I’m feeling that longing again, that restlessness that tends to bubble up, telling me that there’s something I’m meant to be doing with my life that I’m not. I just am not sure what that is. I’m stuck in a rut – making a living, but not making a life. I feel like I’m spinning my wheels, and not getting traction. I feel scattered, unfocused.
Part of it is working three jobs – and all spread out over the week. I do grant writing on Mondays, Thursdays and every other Friday. I do book-keeping on Tuesdays and the other Friday. I also do cancer registry work on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Then there’s the household stuff, and the kids stuff, and the pets… So my writing has taken a back seat. Or maybe a seat in the trunk. Even in the evening, instead of writing I’m so brain dead that I’m plugged into the TV, or dozing off with the kids.
Part of it is that, three years out from the separation, I’m getting tired of living in this holding pattern. I’m living in the same house, sleeping on the same side of the bed… I’m working, but doing jobs that engage my mind but not my heart… I’m not dating… it’s almost like Tom isn’t here, but I’m still going through the same motions. Just by myself.
It’s time to start dreaming, and to see what I want to be when I grow up. See who I want to be.
Day 3 of Holidailies – entry two. Oops. The hazards of putting the kids to bed when they go to sleep in my bed. I lay down with them, just until they fall asleep… and then I wake up at 3 am, still in my jeans and with all the lights on downstairs. And with my entry unwritten. Fortunately for writing, they are with Tom tonight, so the only Sleep Rays I need to resist are those of the dogs.
Tonight I started working on making holiday cards. I haven’t sent out a letter in at least three years. Not since the separation. I’m not sure if I’ll write a letter, but I am enjoying creating the cards. I pulled out all of the supplies – the scrapbooking paper and stickers and inks and stamps, the markers and embossing powder, and the die cutter. I spent a good couple of hours working on just one card. And for those two hours I wasn’t overthinking things. I wasn’t worrying. I was just enjoying myself. A small taste of the season, and maybe this is a way in. One thing at a time.
This time of year has been hard for a while now. I had some pretty fierce anxiety and depression in the weeks after Miriam was born. It was this time of year three years ago when I finally hit the wall with my marriage. Last year I got hit with a stomach flu that put my on my ass mentally as well as physically, and then I had to figure out how to do Christmas for the kids when I could barely keep from committing myself.
In between, though, from about February until November 8th, I was doing really well. I’m not letting this pull me off course entirely.
It’s not yet midnight, so it’s still December 1st, at least in California – the first day of Holidailies, a community of online journallers who solemnly swear we’ll update daily from today until January 1st. I’ve participated in this challenge since the beginning – lo those many years ago before Tumblr, before Live Journal, before it was called ‘blogging’. But it’s been quite a while since I actually completed the challenge. (And I recently discovered that I lost a bunch of old posts, as I’d let my webhosting account expire without realizing.) New year, new leaf – a month early.
Maybe writing every day will get me back in the habit. Maybe it will slow things down – because this year has flown by. Miriam is going to be five in just 20 days. Tai is going to be nine in February. And somehow we are almost through 2016 when it seems like just yesterday that I was making New Year’s resolutions and getting excited to see Tim Minchin on the day before I turn 40.
Maybe writing every day will get things more clear in my head, and in my heart, because I’ve been in a dark space lately and I’m counting the days until the Solstice, when the darkness begins to retreat and the light returns.
Because there are very few pictures of me and the kiddos (usually I’m the one behind the camera. Or, technically, behind my phone) here’s one from months ago – at the Little League Night at a Giants game.