Saturday, June 29, 2019


It is late and everyone else is asleep. My brain is still busy and because, last night sleep was elusive, I best just type away until I can settle.

The last few days I have majored in the brain part of the photo. Fixated on my screw ups. Unable to see the good. So many tears, harsh words, exhaustion.

As a result I'm not liking myself very much. I have many notes made on my phone for when I see my therapist next week. They all boil down to why am I acting, thinking, believing this way? Ways that I was sure were behind me a long time ago.

Dearest One and I have joked lately that the epitaphs on our gravestones may include something akin to cancel all future appointments with our therapist. We are sure we will be needing to see her until then. We are funding her retirement, which we don't want to hasten. We are grateful that we have the means to see her. To get help. To continue to grow, change and face whatever is in front of us even though I definitely feel like I am a two year old having a temper tantrum lately.

I detest not getting my way.

A conversation yesterday left me wondering about that. About the rest of the people in my world not seeing things the way I do. You know, the right way. But yesterday something shifted just a titch. Enough that I am more open than I was before that shift. I don't know what to do with it, yet. Part of me feels like I am giving up something I should hang on to. Part of me feels like if I don't budge I am going to be very lonely.  I'm glad there is a safe place and person to sort this all out with.

Look at that. I can write a whole post without swearing.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Letting Go

The meme that is attached to this post? I would've chucked it at you yesterday, were that possible. But today I felt desperate for some kind of relief from the stress. Sitting in my car after I was done my work day, I sent Only Daughter an SOS text and asked her to pray for wisdom for me.

I'd gone online and it seemed every little cutesy post was speaking directly to me. When I read this one it hit me between the eyes. It's one thing to want to let all the extra stress, worrying and overthinking go. It's another thing to do it. The best I could do was want to want to do it.

After I talked to Only Daughter I drove to my physiotherapy appointment. I don't have the run of the mill physio person. I don't know how to describe what she does. She scans one's body and has the ability to pinpoint what needs work. Places that might be holding emotional tension. One always has the option to tell her areas that are bothersome and she does work on those, too. Today I was back with a nagging knee pain. Last time I saw her she dry needled my hamstring and that gave me instant relief in my knee. Today I was back with knee pain, lesser, but still there.

On the way to her office tears were so close to the surface. I far prefer to cry in the privacy of my own home. My emotions were so raw today that I couldn't swallow them. As the physio assistant took me back to one of those curtained off areas, where beds are separated by a hospital like curtain I just couldn't face being seen. I asked for the private room, telling her that I was really teary and wanted to be treated there. She was gracious in granting me the choice.

When the physiotherapist came in I told her how I was feeling. She had me stand and scanned my body, then she directed me to the table where she prodded behind my knee. Agonizing pain. She started to do her mojo and the tears just rolled down my face. Not from physical pain. She knows the details of the stress I have been carrying around. As the tears continued to fall the muscles, tendons, ligaments, whatever lurks behind my knee, released.

As they did she told me that I didn't need to solve all the problems in my life at once. That it is okay to take a manageable chunk and deal with that. I started to sob. Ugly cry. She came to where she could see me and told me to go do something for myself after my appointment. To stop thinking I needed to do everything for everyone else and do something I needed to do for me. She then took a blanket and wrapped me up tight, akin to being swaddled. With that she was out the door on to her next client. I stayed and cried and looked inward to see what I needed. I'm not good at knowing what I need. But I waited and into my head popped the following: I need to be honest. Be honest with those I am feeling in turmoil about. Not from my go to place of anger but from a place of vulnerability.

Don't you just love when the answer comes and it's the least likely thing you would have chosen if you were in charge of the universe? But I recognized the truth of it.

And I did as I felt I needed to do. Two of three conversations took place today. Copious amounts of  tears and snot were expelled. I can be vulnerable. I can. One of those people was vulnerable back and they hate showing their tears as much as I do.

