Wednesday already. The weeks fly by and little seems to get achieved but, then again, looking back, what we deal with is more than it actually seems at the time.
Monday would have been my brother Ian's 62nd birthday, had he still been with us to celebrate it. But, sadly, he passed away in 2006 on the morning of his 50th birthday.
Last Saturday my Mother, Emi and myself drove out to Wakefield cemetery to place a flower arrangement Emi had made for his grave. We placed a birthday card there too, written as if he might read it and know we loved him.
It's always a melancholy experience, standing there looking at Ian's headstone and knowing that his remains lie somewhere beneath our feet. I try to sense his presence, to locate his spirit: Is it in the windswept cemetery air, hovering over the ghost of the 1950s Wakefield we both grew up in? Or is it in my heart along with so many warm memories of the childhood we shared and our later musical adventures?
I think it's in both, but also, everywhere and nowhere. Our lives are simultaneously monumental and inconsequential. As one of my lyrics states, "everything matters and nothing matters..."
This seems like a kind of mystery, a sort of zen paradox, but it's simply a hard, cold fact. Life is not so much 'rounded with a sleep' as Shakespeare had it, but with an extinction, a state of non-being. Where were we before we were born? Where are we after we pass away? Where do we pass away to? Where can we travel when we are always here?
Our human imagination conjures up all kinds of answers, some that comfort, some that terrify, but the truth is that there are no answers. Life just is...death just is...things are just so. This we must accept if we are to flow with the wonder of living. Accept our own inevitable disintegration and live in each moment with love and creativity.
Monday also involved another routine appointment with the podiatrist. My feet seem to be stable, despite losing many of the nerves in them due to diabetes. Another appointment arranged in four weeks time.
Yesterday I attended the eye clinic at the hospital for yet another eye injection in an attempt to slow my diabetic-related macular degeneration. God knows how many of these injections I've had since the condition was diagnosed but I never get used to them. It's an ordeal every time. The black 'blobs' that appear in my vision after each injection haven't quite dissolved today, though they're shrinking in size. I had five of these blobs this time and the clinicians explained that it was just the drug they had injected into the eye floating around and that they would disappear within 24 hours. Normally they do, but this time they've persisted longer but, thankfully beginning to subside now.
This afternoon I took my car for an MOT. Have to tax it in a few days and it needs a test certificate. Emi's car going in for a service tomorrow. More expense but necessary.