I’m Alive

I woke up this morning and decided that I’m ready to blog again.  I went on an unplanned sabbatical and stayed a bit longer than planned.  I think bullets are in order.

  • Marriage — oh, where to begin.  Gil and I survived the holiday chaos and made it through stronger, or so I thought.  The past week has been challenging, but that’s another post.  Just after Thanksgiving I felt renewed and willing to give our marriage another shot.  This was sparked by a conversation with a woman I respect tremendously, and she provided a fresh but experienced perspective.  We spent Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s at home and were firm with our extended families about NOT traveling.  We have hauled ourselves and all of our holiday crap to multiple places every year since we married (13 years!!) and it’s always stressful.  It has become a chaotic hell since Piers and Wallace were born, and this year we were firm — NO TRAVELING.  We’re done.  Our families are not easy, and well, even though it was nice to be home, it was not without stress.  Again, that’s another post.  Gil had a lot of time off and worked from home when he could, and overall, the time together with just the four of us was the respite we needed.  I had a lot more time to think since we were home, and a big realization was how much other people and their expectations invade our marriage.  Gil and I both have some serious boundary issues with our families, and overall it felt good to put our marriage and our own nuclear family first.  
  • ADHD — I am no longer taking Strattera.  I got to a point where the benefits were not outweighing the costs.  Between doctor’s appointments and copays, it wasn’t worth the trouble.  Strattera is not on the preferred drug list for my insurance company, and there’s really nothing comparable.  Perhaps when a generic comes out or when our insurance changes, I’ll give it another go.  The most frustrating part is that my focus has been dreadful this week.  It feels like my brain is in a wind storm, and it’s trying to process every piece of debris that’s flying at it.  I can’t filter what’s important and what’s simply trash, and after using ungodly amounts of energy to simply exist, I’m entering into that terrifying state of overwhelm.  Last week I impulsively told my therapist that I was done with therapy for a while.  This week I want nothing more than to hole up in her office and sob uncontrollably.  I adore my therapist, but for multiple reasons, i feel that I’ve reached my limit with what I can accomplish with her.  I’m also not in a place to go shopping for a new therapist.  I have to continue living in the present and know that I won’t always feel exactly as I do right now.
  • Grief — so this is why I started blogging in the first place, and I’ve spent very little time writing about coping with my father’s suicide and more recently, the death of my beloved father-in-law.  Something happened recently that literally brought me to my knees.  A random cousin who I’m friends with on Facebook, tagged me in a picture.  I received an email and immediately opened it up to view the posted item.  It was a picture of my dad and several of his brothers and nephews.  I don’t have as many pictures of my father as I would like and even fewer where he looks happy and at peace.  Well, he looked that way in this particular photo, and it’s been screwing with my head ever since I saw it.  The other part that I found unnerving were the comments from various friends and family members about the picture — so normal and unscarred.  Several mentioned my dad and one of his brothers who has also passed since the picture was taken, but it was like they were sentimentally relishing a distant memory.  I don’t understand why this picture hit me so hard.  I think it might have something to do with my dad really being in his element in the picture.  He was happiest when he was out on his family’s farm land spending time with his brothers and other family members.  I think that was when he was most himself, and that was the scene in this photograph.  I could tell that it was fall by the clothing and the rich, colorful leaves in the background.  Perhaps it was a Thanksgiving get-together, and the men might have been smoking some type of meat.  What got me the most was the genuine smile on my dad’s face.  He looked completely relaxed and joyful.  The photograph was taken no more than a year or two before he decided to end his life.  After all this time, I still don’t understand and I don’t know that the ache inside of me will ever go away.  The other part that unnerves me is how little my dad’s side of the family understands the depth of my pain.  I felt that way right after his death, and it took everything in me to not reference this in the comments underneath the photograph.  I never commented.  I simply hit the Like button and again, dealt privately with my grief.
  • Other – The boys and I caught the flu the beginning of January, but I think we are finally well.  I had it so bad that I had to send Piers to stay with Mamala.  If you’ve read any of my posts about my mother, then you now fully understand how sick and out of options I was.  It was rough and I thought I would never feel good again.  I lost some weight which is never good, and I still feel a little run-down, but overall, I’m all better.

I’ve missed blogging and had really gotten into a groove a few months back.  My plan is to post at least a couple of times a week.  Happy 2013 everyone!!  Before the flu hit, I felt renewed energy and had goals set for the new year — not my typical thing.  I’m trying my best to be patient with myself, but I really want this to be more of a year of action.  I can really get lost in my head if I’m not careful, so I need action-oriented plans.

Until next time, friends…..

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6 thoughts on “I’m Alive

  1. Thanks for the kind words, Lisa. I’ve never tried Reiki, but it’s something I’m interested in learning about. I’ve done lots of yoga and have incorporated some chakra healing through yoga. When I’m consistent, that works wonders. I finally made it to my Iyengar yoga class today, and I feel better emotionally than I have in weeks.

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  2. You’ve been through so much. Please don’t be too hard on yourself. Reading your long list of challenges, I don’t blame you for taking time to stay well and balanced. Speaking of balance, have you tried Reiki or energy healing? It’s something that I’ve been doing and learning about; very cool and helpful.

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  3. Welcome back, Grief Happens! 🙂 (I was wondering where you’d been.) Glad to hear you’re recognizing that one of your marriage-stressors was that your families were ignoring your boundaries. (Sorry you have to deal with this, but glad you’ve figured it out.) And it’s nice to see that you’re figuring out how to deal with them.

    Sorry you’ve been sick, and what you’re going through w/ your ADHD-stuff, but it sounds like you’re doing better, physically, and you seem optimistic. That’s awesome! Can’t wait for next time, to hear more…. 🙂

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