Worry Worry

I should be so happy right now, but I worry over the little things.  I blame my mother because she always worried so.  Truth is, sure I learned it from her, but I never unlearned it.  I never stopped worrying even when I wanted to or knew I should.  There’s plenty of things in this life to worry over – health, love, death, those are the things worth worrying about.  Logically I know this.  It doesn’t stop me from worrying over traffic, time, work things; the little things that I so desperately need to learn to let go of.  It’s not even about control, it’s more that when I don’t worry I get burned.  But the worry is burning me just as deeply, just slower and more painstakingly so.

I’m 37 years old and honestly wouldn’t be shocked if I had a heart attack.  That sounds awful.  I mean I don’t want one, who wants to have a heart attack.  I’m not wishing for one, but I am too stressed.  I need to relax.  I don’t just mean the kind of relaxing you do on vacation.  – That ends when I return home and the worrying starts.  “How much is waiting for me at work? Did that bill ever get mailed? Shouldn’t I have received that phone call by now? Wasn’t that medication due to be refilled? Why is insurance not allowing a refill? Why is this traffic light always red when I’m late? Why does the garbage guy show up just when I want to pull out of the driveway? etc etc etc”  I’m doing it now, tonight, at 9:24 PM.  I’m thinking about my workday and all the things that did or didn’t go right.  I’m thinking about to fix them or how it’ll all play out tomorrow.  I’m checking email.  I’m downloading applications, configuring things, and I’m doing this stuff to in my mind prevent some imminent disaster.  Except, it’s not.  The disaster is still probably going to happen.  Is it really a disaster? Probably not, but it’ll likely feel like one when it happens.

So maybe it’s not so much that I worry too much, but rather that I let things mean too much.  If the work issues weren’t so important to me, than I wouldn’t worry, right? But who doesn’t want to be successful and do a good job and make someone proud?

How can I stop the constant stress if I can’t pinpoint the big issue that most needs to be addressed to stop it? Is it the worrying? Is that I’m a control freak? Is it both? Is it something entirely different, like the fact that I simply don’t shut my mind off well?

I always wondered how others do it.  If I’m working on a project and it’s not going well, for whatever the reason, I want to try to fix it or at least provide some kind of mitigation strategy to protect against the issues arising.  If those issues and the source of them are entirely out of my control, and the disaster is happening regardless of anything I could or couldn’t do to prevent it, why is it so hard for me to step aside and watch the train crash (metaphorically of course)? The other day my boss said I needed to step outside the train and be watching the crash instead of trying to drive the train car.  To which I responded, “but if my children are on the train, how can I in all good faith simply leave them to crash?” She said, “because you have to stop looking at the work situation and your coworkers as your children.”  So how do you care less? I mean of course you still need to care on some level, but how when you always cared maybe a little too much, do you tone it back down?

I’ve gotten a little better as I aged.  I’m better at bad stress now – ya know the things you can’t expect or plan for, the things most everyone else would totally and justifiably stress out over.  Those things I handle well.  It’s the things that shouldn’t be so big, that seem big, which I don’t often knock down in perspective.  Logically I know they aren’t that big.  The world won’t end if something goes wrong at work.  The world will still spin if  I run late tomorrow.  My head is starting to spin now.

I’ve tried yoga.  I’ve been told to meditate.  These are all nice things, but they haven’t had the long-term guidance and impact I’m looking for.  In the moment, when the little things feel big, how do you squash them like the annoying painful stinging bug they are? That’s what I need to learn.  Suggestions welcome.

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“So Ya Had A Bad Day. . . “

Ever feel like you are on the Titanic, reaching desperately for the life boat as it floats away? I think I put too much of myself into work because it is my legacy since I have no husband, no children.  I’m forced to remember how much more important those things are to me.  I try to push that part of me down, aside, whatever.  I focus on work.  I work my butt off.  I put my everything into every aspect of what I do.  It’s who I am and it’s a pale piece of what I wanted to be.  I’m my loneliest when I’m reminded that work is but a job and doesn’t bring me happiness.  I’m my loneliest when work turns on me whether by beating me down with countless thankless hours, additional work as my only reward, or as in today the knowledge that when the ship shinks I will be the captain who never had an anchor, never had the wheel, and never had any fuel.

