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Don’t make me Jazz Hand – I can’t Jazz Hand today …

Today I feel … inadequate.

sad

I tend to pull away from people when I am upset with myself about something.

I need time to contemplate before seeking out a shoulder – time to contemplate if I even need to burden a shoulder.

I get very reserved, focused and quiet.

It’s definitely one of those days I don’t want anyone to ask “How are you?”

C’mon, we know most people don’t really want an honest answer to that.

I realize it’s a conventional nicety, but I ALWAYS feel obligated to work up a cheery “GREAT! How are YOU?” Whilst shaking pom-pons and somehow pulling off jazz hands at the same time.

hamster ball

Wish people would just say “Hello.”

I can say “Hello” back.

That I can do.

Just acknowledge me – I’ll acknowledge you back, we’re golden!

So yeah, clearly I’m still in stress ball mode.

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I read the beginning of an amazing novel yesterday and had this stunned, authentic moment of “Holy Crap! This is REALLY good!”

In that same moment, I also became painfully aware of how NOT good I am in the arts.  And no, there was no jealousy – there was a lot of pride and awe.

My fiancé wrote it.

We made a deal before he moved in with me that he would focus on his artistic side. Pursue his dreams. And I read this freaking epic flow of words and got so lost in and I KNOW, it must be published.

So, I began my retreat further back into my shell, because I’ve been feeling like I’m not holding up my end of the bargain, which is providing for my little family.

I have pets and people looking to me for emotional, physical and material support and I’m falling short.

I feel like I am anyway.

And that’s a horrible feeling.

What I do have an abundance of though, is love. And I’ll just keep plugging away at the other stuff … quietly.

avoid communication

(Here’s what my fiancé has been plugging away at if you care to peek.  http://neopompeii.com/)

 

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Quieter

 

 

quieter

 

Said goodbye to my son this morning and actually did a typing motion with both of my thumbs as I said “check in!”  This is what it’s come to.

I miss him lately.

This weekend he’s off to judge a speech and debate event in Phoenix. Then house sitting – then working – then I might see him Monday.

Ok, I miss him a lot lately.

I often think about those posts I wrote when he was still in school (High School) and I was lamenting how fast time was flying by even back then!

I didn’t even have to miss him then.

It’s hard for every parent I’m sure – but when you’re a single parent and nearly two decades have revolved (happily) around one person and suddenly they don’t need you – and their exit date is looming well … it’s disconcerting to say the least.

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It’s hard to talk about it with anyone – because I usually get the ‘Yeah well, kids grow up, that’s how it works!’ speech. Or, ‘Find a hobby!’

I KNOW this is how it works.

I want him to thrive and explore, stumble a little – learn from his mistakes, brush himself off and thrive again.

I want him to spread those amazing wings!!

This is me remember?!  The one who made it a priority to get him a passport! The one who sent him off to England to see more than our backyard.

I was even prepared for him to not want to return from that trip.

So my point here is – there are no apron strings tying him to me. The umbilical cord is cut.

 

But oh how I love him.

For all this time, he’s been the constant in my life.

We’ve had ups and downs but always had each other.

 

 

I don’t laugh as much anymore – because he’s not around much anymore. I feel his absence in ways I can’t even explain.

 

No, he is not responsible for my happiness.  No, it is not his fault that I feel this way.

I am simply sharing these raw facts honestly with you.

Because if I am being completely honest – I have been changing, and it’s not for the better.

Things I used to love to do, I’m not doing anymore. I feel unmotivated – a little lost.

I’ve wondered, is it because I’m alone with myself and really not sure who I am without the ‘mom’ tag on?

Then I realize that probably it’s a culmination of many years and many things that I’ve been able to sweep aside to some degree, because I had something more important to focus on.

My boy.

 

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We all go through this at some point. ‘Finding ourselves’ – and while that phrase is often mocked – it is a relevant phase.

 

But I thought I had found myself.

