On Privacy and Domesticity
March 18, 2010 2 Comments
My grandmother died last night, a death I have been expecting for years and a phone call I have been expecting for weeks. It is sad in all the ways it is sad. Very. When I was alone in my home, talking to my mother, I cried. When Mr. Carla Fran, in all his wonders, came home, I tried to get on with the day. We talked. We went to lunch. We looked at our laptops. Then I went on a walk by myself and cried a lot more. There have been other moments of grief or disappointment where, if I was alone, I would have bawled, but because I was living with a person, I spent my mental energy on speaking clearly and not crying (or I went to the bathroom and cried). There is no reason to hide brute emotion from a partner like Mr. Carla Fran. He accepts all things (so far), and is very supportive, but there are certain things that need complete privacy (bodily functions, tweezing, intense emotion after immediate public display). This highlighted to me, as I walked and wondered why I was crying more on the sidewalk than in my own living room, that the lives we share with others are at times half lives…they are corsets (I just watched Coco Before Chanel…where Audrey Tatou fights the corset, and is tellingly single). They give us shape. They hold us in. They are smoothing. They are suffocating. I wouldn’t trade, but it is a pickle, isn’t it?