And as the theme lurks in the back of my mind, all about how one’s heart will go on, it’s abundantly clear to me my heart was broken long ago and the damage never repaired.  I invested myself in my work but was assigned something that could never succeed.  I knew it from day one.  I said it from day one.  I proved it repeatedly.  I used all the right tools to show them the failings, to show them where the path went astray.  In the end the tools don’t matter.  The path doesn’t matter.  All that matters is the end result.  Sad isn’t it?

We teach children that the journey is supposed to matter.  Heck, it should be more important than the end result.  After all, the end does not always justify the means.  All that jazz.  But as adults I’m not convinced everyone believes these teachings.  The world we live in is a bitter angry place and it is every man for himself.

I’m a strong person and when I’m not I act the part.  That actually is probably my biggest weakness here.  People think I’ll be ok.  People think I can take it.  People beat me down mentally, emotionally, publically, because I’m the one person that it won’t touch.  I’m not phased by these things.  I’m strong after all.  It’s ironic that the world falls for such tricks.  That a simple look or a staunch mindset meant to protect us from all the things that broke and beat us before wind up being the things that break us now.

I’m truly at a loss tonight.  I’m saddened by the words ringing in my head from today.  I’m saddened by the evils of this cold dark world.  But I’m most saddened by the reminder that when my time comes, all I’ll have to show for it is a job not always appreciated, not well remembered, and all in all just a job.

And even when I got my rewards or certificates, or some kind of mention of appreciation, I would come home and want desperately to show it to someone.  Tonight I wanted the comfort of knowing that when it all implodes I won’t be alone.  I wanted the comfort of knowing that all my hard work means something, but the truth is it is nothing.  It means nothing.

When I’m old and gray and looking back on life, I’ll be wishing I traveled more.  I want to go to Spain, Italy, speak Spanish again.  I want to be amazed by something not man-made.  I want to be loved.  I want to feel love.  I want to give back said love.  And not because someone tricked me or because it’s supposed to be or because …..I don’t know.

I’ve pretty much failed miserably at the online attempt of recent times.  I gave up after a few short weeks.  It’s just not me.  It feels so forced.  Love shouldn’t be so hard, at least not in the beginning.  Maybe I only know what the movies say, but I want to have that connection with someone.  I don’t care if they aren’t perfect.  I don’t care if they are overweight, heck I’d feel a little less pressure myself maybe.  I don’t care if they have flaws.  Flaws can be beautiful.

When I love someone I give 150% of myself and that is my flaw.  I set myself up to be the one who loves more.  You never want to be the one who loves more.  See they are the one that is left behind.  I never smothered, heck I like my alone time.  I like to think I give plenty of space in a relationship.  Maybe I give too much, so it’s easy to walk away.  I’ve wondered sometimes if I just maybe did some horrible wrong in another life and this God awful loneliness that never quite goes away is my punishment.  Is it so wrong at the end of a horrible day, to just want someone by your side?

If I’m being brutally honest with myself, I disappoint myself.  I need to return to the one thing that heals my soul – my writing.  I’ve been away for a while.  And if my legacy can’t be a great love, or children, or family, or the mark of a wonderful career, or any of those things, maybe just maybe it can be the message I send with my words.  I want to write a book.  I need to work on my poetry collection.  And so I resolve to make it my mission to return to my only true salvation, my writing, my poetry.  I will write the number of poems I need.  Hopefully, some of my followers might even wish to buy my book one day.  But even if the book never sees print and even if the poems reside only here or on paper in a pile somewhere, at least when my time comes, I will leave something behind worth seeing.  I will leave something behind with great meaning.  I will leave a part of me no one quite got to know.  I will leave the most intimate part of my soul.  And I will be proud to have let that piece shine when nothing else could.

