My Mother in-law and I were having a conversation the other day. We always have great talks. As Mothers, as women, we are the ones who make things happen. It is exhausting. I thought on it some more and if I don’t make it happen, it doesn’t happen. That driving force that keeps everything going. In my case, holidays, birthdays, school anything, sports, family outings. No wonder I am tired and binge eating sugar carbs, drinking my weight in coffee. Can’t imagine why my body is revolting against me. Every time I over do a event, Am I showing my daughter that to be a good Mother you have to be this extra? See good conversation brings deep thoughts. Am I setting her up for the same kinda exhaustion? That personal expectation of perfection? If you know me you know I am not perfect and I don’t claim to be. If anything I may be a little O.C.D., I like all events to go how I pictured them. I start weeks a head, so extra. I have stories about hand crafting paper flowers for my aunts Birthday party. I burnt my fingers with hot glue. I’d be surprised if I didn’t change my finger prints. The flowers were super cute and I spent weeks making them.
I know that a big part of this is lacking from childhood. Children of Jehovah witnesses all seem to have similar issues. We all seem to go big especially with holidays & birthdays, like it will somehow make up for what we missed out on. I think it is important that we see our trauma and address it. Sorting out this mess now that I see it is going to take a while. Lots of deep self talk to figure out or therapy.
This evening we had Pre-K Graduation! By graduation I mean, we drove to the school. Teachers waved, handed up a trash bag sealed with a memory book and the shirt they were suppose to wear for graduation. I am not ungrateful, I swear. I bought a child’s cap and gown a few weeks ago. He wore that and they took a picture with him in the car and them masked up out side of the car. I know that that made him feel special.
I am heartbroken that he thinks that was normal. He is my last baby, this is my last pre-k graduation. I know that high school seniors parents can understand this feeling. I got back & forth. I am proud our community handled this with grace and kindness but I am angry that these experiences have been taken from us. I am angry, I am sad.
He doesn’t have any of these feelings. He is happy he graduated. He doesn’t know this isn’t normal. I am grateful that he is resilient.
Humming 9 to 5 by Dolly, drinking cold coffee. I like to grind out my work first thing in the morning so i have the afternoon to get everything that comes up done. Right now working during the day while the rest of the staff is working evenings and weekends is difficult to say the least. New Routines all around, unfortunately it means I spend a good amount of time twiddling my thumbs because I don’t have blah from blah. Which means I am running a day behind on everything. It is a odd disconnect working at home.
I’ll have all my work done, I don’t.
I’ll have a super clean house, I don’t.
I’ll make every meal from scratch, I’m about half of the time on this one.
I’ll have my children home schooled better than school did, Okay I really never even thought this one because my children’s teachers are my heroes and I dare not compete.
I’ll have so much time to paint, I have the time lack the motivation.
I know I am not alone in this work from home stumbling. I know others who are grinding a way at it, I am envious. I miss having an office with a door I can close. At home if I don’t wear head phones, from my dinning table/desk I am over stimulated by B’s phone noise while he chain smokes, Baby T-REX playing Mine craft, Sister doing School work. Kills my focus. I miss coffee with co-workers, I even miss hearing them complain about each other.
I have been debating on if I should even talk about this or not. I can’t be the only one out there that this happened to during the pandemic.
….. I got Fired.
First thing, I have NEVER been fired in my whole life. That alone is a whole different thing for me to deal with. Second thing, the paper was owned by a large Company that owns so many papers. I won’t say the name. They are in financial trouble, they closed multiple papers that day. We were just a bucket of water they dumped while trying to bail out their boat. I can be calm about it now that I have had time to breath and get in my right mind. Time to see them trying to save other papers, I know it wasn’t personal now.
We had so many plans for this next year. While we knew the pandemic was going to push our plans back and things were going to be tight. This was unexpected. Fortunately for me my co-workers are not the lay down and die kind. The Salesman has started a new paper, Oklahoma’s Choice Weekly. It will take time to build and grow. There is a plan and I feel it will grow bigger than what was before, since their is no corporate to keep us limited. No more worries about stepping on a sister’s toes.
Starting over isn’t easy, I’m struggling. Children are home for a extra long summer, I have no office, even if I did the virus makes that difficult. Working from home, like the rest of the world. You may have noticed the change in my page. I am navigating the freelance world while I build social media and newsletters. Collecting new skills to prepare me for the next jump. I don’t know whats next but I want to be more prepared.
Dandelions bloom twice. First they are the cute little yellow flowers that nurture the Bees when spring starts. Then they bloom and spreed their seeds. Dandelions are more than pretty flower, they are food for the bees and humans alike, teas, wine, salads. How great are these weeds? I want to be just like them! I want to have multiple skills, feed those who need to be feed, physically or soulfully.
Speaking of blooming twice, why should we only get to bloom once? Come to think of it, we should get to bloom as much as we want and who says we can’t stay in bloom for a season or two. Plant rules and people rules can’t be the same, right? As the seasons of our lives change shouldn’t our blooms grow more lovely? We should take the time to nurture ourselves to keep from loosing pedals.
**Not my photos**
Sunday service in my household was an hour of gardening, had to get more in the ground before the storms Monday. The garden has been my solace, a place to give my anxiety to the earth. For breakfast I made Cinnamon Swirl French toast, feeding my family fills my cup. We listened to The Avett Brothers preach their message of love. That was our Church for the week. It couldn’t have been a more lovely morning.
