Its raining really hard.
It’s a beautiful sound. I’m thinking of all the things I’ve done in my life. Thinking of decisions I’ve made and roads I’ve taken that have led me here. Sitting in a recliner getting chemotherapy. They say its not my fault. There are no symptoms for ovarian cancer. Not at first. It’s when you get the symptoms that you realize something’s wrong. Very wrong. Wrong as a three headed dog. Cerberus? Why did I say 3 headed dog? Doesn’t he guard the path to hell? Hades. Hmmm…strange. Hell. Cerberus. In most works, the three heads each represent the past, the present, and the future, other sources suggest the heads represent birth, youth, and old age. I wonder. For me, right now, he would represent the past, present and future. Here I am. But what side of the river am I on?
I can’t remember my mythology. What it was about Cerberus? Didn’t he guard hell to prevent the souls from crossing the River Styx? To prevent them from leaving, not entering? Isn’t that why Hercules didn’t kill him. Cerberus let him in, but he couldn’t let him leave. Hercules knew that dog was just doing what he was told. Just doing his job. Isn’t that how we create our own hell? Just doing our job? Not thinking of consequences? We stumble along, not blindly, no. Just distracted and busy. I knew there were things that should be different in my life. I knew there were choices I made that had nothing to do with what was good for me and only about what was easier and most convenient. What was best for other people. Not me. Isn’t that what were supposed to do? Isn’t it?
I believe I created my own hell. What was I guilty of? Everything? Nothing? Lying, cheating, indifference, bad diet, bad men, bad habits…so many roads to hell. Was it the hotdogs? I loved them. Maybe cigarettes? I should have quit sooner. Working in a smoky bar? That didn’t help. Hair dye, deodorant, red dye 4, sodium benzoate…? I wish my Cerberus had been guarding the entrances and not the exits. I wish I’d had a big mean 3 headed dog to say ‘Hey, Dummy! What are you doing? Can’t you see this road leads down down down…you’re heading for a fall. Turn and RUN!’ I had a fluffy kitty when I needed a Cerberus. Cerberus would be more along the lines of the girl who told everyone to f-off and she faded away long ago, it seems. But when does this happen? Have any of you looked at your path and noticed the fork in the road? I look back and I just don’t see it. It seems I made so many decisions that were so important, and I did it casually and without due caution. Someone should have told me. Cerberus…you’re on the wrong side of the river. Aren’t you?
Huh. Someone should have told me. Nuts. I knew. I just couldn’t let go of my crazy concerns for everything and everyone else in my life. Everything but me. I just thought my life would sort itself out. That once I got everything else straightened out that my life would just fall into order. I would have time to go to school, get a degree, get married, have a kid, I’d meet someone who wanted a kid, right? I’d be able to stop worrying about everyone and everything. Just accept. Move on. Live. My. Life. Instead, I just stumbled along, looking backwards and sideways, distracted and amused and worried.
What fork was it that led me here? What small change would have given me my choice of dreams instead of this narrowing path I’m on. Narrowing at an alarming rate and I don’t want to see the end of it. I want to turn around NOW. This isn’t the end for me. It’s not what I deserve. I did everything right. Didn’t I? Because when I look back, I just don’t see what I did that set me down here. What inside me changed so violently and when? I was always happy. I always thought my choices were good and correct. Now I look back and, is this a sign of age?, I look back and I see that something should have been different but what? What did I do that I should be punished like this? Is it punishment? Or another lesson?
Once I turned 40 it became apparent that I wasn’t going to be getting the life I dreamed of. Because I never let it be anything but a dream. Stupid girl. I loved easily, but not well. Love is grand. Love destroyed me. Love of my friends and family. Love of the men in my life. Love of ease, love of simplicity. Love of peace. It will destroy you, love. Because you need to fight. Fight for what you want. Fight for an education, fight for a good job and promotions, fight for your children and the men and women you love. It’s all a long battle it seems. And I just wanted peace and quiet. I wanted to read and draw and kiss someone and cook them a good meal. Fights and fighting…trying so hard to make sure that there was a chance at peace and quiet. At some point. Now look…I have no peace. Only quiet. Silence. The rain has stopped for now.