The past couple of weeks have been…

God, I don’t even know where to begin.

My brother had his seventh child last week. It was a high risk pregnancy and a dangerous birth, but both mother and son are fine now. My brother’s wife had to stay in the hospital for a bit so I babysat my two youngest nieces for three days and, while they are adorable, they set forth a very convincing argument against me ever ever having kids of my own. Thankfully, with the arrival of this seventh child (man, I find myself hoping this kid will have seven of his own children and that the seventh will be a boy just so I can say “Behold! The Seventh Son of a Seventh Son!”) has persuaded my mother that she has enough grandchildren. I’m officially (finally!) off the hook, even though I’m the oldest and apparently giving her grandchildren was my responsibility.

Two days later, my granddad died. It was surreal in the way it was both expected and unexpected. Expected because he was 96 or 97 (we’re not sure–he doesn’t…didn’t have a birth certificate) and was in the hospital for pneumonia. Unexpected because he’d been pretty healthy prior to that so none of us could have pictured him getting sick. He was the oldest member of my family.

Someone tried to give me a “circle of life” speech and I wasn’t hearing that shit. Was still in the “anger” stage of grief, I guess.

I went with my father and aunts to pick out a casket. I’d never been on that side of a funeral before. There was one they thought was good and also within their price-range, but when they asked for it in a darker shade of blue the lady at the funeral home said it would raise the price by two thousand dollars, because coffin manufacturers know that mourners generally want more somber colors and they price accordingly. It struck me as ghoulish.

My father and aunts agreed on the light blue coffin. They told the lady that they only had black suits for my granddad, though. She said she’d provide a navy suit free of charge. So zero points to faceless corporations, but at least five or six points for the compassion of real people.

The church service was nice. The preacher spent a lot of time reciting lyrics from five different hymns which I thought was odd, but I don’t know. It was only the third funeral I’d attended in my life, so maybe it wasn’t. The preacher actually knew my granddad, though, so I would have liked hearing more about him since he was the one giving the eulogy.

At the gravesite, they gave my father my granddad’s flag. He served in the U.S. Air Force before an official Air Force even existed. Technically he was a member of the U.S. Army’s Air Corps. How cool is that?

Then the service was over and my granddad was gone.

A lot of stuff happened afterwards, which I won’t write about here. Partly because it’s personal in the sense that you’d actually have to know me to have any sort of context. Partly because if I wrote the events as they happened down in a story, you would not be able to suspend your disbelief. So, so surreal.

But… my granddad is gone. I’m nowhere near acceptance yet. I think I’m stuck somewhere between bargaining and depression.

I didn’t intend to share as much as I just have. I guess I’m still trying to work through it.

So exhausted. I had plans, you know? Frivolous, fun plans. Was gonna post the first chapter of a new serial. Was going to buckle down and get some sequels done. I figured I’d get back to drawing. Possibly make a Captain America AMV because doing batshit fanboi things like that makes me happy. Animate something. Get to know my new nephew.

But right now I just want to sleep, which will be a trick because I have a fairly severe sleep disorder, but I’m gonna try anyway. If not, I’ll dink around tumblr since that is the ultimate distraction machine.

Next month. Next month I’ll try to pick up a few of the pieces that have scattered across the metaphorical floor.

Maybe.

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6 Responses to “The past couple of weeks have been…”

  1. K says:

    Hey Rowan, I’m sorry to hear you’ve had such a harsh week. Would tell you how best to unwind, but you would know yourself better than such platitudes. I’ve been following your blog for the past year or so and it sounds like you haven’t had such a good time, so here’s to hoping it’ll be better from now on. C:

    • Rowan McBride says:

      It has been kind of a rough year, hasn’t it? Thank you for taking the time to follow and read/listen to me through the months, and thank you for your support.

  2. z says:

    Rowan, sorry to hear about your loss. It’s a different reality than it was before, but I hope that with every day, you get closer to feeling frivolous, fun, and energetic.

  3. christine walker says:

    Rowan – I’m so sorry for your loss. I was thinking of you a couple of weeks ago, and was wondering why I hadn’t seen anything by you lately. You’re one of the names I look for when I search for something to read. I took some books to my nephew, and your book “Lone” was in there. I told him, this is one of my favorites. It makes me cry every time I read it. Anyway, I hope things get better for you, and I look forward to reading whatever story you write.

    • Rowan McBride says:

      Thank you. I know I’ve been out of touch for quite a while, but I’m going to try to ease back into things and see how that goes. The important thing I think is to take life at my own speed, and not feel guilty for taking a time-out if I need one. It’s just a strange feeling knowing I can’t go to my granddad’s anymore and sit next to him while he rocks in his rocking chair. :/

      (Deep breath)

      One of my books has been gifted? That is so cool. I hope he likes it. 🙂

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