 

 

Call Me Maybe

I’m sure many of you know the Carly Rae Jepsen song, “Call Me Maybe”.  And in it there’s a line, “Before you came into my life, I missed you so bad….” I think I finally understand how it’s possible to miss someone you never met.  Most days I have a moment or two or three of loneliness and shrug it off and keep going.  It’s events, holidays, and occasions that are harder.

My birthday never had that special feel – not for lack of trying on my family’s part.  But I don’t really remember the young ones and the ones that stick in my head are more the high school and beyond.  Well, ok junior high and beyond.  Anyway, it wasn’t that my family didn’t do a big meal or that they didn’t buy me presents.  It wasn’t that they didn’t care, because they did and it was all nice and thoughtful and appreciated.  But every year when I blew out those candles I had the same wish.  For 30+ years now (that’s the closest your getting to an age….lol), I’ve wished for God to bring me a soul mate, someone special to spend my life with.  And maybe it’s not fair to wish that anymore, maybe it never was.  First off, yes, I know that wishing doesn’t make it so and I know there’s no power in a birthday candle, but hey, can’t blame a girl for trying.

Even when I had a boyfriend it seemed we were always on the outs for my birthday.  I never once really celebrated a birthday with someone who didn’t have to love me.  When I was younger, I dreamed about what it might be like.  I yearned to have a special day with someone who would look in my eyes and see me as their biggest gift and treasure.

Honestly, I’ve lost faith that my wish will come true, despite occasional efforts to the contrary.  My friends asked what I was doing for my birthday and I prefer to try and treat it like any other day, because the moment I start to think it is something to be honored or celebrated, I start to think of how I might want to do that, with who, etc.  Then I feel lonely.  I feel as though I’ve lost something, something I never quite had to lose.

I think sometimes I sound ungrateful.  I have a good life.  I have a job I love, for the first time in awhile, with a few kinks.  I am good at what I do and proud of what I’ve done.  I have an awesome niece and nephew that I get my mom fix with.  I have parents who love me and who continually try to make my life better.  I have a close family, which is good and bad.  I have friends, though most are married with children now and I don’t often get to see.  I have a stable life.  I have a great home.  I’m not needing for things or hurting or hungry or cold.  What right do I have to ask for more?

Logically, I get it.  Then I look around at the couples on the street.  I can’t help but be envious of the connection they have and of what that could mean.  I have pictures in my head in rich color of what I envisioned my later life to be.  I can see my mate (from the back anyway) sitting with me holding my hand as we age.  For a moment, I feel a sense of peace, like the image is real; it is so strong. My biggest fear in life has always been winding up alone and dying alone.

You get to be good at being alone after awhile.  There’s pluses to it.  I can cook whatever I want for dinner – ice cream, pasta, cereal, soup, etc.  I can choose not to eat.  I can eat at 11PM.  I can do the laundry, but leave it in the dryer.  I can  hang a towel up messy.  I can leave the TV on when I go in another room and know my channel won’t be changed.  I know the toilet seat won’t be up when it shouldn’t.  I know I can go to sleep when I want.  etc etc…

On the other hand, there’s no one to nudge me in the morning when it’s cold outside and still dark and help me get out of bed to start my day.  There’s no one to make me dinner when I get home late from work.  There’s no one to kiss me when I’m excited or hold me when I’m sad or comfort me when I need comforting.  There’s no one to laugh with or smile with, cry with, or simply be with in silence.  There’s no one to help when the work seems too much.  There’s no one to just shake sense into me when I get overwhelmed.  There’s no one to balance me when my scales get rocked.

I refuse to settle for someone I’m not in love with.  I want that meaningful connection with someone.  Honestly, maybe it’s not possible, but I had a glimpse of what it could be once.  I met someone once that I felt a true deep connection with, that I could have loved, that I think could have been a soul mate of mine in another life, in another place, in another time.  But in this life, it wasn’t meant to be.

