We were fortunate to have had our most recent Death Café Orlando gathering take place on a dark and stormy summer’s afternoon. The inclement weather and the homey nature of our meeting place were the key components for a hotbed of intellectual intimacy on par with the infamous year without a summer (the balmy progenitor of M. Shelley’s Frankenstein and John Polidori’s Vampyre story).
I’d hesitate to identify a routine in our meetings, but typically our group tends to tour a diverse spread of ‘trending topics’ in death positivity and death awareness, from whence we might wax philosophically or share our ‘what if–?’ scenarios. Our eighth regional session broke from the mold.
Although I’ve been on the up-and-up over the past several years, I’ve never claimed to be out of recovery from pervasive and life-limiting mental illness. Bearing my history in mind, I was acutely aware of the risk of post-operative depression. So much so that I actually deferred my admission into my counseling program after factoring it into my 2017 summer/autumnal schedule. (With total compassion and understanding, mind you.)
I still radically underestimated what impact post-op depression would have on my life after the revelations from my tissue pathology.
Last Sunday, I fully intended to post. I didn’t see myself falling off the wagon so early on in my posting regimen, especially since I was only posting on a weekly basis. I had topics scheduled out for at least ~3 months and hoped that between now and then enough inspiration would strike to keep the longevity of the blog rolling.
I also thought I had already experienced the shock and heartache of everything that Nov. 8 foretold. I had already set my sights on how ugly things were going to get and made adjustments thusly. My partner and I set up goals and credited our deadlines. We developed a ‘2 – 5 year plan’ to get out of trouble without landing in more trouble impulsively. We shifted our career and academic aspirations to be more productive and reactionary. We got married. We signed all manner of directives. We planned for the likelihood of trauma.