Bad Feeling

Have you ever had a bad feeling about something and acted on it? I’m not talking about things like tests or job interviews or doctor’s appointments or first day at work or any of those things we have to do at some time or other despite a feeling of uneasiness. I’m not even talking about a premonition. Just an all-around bad feeling.

That happened to me yesterday. Just an all-around bad feeling about a meeting I was supposed to attend. I have no idea where the bad feeling came from. It’s possible I’ve been around people too much lately. Actually, that’s not just possible, but a fact. I have been around people too much lately, but still that’s no reason for the bad feeling. I’m a bit uneasy about having been exposed to The Bob, and although I’m sure the person who exposed me is past the contagious stage, it could still be something that set off the bad feeling. I’m also having my general winter coughing spells, which I prefer to have at home rather than in public. Luckily, I’m discovering that a cool mister helps. (Cool Mister? Sounds nickname for a romance hero!)

Now that I think about it, it’s all too probable the bad feeling comes from a falling barometer since I do tend to be affected by changes in atmospheric pressure. For example, when the barometric pressure drops, it creates a difference between the outside pressure and sinus pressure. Considering how problematic my sinuses are, the difference can, at the least, give me a bad feeling — not exactly sick, but not exactly tip top, either. Lower air pressure also exerts less pressure against the body, allowing tissues to expand, causing pain around joints. I’m not to that point yet, though I’m sure in the coming years I’ll become as much of a human barometer as anyone with aging joints.

Also, the falling barometric pressure indicates a coming storm, though there is no need for a barometer yesterday — I woke to sunny skies and still air, and by noon, dark clouds and high winds were the norm. I don’t like driving or being driven in storms, so I went with the bad feeling and backed out of my meeting.

As it turns out, the storm was overrated, just a sprinkling of snow, and nothing happened to the people who went to the meeting, though if I believed I’d had a premonition (which I don’t) and had a more mystical bent, I would think that my staying away was the equivalent of the flap of a butterfly wing that changed everyone’s fate from dire to favorable.

Still, whatever the reason for the bad feeling yesterday, for the first time ever, I went with my instincts and stayed home, reading and napping and enjoying a pleasant afternoon despite the low pressure outside and the higher pressure inside my head.


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.

A Day for Dozing

I keep opening my laptop to write today’s blog, but then I play a game of solitaire, close the lid and go read a bit and end up taking a nap. I don’t know why I can’t stay awake. The heat perhaps, though it’s not all that hot in the house. It could be something to do with the falling barometric pressure and the storm that is on the way bringing rain and hail.

This area is notorious for hail, so much so that some insurance companies don’t include hail damage in house or car insurance policies, and the ones that do include some coverage, have a huge deductible. (The insurance companies say it’s the law in Colorado, but they aren’t fooling anyone — they want the law, policy holders don’t.) One good thing, my car is finally under cover, so I don’t have to worry about the poor things being pummeled by golf ball-size hail.

Although I don’t think it has anything to do with today’s sleepiness, today is Jeff’s birthday. That milestone doesn’t seem to have anything to do with me anymore — it just seems like another number and a reason to remember him as well as indulge in a bit of nostalgia.

Even though I feel good about my life now, I still miss him, still find myself confused at times about his being gone. I know it’s the way it is, and I have become used to it, but it still seems . . . off. As if maybe our being together was a dream. As if I dreamed him and none of that was real. Or maybe it’s this particular phase of my life that’s not particularly real. Either way, it doesn’t seem as if his life has anything to do with mine. Or mine with him.

It was a long time ago — our life together. His death.

I wrote a post seven years ago about how, in the movie Heaven Must Wait, Andrew McCarthy tells Louise Lombard that his mother died. She told him she was sorry. He said, “It was a long time ago.” At the time, the line struck me as particularly poignant, and I realized that someday, I too would say, “It was a long time ago.”

It is odd, and perhaps typical of such a loss as mine, that although time passes and other things in life supplant at least some of his influence, and although I don’t think of him all the time, I do always miss him. The void he left behind that I filled with tears is still there, but when I happen to brush against that void, I tend to shy away from it. I don’t need the tears as I once did, and there’s no real benefit to indulging in sadness anymore. It really was a long time ago.

And yet . . .

Maybe that’s reason enough for sadness — that he’s so far away the tears no longer come.

Considering body memory, I suppose it’s possible that the effects of this day are draining my energy enough to make me doze off. But whatever the reason, the truth — the still hurtful truth — is that I am here and he is not.


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator