Life has a funny way of nipping your Augustine withers (that nipping/wither phrase comes from the book "Smoky" by Will James, a regular cowboy drawlin' book. Cody and I are reading it and re-enacting the characters during drives, shopping, sitting, etc. Nicker! Nicker!, etc).
I mean tonight I was sitting at Cody's basketball practice trying to burrow into my new read "Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress" by Dai Sijie. If I burrow deep enough during times like this, I don't have to 1) talk to the dad next to me, and 2) hear what's happening with Cody on the court.
However, Cody was going crazy. I mean he was hyper. He was playing defense like a fourth of July sparkler. Not only was his body moving, his mouth was doing its customary REM. He was screaming, he was yelling, he was overboard in a whirlpool of his own creation. Then, he would get angry suddenly and throw a ball at a kid close-range. Or, he would tell the coach to shut up because he encouraged him and made him feel like a little kid. Cody's face would go from elation to scowl in a matter of seconds.
The parents next to me commented on his small size.
I gripped my book tighter, looking up to give him admonishment.
And it just struck me that I have been pretending on a couple of things, making them seem glorious when in fact they are subterfuge coverups. Homeschooling is going very well, yet within it, I can pretend that Cody is normal, that things are okay. At the one outing we do, it comes back to me quickly: his issues are severe. How will he ever assimilate into a homeschooler's group, into school, into a healthy existence within society? I feel shaken and exposed and scared to death for him.
Okay, Saint Augustine now. Of course, he's a well-known mysogynist. I know ... think of culture at the times and what was proper then but not now. I know ... consider his virtues. Yes, I am enjoying his writing, but sooner or later, the truth comes out that he left his mistress and son for the political position of bishop in the Church. He chose what was best personally over what was best for others, at least that's what it appears in today's culture. Later in his career, he rails against women because obviously he feared their allure. Sigh. Exposure tends to shake my faith in even what I praise and admire.
And, tomorrow Kevin takes his mother to a funeral of an older couple who committed suicide together on Monday. They were sick, and they decided to sting their children one last time with the worthless experience of life. They planned their funeral on paper, left their front door ajar so they'd be found by the neighbors in a nice, timely, nonsmelling manner, and took some pills.
Why is the deconstruction of nice ideals and concepts quite prevalent? We grip onto one thing, and it tears apart to leave a hole.
Yes, there are believable platitudes to shield; however, at times, things feel quite dark and exposed and shaken.