On occasion, there are birds that fly into the tall windows of our office. Walking back and forth to my car, the sidewalk will be littered with song birds. I’ll circle as far around them as I can, so I make a circle path. But to avoid stepping on any one of them, I also have to look at them.
And I’d rather not.
So I give as wide a path as I can to not step on them, while still seeing them out of the corner of my eye.
That’s kind of how it is with writing right now.
I’m warily circling the thing that I want to talk about or that I’m feeling. I have to keep it in my minds eye, but I don’t want to get too close to it, because then I’m confronted by the small, beautiful thing that’s broken.
Last night, I confessed to my husband that I’m still scared. I’m scared of what happened to him, and sometimes it still bothers me.
And he said “well. I’m here. And I have a job. And this dog” who snuffled loudly and then took more blankets away from me.
Those are all true things. But it doesn’t stop me from being scared.
Someone else told me “It(what happened to you) was a lot at once. And big stuff. So it’ll take time. As an overachiever I can see how you’d be expecting to be moving on by now…measurable results don’t apply in this type of situation. It’s a play it by ear sort of thing, unfortunately.”
So we’ve got this jumbled up mess of feeling angry with myself for not snapping suddenly back to normal after the danger has passed, being traumatized by having to confront a loved one’s mortality, feeling unstable at having a sudden loss of dependable income, feeling frustrated at constantly having to ask for help because we still only have one car.
I’m mad at helplessness. But I’m not helpless. We’ve persevered. I’ve gotten up in the morning. One of the few things pulling me through has been simple routine. Get up, get dressed, go to work, go home, make dinner, unpack a box, go to bed, rinse, repeat. By simply moving forward, it helps to not dwell on what’s happened.
And I think of what we’ve survived in the almost 3 years we’ve been married:
2 cars being totaled
Selling a house
2 job losses
When you look at those stress scales that show you how much stress you’re under and its impact on your life, we’re in the top tier.
We’re still here.
That should be triumph enough.