i still have nightmares. more nights than not. everything is on fire.
i have panic attacks so many times a day that i lose count. my chest is tight constantly.
it is still there. like a big yellow sore thumb. staring at me. taunting me.
the hollowed out room of Big'K with it's burnt windows. the blackened windows in all the rooms.
but the outside looks fine. what's the problem? what do you mean you can't live in it? it's fine from the outside!
people are dicks. they don't know. they don't see what is hidden behind the bright yellow siding.
fire makes you a burden. on others. on yourself. emotionally. physically. it makes you feel helpless. and worthless. and stupid.
it has been 195 days since my house caught fire. a lot of the details are blurry. i remember parts of it. i wrote down what i could remember. i will share it. just not today.
i just mostly remember panic. horrible panic. this crazy screaming bitch. who could not calm down. and was just screaming. and hyperventilating. and shouting nonsense. and it was me. the one who never panics. straight the fuck panicked. like a crazy person.
the thing is it really isn't about the stuff. i love my stuff. and i mean really love my stuff. most of it is family stuff. furniture my mom and dad had. wooden pieces he made. barstools my grandma had for what seemed like eons before i even came along. my baptism gown that Big'K wore. the new one i bought for Lil'K so she would have a hand me down too. the only six outfits left from when i was an infant. my magic cards that Big'K begged to play with all the time but i always said no. the porcelain dolls Lil'K begged to play with all the time but i always said no. my graduation gown. their hospital bands. the newspapers from each of our birth month day and year. tidbits and pieces from my past. most of it was wooden. but some was not. things. just shit. crap i have tried to hold onto since i received them. thinking my life would just end if they were one day gone. fire being one of my worst fears. and then it happened. i have been able to save some of it. although it is scarred. dark and light spots where things were sitting before the fire and the wet soot settled after in the spaces in between. it will always be discolored. the six to ten pieces i have saved will always be flawed. and that is ok.
the good news is my life didn't end when i realized most everything was gone. it really didn't. it just kind of felt free. like wow. ok. all this stuff i have tied myself to forever is gone. ok. let us move along. and then devastation. and oh. my. god. my stuff. and back to eh it is what it is. and...and... exhaustion. and i have saved things. but when i look at them they no longer hold the love i once had for them. now they just hold sadness. we got lucky. we got very lucky. although nothing made of plastic or cloth or anything other than cast iron or stainless steel really survived, other than the wooden pieces that didn't burn, we were lucky. in that way.
i did think my life was going to end. burst into flames and float away with the wind. i truly for the first time in a long time just did not want to live. i just had no desire to continue breathing. for more than just one reason. and for reasons that would never cross your mind. and that is another story as well. and maybe i will tell it too.
insurance is a bitch. apparently the house, although deemed not repairable by the insurance in the beginning and at least two contractors, has been determined to be 'repairable' in the end. do what? yep. so now we don't get all of the insurance money. which i guess is ok when you have savings and stuff. but when you don't. and that money is what you are counting on to start over. and then you don't get it all. well it sucks. and it leaves you still without plumbing 195 days past flames. electricity having only been on a few weeks. pissing in a home depot bucket. showering at friends. still $3000 short. always fucking $3000 short. feeling like a burden. always a fucking burden. not knowing what to do. being so lost. knowing you are inside. but not being able to be found. appreciative of the help but gut wrenching sickness when you have to take it.
all in all we were so very lucky. none of us were hurt physically. mentally and emotionally are a whole different world. we were lucky to have wonderful friends who are like family. we were lucky to be so loved. and cared for.
the unlucky parts are worse though. because they are mostly emotional. and mental. and they just keep poking and digging at an already broken me. there is so much i just want to vent about. to vomit until the bad comes out. to scream. drink until i pass out. to cut just a little. to complain. cry and wail. flail on the ground until i am bloody. just to bitch. but it comes out in crazy spats. starts as one and warps into another. and then none of it makes sense. at all. not even to me. and the guilt. the horrible guilt. the mind numbing pathetic guilt. that i was out of it for so long. that i shut down. and closed in on myself. that i ruined things without knowing i did. without intending to. with trying to do what i thought was best. was easiest for everyone else. disappear inside myself. you can't see me. i'm not a burden now. feeling left out. feeling hated. feeling like the enemy. what - you don't understand...but you were doing everything you could to ruin it. but i wasn't. i really truly wasn't. i was thinking oh my god. freedom. help. love. family. what we have wanted. and yay. now it is here. but no. it's not. because you're one apple'd and a user. it was truly only the best of intentions. but every road to hell and destruction and fuckedupedness was paved with good intentions. good intentions from oblivious assholes. like me.
i know we were lucky. i do. but some days...well. we kinda weren't.
but i still miss my stuff. and my house. and myself. and i miss my best friend more than life. and my normal. and everything else that those flames took with them. the things that were burned have been the least ruined things. it's everything else that got fucked up since the flames. that has been the worst.
195 days. oh jesus. what will the next 195 hold...