I can honestly say that today is not a wonderful day. It is hard for me to be happy for no reason or any reason. Certainly I am in no mood to be happy for you, whatever circumstance in life you may be in. I sound like a person with a bad attitude. You can safely say that I am a bad person altogether. It would not bother me.
What I know for sure is I am my own best friend. No one knows me better. No one can take care of me or can make me feel better. And when I am feeling the worst and need a shoulder to cry on, that’s the worst time for me to seek solace from another. It’s the best time to be quiet, not do anything but know that I am ok. There’s no need for action. What else I know for sure is I am human. In the heat of the moment, all good sense run out the door. And I react and do what I told another not to do. And because I know she had the same, experience I sought solace from her. She was kind enough, soft spoken enough but told me that I brought it on myself.
Can I say that I was a little surprised? She went on to say she was happy to welcome me again but not to bring my drama. I can understand that. Really I can. But I had not known her well at all when she knocked on our door a few months ago with her drama, her tears and plea for help. We welcomed her with hugs, offered her tea and gave her help. Not once but on 3 occasions. I remembered hours on the phone listening to her trouble with the same crazy neighbour. I gave her advice of not engaging with her at all. I told her to seek help from the police liaison. I told her all this, and yet I went against my own advice yesterday. I am human, damn it and I engaged, yelled and screamed. I was so frustrated and angry I thought I was going to explode. I thought talking with someone who had a It similar experience would help.
I had no tears and only want to ventilate. I did receive an ear and some soft spoken Christian lecture of where I had erred. It didn’t understood or comforted but it didn’t anger me either. It was rather sobering and eye opening. I am thankful for the encounter. It made me realize how naive and Pollyanna I am. I am always willing with open arms, tea and an ear to another’s distress. I cannot think fast or see far enough to form judgements to lecture. Soothe first is my motto. I am not sorry that I am a Pollyanna or that I am a feeling, reactive person.
I am not happy that I had this episode. I feel bad, as if I had a psychotic episode. My stomach hurts and my thoughts are galloping in tandem with my erratic thoughts. It’s not at all good for my health. Here’s my advice again on dealing with someone like my crazy neighbour. Do not engage. Do not look at her. You will never win. There’s no winning here. I use win for lack of a better word. And here’s why you/ I cannot win.
She does not allow me to speak. She will talk over me. She even talks over the police.
She’s fixated and hates me and my yard. My raised beds are coffins. She plants pine trees in my/her yard. My solar panels brings down the neighbourhood’s property value.
She is always right. She’s very clever and fast changing stories. She has accused me of giving her a parking ticket. When I asked her how I could do that when she parks in her own driveway, she said it was her mother that I gave the ticket to for parking on the sidewalk. She refuses to bring her mother to talk to me when I asked her to.
She accused me of sending her a letter last year and she still has it. When I ask her to show it to me, she refused and keep refusing, talking over me the whole time.
She accused me of redirecting her mail, writing on them that she has moved.
I could go on forever. And that’s the trouble. Once I’ve engaged, it’s hard to break off. She makes me so angry I keep going back and back, screaming, yelling to no avail but to make myself ill. And I do feel ill. And I have brought upon myself. She is mentally ill. I’m not. She can’t stop but I CAN. BUT there should be something in place so that someone like me should have to be subjected to her antics. It’s bad for my health. The police said that it is not fair to charge a person with mental health. Is it fair to me that she allow to do this to me? It’s going on towards 13-14 years at least. Yes, right. I have to remember I’ve brought this on myself. I really have by thinking less and taking care less of myself than another.
Morning has broken. Snow is falling. There’s snow on the potted avocado. The buddhas are content beneath the spruce trees. My body is slowly easing and unfolding from its tightness. I need to move and stretch but sometimes what we need is the hardest thing to do. I skipped on my Saturday morning swim. I went through much talk in my head about why I couldn’t. The miserable weather gave me the final good excuse – as if I need one. Who do I have to answer to?
