5 years goes by so fast

My honey was poking around on the web and found some things that brought up old memories, which in turn led me to reading my old blog postings from the first year I was on here.  Suddenly it came to me that it has been five years and I don’t know why that stuns me, but it does.  While reading those old postings, I realized the sum of the memories that are captured in them and I’ve decided to start printing them off to preserve for my foggy brain.  My only regret is that I didn’t include pictures this whole time.  How many of those memories would have been made all the better with a photo or two?

The counterpoint to all of the nostalgia, was the sad feeling of loss that resurrected over the loss of my friendship just before I started writing on here.  As with any relationship, a friendship weaves its way into your life and becomes a part of your structure.  The difficulty when you end a relationship is that you’re left with the placeholder for the person that was once a part of your life and that emptiness can be hard to fill.  Some people will just find a new person to fill that space, while others will just brick up the space and pretend that it was never there in the first place.  And then there are people like me – people who can’t fill the space and want to brick it over, but ultimately find that they can’t… so the space just gathers dust.

I’ve been fine about it this last year.  Maybe I’d finally started to let the memories themselves leave.  Or maybe the scab had finally healed and fallen off.   I don’t really know.  I haven’t wanted to know why I was able to go longer without thinking about it, because then it lets the grief come up again.

And I suppose that’s really where I was headed with this posting.  It did eventually turn into grief.  I should clarify that it started as anger, along with all of those other negative emotions that built up at the time it happened, but then – over time – it turned into grief and loss.  And so there is that hole still existing and I wasn’t noticing it anymore, until the conversation last night.

Everyone involved in the whole mess has their own take on how things went – who was to blame and their own personal hurts.  My honey got beaten up just as bad, if not worse, as I did.  My mum had to hear from us about what was going on and she was protective of us, so it impacted her in that one way.  My oldest dealt with the emotions that we were all flinging around and I think he is still tender about it, although I don’t know that he’d get where it came from.

Small guy is the only one who really doesn’t know and he remains free of it.  I’m glad that one of us can say that. 

Along came today, in the aftermath of very brief discussion last night, and I came very close to falling apart again.  I don’t feel the anger anymore.  I just feel the sadness.  I don’t discount what any of us went through back then, but I’m damned sad that all the friendship that we had got thrown out like it never mattered.  Here and now, looking back, I can say that it DID matter.  Nothing lasts forever, even if we hope that it will, so I can say that it’s ok that it ended for all that it meant so much to me before that last awful year.  Five years gave me that peace, that knowledge, that it’s ok to have the friendship end.  And it’s ok that it hurt and it’s even ok that I’m still able to grieve about it.

About a year after the whole thing dissolved in a giant mess of anger and resentment and almost every other negative emotion you can imagine, I wrote my final comment on the situation.  I mentioned that I wanted to be able to forget and not even remember her.  Well, five years later I have healed enough to say that I don’t want to forget my friend.  That would be the final and worst betrayal of the person that was my best friend and I won’t do it.  Instead, I’m going to learn how to have peace with my memories.  No more editing my recollections to avoid places that were tender for too long.  We had good times and bad.  We were stupid to lose sight of what was important and that cost us the friendship, but that doesn’t mean that it was anything less than a good part of life when it existed.

Everyone else will just have to find their own peace in their own terms.  That might just be my last wish – my last thought – on the subject – that everyone who had to deal with it gains peace.  I don’t mean a resigned feeling that they were wronged or treated horribly or that people they loved were treated horribly.  I want everyone involved to be finally free of those negative emotions so they can look back on the friendships and good times with free hearts,.

I don’t know what this means for me now.  Will I wake up tomorrow just a little bit lighter in spirit?  Does this mean anything has changed for me or am I just putting into words things I was already feeling over this last year?  Hmmm.  I can’t say. 

It’s time to get the small guy out of the tub and get him into bed.  I’m getting the “awwww, mom” from the boys on bed time, so it’s time to shut this down.  Wishing all a good night and sweet dreams.

moonfire

 

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Tired

I had a busy day and it was mostly productive, which is a change from how things have been going for the last few months.  I don’t know what is wrong with me, but I have the attention span of a gnat.  At least today I was able to focus and able to get a few things knocked off the urgent list on my desk.  I’ve been fighting some kind of respiratory bug – not enough to take me down fully, but enough to make me tired and a bit bluesy.  And it was enough to cause me to take a few weeks off from my early morning workouts.  I feel bad about it, still the guilt and self-judgment over taking the time off is offset by the relief I feel at not getting up at 4:45am each day, Monday through Thursday.

I have now officially been off all sleep medications – whether prescription or OTC – for a full week.  Prior to that week, I was using them sporadically for about a month.  I’m sleeping better now and it’s odd to me that getting off the sleep medications has finally been successful.  I think it’s due to the prescribed 5-HTP, but maybe it’s just that the sum of stress in my life has finally been alleviated to the right level?

So you could look at my being off the sleep meds and make the correlation that it explains my fatigue, only I don’t think that’s the case at all.  We’ve had nasty icy and wickedly cold weather here, which has, in turn, caused me to miss all of the last 2 1/2 weeks of walking.  Now THIS is something that may explain my fatigue and my foul temper.  At least, that’s how I’ve decided to view it.

Anyway, I have gained still more weight in the last month and it has dragged me down into the dumps so far that I wonder if I’ll ever feel light and energetic again.  We had some lovely sunshine this afternoon and when I took advantage of it, I felt my spirits begin to nudge upwards.  Maybe that’s all I need?  Feed my spirit a good walk each day, with fresh air and sunshine, and I’ll feel better?  I can accept that I think.