The wind of change brings a different kind of day. There is no giving this to the earth. My heart hurts, I think of all the effort to flatten the curve everyone I know has done. Now everything is to open up. Will it undo everything? The morning was just a delay in all this worry. Hearing that the death in Payne county in a Cushing resident undoes all the garden therapy. My eye swell at the thought of the outside world. I keep thinking, am doing any good by self-isolating? The world is a turning and I hope my staying home I am giving her a little boost in healing.
“Speak to your children as if they are the wisest, kindest, most beautiful and magicalhumans on earth, for what they believe is what they will become” – Brooke Hampton
The local school put together packets for the Preschoolers. I have to say they looked like they had taken every safety precaution. Baby T-REX has no desire or want to do anything in that packet. Sister has been doing school work this whole time, She can’t risk falling behind. 6th grade vs Prekindergarten I guess. **Deep breaths** As long as they are learning something they will be okay. They are still reading, drawing and eating, in my case writing and gardening. The kids will be alright. As a family I think we have spent more time outside during this time then we have in a long time. Our backyard is quickly becoming everyone’s favorite place to just be. We have cleaned up about 90% of it, one more good work day and we will have it in ship shape. Working outside has given us the normal we crave. With Children who are active it is so hard to to keep them from wanting to go-go, driving around looking for teddy bears and getting happy hour drinks from Sonic helps. Not something I want to do everyday, only enough that they feel like we aren’t stuck at home.
Yesterday I had to go to the store, I left the children at home with Grandpa. I received mass texts and videos. Sister took it upon herself to keep him entertained without TV or YouTube. Let me start off with, some days she drives me crazy. Yesterday I was grateful. They spent hours chalking my porch. Sweet little pictures of sunflowers and our family. My heart needed it, especially while I was out in public with people who still aren’t wearing face masks. Chalk brought the whole family so much joy yesterday.
The future maybe unclear as we navigate this new life. One thing we will be following the children’s lead, making more time for playing and art. We as adults talk about listening to our gut feelings, blah blah. When children tell us what they need we assume they don’t know what they need, because they are small and haven’t lived as long as we have. **shaking my Head** WRONG!!! They are more in-tuned with their needs then we ever will because they are currently living on that primal need basis and we are not. That reminder brought to you by Chalk.
It has been cold for 2 days now. 30’s and 40’s not ideal temperatures for gardening. I spent yesterday in the kitchen instead. A cold day is perfect for baking soda bread and a slow soup. So yummy, I forgot to take a picture of the finished soup.
My children swear they do not like rice pudding. The fact that there were no leftovers say differently. Sweet rice in your belly on a cold night, it is a different kind of comfort. A comfort the world could use right now. Cue the music for “what the world needs now is love.” I will be humming that all day now.
My Mother in-law said today that we are allowed to grieve the life we had before. Not just before of this virus, but any other before. Back before I met my husband, in fact early teens, my Mother in-law was in a car accident. She almost lost her right arm, a doctor put it back together with metal. Now she got to keep the arm but her life isn’t the same, she doesn’t have full range of motion. Her life is marked before the accident and after. If anyone understands grieving normal life it is her. I know most of us have lots of markers in time, before kids, before deaths. Not everyone has before illnesses, with her arm she understand that before. Missing doing normal things.
I am in a state of limbo, I am struggling with my life. That grey area right where the before and after switch places. I may have Lupus. Due to the Virus, I am waiting to see a specialist to get an official diagnosis. A year ago if I was anxious, I could turn on some music and clean my house top to bottom in one day. Today I am struggling to keep the dishes done. I miss having the energy from before., I miss my life before. I go out to my garden in the morning and piddle around, I have to lay down when I come back in. All of my joints hurt, my hair is falling out, weird rash on my neck that will not go away. My finger tips keep loosing feeling, I cut myself and had no clue until a few hours later when I could feel my fingers again. My hands stop working and I drop whatever is in them. My stomach hurts all the time depending on what I eat, enough that I’d rather not eat most of the time. One would think that would mean I have lost weight, not a oz no matter what I do. At the drop of a hat I have headaches the turn into migraines quickly. My head is foggy, I can’t think of words I want to use. I can’t spell them or even get close.
I am an overachiever living with no control. My body can’t keep up with my mind and my want. I am a caretaker who cannot take care of herself. I have never felt more vulnerable, in a constant state of worry. In life we travel one hurdle after another and not having a official name for this mountain I am climbing. Not having a plan because the world is in turmoil. I love a plan, I love a list, without a diagnosis I can’t prepare myself or my family. I just read what I should do if it is lupus and what should help. SHOULD. All of these shoulds are medicated shoulds, until I get to that point there is no normal. Just lots of trying. I mean a lot of trying., I did a juice cleanse, I did fasting. Now I am cutting out as much sugar as possible. I am trying every natural thing there is out there.
I worry about…. Everything in my life. How it will all change soon.
Life must go on. While the world is in turmoil, people trying to stay positive. More has closed in Cushing. While my husband and I are both considered essential, we navigating our new life with more purpose. No more just running to the store when we are out of something. I am making it a point to make things from scratch, embracing vintage life. We planted a Victory Garden yesterday. Spent the whole day outside, purchased plants from our local greenhouse. It felt nice to be productive and spending time together in the fresh air. Kids running around, the dogs and cats following us around. Could not have been a better more exhausting day. I’m interested to see how you are keeping busy during this time.