People think I’m critical or picky, but when you reach a certain age, you dreamed a dream so long, if the dream can’t be, than why shatter it for something that pales in comparison.  I’m not looking for Mr. Perfect as many seem to think.  Far from it in fact.  I’m looking for Mr. Right-for-Me.  And he’s hiding under a rock…..somewhere far far away….and I guess I may never know.

I have married friends that make me awfully uncomfortable sometimes.  They tell me they think things about me or well, that’s enough.  A compliment is fine, but some take it too far.  I think they say it because they think it will help me be less lonely, but it’s just creepy and inappropriate on all accounts.  Then I start to think why is it I’m attracting taken men, but I can’t find a decent single one anywhere. If only I knew I suppose….

well I’m off to blow out another candle, wish another wish…there should be something to say for persistence right? 🙂 Goodnight my Mr. Right-For-Me, wherever you are! Until someday…..I hope….

Ramblings of a sad tired girl

My biggest fear was always winding up alone.  But I’ve spent my life pulled in two completely different directions.  There’s the loyal part of me that has stayed close to home, to my family, and that keeps me stuck in some ways.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my family and enjoy spending time with my niece and nephew, but my family inherently expects so much from me that there never seems to be any time left for me.  I cannot seem to find that happy medium and when I try to I get accused of not giving enough of myself over to them.

Then there’s the other half of me.  She’s been drawn to move away to a big city for many years.  I wish I could go back in time and never graduate college early – that last semester could have been so much fun, just taking courses I wanted since I had all my credits, just enjoying being young while I still could.  I was in so much of a hurry to grow up, move out, be on my own.  Truthfully, I wanted to give my boyfriend at the time, and myself, a real chance and because he and my family did not get along, it helped matters greatly that I was able to graduate and be out on my own.

But here we are years later and I never followed my heart to a big city, never went somewhere where maybe I could have met someone simply due to the larger population.  I never took that chance and now I’m grounded, with responsibilities and I can’t go.  I’m not sure I’d have the courage to start all over again anyway.  I feel like so much of my life has been about starting over.

I love my family.  I love my parents.  They were good parents, but they were very strict.  I was desperate to find my own way and to be free to do so.  I wasn’t a bad seed, I didn’t experiment with drugs or alcohol.  I didn’t break the law.  I got good grades, great ones actually.  I studied hard.  I worked my butt off.  Some part of me felt like they never realized how lucky they were that I was such a good child.

I felt so much pressure from them and from my boyfriend at the time.  I was completely torn in two and I don’t think anyone saw that.  I slapped on a smile.  I faked it every day.  People never saw what was happening inside me.  I was crumbling.  I was supposed to be excited and young and on the verge of great things, but I was weighed down with stress, fear, pressure.  Maybe it was all my own doing, I don’t know.  He didn’t like them, they didn’t like him and I was in the middle.  I was confused and frustrated and I tried to talk to people, but the words either didn’t come or they sounded like a foreign language because no one seemed to understand me back then.

I won’t go into the details of my move.  Let’s just say I was out of the house within weeks of my college graduation and it wasn’t a pleasant time.  My family was upset with me and many of them were not even speaking with me.  I started out on my own with very little – basically what I could fit in my car.  I was naive enough to believe that hard work and love would fill the voids.

My boyfriend and I didn’t last.  Instead I was alone and although I’d proven to myself I could make it on my own, which did give me some warm fuzzies, I was still alone.  Some family never forgave me.  I even got a letter from one relative about how much I’d caused hurt to my family and all the reasons I was going to hell.  Let’s just say that letter gave new meaning to twisting religion.

I was out of the house less than a week when one of my best friends died.  I miss him to this day.  We spoke just a day before he passed.  I’ll never forget that phone call.  But I digress….

So here I am 15 years later and I’m not sure how much further in life I really am.  I’m still feeling very much alone.  I resolved most issues with my family.  We’ve been through a lot since then.  I’m closer with my father than I ever was before all that.  My sister and I are ok, but our relationship has never fully healed.  The only time we really talked about some of those old unresolved issues was about two years ago, before my surgery.  I left the conversation feeling as though she understood as little as when it started.  I love her, but I guess we just have to agree to disagree on some things.