I can do hard things. Hard things can lead to good things. Beautiful things. Hopeful things. More than muscles, tendons and ligaments were released today. Thanks be to God.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019


Most of my coworkers are on their last few days of work this week for the summer. I've yet to find out how many vacation days I have to use but I am hoping we can make most of the days we have booked to go camping mid July. I am looking forward to having time with Dearest One. No animals to look after. Or people either, for that matter. Sitting around a campfire, lazy mornings, playing cribbage, reading to my heart's content, walks around the campground. Doing nothing or something. My choice. I look forward to it all.

But I have to say I am some sort of funk. It feels like I've stepped 50 yards backwards yet my therapist assures me I have simply punched through another layer of stuff to sort through. She implied this was just the beginning of the layers yet to be uncovered. Yep, you heard me right when I said, "Fucking yay."

Ultimately it's about not being in control. I thought I had some sort of grip on that. Nope. Or should I say I thought I I had less of a grip on the need to be in control. Turns out I'm hanging on tight to things going the way I want them to or think they should go. I know the answer is in surrender. I could spout every saying, platitude, rah-rah cheerleader kind of thing about freedom being in surrender. There are times when those words are of no interest to me. This is one of those times.

I can hear my long ago friend saying, "Shit or get off the pot."

That little note up there? It's perfect for where I find myself these days.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Not Alone

I don't know how other people process stuff that is going on in their lives. I can't imagine carrying it around in my head and leaving it there to fester or disappear or be forgotten. It's enough that I have to remind myself on a regular basis to relax my shoulders from being up around my ears. If I couldn't write down the stuff that causes my shoulders to rise, I can only imagine the smidgen of space there'd be left between the two by now.

I saw my therapist on Friday. The need to write shit down since then has felt akin to needing a drink of water in the desert. Holding a cooing and smiley baby and spending time with Twinkly Eyed Grandson has occupied me in the meantime.

So today, I'm writing this all down for me. Take it with a grain of salt. I can't make this shit up. I don't know how it works. Maybe I just have a vivid imagination. In any case....

There's a situation in my life that is causing me untold anxiety. Anger. The feeling of wanting to put my fingers in my ears and sing, "La,,la...I can't hear you." But it's not going away any time soon, if ever. Fun times. I've learned enough from therapy to know that my wanting this situation to disappear guarantees it will be around a long time. I haven't gotten to the place of embracing it yet. Not sure I even want to. But I need to find some kind of peace or else the irritable, grumpy, agitated person I have been lately will only get worse.

I am not used to being this way anymore and I am causing damage by letting it gain such a foothold. So much fun. Sigh. You know when you want to get it right but on your own terms? Have fun with that. Or you want to get it right but the painful path through it seems insurmountable. Yet at the end of the day you know you're going to try anyway because you've yet to shy away from Doing.The.Fucking.Hard.Work.Of.Healing.

So that situation is causing a ripple effect in other relationships. It culminated in my telling my therapist the other day that I didn't even know what the point of trying anymore was. Well, fuck. Wrong thing to say within earshot of my therapist that's for sure.

She wondered what age I was when that attitude first showed up in my life. The No point in trying. Might as well give up. So we wandered around inside a bit and into my mind came my 14 year old self. I don't know if it's a blessing or a curse to have these earlier versions of myself show up so vividly in my brain but there she was. Sitting in a dark hallway, hooded jacket pulled up over her head, cross legged with her arms crossed tightly, head down. I knew her well. I felt her pain.

I whispered out loud, "Scared." The next feeling that came was as familiar as my own skin. "Alone."

Tears and then sobs. So alone. Tears and tears and tears. Whispering scary things out loud, "If I don't keep trying I will be all alone."  Sobs. I want to curl up in a ball. My therapist asks, "What does your 14 year old self need?..... A hug?" Fuck, no. We wait while I try to figure out what I need. Didn't she know that my 14 year old self had given up on having needs long ago? There was no one to meet them.

