The Sunday Edition
I want to be a writer and this weekend I began that journey. It’s been so soul filling and I can’t wait for the future.
You see, for me, it was tragedy that halted my life 9 years ago. I went from really living, to giving all of myself to being a full-time caregiver to a quadriplegic, in addition to working full-time from home and raising my son. It was a labor of love, and never will I regret it, but after five years, I realized I’d completely lost myself and who I was. I spent the next couple of years crawling out of my dark cave and slowly discovering myself again. Two years ago, I finally got to take two full days and a night to “get away” and I drove only 40 minutes away and just relaxed and let someone take care of me. I started slowly squeezing in longer trail runs and trying to reconnect with people long pushed away after the tragedy.
In early June, my son graduated high school and turned 18 a week later. The day after his birthday, tragedy struck once again and while we thought we had been preparing ourselves for this inevitable end-of-life scenario, one can never truly prepare for the death of a loved one. The gaping hole left in our lives was ominous. The day after that, on June 11, my son and I both listened to “But This Fleeting Life” and wept together. We agreed that we weren’t going to let life escape us any longer. We spent the next month putting our lives back together as best we could. We went to a movie, we ate things we had been missing out on, we did inaccessible things we’d not been able to do in 9 years. Then, in early July, on a whim, we booked the cheapest flight we could. On July 16th, we were sitting in the airport for the first time again since he was 9. That morning in the airport we listened to “Travel Like Childhood” …
Sometimes it is catastrophic situations that take away the ability to really live. I’m not saying life halted during those nine years. We did still have adventures and lived, but it was very hard and different. The amount of work that went into making those “accessible” adventures happen made them not as enjoyable for me as I was the planner, provider, chauffeur, tour guide, caregiver, everything. Those adventures allowed our loved one to still live their best life while they were alive.
When I started taking my life back four years ago, it started with an hour-long escape to the nail salon once a month where I could be pampered with a foot massage and wine. Next it was longer trail runs through the forest, working my way up to being out there for four hours that was my saving grace during COVID. On those runs, I would once again feel alive and free. Last fall, I fixed up my sunroom, making it a reading nook and my own personal escape room where I could play my music or escape into a book or a movie.
A little over 3 years ago, during one early morning escape for a couple of hours to a local coffee shop, I met a stranger who quickly became the love of my life, my soulmate. So, while my life might have been on hold for 9 years, I didn’t really stop living. I just found an alternative way to live.
Even if you can’t just go somewhere far away, you can still have local or even at-home adventures! Don’t hesitate to take that little “trip”, even if it is to a local park for the day or to a different ethnic restaurant, pretending you are in a faraway country. Get dressed up and go to a movie or a concert. Read a good book and experience a whole different world. I’m still discovering cool things I’ve never experienced in my hometown, and I’ve lived here for 20 years!
Early tomorrow morning, I'm taking my first trip with my love and flying to Montana to experience sights I've only hoped and dreamed of seeing. I'm happy to still be "living" despite tragedies!
Thank you for sharing this. Your resilience and strength to keep “living” even in small ways is inspiring. I’m glad you have a new beginning and joy to look forward to.
I want Tyler and I to travel more with my kids. Little trips and grand adventures. And of course, as everyone, time and money are the things holding me back. Working on ways to make these happen but time with them just feels so fleeting.
I think, as sad as it is, money is the big roadblock for so many things we want to experience, or for setting up the life we long to live.
You are right though, that there are small adventures, tiny moments of joy, and new experiences that are so close to home and are achievable today. I'll try to focus more on finding these moments than just waiting and hoping and working towards the bigger goals that money is needed for.
What am I waiting for? … I blink softly and smile.
I have been home from work for three months recovering from a total hip replacement. Besides resting, exercises to strengthen what's healing, I have been wearing lounge and activewear clothing . My comfort clothes. I have been watching movies, catching up on shows I have missed, and, now that my movement has pretty much returned to normal, gardening [or at least weeding and planning a big plant in the fall for my front wildflower garden,] I have the time now, but once I am back at work I will not have this any more. I will have two days off a week to enjoy solitude and catch up on rest, as working retail at 63 is more a challenge than it was at 25.
I remember the grind before my time off. I remember the time I was a stay at home mom. Those free hours have meant the world to me. Money hasn't been a huge issue these past few months as I was being paid for temporary disability.
But, what am I waiting for? Money. Money needs to not be an issue so that I can remain in this timeless space.. This is what holds me back. [manifesting Publisher's Clearing House, anyone?] Money and time to travel to be with my lover, to see friends in far off places and yet so easy to get to … to wear what makes me the most comfortable and doesn't go against some company standard.
I have two weeks left of this bliss before I am back into the hustle and bustle of work life. I have two weeks left before I start falling asleep at 8:30 in front of the tv again.
And what will I do?
I plan on going OUT to a movie. I will on what seeds I will be buying and making my lists [medical bills preclude the seed buying for now.] I will wear the shit out of my comfy clothes. And, yeah, I will be manifesting in my heart for an early retirement [especially since it's been pushed back to 67!] I will continue to skype with my friends and lover.
I will live. I will be happy. I will be and AM blessed. And, I won't give up the dreams.
Oh my gosh—-HOW do you do this? How do you keep so eloquently pinning down my innermost thoughts that just occur to me like flashes in a pan? You are amazing, to say the least!
Love this so much. I feel the same aching and yearning, but at the end of the day, it’s money (always money) holding me back. It’s the debt I’ve already accumulated, the weight of all I must pay for day to day. I’m working hard to make changes in my life, seek out new work, new ways of earning money. I’m working to break free from the traditional job structure so that I can create the life I imagine. I hope with all the hope I can muster that my time is near. That soon I will be able to answer the calling. I am thankful for the people who surround me that also feel this way. Who offer inspiration and encouragement. Who understand what really matters. Thank you for being one of those wild beacons of light.
I want to travel, to see the country, to get back to Montana (I haven't been there in 2 years). Money is definitely a consideration, but more important in the moment are my senior dogs. I have 5 dogs, which makes travel difficult unless I take them with me, but I don't have an RV so that's not an option. My two oldest are 14.5 (she has dementia) and 15 (he recently started having seizures). I don't feel comfortable leaving them with anyone other than my daughter, and she has a young family and her own unresolved health issues.
I know time is a thief, and I need to find ways to recharge myself in nature without a real vacation somewhere for now.