Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Post One Hundred and Forty Three: For Reals.

This guy knows where it's at.

WHY IS HE SO HAPPY? How the sh*t do I get so convivial? How do I get there, during the course of my humble life trajectory?

I have questions today. Serious questions, because I had a very serious day.

I answered my first "Hello ma'am, my mum just died. Help me?..." phone call today. It was the worst Jerry, the worst.

I've been perfectly trained in what to say and how to say it, but when you pick up the phone and you can hear the pain in the callers voice as they whisper over the line from the room beside the one that their mothers/fathers/lovers body is going cold and stiff in, that transaction f*cking sucks.  Attention is aggressively pulled away from the clear view of the hot dudes punching the boxing bag in the gym across the street. The fax machine noises that have pissed you off all day vanish. Everything disappears as you try to dive into the phone receiver, twisting through the wire to come out the other side and into the person's mind-space. If only.

I desperately want the words to flow out of my face naturally during the conversation so that I can actually HEAR what the other people are saying (as opposed to what is going on in my own head whilst I kick myself for stuttering/whimpering/pitching my voice too high because I'm stifling tears).

And then I have to muster up the balls to talk to these grieving people face to face, mano to mano. In this arrangement procedure we talk about family history to register the death legally. We make choices like whether they require a cremation or a burial, a coffin or a casket, a religious or non religious ceremony; and the list extends to all the madcap things that you can do to celebrate the life of someone who has died. I have only just now begun to comprehend how much of a multi-tasking genius I have to be, how trusted I need to be by my folk, and how responsible I will be if I stuff sh*t up.

Funerals are pretty crazy. Ladies cry. Men cry. Kids cry because the grown ups are crying. Today even a priest looked like he wanted to cry. The lass that had died had lived very very short life. She left a small, scared child behind. Did that lady know a happiness? If so, does her child know that she did? Will her child remember the funeral in 20 years time?

Gosh, will that child remember me? If so, I hope I said the right thing.


Saturday, January 28, 2012

Post One Hundred and Forty Two: Release The Hounds.

One month of living in Melbourne is all it takes for most of what you know to expire.

More specifically, one month away from familiar custom is how long it took for me to understand in retrospect that what I had in Brisbane was bloody sterling. I miss my friends, I miss my co-workers, and I miss my heap of shit granny flat in Paddington. I realise that it's alright to have these feelings, but I feel like a dickbag for not reaching this appreciation earlier.

I had grandiose expectations about my new life here.  Presumptions of a type of rebirth into a dashing life of unconventional glory. This brings me to realisation number two; converging with new people is exhausting and comparing folk to those you already love will get you nowhere. Cities change, but my social inaptitudes endure. I will expect nothing more from Melbourne apart from death, taxes and f*cking great coffee and cake combos.

Going from the busy underbelly of the biz to a public show pony of death has been preoccupying. Repairing skulls and buttoning blouses has been replaced with squeezing the cheeks of infants, helping old folk up church steps and inspiring personalised floral choices. It's copacetic, but demands reflection on the change in pace from the days in the mortuary of listening to tunes and drinking tea on demand. 

Time, you tricky trickster. I will place no pressure on your healing ability.

Peace. x

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Post One Hundred and Forty One: I Was Just Wandering.

And there ain't nothing wrong with a spot of homelessness.

(Obviously this is a highly insensitive statement to true homeless folk and I'm not actually dumpster diving and huddled in a trolley.)  I'm drifting from place to place until I find a home.  It's a bit shit, but I have hope that a house will be all like "Sarah, I'm cosy and cheap, look at my strong walls and generous pantry! I want you, I need you etc...."

It's a long story, but one that one day will deserve more than a brief mention. Needless to say, I am without roof of my own. It's not ideal by today's societal standards, but y'know what, it's a bloody thrill.

What makes a mortician comfortable at the end of the day? Is it four walls and a door to close? I think not, and something tells me that I'm in for some learnings.

Fate be kind, and bring me a chimney.