The blahness that I’ve been feeling is tainting my work and my nutrition – or at least, it’s tainting my attempts at nutrition.  I have gone from being a foodie to being someone who very much resents food and all the baggage it seems to come with.  And how on earth could I be working that hard at those early morning workouts, only to gain 13 lbs??  What kind of new hell is this, anyway?

I saw numbers on the doctor’s scale that I’ve never seen before and it drew me down into a very sad place.  They said my measurements hadn’t changed from last time, so I’ll take that as something positive, but it still leaves me feeling that working hard doesn’t pay off for me.

The whole issue has departed from the realm of vanity and is now approaching a point where it makes me so unhappy that I don’t want to see people or be around anyone socially.  That’s a bad sign for me, as I suspect it will lead me to depression and I need a round of that like I need to be punched in the eye.

And of course I wonder if I’m not just a little bit depressed due to the ongoing dark days and dismal air we’ve been experiencing?  While I hate endless sunny days, I think that some gentle Spring weather would be really welcome right now, even if it’s about 2 months too early.

So I’m not looking forward to dealing with food tomorrow and frankly, if the sun doesn’t peek out for an hour or so, I might lose my mind.  For tonight, I get a warm bath and cozy flannel sheets to snuggle into.  I might have a small gray kitty join me on the bed and if that’s the case, I’ll enjoy the brief cuddle she’ll give me.  I kissed both my boys goodnight, twice – just to make sure they got that extra bit of love – and I’ve had some relaxation time.  I hope that tomorrow is just incrementally better than today.  It’s all I really ask for at this point.

And that would be enough.

moonfire

Early morning winter blues

I’m really struggling this morning.  I didn’t want to get up before 5 to go to my workout.  I got to it and the sharp cold, coupled with the air quality in the warning levels, all made me want to go home and go back to bed.  I’ve been sporadically going to this workout class for a month and I’m seeing progress, so I don’t feel that I can give up, but this morning was one of those days when it was a true struggle.

By way of full disclosure, I should also note that I’m also going to start my period any time now… I’m over-tired from the weekend… and I’m sort of recovering from illness last week, although the bad air is making that a bit harder for me.

Truthfully, it’s really hard being the only earlybird in the household during the cold and dark months of the winter.  If it were April, it would be balmy or at least not freeze-your-inhalation cold.  And if it weren’t pre-period time, I would certainly be in a better place mood-wise.  Dark, weepiness, cold – yeah, it’s all a great mixture.

I’m going to drink a cup of Meyer Lemon tea (herbal) and take a hot bath to ease my muscles.  I’m going to find some positive self-talk to offset the unhappy thoughts that are pinging around in my head.  If I start down this path, I will give up on the class and I can’t do that.  I need to stick with this.  I need to get my body into a healthy place. Perhaps distancing my emotions from it and looking on it like my academic class would help?

I don’t know.  I just know that today was the first time where I actually questioned if I wanted to continue with the group.  That scares me just a bit.  It’s so easy to say to myself, “Oh, it’s too early and I’m too tired and i can’t do the things she’s insisting that I can do.”  She’s just asking me to try.  And can I say that I’ve come to hate the word “Burpee”.   If you’ve never had to do them, look them up and see what you think.  I have horrible upper body strength and just the word alone has started making me cranky.

But no.  I won’t quit.  And yes, I will learn to do the dreaded Burpees.  I’ll hang in there and remember that this blue mood is temporary.  It’ll pass, so that some new feeling can settle in for a bit.  I like the workout group and I think I will benefit from sticking to it. 

I can whine for a little bit this morning, then I’m going to soak in a bath that smells good, shake off the blues and great the gray, gloomy day with a smile.  I’m thinking lemon tea and perhaps a bunch of flowers for my desk as I’m on my way into work.

moonfire

Call me crazy

Tuesday of next week I am embarking on a new adventure in a familiar environment.  I already know that I’m going to get a raft of pokes over this one, but it just felt like the right thing to do.

I am starting a second bachelor’s degree.  My major?  Sociology.

Let me explain (before you start running around, raging “is she nuts??”)…  I work at a university where all staff and spouses get a fee waiver.  It’s $20 per semester, plus $5 per credit hour.  Books, obviously, are a separate cost.

if I don’t pursue something that is of interest to me while I have access to this waiver, I am leaving money on the table.  I’m totally aware that there is a time “cost” but I am totally willing to offset that cost with letting go of frivolous reading.  No, I won’t give up time with my munchkins, only books.  And we can add video games to that category, too, as I’ve been wasting some time in civilization building adventures of the purely digital type.

Among the criteria I had for the new bach program?  High level of interest and curiosity, opportunity for area of research, if I later choose to pursue that notion, ability to complete it while working full-time (ie, no 3 hour labs in the middle of the work day), and NOT related to building skills for a job.  I’m doing this for the intellectual tastiness of the field and subject matter.

Just prior to beginning the classes for my intended second graduate degree, I was overcome with doubts and anxiety.  I knew, on a deeply intuitive level, that I was heading in a direction that might seem practical but did nothing for my spirit.  I could feel the impending pressure of it – the financial obligation… the time suck it could become… the price my kids would pay.

This is completely different.  My obligation doesn’t have to extend beyond the end of the spring semester, if I determine that’s how it has to be.  Financially it’s a small blip – less than the cost to take the family out to the movies on a Saturday.  Time-wise, I can substitute some of the things that are completely frivolous for my reading and assignments.  Really?  It’s a 100 level class.  I’ve read the first few chapters of the textbook for the course and it’s accessible, with interesting anecdotes.  it’s not painful reading.  I can’t imagine what she’ll request for additional readings, but I bet that they will be interesting.

I’m thinking this is enough for this posting.  I’ll have more to say once I start into the meat of the class, or at least read the syllabus.  🙂