Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Dawn of the 6th Decade

By my own reckoning, I shouldn't be sitting here.

I should have been dead dozens of times.

Yet, still here. God's not done with me yet. My kids are finally on the verge of independence, a place I never thought they'd get to. Elder starts his second job on my 50th birthday.  With a little guidance, he'll get through all the necessary hoops.  But I couldn't have planned any of the things that have happened for him in the last 6 months.

We've just been hanging in there. Doing the best we can. And I expect the coming days and years will be more of the same.


Thursday, May 18, 2017

Putting myself back together


SO. I feel like the universe is asking me to pay attention to this stuff. Sometimes I feel like a bird flying against a building because all I see is the blue sky and not that it's just a reflection...I want the blue sky and I keep getting the glass.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Food is Fuel and Other Random Thoughts

I'm a foodie, and I cannot lie. I enjoy it, I savor it, it's a total sensory experience.

Food is also a fraught thing. I know I'm not alone in using it as a pacifier, a band-aid, or relating it to all I've ever loved and lost.  It's a handy drug, needing no script.

The upside is also the downside. The more you consume, the more you need, the more you fall apart.

Despite my own doctor's admonishments, I kept on keeping on. I'd think about making any necessary changes to my life and eating habits tomorrow.

Until the scale started hitting alarming numbers, even to me.

So on January 1, I undertook the following project. Mindfulness. Watching what I ate. Making sure I hit the gym at least 3 times a week. Making sure I walk 10-13 thousand steps a day. Making sure I remember to breathe. The stakes are actually fairly high, putting aside the thought I need to live until I'm 150, anyway. I'm trying to manage 3, or 4, or 5 medical conditions on diet and exercise alone.

Here's the update on how that's working out for me:
  • Down almost 20 lbs
  • Wine and beer consumption down 61% (I did the math twice)
  • Improved strength and mobility
It would be really nice to get down another 10 lbs, but I'm feeling good, and happy (or at least as happy as I can be),

It's not a diet, it's a complete change to the way I approach food and exercise.  For me, there's no separation of how I feel physically from how I feel mentally and emotionally. The problems haven't changed, but my ability to deal with them has, for the better. 

Other subtle changes that have coursed from this are more real-time, in-person interactions, more time spent out in nature (enjoyed stopping with my younger one last night at dusk to admire the colors of the sky and the song of the spring peepers), and generally a more spiritual awareness of how my attitudes and interactions affect other people. 

Bottom line:  think small. Start small. Create one new good habit a day and make sure you consciously make it a part of your life. Great things begin with a single step. 

Monday, March 20, 2017

Gaslight

In the monumental task of deconstructing all the strongholds in my life, there's the gaslight.

Gaslighting is a hot topic, because that's happening in the world writ large. But gaslighting has been going on in my own private Idaho much longer than that.

I find myself awake in the middle of the night, ripping out the rot that has settled in my soul, from years--decades, really--of people taking advantage of my better nature.

And then convincing everyone around me that it never happened. And that I was crazy.

This has been an ongoing affair.  And up until now, I've been quiet, because, you know, my sanity might get called into question.

Except now the price for my silence is my sanity.

You see my problem.

But, if I cannot speak, I can at least act. Actions speak volumes. I can choose not to engage.  Yet, choosing to not engage is not enough.  I feel the overwhelming urge to call bullshit.

Will choosing not to engage call bullshit loudly enough?

Time will tell.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Screaming into the Wind

Wow, where do I start?  My kids are growing up too fast, and this world is changing faster than I can keep up. Feeling overwhelmed, bullied, left behind. How much of any of these perception, and how much is actual?

I'm not a good person to ask. Years of fighting tooth and nail for the boys have left me scarred, scared, and with a case of PTSD that would shake a combat veteran. I realize I am coming to an end of many things, and I am in the process of making peace with as many things as I can make peace with. Took the boys to confession last night.  Made a gift for my husband that won't be ready until after Christmas (it's okay, something for him to look forward to)

My main goals since autism were to get the boys do adulthood as functioning citizens, not clients. We are most of the way there, age-wise, but their lives are open questions given all the variables from political, ecological, and societal perspectives.  I'm finding myself focused on 'next world' stuff. I want them both to have a relationship with God, as I do. I'm finding that to be my overwhelming priority, almost to the exclusion of everything else.

