Tag: Life lessons

Patience…limited edition

My desire and willingness to post declined significantly once I started working full-time; however, I’m in an adjustment phase.

Being in an adjustment phase is what prompted today’s post. I’m unsure if this is true for anyone other than myself; but, transitions are difficult and they never go as planned.

My job is great and I enjoy it; however, other aspects of my life are in disarray.

Part of the reason I feel things are in disarray is my unrealistic expectations and my lack of patience.

I was out of work for nearly 8 months and bills went unpaid; however, I unrealistically expected to be back on the top, financially after 1 month of full-time employment. I’m smart enough to know that this was crazy but still I find myself criticizing myself for not meeting that unrealistic expectation.

In this day and age we are taught to believe that things happen instantly or at the longest within 2 days…so it’s difficult when things take time.

I wish I had the answers and perhaps a stockpile of patience to give myself

It All Works Out

Don’t worry about it {whatever your it may be} because everything will work out in due time.

I don’t know about you, but I am not comforted by the aforementioned sentiment. For a fact, I often feel like it’s an insult when someone says it or any variation of it to me.

Unfortunately I’ve uttered similar statements to others; however, now my perspective on it has changed.

I know that individuals are well intentioned when they say things of that nature and they are genuinely attempting to comfort the recipient.

It’s likely comforting to some individuals, in a similar sense that statements suggesting that a higher power or the universe is working things out on your behalf.

Sigh, I’ve never been one to be comforted by such statements. I’m often someone who struggles to see past my current situation and circumstances. I guess some would say when it comes to my perception of my life, I’m a glass half-empty kind of person!

This is not the case when it comes to my perception of other’s lives and the advice I give. That’s when I’m beyond optimistic and encouraging.

This part of my personality, makes me a great advice-giver and not so good advice-recipient. Especially when that advice requires me to change my perception of my situation.

Before you start with the shenanigans about how this is a bad thing and I need to work on it…let me ease your mind: I actively work to improve myself and my life daily. This includes changing how I perceive my situation and circumstances.

So, yes I work on it, but, I’m a work in progress to say the least. I don’t necessarily see my perspective as a bad thing, however, there are times when the balance is not there!

For instance, during the last few months, I accepted a job that will launch my professional career, I’ve managed to keep my bank account open during a long 7 month stretch of unemployment, and I never once became homeless or experienced true hunger despite my lack of income.

Ok that sounds great right? All things considered, but I see my situation through another set of lens.

That set of lens suggest that I’ve been unable to pay a single bill independently for the entire year of 2019 thus far; I had to depend on my parents, extended family, and friends for the simplest of my basic needs; and most of the time when my phone rings it’s a debtor whom I must tell the same tired story about why I am unable to pay my bills; I have multiple educational degrees and yet I was unable to secure any employment; my credit score has plummeted; and yes I have a full time position lined up that will launch my professional career and it is the position I desired but it doesn’t feel that significant.

Think about the differences between those thought statements. Now, imagine how an individual with the latter thoughts feels when someone says it will all work out.

Imagine their surprise when the person with the latter thoughts is unable to even faintly smile in return to their well intentioned statement.

Sigh. I’ve been told that I’m a negative person and that I make others uncomfortable when I do not take comfort in their sentiments.

Ok, so here’s the deal…I’m not here to for anyone’s comfort and it’s nonsensical for me to change my feelings about my situation and circumstances for the sole purpose of making someone else feel that their advice is inspiring.

Additionally, the phrase that it will all work out is on the same shelf as it could be worse…those phrases are empty platitudes.

I’m not naive I am very self-aware. I do not waddle in despair and I do not feel that my situation and circumstances are hopeless. However, I do not feel comfortable in this situation or with these circumstances.

I am entitled to feel however I feel. I believe it would be much easier for people to simply say, that sucks during the rare times they hear of my situation or circumstances.

Plus, it’s more than appropriate for an individual to tell me that they do not care to discuss my situation because it’s bringing them down. It’s important to take care of you, and part of that is protecting your own mental health.

Thankfully, I don’t sit around and incessantly gripe about my situation and circumstances. For a fact, when most people are made aware of them they are shocked.

But on the off chance that I do share with you or that anyone tells you their less than good current situation and circumstances,..try not to immediately find a fix! Just listen and once you’ve had enough change the topic.

And please, be mindful when you say it will all work out!

What’s something that irks your nerves when you’re in the midst of a trying time?

Friends forever

Years ago I believed that if I remained friends with an individual for five years, we’d be friends forever.

That’s not exactly true…yes five years is a long time to keep a friendship going. However, both parties have to actively work to keep the relationship afloat.

I’ve moved a few times in my adult life and I’m the first to admit that it’s hard work to maintain friendships. Thankfully, I’ve maintained some relationships in my adult life. Although it has been work.

Like me, my friends are adults. They are employees, spouses, parents, and we all live in different areas of the country. Life gets busy and making time to check in on friends is a lot. We manage to keep in touch with each other.

I’m also inactive on the major social media networks which has become a primary way of keeping in contact with individuals. I believe that true friendships reach beyond the world of Facebook. Removing myself from Facebook and Twitter approximately 5 years ago, quickly showed how some of my friendships were faux/ships of pseudo/relationships! They didn’t outlast my participation in social media networks.

I also was invited to less baby showers, birthday parties, and weddings when I deactivated my major social network pages! – this was welcomed news because I was always mailing gifts or sending my mom on a mission to find a gift for the recipient.

Today, I think that it takes much more than five years of knowing one another to be friends for life. It takes commitment and communication.

Let’s talk about today…

I’m in the land of the living; however, most of my residence today is in the I Am Chronically Unwell camp! That’s no problem!

Well it’s a bit of a problem…let me explain.

I’m what most people would consider invisibly unwell. Meaning that there’s not many external markers that give away my membership in the club of chronically unwell and/or sick individuals.

There’s millions of individuals who have invisible illnesses so that’s not the problem.

The problem is that at times my acting skills are so good that even I forget that chronic ailments take up residence in my body. Yes, acting skills! Day in and day out I purposely put on my best face and I muster up all the strength I can to downplay my membership to the chronically unwell club.

Through the years I’ve worked hard to not allow my ailments to define me. We’re not going to get into how psychological, physical, and emotional damaging this mindset can be when it has limited impact on the true state of illness.

I won’t say that this acting is a bad thing, neither will I declare it a good thing…I’ll let you draw your own conclusions. I’ll just say the acting is what I do on a daily basis. Acting as if I am free of any ailments despite the fact that my body is riddled with ailments became my way of life decades ago. So much so that presently acting well is simply a habit now.

Sigh. So when I have days like today when my illnesses outweigh my acting skills and I must pause…I struggle.

I struggle because I’ve spent so much time pretending to be well that I forget how to tend to my illnesses.

I struggle because no one is used to me saying no or being unable to participate in whatever activity they want me to.

I struggle because on those days (today) I’m forced to look at myself and see the illnesses that I fight so hard to ignore.

I struggle because the illnesses impact my entire being.

You’d think I’d only experienced days like today once every three years, the way it seems to knock me down. You would think that there’s no warning signals and that I’m always caught by surprise based on my reaction to days like today.

None of that is true.

I frequently experienced days like today. There’s generally always warning signs and I even take steps to prepare for the life interruptions. Yet, I’ll never get used to the toll days like today take on me.

Days like today will be familiar, yet foreign.

Plans. Pain! Plans?

It was Sunday, which meant it was time for me to mentally plan and prepare for the week. It would likely be more sensible for me to plan on Saturdays; however my Saturdays are booked and so I plan my week on the first day of the week…

At times those plans are very loose; those are the times when I actually plan to stream programming, read a novel, or watch random videos and listen to music.

This Sunday my plans were not very flexible as far as the tasks I’d intended to accomplish. I planned a set amount of hours that I’d spend on the tasks in order to follow my plan for the week.

Well…here’s the problem – when I planned my tasks for the week I failed to plan for pain. Oddly I failed to even consider the possibility of pain.

Not considering the possibility of pain is odd because I actively live with chronic illness and pain. Well I guess I wanted to think positive and plan my week without the presence of pain.

I am in pain most days of the week, multiple hours in a day; however, when I planned my week on Sunday…I didn’t consider the possibility of pain.

At times I believe that the faith talks dissuade me from practicing self care. In many ways faith talks or willpower talks fault the person going through something and rarely addresses any core problems. When faith talks and willpower talks occupy my mind I believe I am able to not consider the pain I experience on a regular basis.

Somehow That pain pauses until my weekly tasks are complete or at least that was my frame of mind Sunday when I made plans.

Surprise, I know it’s not even going to shock you, pain was not only present while I attempted to complete my scheduled tasks, pain sidetracked me to the point that I was unable to stick to my scheduled events.

I’m not new to chronic pain or illness. I’ve dealt with these things in various forms with varying levels of success most of my life…so it’s amazing that I’m astonished that pain made my plans questionable.

Whether I’ll be able to complete the scheduled tasks this week as planned is a question that will remain unanswered for a few days.

