About the writer: Kevin is a doctorate student in the field of psychology living in Oakland, CA. He loves and deeply misses his ’ohana.
My Fists still clench
Another day passes…
Another conversation had over Zoom
In an attempt to create “normalcy.”
Another casual ask from a friend on how I’m doing.
This time though
The unconscious (finally) arises…
And breaks the surface level dance of conversation.
Eyes swell up.
Tears enter the space.
Yes, right, the pandemic is here.
I excuse myself from the Zoom convo.
I find a quiet space looking out the window.
I close my eyes wondering if I should have let my friends console the fire in me.
Then again, can they understand me in all their privileged feelings of boredom?
“It’ll be ok,” I internally remind myself.
“I can do this.”
“My family will be ok.”
“My uncle can get through this.”
My next breath enters and unevenly ripples out on exit.
Images enter of my uncle sleeping in that old rusted van near the green dumpster upwind from him;
And, shitting in an old white painters bucket.
I see his dull eyes…trying to smile and convince me of hope…for me (and only me).
My eyes open.
….my next breath fails me.
Fists slowly open.
Hello Control…my long time companion.
You will fail me this time.
Oh how I so need you now and all of your ability.
I can’t protect my uncle; at least feed and shelter him properly with what money I have.
Nor help my mom and dad in their elderly, vulnerable, and stubborn state.
…and the 2,000+ miles that separates my control to help family.
Uncertainty, yes. Gotta learn how to live with it blah blah blah.
My Fists still clench.