Why?  I'm not sure. All I know is that I am cycling from sad, to tired, to quiet despair. I am feeling my age. I am feeling my mortality. All the petty pains of day to day living are little more than distractions to the business at hand.

I pray a lot. I pray for us all.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Erasure

It's been a little while, hasn't it? It's been so long, that I'm not even sure where I left off.  (Pausing a moment to read back and reflect. WOW....)

Since that last post, the old job has come to an end and I've changed jobs twice.  I had planned at the end of the first one to stay home and get our lives in order, and three days into CEO at home I had my first email for a phone interview. Two months after that, I'm back in the fire.

However, I'm not here to talk about any of that, because it's not that important. What I want to talk about is some of the stuff we are struggling with. The kids are all right, but they could be doing better. In particular,  we're struggling with erasure.

My son ran an enhancement (mini course) and was the student Wing Bowl winner. He also has autism and the yearbook editor 'forgot' to include himeven after promises from the yearbook moderator that he'd be included for both his enhancement and the wing bowl. Yet, there are pictures of kids' family vacations and certain kids enjoying winter break. And these things clearly didn't happen as part of school activities.  Wing bowl was covered, featuring a hunky student and announcing the adult winner. Hmm.

Adding insult to injury, the ONE club he enjoyed and participated was left out of the yearbook. Yes, LGBT, ethnic, all clubs were included.....except for the one that features mentoring students with disabilities. 

As if they don't exist. 

Take this all another step. The guy in our backyard takes down a tree on our property. Because, you know, "You have a full plate." (I loved that tree. I am bitter.) I drive home from work to find a neighbor allowing her dog to do its business on my lawn. When I wrote her a note asking her to PLEASE keep her dog off my lawn, she scribbles me a nasty note--as if I am the person in the wrong for NOT letting HER animal do whatever it wants on my property. 

This is death from a thousand cuts. Because we are who we are, it's almost like everyone feels they can do whatever they want to us, because, we are somehow less.

If this is the way the world is going, I don't want to live in it. 



Wednesday, February 18, 2015

So....Lent

I have a whopping two resolutions.

1)  Walk with Job
2) Don't be an a**hole

The second is harder than you think. 

I've been quiet for several reasons, mostly having to do with going another 15 rounds with depression and anxiety over all the impending change and second-guessing my decisions as a parent.  And some anxiety and depression radiates over that, too. 

But despite all that, we have good stuff. Nic finished his first season of high school sport, and Gabriel is getting ready to cross over into Boy Scouts AND continuing his music.  He sings a lot. I love to hear him. Despite not making the school chorus (which I strongly suspect is a biased process, anyhow), I hear him sing tunefully around the house, all variety of music. It makes him happy, and hearing him makes me happy. 

And a little less stressed. 

In my work life, I totally won launch, in my job and in all the other roles I found myself thrust into. It was an awesome experience, but I'm happy the excitement is dying down. I'm still giving university lectures, and wonder if my next step is at long last getting my doctorate and leveraging my parental experience to effect change. It's a hell of an idea, but I don't know whether it's the right way to go.  Praying on it, like I am praying on everything else. 

And in other news, I was commissioned an extraordinary minister of holy communion in November, and as such, my first commission was to help distribute ashes. Which was awesome.  And I felt very much like I was exactly where I needed to be, when I needed to be there. 

And Nic tonight met with the director of CYO and asked to help with the track team. I guess I won't be stepping too far away from track this spring. 

And maybe we'll sign G up. Maybe this will be good for him, too. 

In the meantime, I celebrate 5 years at my place of work, despite that coming to an end. It's not over yet, so I'll go out doing the best job I know how. 

I don't know what's ahead. But I'm sure it'll be fine. Whatever it is.