The laundry is done. I swept the floor. I had breakfast and lunch and a nap and now I’m hungry again. I am supposed to visit an English teacher today. She is Maths Ma’am’s cousin. We did not set any particular time and, to be honest, I am probably over-taxed at the moment. But I feel like having social time again. I have been living in this world that is just me and horrifying memories and C and not a lot else. It wasn’t a lot else because I couldn’t handle anything else. I was maxed out with those issues alone. I am probably still maxed out.

But people are so nice to be around sometimes.

I am going to ask VP Ma’am to get the bank details for me. I can get them from C’s dad: he is educated and speaks English well, but men get their pride hurt when people give them money and, continuing with this idea of playing it safe, I don’t want to talk to him and risk any problems. Also, he seems to spend weekends getting drunk. Evidently, he was here when C’s family was loading up all their possessions in the truck to head off to Timbuktu. (I think I’ll call it that: their new home is in Sticksville. It’s a place you get transferred to when you have been bad.) But he was dead drunk.

VP Ma’am can call up C’s mom and ask about it on my behalf. C’s mom does speak English, sort of. Not well. Things get all confusing sometimes and bank details might get complicated. So that’s the plan. When I am a bit more revived from post-nap haze, I’ll call her up and ask her to do that for me.

I woke up from my nap with a thought. It’s interesting how things seem to be getting processed when I sleep in the day. The day before yesterday, I woke up and, unconsciously, had this idea that I should reach out to C. As it turns out, that instinct was correct. It’s the 6th now. School starts on the 15th. It took 2 days to sort out what to do. Meanwhile, there are these other things: making sure C has a place in the dorms, getting money to her parents for C’s 2-3 day trip to Y-town, her parents arranging for the taxi.

The thought I woke up with is that the reason I can’t seem to stop worrying about C for more than a few days at a time is that I don’t acknowledge worry as a part of adult life. It’s this constant surprise to me. Why am I worried so much? My brain keeps sending the message to me to worry because the message is always NACK. Not acknowledged.

Well, I am worried because there is someone who depends on me and that I have some degree of responsibility for. I worry because actually I am trying to navigate a language barrier and a cultural difference, which makes for not an insignificant communication complication. She depends on me, but I am never entirely clear what she needs me to do.

In this case, does she need me to lay off and let her study at the school of her choice? Was Timbuktu really her choice? Or does she need me to solve the bus ticket problem? I think now she needed me to solve the bus ticket problem, but the morass of things it could have meant she needed me to do was thick indeed.

No one is going to die if I don’t take care of her, but it might be her whole education on the line. At lunch yesterday, VP Ma’am asked me, if C is in Timbuktu, will she pass in Class 10, do you think? No, she won’t. I don’t think there’s more than a very slender chance of it. Will she here? Maybe. Give it 50-50.

She has a learning disability. Her life is consumed with being the parent of two adults and three children. I have the power to give her a chance she would not otherwise have in life. This is not a small deal. As much as I want to assure myself that whatever happens is okay, there are real things to worry about. The problem is that I don’t stop worrying, because no one has ever depended on me before in my adult life. I am continually surprised by it, and the worry never fully registers in my mind as something that is there for a reason and I ought to attend to it. I do attend to the problems, but I never take in the fact of the worry completely. So it keeps coming back in this intense and unpleasant way.

Worry is normal. People do it all the time. I would worry less if I could accept that.

 

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