Pain has interrupted my sleep cycle, lack of sleep impacts my comprehension levels which are already lowered as a result of the pain…all of this makes it difficult to complete my tasks I scheduled for the week.

Ok so at this moment I’m accepting the possibility of being unable to complete the planned tasks this week and like many people living with chronic illness and pain. I adjust and do what I can, while thinking to myself “why did I forget to make room for pain?”

What do you do when pain makes your plans questionable?

Independence

I’m a bit rusty on child development research; however, I know that between the toddler and preschool years children stake their claims for independence.

Oh yes they want to prove that they no longer need their caregivers to help them with anything. Most of us in the United States are very familiar with the coined phrase, “mommy wow, I’m a big kid now” thanks to a popular advertisement.

This time of independence is often challenging for the caregivers. This stage is one of the first times, caregivers get a glimpse into the future when their child is less dependent on them. This stage comes quickly; however, many caregivers feel like its sudden.

As you know I’m certainly not a toddler, nor a preschooler but I’m once again staking my claim for independence.

I’ll explain…I’ve had a various jobs throughout my life but the next job will be the first position I have where I’m also not simultaneously a student.

That’s all great but it has little to do with my claim for independence.

My claim for independence stems from the fact that I’ve reached a place in life where I’m not concerned about being identified by my family or any attributes.

I don’t want to identify myself as X’s daughter or a member of X organization.

So my independence embodies the fact that I’m stepping out on my own and I’m defining who and what I am. My family and friends don’t have to hold my hands because like the child attempting to prove that they are a big kid now; i am showing my Family and friends that I’m able to do these things I’ve set out to do,

I’m a big kid now!

Worry Less

As I prepare for my next phase in life, I have several concerns about how things will be.

One of the reasons I have so many concerns is because my financial state at the moment is pretty sad.

I’ve never been in a situation like this before. I worry how my future will be impacted.

This is a credit score driven community and with each day that I’m literally waiting on my job to start, my credit sinks.

I’ve spoken to my debtors, I’ve explained the situation thoroughly multiple times. For the most part, they’ve been understanding and treated me well.

They are all running businesses so I completely understand if they are unable to wait until my situation changes.

I worry about my ability to have a smooth transition because of my current credit woes.

I’ve punished myself far more severely than anyone ever should for the financial decisions I made when I had income. I punished myself for helping others who faced unusual financial situations. Oh I’ve punished myself for buying any unnecessary item when I had income.

I punished myself for months and I must say that didn’t help my financial situation. If anything the continual stress weakened my immune system which led to sickness, which led to more expenses I was unable to cover.

At the moment, I’m not in a dark place and I do not feel doomed…but it has taking months to get here.

I cannot make my job start any sooner. I cannot make temporary employment appear. I cannot change the decisions I made when I had income.

However, I can make the most of my days. I can enjoy my family and friends before I depart for my new adventure. I can respectably inform my debtors of my situation. I can accept any consequences I must face during this time.

I can take care of my health to the best of my ability. I can help others and I can smile and laugh.

There are times in life when it seems that we are sinking further into a dark hole. In these times we feel like there’s NO WAY we will get out of this tough spot or perhaps there’s no way we will survive.

You and I are not privy to what the next hour, let alone the next day will present to us and our lives; however, we can do our best to make the most of this current moment.

I have a lot to be thankful for and I’m sure you do as well. I’m not telling you to keep fighting or stand strong; I’m merely suggesting that you cherish the moment and try to enjoy it.

It is too difficult for me to tell myself to have a great day and/or make this day count….at this time in my life a day is too long to even really think about so instead I attempt to make the most of a moment.

Sometimes once the day ends I noticed that I had a good day…but it’s a blessing when I can simply have a good moment.

You know? Like during the few moments that I wrote this post, I breathed a sigh of relief from my current situation. I don’t know if I’ll have a good day and I’m certainly not going to make myself have a good day…but thanks to you, my readers, creating this post for you, provided me some good moments during this day.

I was able to worry less, if only for a moment.

Can we talk…more?

It’s been said once or twice that I keep to myself and don’t open up to anyone.

The individuals who’ve said this share familial ties with me.

Each time I’ve been told that I need to talk more, let people in, share what’s going on with me; I’ve actively addressed it.

I’m the type of person who’ll heed your advice until I see that your opinion is baseless so I would purposely talk to these individuals and try to share my world with them.

Each time I’ve tried I may as well be talking to the wall because these individuals actively ignored me. At times they would find ways to busy themselves in order to escape the conversation.

Don’t you recall that I told you these individuals would say I needed to talk to them more

Yet when I try they decide that there’s better things to do than listen to me.

