...in myself, and somewhat in regard to my life.
There has been turmoil going on in the past few weeks, and I was in the process of processing, if you will. And today it kind of came to a head.
And I realized a couple of uncomfortable truths.
I don't like when people, especially people who are supposed to "be in my corner" tell me that they don't expect sympathy because I'm a cold person.
But then again, maybe I really am a cold person.
I'm not exactly the easiest person to get to know. I would venture to guess that people who know me - they believe they know me very well. And 90% or more of them would be wrong. Very wrong. Basically, I'm extremely introverted (says she who writes a blog). I write because it's something I'm fairly good at and I enjoy it. Same reason I sing. But in spite of the writing and the ability to speak and sing in public, I'm really a very private person, in the sense that personality tests show me as an "introvert" almost off the extreme end of the chart. Hardly anyone knows much of my history, and not that I'm hiding felonies or the like, but there's a lot that I don't talk about. I'm not a fan of the tell-all. But I wonder whether pushing all the "stuff" down hasn't done more harm than good.
We're told in our yoga studies that we carry our history in different places in our bodies. If this history isn't adequately dealt with, parts malfunction. I've got a lot of malfunction going on lately, I can tell you that. I tend to deal with things by "working." I'll be the one handing out cups of coffee or tea. I make sure everyone's fed. I make sure that if there are phone calls to make, they get made. Gas is in the truck. Fridge is stocked. But I'm often not very good at the tea-and-sympathy thing. Not really. At least that's what I've been thinking lately. There are family members who can handle this much better than I can.
Maybe being a warm fuzzy person isn't in my make-up. Maybe I'm missing a sensitivity chip.
Maybe the person who told me that is manipulating and trying to get something for her own ends, and I don't like it, so I'm harsher than I would normally be.
So where does that leave me?
Depressed. And I don't necessarily mean in a sense of "being sad."
I am beginning to believe that perhaps I have been living with honest-to-God depression - the clinical kind. For years, maybe. I've kept so much under so many layers; having to be the one "in charge" and "the strong one." But underneath, I'm just not able to muster up much joy.
I'm recalling a workshop many years ago that I took (the kids were young, that's how long ago it was) where we had a quiz to take. I remember answering questions honestly, and scaring the crap out of the facilitator, who said, "There's a person who answered quiz questions that I'd like to see, because we need to talk." I just knew it was me, and I never did follow up on that. And maybe I should have. I might be a happier person today if I had done that a long while ago.
I'm not talking happy-slappy with butterflies, rainbows and unicorns.
I'd just like to get a good night's sleep, wake up rested and feel like I could tackle a normal day.
But I am not. I'm not doing any of that, really. And I'm beginning to realize how much I've shut myself off. And I know people don't realize it. Maybe not even me... I've become very good at "being busy." But in that busy-ness, I'm not truly enjoying it. I'm doing things because it's expected of me. Because I'm "supposed" to. Because there's this mask that I'm wearing that's covering my own true self up. I'd like to not feel like I was shut off from basic good feelings and affections. But I feel as if there's this gigantic pane of glass in front of me. I can observe what's going on. I can react, appropriately for the most part. But my emotions aren't engaged. It's almost clinical. I do what needs to be done because people expect me to do what needs to be done. And then I move on.
I believe, in my heart, that I'm a good person. But I don't know anymore. I don't know how to deal with change, and I know I need to change for my own well-being.
Maybe, though, if I thought about it, I wouldn't like me. Maybe the me that's hidden needs to be kept hidden. Or not. See? It's not as easy as, say, knitting a sock or making jelly.
Each of us is made of layers. We have to be; that's the way we're all wired. We're multi-dimensional beings. But I often wonder what it would be like to recapture (If there's anything to recapture? How long have I been this way?) days when I was ok with who I was and how I faced life. Somehow, I imagined this time in my life would be "better." I can't actually define the concept of "better" but I do know I didn't expect to feel like this. I didn't expect to find no rest in rest. To find no joy in "being." To find myself counting days as "wasted" when I really do know that each is precious - particularly in my own circumstance, because I'm very lucky. I have a good set of kids; I have a fantastic husband. I have a good job, a house that's paid for, and nothing near the struggles that so many people have. But somehow, there's a hole somewhere, and I feel like I'm at the bottom of that hole looking around and not finding a way back up to the light.
I remember getting joy out of being outside, with Hubby. Being places where the two of us could just enjoy each other's company. Stuff changed, and I don't know how some of it happened, but we don't do that a lot anymore. We're orbiting the same planet, but at different times. I believe our foundation is strong. But I'm missing the stuff that's the glue to hold the rest of it together.
He mentioned it the other night. And the sad thing is, there's nothing he can do because he's doing everything within his own power. He's the one who said that I had shut myself off - and he's right.
I can blame a lot of this self-realization on the fact that I've spent the past year and a little bit NOT doing stuff I was accustomed to doing. Once I keeled over and it took the docs several months to figure out how to keep my heart rhythms straight, I noticed a big change. I'm more of a slug. I really don't want to do anything. Honestly, a perfect day is to just sit.
And what the heck is that??? That's not me. I am cooped up. Cooped up in my office, cooped up in my house. Cooped up in my head. Nobody's got the lock and key. It's all me. Maybe some of it is the meds I'm on. I don't handle heat well, and I'm scared. I'm scared to do anything that will result in another keel-over. I have no endurance. I have no ability to do the stuff I used to do.
I'm not talking "climb the Matterhorn" kind of stuff. I'm talking about a 10-mile bike ride. I'm talking about taking a walk through the (admittedly hilly) neighborhood and not panting like an aged canine after the first 2 blocks. I'm talking about having some basic upper body strength and being more physically active. This is after losing all kinds of weight, too. So it's not even that I'm extra-heavy, though my own personal goal is about 10 lbs. away. I'm just "off" in a lot of ways, and I am beginning to feel like I'm overwhelmed. I look at my schedule and while I've dumped some things, other things have come up and many days (well, MOST days), I'm feeling as if I'm pushing a cooked spaghetti noodle uphill with my nose.
I don't know what to do with all of this. Unpacking it may be healthy, or maybe I'm perpetuating a gigantic pity-party for myself as guest of honor. And nobody really cares. I don't mean that to sound like I want an outpouring of sympathy, because I don't. I'm just acknowledging that everyone has baggage. I think I've just figured out where mine is, and I'm not all that happy about it. Then again, is anyone??