Monday, January 27, 2014

Comment Section Open!

I have made adjustments - you can now comment directly on the blog page without having any kind of account. :-)


I moved to North Carolina in August. Here it is 5 months later and I still have some boxes sitting around my place that have not been emptied or sorted through. The condition of my stuff within my living space is a mirror image of the "stuff" in my head. There are places that are clean and organized, and there are corners and particular spots that need to be sorted out. Some of it is useful. Some of it is garbage. Some of it needs to be shredded into teeny tiny little pieces never to be seen again by anyone. I have waited, saved these boxes and piles of papers for later because I have not had the energy to deal with them. My goal is to get through a little each day. Whatever I can handle.

I am afraid of some of the "stuff" that is in these boxes. I am afraid it will make me feel, and then if I feel something so powerful it will consume me. These boxes hold memories and with memories comes emotions. What do I do with them all? My previous tactic of pushing them away did not work, because here I am, dealing with them. They will re-surface and re-surface until you deal with it. I cannot fool myself with self-talk saying, 
- I'm okay! I really am! I am fine! See how I got through this? 
- Well, Sarah, how DID you get through it? 
- Umm... I don't know...
- That's cause you didn't yet.

Let the emotions come, let them go. If I get lost in my memories and thoughts for a while, it's okay. It will not consume me. I will come back to myself again. Don't be afraid to feel. Sadness can be okay. It will not consume me. It will not dictate the rest of my life. Don't be afraid to feel. Feeling emotions makes you honest with yourself. You cannot know what you really think if you do not let yourself feel. Make your emotions your friends. You can sit with them without being afraid. They are not monsters. You have control of the party. You say when tea time is over and there is nothing more to discuss. Don't be afraid to feel. Let it in and let it go.

The boxes I have here are not even the bulk of what I have to sort through. Because as soon as I get through these, I have 15 more waiting for me at my parent's house and a storage garage full of items to deal with. It is daunting and scary. I can stand in the middle of the room just looking at the boxes and feel over-whelmed. They are full of questions: What do I do with this? What do I do with that? Should I keep it? Would someone else want it? Would my son want it? Should I donate it? Will I regret giving it away later? Would R. want me to keep it? All these questions create fear and anxiety in me. It helps to remember that they are THINGS. Material things. Love has nothing to do with material items. I believe love is the only energy that transcends everything. And if that is so, then R. would not care what I keep and don't keep. A simple truth remains that the longer I wait to deal with my stuff, the longer it will take for me to find peace.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Quiet Time

Frequently, I find that I am in need of quiet time, meaning either being in silence, or being in the midst of a quiet noise level that I can handle. Many times I go to a coffee shop expecting to hear quiet conversation among jingles and tinkles of cups and silverware. That's the kind of noise I can handle; I can still keep track of my own thoughts. Although, this is not always what I encounter. Sometimes it's full of loud conversations, "background music" which is actually in the foreground, invading my thoughts because I know the words to the song. People meeting up with each other and excitedly yelling, "Hey! Hi! I haven't see you in so long!" Or "Oh hi! Fancy meeting you here!" Then they proceed to sit down and take over my quiet space.  This makes me feel irritable.

 I am an introvert and I need quiet in order to process just exactly what I have been through. When I need to concentrate on my own thoughts and am not able to, I get irritated. Unfortunately this happens a lot with my son. He is a normal five year old boy who makes noise playing and jumps off the furniture. I cannot think when this is going on so, I join him; well, not to jump off the furniture. But, I try to take my mind off of my grief and trauma by interacting with him. Playing. It is difficult when the very person you love most in the world shares the DNA of the one who was lost. My son is a constant reminder that R is gone and of how he died.

Sometimes playing with my son for 15-20 minutes is all that is needed for him to be satisfied with my company, and then I can go back and try to read, think, or write. Sometimes it's all I need as well, to give my brain a break so that I can go back to it again without being irritable. It doesn't always make it go away completely. But it is an attempt.

I believe the reason for the irritability is that there is not room for much else in my brain right now, except to process this journey. I go back to day 1 (the day that R killed himself), I go through everything that happened that afternoon and evening, all the way until the end of the week when the funeral happened. Then I keep going chronologically through the major events that happened the year after. All of the "firsts" without R. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, getting  my own apartment, trying to get through nursing school, failing nursing school, moving to another state, failing again...the list goes on as my life goes on. Many times I ask myself how I got to where I am today in this town- and I go back over those events in my head, over and over again. When I think about my life, there is a distinct line I have drawn: a before IT happened and after IT happened. My life is separated into this divide.