I haven't been able to write for a long time. It's very frustrating. I'm not exactly sure what the deal is, I just haven't been able to put coherent thoughts down on paper.
The last time I wrote was the morning of a day that was going well. The sun was out, it was warm and I was on top of my game at work. That afternoon I learned that the job I'd held for the previous 4 years was being "eliminated".
Poof! Just like that. No warning.
Something within me snapped. I helplessly cycled through all 5 stages of grief that weekend. The whole thing was such a shock to my system.
Over the next several days, additional stressors arrived in my life (health issues with immediate family) to add to the already overwhelming reality of no job in the very near future.
It was too much. Suddenly, I found myself short of breath while sitting still. My heart was pounding within my chest as if it needed to escape. My skin felt like it was crawling with electric currents. Tears would begin to fall with no warning. Bizarre sensations that consumed physical and emotional energy as well as my sanity. I soon learned that the sensations had a name: "Panic Attack."
For the first time in my life I was put on medications to balance out chemicals in my brain that used to regulate themselves. I have a bottle of pills in my purse - just in case the panic comes back at an inconvenient moment. I meet with a professional several times each month to work through the issues that all this stress has brought to the surface.
Funny...I've been through some serious shit in my life: Emotional/verbal abuse, nasty divorce, the lies of a con-man and raising kids by myself while struggling financially....not once did I fall to pieces like I did this time.
When I step back and consider this odd reaction I come to an interesting conclusion - this is the first time in my life that I don't *have* to be strong - I finally have someone I can lean on. Yes, I have always had a fabulous family and amazing friends but I'm talking about the kind of "leaning" that requires complete trust and absolute assurance that there will be no condemnation, no backlash and 100% support, no matter what. The kind of support one gets from a partner, a soul-mate - the other-half of yourself.
In the past I was not allowed to fall apart. I had no choice but to keep it together and be strong. If I fell to pieces there would be consequences - for me and for my kids. I could vent to my family and friends and they did what they could to ease the load I carried - but I was never truly allowed to just "let go" – to show weakness.
This time, I have someone who is standing WITH me, someone who SHARES the responsibilities of this house with me...someone who does not seek out flaws to point them out with malice...someone who loves me for who I am. Period.
This time - I was safe, protected, surrounded by love.
It was perfectly OK for me to sit and cry if I needed to. I was allowed to verbalize my fears and to give in to the need for comfort from someone else.
SIGH! I never knew it could be like this!
Although this journey is not over - I am still looking for a new job - I have been given a gift...the silver-lining of this dark cloud...I have been given time. Time to spend with my grandparents, my children, my man...time to get things done around the house that have gone undone for far too long...time to create...time to take care of me...time to just "be" and focus on the things that really matter.
For the things I have learned, the blessings gained, I am grateful. Someday I will look back on this time and shake my head...but for now, I look forward to the lessons to come, the gifts awaiting me in the future.
Would you look at that?! I wrote something!! =)