I have about 50 extra pounds of sadness on my body. Actual weight. That I’m trying to lose.
But, turns out, it’s hard to lose sadness by the pound. I can pick up the pounds just about anywhere, any time, any day but losing them is so much harder. They always find me.
I tried to lose them today… That went about as well as expected. I ate pizza when I got sad. A sandwich when the sadness came back. A brownie because brownies are delicious and I made the mistake of buying them.
You can physically see how sad I am. And when I go to the gym and see rail thin movie stars – true story, my gym is basically at a movie theatre where there was a premier today so I had to walk past them in shorts and a smelly t-shirt that’s fitted* – I was reminded of just how far I have to go. I can literally measure my sadness by the pound. And I can see how much I still have around. Pants don’t fit over my sadness stomach.
Day 94 – Weighed Down
*it’s supposed to be loose
11th of September. Grief is universal. I don’t want anyone to feel what I feel (EVER) but I know for sure that some do. They probably feel the same gnawing fear that (more) people they love will get hurt or sick. They probably experience the same worried turning in their stomachs and frequent heart palpitations that come from nowhere. They probably suffer from insomnia. They probably feel like the world is closing in around them, like an elephant is sitting on their chest, like they will drown in bittersweet memories. Or, more accurately, crushingnostalgicsadlove memories. (That’s not a word, apparently. Microsoft wants me to change it to something else.)
That felt oddly dramatic. Pain is dramatic, but I try to make jokes usually to cover it up. Here’s a fact, not a joke: another woman started working at the same time as me, doing the same job. I went into her office today to figure out what she was doing (because I didn’t want to be wasting time but had no idea what to do) and she was doing a combination of looking for a new apartment and Gchatting her old coworkers about how she wasn’t doing anything. So. I’m not the worst employee?!
I sat back at my desk and with no work distractions, the memories came back. I swiveled in my chair to the memories of Thanksgiving meals with family in Oklahoma and being chased by our puppy when we first got him and how supportive he was when we were playing tennis or doing anything, really.
For once in my life, I was INCREDIBLY thankful when a meeting came up.
Day 93 – Thanks for the memories (I’m crying again)
First day. I put on my big girl pants and faced the world. I’m not gonna lie: pajamas on the couch is much better than pants in the outside world.
As a side note, I tried ridiculously hard not to panic about being unreachable by phone, not to worry that something was going to happen, not to check my phone constantly (thinking I was being sneaky, but I’m about as sneaky as a toddler with pots and pans). I ended up feeling sick with worry all day. What if something happened? What if someone needed me and couldn’t get ahold of me? What if…?
I feel like I’ll never be free of the pain.
It takes a lot for me to admit when I’m wrong. Who wants to be wrong? Especially when I’m right all the time. Kidding… Kind of.
I did admit it, though. And I got the “well, do better next time” response. Which, fair, but frustrating. If you’re already eating crow, it’s not exactly fun to have someone twist the knife. But also, maybe I do the same thing to other people. Unsure.
One of the hardest parts about being sad all the time is not taking it out on other people. I try to keep it bottled up all the time, but if it gets out, it always lands on the people that I love the most. I SHOULD take it out on that asshole driver Mark (don’t know his name, but it could be Mark) who cut me off or that woman who couldn’t figure out how to use the credit card machine but instead I take it out on my mom. Sometimes others, but usually my mom, who doesn’t deserve it. She deserves flowers and hugs but instead she got me. Unfortunate for her.
I don’t live with her or anything, but I know how to work a phone.
Day 91 – Right is wrong
Always a day behind. There is a chance I’ll catch up eventually, but like everything else in my life, I’m not holding my breath until it happens.
I found that freedom I was looking for today, but the grief came in waves anyway. So I bought shoes. As one does…
I justified it by saying that I’ll have a paycheck soon, but I think paychecks are supposed to be for the other, more normal expenses in life, like rent and food. But sometimes, if retail therapy will make me feel better even for a second, I feel compelled to comply. Hopefully I can replace sadness with sandals.
When will I feel better? Does that happen? I have never better understood when Cheryl Strayed takes to the trail in Wild than I do now. Because if you can’t walk away from yourself, then you just have to live in it every single day and think about it every single day. Sometimes it’s too much. Other times shoes or cookies or TV help me forget just for a second that everything is not okay.
Day 90 – Retail Therapy
Does it make me the worst person ever if I am relieved and thankful that I am back from the place where sadness lives? (A literal location, not psychological or emotional.) Or the second worst person?
Because I am relieved. It’s incredibly hard to be there. I feel free the minute the plane takes off. I read. I eat. I pet my dog. I get excited about plans for the upcoming week. I daydream about the future.
If you’ve never been in this position, maybe it seems callous and harsh. But it doesn’t feel that way. It feels like…freedom. It doesn’t mean I’m not sad. I’m sad all the damn time. I wake up sad. I go to bed sad. I get sad suddenly for no reason in a room full of my friends. But sometimes I need to get away from the sadness because otherwise I will give in to it and I’ll never be able to survive that.
Day 89 – Freedom
I love organization, planning, and being a day behind in posting my blog. Not sure why. Just seems to be what keeps happening. Maybe this time it was because I am in the heart of the stress and grief, maybe it was because I got distracted watching TV and drinking chai tea, or maybe it was because when I’m in a disorganized, chaotic situation, I can’t think straight and I just end up shutting down like a robot with an “off” switch. Do they still have “off” switches? Do they still call them robots, or have we moved on to the more popular term AI?
Am I 100 years old?
Does anyone else feel that constant worried feeling in their stomach, followed by headaches, stomach aches, heart pounding, and insomnia? NO? Cool, me neither. I think sometimes that I’m very lucky I found someone who loves me despite this. I also think sometimes that I should probably go live by myself (and my dog, obviously) on an island somewhere and not interact with other humans.
Day 88 – Late as usual