I think that’s why I’m writing tonight.  I feel as though I give a lot of myself to my family – my mother, father, uncle, sister, brother-in-law, niece, and nephew.  Sometimes they don’t feel the same.  I think it’s because I’m single.  My mother and my sister expect more because somehow since I’m single I must have the time.  But what happens inevitably is that in order to make that time, I lose something.  I lose myself or my freedoms.  I work all week.  I’m getting older now and I’m tired most nights, but I try to force myself to do something once or twice during the week – exercise, or something simple.  I don’t go out much on a weeknight anymore, so I plan most fun things for weekends.  I try to leave time for my family too.  The thing is they don’t always ask me if I want to come to something.  They simply expect that I will since I must have nothing else going on.  Because I’m single you know…..when I do have a conflict, I’m accused of not being loyal or there enough if I dare to spend the time on myself.

I actually think there’s a part of my sister that misses that freedom of being single.  So to some degree maybe that’s where her frustrations come from.  Still, I twist myself up like a pretzel and it will never be good enough, or so it feels.  And in the end I wonder, if that’s true, should I have just lead my life 100% for me, would I have less regrets?

I feel like I’m 60+ years old.  I feel like the best of my life is behind me.  I feel unable to grab back my youth.  I’m afraid that I’ve made my biggest fears reality, because I never spent any time caring for me.  So here I am, broken inside, alone, and I don’t know how to meet anyone anymore.  And I never went to the big city and tried life there for a while.

This is not a midlife crisis, this is a yearly crisis within me.  I’m always second guessing where life has led me and I can’t go back and I can’t fix it.  I can’t do it differently.  But I so wish God would give me a sign that I did the right things, and that therefore, I won’t be tortured with my biggest fears realized, but instead will be rewarded with a chance to actually find happiness myself.  Oh God, if only you could help me.  Because I am headed down a road I can’t seem to stop and my life isn’t bad, but it isn’t all full either.  And when my family is gone and I the youngest am still here, I’ll be all alone.  I’ll have reached the end with my biggest fear at every turn laughing at me.  Is it so wrong to wish that I can have a life that is mine too, that I can find love, that I won’t be alone someday?

 

 

Why do we put so much stock in outward appearances?

Tonight I went for a long walk with a good friend. We talked about men, dating, work, and life. Then we continued our conversation over a late dinner (does salad count?) and iced coffee (yum). Anyway, we started really noticing and commenting on the men that were frequenting the restaurant. Mostly good comments, except for the older men that seemed strangely drawn to me. As I said to my friend, I’d rather pick up a guy in a public place that I’ve seen than anticipate meeting face to face for the first time some random stranger that exists online. It’s just a comfort thing. So I’m much more aware than I once was of the people coming and going. I try to people watch a bit.

When I got home, I was checking messages, social websites, etc and I came across a picture of someone’s cousin. He was in a pool with two young children and although the comment intended for the children to be the focus of the picture, it was hard for it not to be the man in the very center of the photo. The thought that entered my mind was, “oh God!” He was shall we say border line gorilla, poor man. He was wearing a bathing suit with no shirt. I don’t mean to be mean or rude or insensitive, but if you think about it, we judge other people by their covers all the time.

We judge ourselves by our outward appearance and we often feel good or bad about ourselves based on it. Clearly this particular man was confident in himself, his appearance, and his manhood, extra hair or not. Good for him, more power to him. I know people judge me based on my appearance. I have a friend and former co-worker who told me his first impression of me was an “innocent librarian”. I remember laughing aloud when he stated this and responding, “boy, you don’t know me very well.” But he got the impression because I was put together, wearing glasses, and therefore seemingly intelligent. But he didn’t know I was intelligent, my look said it to him and he assumed as much. It’s funny the impressions we give off when we don’t even know it.