I’ll never say that I’m untouched by this reaction; I am. Through the years I’ve gotten better at not taking it so personal…but it still bothers me.

Maybe I presented myself wrong or I have bad timing. These are the things I tell myself when a conversation flat lines or never materializes.

I guess I should stop responding when these individuals suggest I open up to them more and share my world; but that would be out of character.

Sigh, if you suggest I converse with you more…please attend the conversation when I make an attempt to have one with you.

Stress Alert

My posts as of late are very “woe is me”, “my problems are huge”, and “I have no answers”!

Thankfully, this is my undefined blog which often serves as a safe space for my thoughts.

My thoughts are not always bright and sunny. Sometimes I think through my dilemmas in a nonlinear, illogical fashion. Then other times I just pout it out.

I’m always me! That’s a guarantee.

I notice readers (thank you btw) enjoy my woe is me posts! Not because you are secretly laughing; but because you can totally relate.

I think that’s the thing that I must always remember – I’m not the only individual who faces stressful times. I’m certainly not the only one who struggles to cherish the moment.

Most people (I know I could say All people but I like to naively believe there’s a group of people who NEVER have problems) encounter issues and deal with an increased level of stress at least once in their lifetime…however when I am in the midst of my issue, it seems like no one else has ever been through anything quite like what I’m going through!

Isn’t it amazing how we have to address such lies while we are trying to stay afloat during high stress times?

I know it must hold some element of truth because movies and television series occasionally highlight the internal angst one experiences while they are in the throes of their issues.

Perhaps it has a lot to do with the culture of the United States or the Western world, but stressing about whether others have the same type of stressors while one is stressed out about an issue is stressful!

Stress begets more stress because pity party likes to do it big!!!

That’s all folks. Stress less…write more!!!!

Friendship Failures

It’s commonplace to hear about long-lasting friendships and about the beauty of friendships in general.

That’s wonderful…but where’s the conversations about those friendship failures?

I’ve had quite a few of those in my life. Honestly, I’ve had more of these failures than I’d admit publicly.

The first question I’m asked when I mention the many failed friendships I’ve had is – What’s wrong with you?

Trust me, I’ve asked myself that many times. I’ve concluded that I’m certainly not everyone’s cup of tea when it comes to being a friend; however, I’m also a very good friend.

My lack of expressiveness sometimes causes problems in my friendships. Also my love of solitude and quiet time doesn’t bode well with many individuals. Not to mention, how the chronic illnesses which take residence in my body can sometimes make it difficult to spend time with friends.

I remember the time I changed the plans to hang out with a friend at the last minute due to my unpredictable chronic illness flare. Notice I said I changed the plans, not canceled outright!

That was the last time me and this individual hung out. I thought we were on our way to becoming lifelong friends…our relationship didn’t make to two years.

There was another lovely individual that I bonded with nearly instantly. We were fast friends! Well during the second year of our relationship we had a disagreement about lifestyle choices. After that fateful conversation we never said as much as hello to one another again.

This particular situation was difficult because during our brief friendship we’d made plans to be in each other’s lives for major events like marriage, children, career milestones. Oh we were so optimistic, yet we chose to terminate communication with each other after just one conversation that highlighted a disagreement about lifestyle.

Then there was also this individual who I called my best friend and felt like they were a sibling to me…our friendship lasted for years. Honestly, it was on and off so when I really consider the times we were actively friends I must say it lasted only about four years.

This particular friend and I had a disagreement about my choices and the relationship ended, never to be mended. The reason I say it will never be mended is because I have no real idea why it ended. We grew apart rapidly and I continued to be friends with our mutual friends. Much to the dismay of this individual

I often hear individuals say that people enter into your life for a season. That may be true, but even with that understand friendship failures are difficult.

I can often be overly optimistic when it comes to friends. I’ve also been known as someone who is too forgiving and always there for individuals even if they are no longer my friends

For example one of my former friends called me early one morning – around 3am – I was asleep. The ringing of my phone woke me up, so I answered. Short of a few significant others who worked early mornings or late night, no one called me at 3am unless it was emergent.

I was shocked when I saw my former friend’s name on the telephone screen; but I answered. This individual was having a hard time and needed a friend. They even told me during that conversation – that although they no longer talked to me they knew that I would be there whenever they needed me.

It was a long call but the crisis was averted before the conversation ended. I didn’t end the conversation expecting the flat lined relationship to suddenly gain life. I’m very thankful that I didn’t hold a grudge and I was able to be the friend I desired others to be for me.

I have many wonderful friends and I’ve learned how to be a better friend. No lessons were quite as impactful as my friendship failures.