collar out of some rope and plastic I found in the shed. I put her in a body bag and tie the rope to the top of it. I attach the plastic collar around my neck and fasten it tight, for I don't want it to fall off. I proceed to live out my days like normal, dragging my mother's dead body everywhere I go.


It is no secret that I have felt enormous responsibility for my mother's suicide attempts and, upon her unsuccessfulness, her well-being. I have spent a great number of years in my life (20+) trying to keep her alive and even attempts to infuse life into her.

Dee once told me that every fear is a wish and every wish is a fear. A great deal of my life's energy has been expended trying to prevent my mother's untimely death. But what if she had been successful? Would my life be easier now? I am aware of how harsh and ugly this sounds, but I am also aware that healing requires looking at my thoughts and actions from multiple sides. There is shame in thinking that my life would have been easier without her. But there is also great liberation in realizing that, after much consideration of alternatives, I am indeed not responsible for her life.

Today I have a much healthier relationship with my mother. I take care of her financially; I make sure that all of her basic needs are met. But my heart is no longer wrapped around her. I am living my own life, for her story is not my story. I honor the fact that she gave me life, but it is not my responsibility to give it back to her. And when she passes, I will not drag this guilt around with me for the rest of my days.

No comments:

Post a Comment