So many people focus on the one or few things they’d like to change about their appearance if they could. Nothing wrong with wanting to improve especially if it’s something we have the power to change – like weight, or hair color, or something like that. But we focus so much on the negatives. It would be nice if when we look in the mirror, instead of noticing that hair that is out of place, we’d notice the really great top, or the excellent make-up job, or whatever. I’m definitely my own worst critic, constantly picking apart my image in the mirror when no one else sees what I see.

We often carry ideas from childhood or somewhere else that have been planted in our heads; maybe they were never true or that time has passed, but we still keep them. A friend the other day was telling me about something her mother used to say to her when she was younger, about how she wore her hair. To this day, it sticks with her, she’ll never wear her hair that way again. People don’t realize the impact they have on other people. We also don’t realize how much stock we put in outward appearances. Think about it, a guy is on the phone with a friend talking about meeting his single female friend for a possible date. She is described as having a great personality. We all know what that means, right? She’s ugly! That’s the impression anyway. I like to think I have a great personality, but I also hope that’s not how someone describes me, because it reads, “she’s ugly”.

In the world of 2013, there’s no changing the importance that is built into appearance or the fact that you never get a second chance to make a first impression, as the saying goes. We want to believe our appearance doesn’t matter, but it does, at least on some level. But what matters more is that we learn to love ourselves, or at least some things about ourselves. That instead of picking that appearance apart in the mirror or in a picture, that we can find the good in it. If we see something good and positive in ourselves, others will too. That should overrule any negatives that our outward appearance may otherwise have. Essentially, be confident, love yourself, learn what works for you, and be proud of who you are inside and out. Because if you feel that way about yourself, others will feel it too. It’s kind of like the idea of it you force yourself to smile, eventually you feel happy. There’s some truth to that.

Anyway, I got a little preachy tonight. Not something I often like to do and my apologies if it sounded like an after school special (if you remember those). But just food for thought……you can chew on it or move on to the next item on your plate. Night all….

Weddings, Children, and all those dreams

Tonight I went to my friend’s wedding. It was beautiful and she is very happy. Yet, it was sad all the same. She’s moving states away with her new husband and their family. There were moments at the wedding that I had a really good time. There were other moments that I am all too familiar with, from just about every other friend’s wedding in the last several years. It’s those moments when you realize that you are painfully alone. Those short seconds in time when you think, “I want what they have.”

I’ve never been one who planned or dreamed of her wedding as a child. I don’t know to this day what my dress would look like. Some part of me would like a Church wedding, but I don’t think God minds a little creativity. I could picture myself on a beach or maybe a lake. A simple dress, flattering, but not overdone, appropriate for the setting. Just friends and family, heck in jeans and t-shirts if they like. Simple good food, nothing crazy, nothing overly expensive, lots of dancing and laughing and having a good time.

For awhile I even envisioned that my wedding would be an elopement. I think because I hate the idea of all the money and planning that goes into just one day, but I do like the idea of feeling special for a brief period of time. More though, I would want that memory for my hubby and I. It could even be just us in a remote setting. I don’t know….

It’s all just a dream right now anyway. I wonder why we put any thought into something when the critical piece is missing.

As you may recall from an earlier post, I’m attempting online dating again. I had a phone conversation the other night with a gentleman from the site. We addressed the topic of our interests in children. I have always wanted to be a mom. I wanted that legacy, someone to sing like me, or have my smile, someone to be all the good in me and none of the bad. But as I get older, I’ve had to face the harsh realities.

A few years ago I went to a routine doctor’s appointment. The doctor said she felt something during my exam. I had been feeling just fine and in my head my first thought was that she was crazy. Nevertheless, she wanted me to have an ultrasound of my abdomen. I got nervous and I remember talking to my parents and hearing all the perfectly ok things it could likely be. I went into the ultrasound not so worried, I really believed I was probably fine.

Later that day the results were in. There was a complex hard mass. At the time, they mistakenly believed it was in my right ovary. It was in fact outside my uterus, thankfully. Anyway, long story short, as I think I told a similar story recently, all was well that ended well as it was surgically removed and thankfully benign.

