Obituary, identity, life, nostalgia, desire

Someone fairly well known in a related field died and his obituary is making the rounds. I read it and saw that he had had the life I wanted: fascinating research, wonderful dissertation students, warm colleagues here and abroad.

I am in a constant state of grief about having thrown good years after bad, hoping I could make this happen for me, and about not having jumped ship to an alternative path toward an intellectual and creative life when I could.

Now that I also know I will not have a comfortable old age I really wonder about my life. I love the small child I was and I am so sad to have done her so much harm. And to have wasted her, who could have acted so well in the world.

I have to remember that my actual task in life is to recover, to learn to recognize mistreatment, to learn to stand up to it. I have not been able to do the things I wanted to do in life and will not be, but at the very least I can do this.


3 thoughts on “Obituary, identity, life, nostalgia, desire

    1. Yes. I think what it is is, life as I know it is about to be over. Up until now, my life has been all about handling my parents, the real ones and them introjected. I lived around the margins of that. The purpose I’ve always served, my main project, is at its end and I am going to be someone entirely different now. I must learn to stand at the center of my life.

    2. Also, yes, but there was so much I wanted to do, and so much pointless suffering I took up instead, and even if the rest of it is pleasant, I am nostalgic. I feel like a war victim, displaced person, immigrant, refugee, you know we had a janitor who was really an MD but had been displaced by war & didn’t have English or recognition of her degree / license / etc. ? AND I don’t have that kind of excuse, so I feel that throwing things away was wasteful — and did at the time as well, this isn’t hindsight even if it is looking back.

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