Family Things

I talked to my cousin for a long time last night. Her dog is dying. She’s bummed. But the other thing is that she’s pissed kind of existentially that the family we were all told we have is not the family we have. And I admit to finding it a little illuminating and befuddling to be sitting on this end of that conversation. Because, damn, man, have I sat at her end. A lot. A long time.

So, I had nothing comforting to tell her, which I found interesting and alarming.

I don’t know. Maybe I’m not making my point clear. But I guess what I’m trying to get at is the ways in which I am constantly assuming knowledge is power–to know something is to have power over it. To understand it is to reduce its ability to fuck you up.

Those things are not true. Knowing all the subtleties of a thing, all the minor details, all the facts (or even, in my case, just many of them, not even a majority but more than some know) does not make you immune to being hurt, still, by them.

Having thought a lot about a thing does not, in this case, make it easier for me, or even possible, to say something that will make it make sense.

All this work I’ve done hasn’t really moved me beyond things and I don’t feel like it’s given me skills to help someone else resolve it.

I guess I don’t believe in resolution. That’s where I’ve gotten after all this time. Resolution and catharsis are attractive fictions, but they’re fictions.