Sunday, January 4, 2009

The People in My Neighborhood

As I read through my last few posts I think it might be easy to get the impression that I am not getting the support I need out here in the real world. And that's really not true.

With the exception of the few people I can count on half of one hand, I could not be surrounded by a more loving lot. Friends, family (for the most part), co-workers, colleagues, hell, acquaintances. These people have all risen to the occasion to show us that we matter. That the girls matter. They have fed us, written to us, entertained us, visited us, wept with us, called us, hugged us, loved us.

I wish I could show how thankful I am. That we are.

And then there's you. All of you, who continue to check in on me, email me, write me privately and not privately. I am not going to admit how many times I check my blog and email throughout the day and read and reread your words. Thank you so much. I wish I could show how thankful I am. That we are.

The problem, I think, is me. I think I am pushing towards normalcy too quickly. I think I am trying to soldier on and I am admitting right now that perhaps I am just not ready yet. I accept invitations from good friends and then I bail at the last minute or simply don't show (I am so sorry, H.). I get myself all gussied up to go out and I can't bring myself to open the door.

Last night, for instance, I make plans to see one of my favorite bands, hell, I even have drinks lined up for me at the bar, and then after a moment, I realize that it is the last place I want to be. And then a familiar internal monologue starts:

well, then, where do you want to be? I don't know. Not there. Well, where? Um, here on the couch seems fine. So, the couch is where you'd like to be? Again? Not really. But I can't think of anything better and I'm already here so why not just stay here. OMFG what is your fucking problem? Sigh. I don't know. Are you feeling sad? Should you talk to M.? Would going out make you feel better? Don't you think it might feel better to be around people? I don't know. Those are too many questions. I don't feel sad. I just don't feel anything. If I were with other people, what would I say? I'd have to talk. I don't want to talk.

And I realize that my feeling lately is mostly numb. Peppered by anger. And then I feel something really not nice creeping in. That, "oh you think you have problems?" scowl that I used to wear in college that has taken me a decade to shed. A chip on my shoulder heavy with anger at the world is the last thing I want to bear right now. Get off. Just get off...

We haven't been total shut ins. I started running and have been going back to the gym. M. is at work this very moment and has been going for weeks. We've hit some happy hours. We've gone grocery shopping. And then hit more happy hours. But (besides work) those all feel a little more anonymous. We're out, but we're still alone. Still together. In fact, it seems it is easier for M. to talk about some things when we aren't at home. Something about a different place (i.e. not our couch) gives him the distance he needs to see things a little clearer. Me, I just want beer.

Gatherings or places where there are people we know are a little harder. I can't explain why. They just are.

So, today my post is to reassure you that yes, there are people around us that are loving and caring for us as well as they can. As well as we will let them. There are a few screwy family members who should know better, but when aren't there? I do worry that I've given some miscues. Some indication that I am ready for the world. And it seems that I am not. And I worry that the invitations or calls might stop after so many being unanswered. Please don't stop.

Tomorrow is Monday. I am going to get my shoes on and go to work. I am not promising I'm going to stay, but I am going to try. If it feels ok, I will be there. If not, I am reminding myself right now that it is ok for me to admit that I need more time.

I just might need more time.


Amy said...

You have to take all the time you need...there's nothing else you can do.

luna said...

everything in healing has its own timeline. you just have to let it run its course and do what you can to take care of yourself.

not wanting to be around people is normal too. do what you need, take the time and space you need.

Anonymous said...

I am a loyal lurker. I am sorry for your loss, but glad to hear that, for the most part, you and M have supportive and loving family and friends.

Brenna said...

I think you're doing remarkably well to already be out and about AT ALL. It took least two months before I could handle spending time with or even talking on the phone with any of my friends. It's not that I didn't love them or wasn't eternally grateful for their support, I just couldn't see them. You'll know when you're ready. And your true friends will understand and give you all the time you need.

Kami said...

This is all so normal. I got in the habit of telling people that I would come if I felt up to and that I would leave if it got too hard. I also had a harder time with people I knew. I was expected to socialize, but that could be so incredibly draining. I wanted to cry or feel nothing instead.

My thoughts continue to be with you.