However, my grandmother had been an ovarian cancer survivor. Among a boatload of other cancers floating in my family, that was/is one of the scariest as there really are no obvious symptoms. In talking further with my oncologist, they recommended genetic testing. About a year after my surgery, I underwent just about all the genetic tests they could do at that time due to significant family history and my own personal scare.

What I’m trying to say, though I fear not very well, is that when all this was happening I was forced to reevaluate my stance on children. What if I couldn’t have my own kids? What if I would be facing a hysterectomy, which was at one point in time a serious possibility? I had to learn to accept that maybe I wouldn’t have my own children. Then I had to evaluate whether I would want to adopt. I’ve always been open to adoption, but I don’t know that I’d want to adopt without a husband. It would be harder in so many ways, but also more difficult to successfully adopt as a single working female. Maybe when I was younger I could do it, but I’m not so sure that I have the stamina I once did.

With the medical issues and my being single, I started to think about whether I could be ok without ever being a mom. Whether I could give up something I’d always dreamed I’d be….something that at some point in time was the only way I knew I would want to define me. Oddly, I came to the conclusion that thankfully with my niece and nephew I was kind of living vicariously. I could enjoy most of the benefits, without any of the difficulty. It’s not quite the same, but as I get older it seems more and more like it might be all that’s in the cards.

I investigated other options – invetro, harvesting my eggs for a future date, etc. All are expensive and have their own issues and worries associated with them. I was really surprised, like somewhere in my dreams I turned a corner. I went from desperately wanting to be a mom, to feeling like maybe I could be ok if I wasn’t. Then I started to think that if I ever do find Mr. Right, well the clock is ticking for one, and maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to just enjoy us and life and being in love.

I guess what I’m saying is I’m kind of torn. Do I still want children? Don’t I? I guess the answer is now that I’m not sure, I could maybe go either way. But I am increasingly sure that I want to know that feeling…the feeling you get when the person you are with is so perfectly matched and right. I have thought I was in love before, maybe it was real, maybe it wasn’t. But looking back, I’m not really sure I have ever been loved. Does that make sense? My longest relationship was with the kind of guy where I often find myself questioning, “did he ever really love me or just the idea of me or what I did or could do for him and by being with him?”

So I’m trying to explain my way back to how this post started. Forgive me, I’m more tired than I realized. I don’t know how to answer someone who asks if I want children anymore. I’m very torn. I was honest with the guy on the phone, from the dating site. But the one thing I do know, is I’m not ready to give up on finding love. And I hope that one day, the wedding someone is at where they look up and think, “I want what they have,” could one day be mine.

 

Maybe I’m just having a fat day?

I remember when I was younger looking in the mirror at my pale skin and my long legs, my glasses,  my awkward stance.  I felt out of place I guess.  I’ve had moments in my life where I’ve looked in the mirror and I thought, “what a great hair day!” or “I feel really good today.” or “Wow, I look pretty.” But then there’s other days, you ate too much or you wore the wrong top and you feel fat, you look wrong, heavy, uncomfortable.  That day you hate your body.

Women, we have this love hate relationship with ourselves, our bodies.  Everyone wants to blame standards and society, but maybe it’s just how we are.

I’ve never been fat, but I’ve rarely been or felt thin.  I lost 25 pounds on a well known diet system now some ten years ago.  Before that I lived at the gym, 2 to 3 hours a day, so any weight I lost was probably muscle.  I looked good before and I looked thin after.  Did I ever really love my body? I had my days.

After four years of never having a brownie or a hamburger out, I started to crack.  With the diet that will remain nameless, when maintenance goes wrong, it goes terribly wrong.  I lived on a system which was the same as my original target for losing.  What that means is I never ate more than the minimum amount of calories and fat a day that were suggested for losing weight, even after I was not losing anymore.  In essence, I didn’t eat much other than veggies and well veggies for 4 years.  It worked because I ate a lot of equal and splenda and all those things that later created a world of medical problems for me.  Eventually, I realized I couldn’t eat the diet sugars anymore and I started craving all the foods I’d been missing for years.  Once I gave into one craving suddenly I realized I was a very hungry girl who was missing out on a lot of simple food pleasures.  I was never more devoted than during those 4 years, ask anyone that knows me.  I lived by the system. I knew the system better than anyone.  I lived, ate, and breathed the system.  I was working the system, till I wasn’t.

