I’ve checked out of the Blue Hotel. Bugger that joint. If Darren wants to stay there, or isn’t ready to leave yet, he can stay. I’m happy to visit, but I have packed my bags and left for good.
How does that look in real life?
Well, I watched the Dr Who Christmas Special and picked up, other than, hey, did you know the Tardis is bigger on the inside, my new rule, Five Minutes A Day. I’m allowed to miss my little sister, Libby, for five minutes a day, though I can go for ten minutes on Sundays at eight pm if I feel like it.
It’s interesting. In all my reading and writing and delving and let’s not deny it, navel gazing, around grief, I hadn’t heard of five minutes a day. Of course, if I’d heard about it earlier I would have said, ‘Five minutes is nowhere near long enough.’ Five minutes an hour would not have covered it.
But life does go on, Libby walks my dreams, and the Blue Hotel is no place to be without a date of departure.
Five minutes of missing Libby a day is good. I acknowledge she’s gone, be wistful, thankful, angry, sad, just plain happy to have loved her, and then move on with my life. Do dishes, get hugs, annoy people about their screen time, write something. I’ve noticed if the missing her bobs up and I don’t have the five minutes to spare, I can recognize that I’d like to spend my five minutes on her but I’ll have to come back to it.
Recognizing I’m missing her is like accepting she’s gone. It doesn’t break me down, I don’t spew tears in the car, at work, at my kids, I nod at the missing, note that Libby and I laughed a lot, and get on.
I couldn’t do that when I was resident at the Blue Hotel.
Another way I have left the Blue Hotel is that I’m not taking my medication anymore. I was on the lowest dose, in the process of weaning myself off them, when I ran out. I went to the chemist and the pharmacist said there was something missing from my prescription.
I took it as a sign.
A convenient sign.
When I first went on anti-depressant (this time round) the idea of ever being off them was terrifying, I would have got in a punch-up before I’d have let that happen, but recently I’d become used to the idea that soon I wouldn’t need them. So that’s it.
No Blue Hotel and no anti-depressants. See ya later, Esipram, it’s been real.
Today is day three of no medication. I feel like I have electric flies buzzing in my head. It’s unsettling and makes walking interesting. I’m not up for any sudden movements and I might have to leave my bike in the garage until the flies stop buzzing.
I’m back. Undepressed. This is the real me now.
I can put up with a few side effects now I’m out of the Blue Hotel. I can visit Darren, look after him, and leave the hotel whenever I want. I’ve got five deliberate minutes a day to spend with Libby. Five minutes a day.
does he have flies buzzing in his head
or is he just happy to see me?