Now it feels like I lost her – our hands slipped apart in my crowded head.

 

 

I’m the first to admit my writing has gone downhill.

The first to agree ‘I don’t have a life’ when people joke about me never wanting to go anywhere.

I still say things at work or in groups that aren’t understood and end up feeling like an alien.

I don’t fit in.

I’ll mention thoughts that pop into my head and others look at me like I’m crazy. “You’ve never thought that?” I’ll ask. “Um, no.” is the usual response.

 

So I get quieter.

 

I thought the answer was to put more of myself ‘out there’. Be braver. Share more. Embrace the part of me that is clearly different from most. But then I was told I thought too much – shared too much.

 

So I’m getting even quieter.

 

Sometimes I feel so locked inside myself that I could scream.

 

I go through the motions of ‘fitting in’ knowing I’m not pulling it off.

Then every once in a while – the couch across from me is filled by this person who gets me.

Who makes me laugh.

Who has similar thoughts and similar humor … and I am happy.

And I fit in.

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“What are you going to do when I leave?” he once asked.

I didn’t really answer. I sarcastically brushed him off with a ‘I have always taken care of myself’ – but what I was really doing was taking care of him.  And that’s all I wanted to do.

What will I do when he leaves?

I don’t know.

I don’t know that answer.

I haven’t got to that chapter yet – and I don’t read ahead.

But I will miss him. That much I know.

son

Then the dam broke

“It’s just everything – it’s worrying about Christmas,  and the car … and always having to worry about things like that – it’s doing it alone, but I wouldn’t have it any other way – what we have … and not feeling well and not being able to go to the doctor – it’s being stressed out and not having someone to talk to about it.  Because they’re going to tell me not to feel a certain way when I DO feel that way.  It must be okay to feel that way if I feel it??  It’s when people ask “Feeling better?” with a raised eyebrow because your answer had better be ‘yes’ … it’s not being allowed to feel sad because you’re the person who makes people laugh.  And on top of it all, I don’t feel well.  And I’m sad.  I’m just … sad.  And no, it’s not forever – and yes, it will pass and I’m so grateful – I’m grateful for everything we have and everything we don’t have … but I’m just … sad.  And I should be allowed to feel sad.”

– Me, after telling my son I couldn’t possibly vent to him.

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I left work early today.

I couldn’t take one more second of holding myself upright when all I wanted to do was curl into a ball.  I put a smile in my voice on the phone … and in front of customers who came into my office.   I went above and beyond on my files – went in early today and cleaned.  I pushed and pushed – and broke.

Monday I had a pretty bad ‘spell’ at work.  Besides my heart condition – I think my body also tells me when it’s done holding things in.

My vision blurred in my right eye and my chest squeezed.  I couldn’t get my bearings. I sat outside on a curb, taking purposeful breaths and feeling the wind on my skin until the spell mostly passed and went back in to work.

That’s what I do.

Remove myself, compose myself and return.

Yesterday I came very close to asking to use my barely used sick time.  But I stuck it out.  My ears have been hurting me – I’m dizzy and nauseated.  But I stuck it out.

This morning, I came even closer to asking to use my barely used sick time – then remembered I had a meeting and had to approve a settlement statement so that a customer could sign their documents.  So I went in.

I tied all the loose ends up and emailed both of my bosses asking to use 1/2 of a sick day.

The answer was yes.

I read an article yesterday on a hospice website.  About the phases of death.  I was making sure I was using ‘catabolic’ correctly in my last post.  A catabolic state is when your body can no longer process nourishment – it’s so starved for it – it starts breaking itself down.

That’s how I understood it anyway.

And that’s how I have been feeling.  Like there has been no nourishing input lately – that I’m sustaining myself and breaking down all my reserves.

So after my grand monologue that I wasn’t going to give in front of my son, I ended with, “I just want to hear ‘everything is going to be ok'”

To which my son replied, “Everything is going to be ok”

And when he hugged me – I sobbed harder.  And he didn’t tell me I wasn’t allowed to feel sad.

