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Sunday, March 06, 2005


My grandfather is dying. Slowly. We think he has Parkinson's, but he has also had a number of subdural hematomas so his cognition is pretty spotty. After all the fighting with my sister and guilt from my mom about not seeing him (I'd last been in hellacious Long Island last December for my cousin's bar mitzvah) I went on Friday. I took the train and just stayed for the afternoon. He is hollow, a shadow, drawn skin over bones. He is dying, it is hard for him to eat, and he has a living will so no feeding tube.

And I don't feel anything. Really. I'm not sad, or angry, or even upset. The only thing that upset me was seeing my mom so upset.

What is wrong with me? Why don't I feel anything? This is my grandfather, and whatever negative feelings I have about my grandmother, he's always been separate from them. I should be crying, or angry, or something, but I'm not. I saw him, saw how far gone he was, and still nothing. I think my mom and sister expected me to finally lose it when I saw him, and I think they're mad, or at least confused, that I haven't. I know he is going to die, probably within the next few months. I should be crying or reminiscing. He is going to die and I'm totally unfazed.

I must really be an awful person. I don't think I have a soul at all. Real people feel things, they cry and scream and rage at God when they see someone slowly and painfully taken away. When their grandfather can hardly speak and can't walk and barely recognizes them , most people would feel something, would cry on the train on the way back. He's going to die, and I feel okay. I can rationalize it and say well, he's old, he's suffering, it is better that he go. But I haven't even had to rationalize, I just don't feel.


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