Friday, November 21, 2008

Moving Forward

It seems like an entire year has gone by since Parceiro died last Tuesday. We commemorated the week anniversary of his passing, and I felt mostly disbelief, not the sadness and raw emotion that marked the first days after he decided to go. I thought I'd have a transition from crying my way through the day, to feeling more-or-less sad, to bittersweetly remembering Parceiro. What has happened, however, was an abrupt jump from being devastated to feeling distant, removed, and almost numb. I recognize that I am sad, and that I am probably in the depression stage of grief, but it almost seems like the whole thing with Parceiro never even happened.

Meh. I'm trying to "snap out of it", but it's hard...I imagine that a proper ceremony to put him to rest will help, but his body was sent for cremation to some state-run institution (the Veterinary School?), and we've yet to receive his ashes. The vet seems hopeful that they will come, but I am quite cynical about the possibility that it will all work out as planned. Who knows...

This week has been a long one in other ways as well. Work was slightly stressful, with a quarterly program report and an extension proposal to prepare. It is hard depending on other people for the inputs you need to do your own job properly, especially when you feel like some of them have it out for you. In general I really like my colleagues at the new job, but there is one guy in particular who has a personality and general attitude towards work (and/or towards me) that I find exasperating. I know it's part of an office job that you have to learn how to work with difficult coworkers and bosses, but it's been quite a while since I've worked at a real, honest-to-God, full-time job. I forgot what drama can occur.

It's been raining a lot in Maputo lately, realy dreary weather. It's common this time of year, at the beginning of the rainy/monsoon season. Still, the gray-blah outside doesn't really help my mood. It's been good for the farmers, though. They were expecting a drought in Southern Mozambique this year, and I heard many people say the rains would't come until January (they're meant to arrive in October). They were a bit late, and I'm not sure how total rainfall for the year measures up, but at least there is some moisture for the crops. The rain is not good news, however, for my struggling veranda garden. My pots are soaked through from the sideways rain that makes its way in, and I'm worried I will lose the chocolate mint, hibiscus and basil I just planted last week, despite the fact that they are water-loving plants.

Rico and I continue to do home improvements. We had our kitchen and bathroom painted this week. For the kitchen, I chose a pale green (creatively called "Pastel Green" by the manufacturer). We have gray-toned tiles and marble countertops, and the room tends to be hot, so I knew I needed a cool color. I've never had a green kitchen before. I rather like how it turned out. It has a retro feel that is going to be fun to work with. For the bathroom, I chose a tan-ish pinky beige color called "Pale Mushroom" (they were more inspired with this name). It transformed what was a grotty, dirty-looking, 70's-leftover bathroom into one that is almost spa-inspired. Now my next project is to bleach our nice heavyweight cotton shower curtain so that I get rid of the blue and purple print. I think I can do it, though my last experience trying to bleach something tured out disastrously, with a stained red Banana Republic shirt disintegrating instead of just fading to white. I may have to experiment a bit until I get the right proportion of bleach:water.

Tonight Rico and I are going to a braai with friends. I'm not feeling particularly social, but I know once we are there I will enjoy myself. I also plan on making a lot of jewelry, as the year-end demand for pieces is picking up faster than I can keep up!

Hope you all are well...

8 comments:

NOLAGringa said...

The painting sounds great! Pictures??

Rainy seasons are dreary indeed. And office drama? UGH!

Grief becomes less gripping after a while indeed, but the processes for dealing with it SUCK.

Marlton Jul said...

Ali,
Hang in there!
You have had a tough week!
Know that you will have sunny days again, your depression will lift. Surrounding yourself with your loved ones, and create create create. Working with your hands will be the best form of therapy for you. I will say a prayer for you that in time the rough waters will settle for you!
I understand the whole office drama thing...I could tell ya stories!! Keep your head up and realize that no one is better you! You are a contributor to the company and deserve the respect of all! :) (I know you know all this, but it still is nice to hear from another outside the situation sometimes.)Take care, Julie

Ali la Loca said...

~NolaGringa - Pictures will come soon, for sure! I just wish we'd taken better "before" shots to showcase the grottiness of our walls.

Being in NOLA, I know you know about rainy seasons! It's one of the few places I've been that is just as humid as Maputo!

~Marlton Jul - Thanks so much for the kind words and the prayers. I know these tough times will get easier...I agree, creating is the best way to get through grief/depression for me. I've been making lots of jewelry, and having fun with the interior decorating as well. Thanks for the chin-up about the office stuff, too. It mostly rolls off my back, but occasionally - like last week - it makes me want to go back to freelance consulting!!

Monkey McWearingChaps said...

Hang in there Ali. I'm thinking of you these days. I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Post some pics of your beautiful creations when you have the time.

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