Today my Other Me is quiet. She has been vanquished by a good nights sleep, a day of exercise, conversation with a good friend, and snuggles from small warm animals.
Today the crisp fall air seems full of possibility. There are baked goods to be made, work to be done, children to pick up from school.
I know she will wake up again, but for now she is silent. It took me a really long time to be willing to talk about my feelings. I have a very hard time letting people know things are not okay. Even now that I am blogging about it, if you ask me in person I am likely to tell you things are fine, or that I am doing OK. I’m not sure why I have such a “stiff upper lip” mentality, but I do. (Why is having a stiff upper lip such a sign of strength anyway? What does that saying even mean?)
The truth is, I am trying to move through. I am angry and deeply sad. I miss my life. My life before illness, my life before separation. I miss struggling to fall asleep because my husband snored too loudly beside me. I miss the way he would put away things I needed while I was cooking. I miss having my kids around all the time. I miss having endless amounts of energy and confidence. I miss taking up space in my life.
I don’t want to move on. I want to move through. I want to feel everything I need to feel. I want to learn and grow. I want to heal.
The problem with healing is that it takes a long time. My hysterectomy was ten months ago and I still feel odd and have physical side effects from the surgery. Sometimes it feels like it’s been forever and I should be over it now. I hate being patient with myself, and because I hate being patient with myself I superimpose that impatience onto others. How sick they all must be of hearing about it.
Healing takes a long time. I have no idea how long. Maybe I will be better next year, maybe the following. In certain ways, maybe never. I just have to remember I can’t wake up and expect myself to fix everything that was broken in a single day. I have to learn to take it a step at a time.
Job hunt today. Exercise today. Sleep well. Eat well. Simple everyday instructions, simple everyday steps. I hope they will build themselves into something complex and fantastic, a life full of optimism and opportunity. For now, though, I just have to get through the steps.