Avoid, avoid, avoid.
Still haven’t made my deadline. Of course. Still haven’t written a word. Of course. Still haven’t faced any of my feelings. Of course. Is it obvious that I hate myself? Is it spilling off this page? If I could punish myself with words, I would. If I could punch myself into feeling better, I would.
There’s no way, it seems, to erase the pain. The well is deep. The feelings in there are fucking awful.
In the words of The Grinch, “I loathe myself.”
Day 116 – Dark Day.
Spoke too soon. I didn’t even give him one day before expecting him to move on. Grief doesn’t work like that. I SHOULD KNOW!!!
I always think I’m so self-aware, too…
I can’t tell what makes sense anymore. Sadness has warped my sense of what “should” be and what reality dictates. I can’t expect kindness and understanding and sympathy when I refuse to give it out. But I can’t figure it out. I have no idea if what I’m saying makes sense or if I’m being cold and heartless.
Cold and heartless this time, I think.
Day 103 – I should know…
I spent the day helping my friend move. He has helped me move no fewer than 4 times. I have helped him move 0 times. (He’s never moved…calm self.)
I hated every damn second of it. When I moved, I had approximately 1,000,000 things to move and he helped me do it without complaining even once. He had: a bed, dresser, box of clothes, some little knickknacks, shoes in a suitcase, a few board games, and a bookshelf. You would have thought based on my annoyance and exhaustion that he had as many things as I have. Not even close. AND we had help. AND I barely did anything. I complained when he asked me to make his bed while he carried in other items from the U-haul. I sighed and moaned when I had to take the clothes out of the garment bags, and not just leave them there. I almost hyperventilated when he asked me to go through one of the boxes when I was just uselessly sitting on the floor pretending to be useful. How dare he?!?
My instinct is to blame how overall tired I am from being sad all the damn time. Sadness takes a lot out of you. I imagine it’s similar to hatred/anger. I wouldn’t know, because I feel them both simultaneously, so I can’t tell them apart. It is exhausting to be wrecked from sadness, though.
I have almost no patience for anyone or anything. I get upset when people ask things of me or expect a normal level of participation/help/being present/caring/showing up. So I “helped” my friend move but really I wanted to sleep in the corner and believe I was anywhere else, living someone else’s life.
Not moving that stupid, heavy dresser with its stupid, heavy clothes and its stupid, heavy expectations that I be normal.
Day 97 – Just be normal
Well, I suck. What can I say? I keep missing days.
I felt good today. Useful, productive, dare I say – happy?!? I like the people at my job and the work keeps me distracted for the most part. I left work feeling like I’d actually done something with my day, had some fun interactions, and then had the evening free to do whatever I wanted (TV and food, obviously).
Am I forgetting? Am I a bad person? I felt relieved. I could breathe. Now that I realize this, it’s all gone.
Should I be grieving? Is this part of grieving?
I feel bad that I felt good. I’m ashamed.
Day 95 – Less grief, then more grief
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.
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
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
I avoided mentioning it for a few days so I could process everything…
The benefits of being single are: doing whatever you want all the time, not having to answer to anyone for any reason, not having anyone to judge you or criticize you or yell at you.
The benefits of being in a relationship are: companionship, someone to be there for you, someone who loves you no matter how annoying/weird/frustrating you are, someone to make you laugh, someone to lean on, someone who understands you, someone to share your life with, someone to love and be loved by.
Sometimes I think the grief is too real and has changed me too much. Sometimes I think it has rendered me incapable of seeing what I should be doing vs what I want to do in the moment vs what’s good for me in the long run.
Love feels more practical and comfortable and common than what any source of media would ever lead me to believe. Movies, books, songs, poems, television shows, and my own hormones circa high school made me think that love would feel epic. And then I notice all the people who had that undeniable flare up – that all-consuming fire of passion – fizzle out. They have nothing leftover once it’s gone. So despite the “normalness” that is my love, it endures.
I choose the relationship every single day. It’s not even a question. But I wonder what effect grief has on me…
Day 87 – Choices