So about two or three years after that, when the original 20 – 25 pounds I had lost returned, I decided I needed to try another diet.  This time I wanted something that required no thought, just exercise, and good food.  Because I now had a world of medical issues, a  high sodium diet was not recommended, nor was a high protein diet.  So after much consideration I chose another diet, we’ll call it diet system B, with premade food, low sodium and no fake sugars.  I lost 25 pounds.

Then I noticed the food labels changed, the fake sugars creeping into the ingredients.  I couldn’t eat these.  Wasted money, wasted food.  My list of foods I could eat while sticking to the diet started to dwindle.

In no way relating to the diets, I did have another medical issue creep in.  I was diagnosed with a complex mass in my abdomen, my ovary they thought.  Turned out to be benign and on the outside of my uterus – thankfully.  I had some reactions to the surgery and some complications with my throat from the breathing tube.  As a result, I lived on a cold liquid diet for 2 weeks.  When I could finally eat again, sorry but diet food wasn’t cutting it.  I needed more than four bites to feel satisfied at that point.  And so it went…

Both diets are good systems, this is not meant to hurt their profits or their following in any way.  Unfortunately for me, in the end, neither diet was a life changing fix.  Now here I am, up again, back at the starting weight – for a now 10 – 12 year period having gained, lost, gained, lost, and gained roughly 20 – 25 pounds isn’t that horrible….I’m 10 years older and at the same weight I was back then. Problem is, I’m not the same size.  Every time I’ve gained and lost the weight returns in a new unusual fashion.  I wonder if men have this problem.  I think it’s God’s little joke on us – we try to improve our bodies and maybe it’s His way of saying we are messing with something we should not mess with.  I wasn’t overweight, I wasn’t obese, I’m not now.  Yet, I still desperately want to feel thin, want to lose that weight, want to wear that bikini again (which I think in my 35 years I’ve maybe worn a grand total of 4 times).  Only now, I feel less and less able to wear said bikini.

Maybe I’m just having a fat day.  See women, we have those.  It’s those days where we ate too much salt, didn’t drink enough water, and the scale balloons up about 3 – 5 pounds literally overnight.  In a day or two, with some care and a few prayers, the scale adjusts itself, usually.  So those days are fat days.  But I’m going to a friend’s wedding in a few days and I’m having one of those days.

To make matters worse, I’m a single female.  I never want to feel as though I keep a man simply with my looks, but we all want to attract one with them.  Every guy friend I’ve ever had says confidence is what attracts a man.  I agree, it’s true.  However, it’s so hard to stay confident, and I’m a confident person, but it’s so hard to stay confident when you are having a fat day.

Why am I telling you, these random strangers, some of them perhaps single attractive men, if they are still reading…..why am I telling you this? I’m not sure.  It’s after midnight, I should be sleeping.  I was unwinding watching a tv show and an overweight woman was giving back an engagement ring.  I found myself with tears.  Was I crying at the great acting or was I crying because I related on some level?

All I have ever wanted was to love and be loved.  And some days I feel great, confident, secure, pretty, attractive, you get the idea.  Other days, I feel none of that.  I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in that, heck I’m probably in great company.  But if I can’t seem to consistently love myself, will I ever find that special someone to love me back? Ironically, I think having that someone, that support is what helps you remember to love yourself, how to love oneself.  Without it, a single person just takes a little longer to get back to the zone.

So maybe I am just having a fat day….and here’s hoping tomorrow, I’ll love my hair, love the scale, and love myself all the same.  For all you women out there that agree, thank you!!! It’s nice to be in good company.  But just to be safe….since I’m not sleeping anyway, the elliptical beckons.  Good night all…..