Tuesday, November 29, 2005

of anger and sadness or when you'd have rather not received that forward after all

I'm back from New Hampshire. It was wonderful and I already miss it. I am grateful for my New York family, and soon I'll be back in NOLA with my parents and friends there. I'm finding myself still frustrated with insensitive people. I wish it wouldn't affect me so much. I wish I could let things roll off my back.

But I get angry and sad even now - 3 months after this happened. It's really time for me to go home. It's too hard to just keep stomaching the utter inability to truly comprehend what happened 3 months ago. I need to see it for myself in order to really let go of the anger. My anger with the government, with the friends who don't know what to say, with so many things and people. The list goes on and on.

I hate having this list. I wish I could throw it away. I wish I had something better to do with these feelings than wish for the government to have built secure levees, to wish for friends who don't even try to contact me to reach out to actually make an effort, for the empathy that doesn't exist in some people's hearts. For a home for my parents and my friends who are also homeless. For security and for the integrity of the city's heritage and history. For all the kind elderly I'll never see again.

It breaks my heart every day. It really does. And stupid things like forwards about Katrina from an ex-boyfriend just make me want to scream. Why do they care? They don't even deserve to even talk about my beautiful city. They just remind me of the banality of everyday. The banality that is eating up this country and eating up so many people in their pursuit to just be "normal." Whatever that is.

I know not everyone knows what to say. My mother reminds me of this pretty often. But how about asking something so simple as "how are you?" or just saying "I care about this and I care about you."

Why don't people learn this instead of the American pursuit of happiness: life, liberty, the freedom to care about only oneself and an SUV. I realize that everything I say just points back and the "me, me, me" nature of this list. I know it. But I feel like I'm feeling too much. It's like being 13 again, but without the promise of being able to escape to college where people might understand you.

It's hard to realize that grown up life is full of people who still hurt your feelings even when they care about you and full of people who - even when confronted with the facts - find it easier to just shut their eyes.


Blogger R J Keefe said...

I'm confident that when the worst feelings have been put behind you, and your heart does not break every day (that day will come), you'll resume teaching people, ever so gently, how to pay attention and live with their eyes open.

It is amazing, though, how obtuse people are about small kindnesses. They're so easily bestowed - perhaps that elicits mistrust. There is not a person on earth who does not like to be thanked, or to be asked after.

Tue Nov 29, 08:31:00 PM  
Anonymous rachel said...

Because people are stupid?

No seriously, I don't know. We have the national attention span of a gnat, this country I mean.

I hope you know I mean it about going on a Habitat trip when that gets up and running.

Wed Nov 30, 12:36:00 PM  
Blogger Ms. NOLA said...

I know you do. And I wish I could feel motivated to organize something, but I feel like I need to go home first and assess what needs to be done, how and where exactly...

Wed Nov 30, 01:28:00 PM  
Blogger Ladypink said...

Dear Ms Nola,
I have been thinking about you. I hope that you and your family have a good holiday, as best as can be assembled under the conditions; that you all will be together, with each other, that the spirit of hope and good will be with you, and a sure and speedy return to the normalities of life for your parents will come in the new year. I wish you all a peaceful Christmas and a safe and healthful New Year. My best wishes, Ladypink

Thu Dec 01, 09:32:00 PM  
Blogger Slimbolala said...

Hmm, I think Blogger just ate my comment. Let's try again...

I want to reiterate the profound cathartic power of returning home, of seeing it first hand. The problems certainly don't go away. Some of them are very hard, awful. But they become tangible, and, slowly, comprehensible.

And there's an amazing amount of good happening, life that has sprung back to a degree that seemed incomprehensible a couple of months ago. And everyone here "gets it". It's very comforting.

Fri Dec 02, 05:01:00 PM  
Blogger Ms. NOLA said...

Thanks, Slimbo. I really appreciate that. I know I'm hitting a wall in terms of dealing with post-K NOLA from afar. I'm ready to come home, put on the respirator mask and tear through what's left of the house, salvage what we can, photograph it. . . then come home and be happy with friends and family.

I am excited to be (in some way) a French Quarter resident. I can't wait to stay up too late talking with everyone. And it won't be long now until I'll be there. Another week and a half.

Thanks for your words. Thank you everyone.

Sun Dec 04, 03:01:00 PM  

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