Two years ago I wrote a list of truthful statements (and some after thoughts) that marked my emotional terrain at the time. I remember feeling vulnerable putting those words out for others to read, but as I reread the list now, I barely recognize the woman or the description of her feelings. It is for THIS reason, that I blog. I am so grateful for the chronicle of where I am in a given moment. There is hope in rereading and knowing that the moment or season, in fact, did pass. To help me continue to mark time, I am responding to each of my statements with a few words about where I am now (in italics).
I am coming to terms with how I can be deeply content and profoundly sad at the same time.
I am still content—even more so than two years ago, but much less sad today. I’m not counting the sadness I feel about Grandpa’s recent death. I am making my way through my grief and my missing him. I also know that there won't be an end to the sadness I feel. I'll integrate his absence into my new normal. This is easier when I consider how many years I had with him. 95 years is a good, long run.
I am lonely for something or someone I cannot quite put my finger on.
I don’t feel loneliness as acutely today as I did then. Mostly I believe it’s because I have become my own best friend. I am who I was lonely for and didn’t know it yet. I enjoy my own company in a way I never have before. I am not searching for the company of anyone else, so when I have the opportunity to spend time with my tribe, my time with them is richer. I am not needy or clinging to them for company as I know I have done in the past. This feels like a great relief.
I am weepy, and when those moments come I wonder if I can ever grow strong in my broken places.
I revel in the strength I have gained in my broken places. I don’t feel weepy.
I'm not eating enough.
This, too, has changed. I feed myself better now than I did then. It doesn’t feel like such a chore. I have accepted that I have a small repertoire of meals I can prepare without much thought and I stick to making those. I rearranged my pantry and got a handle on what I purchase regularly and stick to those things. Preparation is key for me, so I grocery shop with intention. My pants fit as they should, which for someone of my build is quite an accomplishment. I feel good in my skin these days. I don't feel "skinny" in a bad way as I have in the past.
I miss my daughter when we are apart.
This will never change, but the missing her doesn’t feel so tender and bruised. She is thriving in both households. We enjoy our time together after we’ve been apart, and now that she has a mobile phone, we are in constant contact. Her thriving eases this ache.
I'm tired of thinking about the debt I have to pay down.
I’ve come a long way in my thinking about this too. Yes, I have debt, but I have extenuating circumstances that led to this. I also have a plan to pay it down. Experiencing the shame and frustration of this financial situation has served me well. I have proved to myself that I am resourceful, can delay gratification, and am capable of stretching a dollar without feeling deprivation. My creativity has surged as a result. Though hard, I know I will appreciate the lessons this chapter taught me. I feel no shame, now.
I'm scared that I may never be a published writer.
I’m too busy writing and thinking about my next project to worry about things that I cannot control. I have really come into my own when it comes to understanding why I write and what I hope to accomplish with it. The love for writing has nothing to do with fame and fortune. I would post to my blog even if there were no readers, no audience. That's how crucial a part of my writing is to who I am. Figuring this out is integral to my well-being as I continue to rack up rejections. What I mean is, what's important is that I am writing. My value as a writer comes from within.
I'm scared that the story I'm writing will never be as good outside my head as it is inside.
I trust my writing process because I’ve done A LOT more writing since 2016. This trust empowers me to keep writing until I get what I'm working on right. This is no longer a worry either.
I get anxious when I can't plan for the future or even have the remotest idea what might come my way.
Not anymore. I consider the unknowns to be adventures that I don’t know about yet. This has come about by my ability to be content in the present moment. The future is merely present moments that haven’t arrived yet. I’m okay in all of them.
These winter days have me feeling like I'm a character in Groundhog Day.
This is how I feel about winter these days: “Winter reminds us that everyone and everything needs some quiet time.” – Katrina Mayer
I am grateful for the slower, cozier pace of winter. It is practice in remembering that no season lasts forever.
I am an overthinker, and am wondering how to turn off the chatter in my head.
My practices of yoga, mindfulness, and deep breathing are the solutions to my chatter-y mind. I don’t experience this as often or as intensely.
Two years ago, I couldn’t envision being the woman I am today. I look forward to seeing where I am and what’s occupying my thoughts and activities two years from now. Wherever life takes me then, I can trust that I will be well and able to handle whatever life presents. This is priceless and the key to living a content life.