I have to give up the need for excuses and explanations. It’s as if I still need approval and permission. Just when am I adult enough to do or not to do as I please? I never seem to know if I am doing the right thing or not. Maybe it is that I am not willing to live with the consequences. I want to straddle both sides of the fence – the need for self esteem and pleasing others. Straddling never works for me. It has failed every time and it is I who is sorry for not being brave enough to choose my true North. I have not been strong and free. I have always compromised myself.
But I am getting a bit stronger. I am not so keen to please anymore but I am not aiming to displease either. I am just a little more thoughtful and generous towards myself. I am practicing doing for myself as I would for others. What better day to pamper myself a little than on a snowy Saturday in September? I am deliberately giving myself a break.
I’m just passed my least favourite part of the day – lunch and its aftermath. I don’t know why that is. Today is the worst. I haven’t fully recovered from my cold. I still have that occasional hard to shake cough, echoing head and the weak in the legs fatigue. I’ve been to the doctor 4 times this month though not all were related to my cold. The garden is begging some TLC. I’ve been poking at it, not even managing to weed my 2 rows of peas along the fence. They’re getting choked out by self-seeded cilantro and weeds. They’re also crying for water though it had rained the other day.
It’s been this kind of a summer. I’m feeling its blues. How could I not? I could be the poster woman for the all year round depressive. No, I’m not ashamed or afraid to talk about it. Maybe I should be but what’s there to be afraid or ashamed of? I’m acknowledging my feelings and seeking solutions. I’m trying to engage my left brain and right brain in a dialogue with each other. Two halves can make a whole. Two heads are better than one. More is better. I’m trying to console myself. Self love. Talk about euphemism! I’m on a roll.
I think the after lunch dirty dishes, pots and pans are symbols of the mess of life to me. When I look at the whole enchilada scattered on the counters, I just want to close my eyes. My God, how in the hell can I put everything right again? I feel whipped with fatigue and helplessness. There’s nothing to do except sigh and move however I can and at whatever speed I can.
I am always delight in fooling my feelings. I take pleasure in showing them up. I can do more even though they sit on me and try to pull me down in the deep dark hole. Sometimes it seem like I’m moving like a robot. Mechanical is ok. I keep moving until things are done. The dishes, pots and pans are washed. The mess in the fridge calls out to me. I can hear it even with the door closed. That’s the thing. I know it’s there even when I can’t see it. I’ve learned I can rest better when I answer its call. It’s not difficult after all.
I know it’s summer and it’s holiday time. I think I’m suppose to be happy, carefree and having a whole lot of fun. But I was never that kind of a girl. I’m not that kind of a woman. Growing up as a child of immigrant parents in a small town, summer was never what I called ‘fun’. It was lonely. School was over and it seems the whole town was away on holidays except for us. That was my perception at the time.
That is my perception today, too. Everybody is on holidays and having fun, except me. The difference now is I know IT IS NOT TRUE. It’s just my blues vocal of the moment. Tomorrow I could be singing a different tune.
This month marks a new chapter for me. I have 3 full years of retirement behind me. No more shift work, no more sleep deprivation, no work stress to complain about. It’s time for me to shift my focus away from all that and be here for me. Life calls and wherever I go, there I am.
It it almost 4 pm again. Day 5. 360 days left. I shouldn’t count but one likes to cross/tick things off. I’m not doing well in that department but I am working on it. There will be no baking again today. The floor is good enough from yesterday’s vacuum. One must prioritize or I could be circling and circling like a gerbil in a cage.
What I like to do right now is lay on the couch with a book or just nap. Serves me right for lunching on a burger, fries and root beer. The root beer is what did me in. All that sugar. It was good after an outing with Sheba at the dog park. It was cool, sweet and went down nice. Now I’m struggling to keep my eyes open.
I did sort my paper piles, called City Hall about the light bill. Have you heard of anyone eager to get their light bill? Well, I am – excited to see the first bill on solar electricity. I might have to wait another day or two. I can wait. Practicing patience. Damn hard! I better put that down on my list.
