Monday, February 27, 2017

Single or Satisfied?

I like being single.  I don't even really think about the fact I'm single anymore, despite what my Facebook  #reasonsImsingle diatribe may have given the impression of.  Though it was really just a celebration of my oddness, but I digress.

Here are the things that I am thinking about instead: What do I want to do in life and how am I going to get there?  I'm taking online courses, going back to school and planning for full-time college in the Fall. My health has become a priority as well so daily exercise is taking up at least 30 minutes a day.  Creating healthy meals also fills my mind, so I'm focussing on the nutritional value of foods. I want to be able to handle the stress of school, so I'm meditating every night.
My kids are getting older, taking time to play cards games and go on walks with them is a priority. I enjoy creating, so I purchased a ukulele and I "jam" along to my tunes with it.  I jump on my son's mini drum set and practise basic rock beats to rebuild my motor skills after years of poor neuro function. I get together with good friends; we talk, we joke, we have deep philosophical discussions, we listen, we support, sometimes we play music. I believe in every voice counting, on social media and otherwise, so I read, post and comment on social justice issues.

Every two weeks or so, I go out and do something fun with someone I find attractive that I don't know very well.  Not dates per se, just enjoying their presence, getting to know them. These are potentially good friends and I don't mind riding that line until they (or I) decide otherwise.

I'm not really looking for a relationship.

I know, pretty cliche. I'm sure some singles are sick of hearing it.  However, in order for me to be willing to commit a specific amount of time and emotional energy, it has to feel GOOD.
I think it can be described in this way:
When I see them I genuinely feel a rush of happiness and warmth. Then as we are hanging out I feel a level of comfort comparable to when I take my bra off at the end of the day. When they touch me... Well this isn't my sex blog so I'll leave that part out.

This GOOD feeling doesn't happen overnight and I don't have large amounts of time/energy to build that with someone at the moment.  I do, however, enjoy a different types of relationships (when I say relationships, I'm referring to the way two people relate to one another, not the traditional romantic perspective).  The ones from afar, where the person is just as unable to commit as you are.  There's getting to know them, no pressure, no expectations, no intentions other than communicating to share because you both honestly enjoy it.  These are becoming my favourite.  When your visions of the future don't currently include a serious romantic partnership, it's nice to have others around you who are on the same wavelength.

When I was 13, someone asked me how I saw my future.  I told them I would be living in a small cabin on a lake, writing everyday. There was no husband or wife in that vision.  I see now that this was a unique mindset for an adolescent girl and I am happy for it, it means that I saw myself as completely content as a single adult.  Here I am, just that.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Don't Feed the Fear

I'm nervous about my neuro consult tomorrow.  I know that there is nothing seriously wrong with me, that my condition is not fatal, it is however, affecting my quality of life.  We grew up being told not to waste the doctor's time.
Don't go to the doctor unless it is really bad.
Our parents wore the badge of suffering like it was the Purple Heart. They prided themselves on not being a drain on the system.  Time and time again, we hear the diagnoses of 3rd and 4th stage cancer, if only we caught it sooner...
But we don't learn.
Socialized healthcare seen as a free hand-out and it is rude to take advantage of something given freely.
It is wrong to accept help before you are damn near dead from trying to do it yourself.
We have such a diseased view of our "health" care system's role,
that the symptoms are killing us.
It's the night before my appointment
Those voices are trying to tell me that I'm taking up time that a sicker person could have.
Scenarios of my symptoms being brushed off as not serious enough to look into are circling like vultures.
Having to tell someone why I deserve a higher quality of life, not just a passable existence until my body develops something that could actually end said passable existence before we do anything about it, sucks.
(That was a super long sentence, I don't care. In the words of my friend Jacob Kriger: Deal with it.)
I'm not dying, I'm getting better.
I want help continuing to get better.
I deserve the chance to live a realitively normal life.
I want to be able to work more than 20 hours a week without getting migraines as a result,
or at least have a medication that will actually treat the migraines, and allow me to function at the same time.
I want to not have to leave work early because I can't speak, type or walk straight.
I want to be able to go to school to get a job that I could only work 20 hour weeks if necessary for my health and still not live under the poverty line.
What a line to draw in the sand it is simply to state:
Because I deserve to feel better.

Monday, February 13, 2017

It's Just a Dance

My daughter came to me the other day and told me she was excited because she asked one of her crushes (that's right, she's keeping her options open) to the Valentine's dance and he said "Sure, why not."

Granted the acceptance was a little lacklustre for my taste, but here's the thing: she approached him. My 11 year old, usually very shy, daughter mustered up the confidence to ask out a boy she liked.

Today, after discussing her outfit options for the dance, she mentioned she was going with her friend, not her crush.  "Oh, why aren't you going with him anymore." I enquired.
"He told me he wanted to go with someone he had a crush on." She said with a non chalant shrug.  I was like, "Oh, honey, I'm sorry." And I felt that familiar adolescent heart ache of the unrequited (not that that feeling is reserved for adolescents, but I digress).  Though watching her body language I could tell this was not a big deal to her.  She was perfectly fine and didn't seem to take it personally at all.
"It's okay, I'm going with so and so, she's my friend and she was going to be the third wheel, and now she's not."

I have succeeded in raising an adolescent girl who doesn't place her self-worth on wether or not a boy likes her back.  Holy shit.  That's the parenting mother-load right fucking there.

Sometimes it's important to pat yourself on the back.

Now, to help her maintain that self confidence and independence over the next 7 years.  I got this.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Surprise

One day you are going to be strolling down the street and your most nagging fear is going to walk towards you and you are going to realize you don't fear it anymore.  You sure as hell don't want it in your life, but it no longer knocks the wind out of you or buckles your knees.

One day, after 18 months of taking it one day at a time, you realized how strong you have become.  You went to group therapy, you meditated, you focussed on your art, you drew your friends close to you and let others go.  All of these things, they added up. You didn't even know how much, until that fear rounded the corner, looked right at you and headed in your direction...and you didn't duck into the nearest store.  You didn't turn around and run away.  Instead you breathed, focused on your priorities, kept your loved ones happily oblivious to the fear approaching.  You didn't even imagine the worst.  You simply stayed in the moment, one breath at a time, one step at a time, the words of your children filling your chest with purpose. Then the fear passed right by. You even turned to watch it go. "That's it?" You ask your body. "You're not going to give out on me in a few minutes are you legs?" But they stayed strong, unlike the last time you faced that fear. You wondered "when am I going to burst into tears?" But the urge to cry  didn't not come. Not right away.

It's later, when you realized the enormity of where you came from to where you are now that you cried.  When you knew that from now on you will not feel the need to check the grocery store parking lot, or do a scan of the pub when you walk in. You see now how your life is going to change. You are no longer a victim and this fear holds no more power over you.

You also realized that DAMN you were looking fine, in your swooping scarf, long Stylin jacket, new 'do, a ukulele in one hand and a briefcase in the other.  You were a walking powerhouse of an artistic business woman, with a side of nurturer...and you were 100% your independent self.  You dressed that way for you and you only, you did not wake up that morning and ask yourself what would "so and so" (in the past, a romantic interest) think of this outfit?  You have become whole again.  You just needed an old fear to round the corner to realize it.