"I need someone to sit beside me." My 57 year old self sat herself down in the dark with my 14 year old self. My therapist came and sat beside me. We three sat in a row in silence.

We gave thanks for the feisty-ness that my 14 year old self needed. We invited her to bring that along into today but that the other coping mechanisms were no longer needed. My 14 year old self punched people who pissed her off. She swore so much. She had an invisible suit of armor that was made of the strongest steel.

No wonder she felt alone.

My therapist walked me through situations in my life today and how to take a look to see which age was showing up to the conversation. Was it my 14 year old self or my 57 year old self?

I have hope that I can learn to respond in the here and now with my here and now abilities. I don't have to continue to view the world through that scared and alone 14 year old self. It feels like there is a mountain yet to climb. But I am not alone. Not anymore.

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Taking Time

Two half days of work and it's Friday. Nice. That picture? Hard pill to swallow. My trauma got triggered earlier this week and I was not nice about it. Nastiest I've been in years.

I'll readily extend the grace of saying change takes time to other people and even believe it. I tend to have higher standards for myself. Impossible to meet standards which I sometimes wonder if that isn't a bit of ego mixed in with all the rest. The challenge of being okay with simply being human continues.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

How Far

I return to work in a week from today. I wrote that sentence nearly a week ago. That tells you what life has been like lately.

I return to work the day after tomorrow. This morning I am exhausted after a busy day yesterday spent on my feet. So today is a rest day and a therapy day.

I returned to work yesterday. See how the week has gone?
Therapy was hard. Really hard.
But I survived it and the hard work is worth it. But it's not always fun. Ha. Actually my therapist has been reminding me that I sent her a meme that said it wasn't fun but that we'd be screwed without it. That is so true.

My first day of work I deleted over 1600 emails from my inbox. I wish I could say I was excited or even glad to be back at work but that's not the truth. I'm feeling mentally ready to tackle the challenges that come with my job. I have found my voice and will need to use it to advocate for either a less demanding work load, as I'm not willing to do the work of 2 people, or for my timelines to be less rigid. They hired two people to do my work while I was gone. That should tell them something? I hope.

And tomorrow is Friday and I work only half a day. I have to keep track of what day of the week it is now. I can see that when retirement comes my way I will enjoy it immensely. Until then I will keep putting one foot in front of the other and remember how far I have come.

Monday, June 03, 2019

Poop, Puke and Play

Things you (re)learn with a baby in the house:
  • you will never regret time spent holding them. Ever.
  • when they start to make those cooing noises? Love.
  • their smiles will melt your heart. Many times over.
  • when they start to cry with tears it will break your heart.
  • your own deep breathing practice will calm them down, too.
  • sleep is a gift. I'm not doing nights with the baby anymore but sleep still feels like a gift.
  • grateful for hand me downs otherwise you'd go broke buying all those cute baby outfits you see.
  • smelling a baby's head is still the best thing ever.
  • smelling their formula fed poops ain't. It helps to be out of the line of fire when changing a diaper because there's such a thing as projectile poop. Who knew?
  • Singing Pat a Cake, Pat a Cake, Baker's Man is still fun. So is Itsy Bitsy Spider. I smile even if the baby doesn't. 

I went looking for baby memes. Most of them are directed at moms and the ones for dads mostly take a stab at how much a dad doesn't do with their baby. The situation in our home isn't ideal. But it is our reality. Our son is doing a darn good job being a dad under less than ideal, and unplanned for, circumstances. 

We haven't spent this much time with a baby since this son was a baby. Dearest One commented the other day that this is the most time he's spent with any baby, ever. His schedule is much more flexible at the moment and he does the occasional night shift with the baby so he is getting more baby snuggles than he's ever had. Years ago my counselor spoke about how her husband didn't grasp until he was a grandparent how much work parenting is. I think Dearest One would agree. 

Here's to a new month. A new week. A new day. The sun is shining. Life is good.