I'm feeling hungover again. Except I haven't been drinking. I felt fine when I first got up, even though today started differently. Today was supposed to be the day that we finally got help for loved one. I mean help for more than her homeless state (which we did get help for despite her unwillingness to admit to having been evicted this weekend - for the second time in about six weeks).
When I got to work, I suddenly realized I felt like ass. Jittery and distracted and so. damn. tired. I think I must have been putting on supportive airs for Sugar D and as soon as I was away from him the jig was up. I felt so changed. I'm pretty sure none of my coworkers can say their Saturday night involved the arrival of a family member in a cop car. I remain haunted by T from the drop-in centre. A friend of mine said she once read a book about how to build community that was sometimes kind of cheesy but one of the tidbits remains with her still: Don't think in terms of us and them. It's all us. The posts I managed to read this morning swirled together, all part of the same big circle.
Probably not a surprise to anyone who's had experience in this sort of thing, but today was not the day we got help for our family member. I think, however, that today WAS the day we got ready to play hardball. Ultimatums. As in, if you don't go to the doctor, you won't get to come for visits anymore and we sure as hell are not bailing you out next time you get evicted. This is how people end up on the streets, even if they have loving family. I'm so done, but it's not really mine to be done about, and it's never going to finish.
Today is also the day my best friend leaves for Malawi. I don't think it's any coincidence that I had a wee breakdown at work, upon hearing that today wasn't going as planned. What's a girl supposed to do when the person she can always call for a sympathetic cuppa is gone? Apparently, she goes into the handicapped stall and cries. And then cries to her manager that she can't finish up that rush request because she is totally unable to focus. Sugar D came and got me, and we quietly vented and mourned and debriefed on the day and the phone calls and the lack of resolution.
I couldn't think of a goodbye present that would do justice to how much I'm going to miss my friends. I thought about just getting Malawian currency, but for some strange reason the exchange houses don't carry the currency of the fourth poorest country in the world. I thought about Indian currency because they're stopping over in Dubai and it's nice to be able to buy a tea while you wait. But Sugar D told me Dubai isn't in India. I got it mixed up with Mumbai. When we looked on wikipedia we discovered Dubai is very close to Iran and Iraq, which we found a bit alarming. Still, it's better than Nairobi, which is where they were originally routed to for a 12-hour stopover. I asked Sugar D how things are going in Kenya and he said not good. The prime minister won't admit there's a problem and refuses to do anything.
Yeah, said Sugar D, my mother is an African dictator.
We laughed. A lot. I said I had to blog that and he didn't object.
On a happier note, voting is open for the Canadian Blog Awards, and I've been nominated for Best Photo/Art Blog. Please go vote for me. Apparently, voting goes in rounds, and you only get one vote per category per round. Voting for Round 1 ends January 21, 2008, so please go vote for me now. (Write About Here in case you forgot where you were.)
Baby belly laughs and a Fisher-Price contest
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