I expressed some frustration in my last post about Leon's and my role in putting together an event for his car club. I realize that one of the reasons I do not generally get involved in groups and why even many job situations end up being uncomfortable is that they all tend to be more or less dysfunctional systems. When I am involved in a dysfunctional system have a neurotic tendency to be a symptom carrier and my preferred symptom is anger disguised as guilt and depression.
So this week, I've been carrying around some anger and have been very depressed. This has not happened to me for quite some time - at least since leaving the day-to-day workplace and being self-employed. But my involvement in the car club over several weeks became more than tangential and the dysfunction inherent in the group began to affect me subliminally.
Now I take into consideration that we will be visiting some puppies that are up for adoption and a whole lot of brain synapses begin firing out of sequence. I should be feeling excited. Instead I feel depressed and guilty for not being excited. I feel apprehensive. I feel guilty for feeling apprehensive. I'm afraid that any puppy could never be as perfect as our beloved Bruno. Then I feel guilty because I may be rejecting a puppy who needs a home because of some ideal the puppy may not live up to. Then I get depressed because I'm such a selfish cad. Then I'm afraid I might adopt out of feeling guilty. I can go Ad Infinitum here.
So what to do. One cathartic, but not necessarily constructive activity I engaged in during the wee hours of the morning because I was unable to sleep or stop obsessing, was to write a scathing email (and I scathe well, in writing, when I am angry) to the officers (highlight one specific officer) of the car club. The other thing I did this morning (and have never done before) was to take Bruno's ashes for a meditative walk in the woods where we used to go almost every day. Call me neurotic, but I began having this conversation with old Brunie and started balling my eyes out. I called Leon and was crying to him over the phone uncontrollably. I can be such a silly old man.
It is funny how these things come together. And how difficult it is to sort out feelings. I think that I have been experiencing an underlying depression ever since we lost Bruno and I hadn't finished grieving. I know this seems all out of proportion considering the relative status of man and beast. And the facts of life and death. And the time that has elapsed. But it has more to do with attachment and bonding than with the facts of life. By my nature I reject "implants" of any kind 99.99% of the time. I am not a people person. I do not get too close. I do not bond easily. But when I do bond, the letting go is much too painful.
So, some, or most, of my anger is/was directed at the individual who disrespected Leon. It was a direct threat to our integrity as a couple, our attachment to one another. To me personally. To my .01% chance of bonding. You disrespect Leon, you disrespect me. Coming as it did, at a time when we should be excited about becoming doggie parents, it began to interfere with my (our) ability to think clearly and feel appropriately about adopting.
Is there room in my heart right now for a new puppy? Will I be disappointed? Do I have it in me to bond with another creature? And those same questions for Leon. When I talked to Leon between sobs, I suggested it was time to put Brunie to rest. Perhaps we will do that this weekend before going to visit the Weimedor (or Labraweimer) puppies on Sunday.
I do feel somewhat better now. Thanks for listening.