The insurance company was next on the list. Don’t you just hate that time every year when it comes for renewal? Ugly, ugly! Goes up every year. The agent was friendly and understanding. We had a chuckle or two before getting down to business. I’m her first client with solar panels. They are not on her list. She will call me back after she makes some phone calls.
I think I did pretty well considering I was not positively positive in the morning. I got up anyways, dressed up, made up and showed up. Thank God for people like Regina Brett for their sunshiny outlooks and mantras. I didn’t put on earrings though. Couldn’t find the perfect ones. When I did, my right earlobe wouldn’t cooperated.
Life can be hard sometimes. You have all these intentions. BUT habits and wounds go deep. They have their knives down to the hilt in you. They don’t like letting go. I battle every day to do/react different. So every day I will get up and put makeup on. Every day I will stand naked in front of the mirror and say, I love you. That would be a selfie. LOL I’m more comfortable in shades or doing my feet. Somehow, feet are not as vulnerable.
Enough mumbling for today. Tomorrow is another new beginning, another new page. What is on your page today?
I love these salad days of summer when the grass is green and love oh so mellow. Oh, I’m stealing words from the song, Try to Remember. I’m feeling melancholy and nostalgic. No worries, though. Melancholia and nostalgia have always been part of me. I’m glad to have them aboard. They are restful companions. They help me when I’m tired and need to slow down. But I’m still here, dressed, made up, and different earrings on. Sorry, another selfie. I’m practicing saying I love you to myself – baggy eyes and all.
It’s 4 in the afternoon and I haven’t crossed off a thing on my to-do list. Usually the list is all in my head. But I’m choosing to make hard copies to see if it makes a difference. It has only 4 things on it. Pay bills. Bake bread and Sheba’s biscuit. Vacuum. I have turned on the Roomba. Thank God for robotic vacuums for these hard days! At least I made a list. I still have time to do and cross off a couple of things. But forget the bread and biscuits!
I am done in by summer heat, humidity and long walk with Sheba this morning. And making a detour at our plot at the Community Garden. I harvested a huge turnip, some beets and a few carrots. It was a heavy load to carry home as is. Next time I shall take a veggie bag besides doggy bags. I had to have a snack and a nap before I could clean and prepare the veggies and lunch. But it is all done. I sauteed the turnip greens. They were delicious if a bit tough. Next time I will blanch them a little longer. This was another first.
The Queen is barking. She is out of water. Must go and fill her bowl and then pay some bills. Hope you are having a good day. I like my accident with my header photo (feature image) yesterday. I decided to do it again.
Loving oneself is perhaps the hardest thing to do/learn. It’s taken me these many unconscious eons and this one conscious year to see how abusive I’ve been to myself. Now I can see clearly how I/all of us can fall into that vicious pattern. Like it or not we are not unique unto ourselves. We are wired the same.
Until we are awakened to that moment, we/I will keep falling into the same hole that Portia Nelson speaks of in her poem, There’s a Hole in My Sidewalk.
“I walk down the street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I fall in. I am lost… I am helpless. It isn’t my fault. It takes forever to find a way out.
I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I pretend I don’t see it. I fall in again. I can’t believe I am in the same place. But, it isn’t my fault. It still takes me a long time to get out.
I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I see it is there. I still fall in. It’s a habit. My eyes are open. I know where I am. It is my fault. I get out immediately.
I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I walk around it.
I walk down another street.”
I can’t really tell you how many times I have fallen into the same hole. I am unaware of how bruised or battered I became till that aha moment when someone switched on the light. It seems so easy now that I am on the other side of the street. It is not so when I was in the quagmire with no firm foothold.
Learning comes slowly for me. I’ve been stuck in the same place for the last year. Sometimes you have to hit me with a 2×4. Falling into the same deep hole also works! The lesson is lasting. I realize that I am not in control of or responsible for everything. I am not that powerful. Not everything is my fault. No doubt, I will forget again from time to time. It’s only human nature. But I will not hurt myself more in those times with self-blame. Loving kindness starts with oneself.