I love him so very much.

The sky this morning

The sky this morning

Self. Indulge me.

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Indulge me – and my foul mood.

You know, I read a friends blog who has Aspergers, and a common thread that I pull from her carefully woven words is that she is trying to process the world around her and her place in it.  But what I feel from her words to a degree of envy, is that she knows herself.

I don’t know who I am anymore.

I feel, right now, like a bundle of contradictions – my muscles and my gut tight with the many facets of me that don’t play well with one another.

I despise liars, cannot stand to lie – yet lie to myself.

I cry at romantic movies, and a part of me yearns for the fairy tale ending, while the rest of me knows no one could possibly scale the walls I’ve built around me.

I abhor child abuse – and yet, just this afternoon I spat ugly words over the phone at my son after I perceived that he lied to me, when he was suddenly ‘not hungry’ after I asked him what he wanted from the shop for dinner rather than a drive thru.  The sudden, let down, it’s-not-good-enough tone of his voice hit me where it hurt. I seethed.  Thinking, ‘Ingrate’.  And let him have it.

I might as well have slapped him, because I know how painful venomous words are.

I am impulsive and ugly.  I am better alone.

I am always so desperate to please, then resentful that people take so much from me.

I am contradiction incarnate.

And now I am home – and the door to my sons room is closed, and the light is off.  And we may as well be a thousand miles apart.

And we are.

I’m in my self-hatred and he is probably letting a nap take him after licking his wounds.

I won’t open his door.

I am stubborn.  I am grateful for every day and painfully aware of how, without warning there can be no more days – and yet I squander them.

I don’t plan for the future.

I am content with ‘enough’, yet also settle.

I work hard – I give and I give all that I have.  And I am tired.  I am not well.

Somedays I only know what day it is because my pill-box reminds me.

I count my blessings, and neglect them.

I am 43 and responsible – and inside right now I just want to curl into the smallest ball I can muster and sob my soul right out of me.

I’ve never felt so alone, and yet have so many friends.

I say I’ll bare it all on my blog and yet, almost every post I find I edit in some way.

Well not this one.

More to me

Rough night last night.  Two stubborn people in one house – no give.  No goodnight hugs.

Woke up this morning determined.  Deciding to have a good day.

I’ve been swiping some mascara on my lashes of late – and sporting a brighter colored lipstick to work.  It’s almost embarrassing how much of a difference that apparently makes as I’ve received a lot of compliments.  I don’t like it.  I wanted to feel brighter – but not be looked at.  Silly.

Jan92012 me

I’m a complicated chick.

I was listening this morning to Jai Ho in my car.  (From the Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack). Okay, I was blasting Jai Ho and thinking – ‘there is more to me’.  I’ve BEEN to Bombay (Mumbai in the movie) – I was in Goa and New Delhi and Old Delhi.  I’ve experienced more in one lifetime, I can safely say, than probably 95% of the people I know.

I’ve laid eyes on the Mona Lisa (a tad disappointing … did you know it’s quite small?)  I’ve gazed up at the Sistine Chapel ceiling.  Breathtaking.  I’ve almost been sold in Afghanistan and dined with men in Countries where females just don’t DO that. 

And today – I’m driving to work in the car I worry about making payments on, in a desert I never wanted to live in, but feeling a little brighter.

The music reminded me of something odd I would do as a child. 

On road trips I’d have my head leaned against the back seat window and whatever song was on the radio was my theme song.  I pretended I was in a movie – it was the closing shot.  My reflection – the passing scenery … My imagination has got me through a lot of things.  Unwavering.  A constant.

I cried at work today. I had a bad moment and felt hopeless and unvalued and discounted, and without any warning, alone staring at my monitor – I cried.

I felt bled of my color and left grey.

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I came home stinging from words and washed the lipstick and mascara off of my face.

But – tomorrow is another day. 

Jai Ho!  (Hoping to be victorious)