I feel like this might help others. It spoke to me. I know that I have apologized several times for being so caring. How many others can understand how this feels?
Caring is not a crime. Getting attached easily is not a sign of a weakened heart. You should be proud of your vulnerability. After everything you have gone through, it would be easier for you to say screw love, screw forever, screw happily ever afters. But you have not done that. You are still wearing your heart…
If you ask me what I did last year this time I can remember one thing trying to find a job. I had flown into Seattle the week before Thanksgiving and was trying to find my way around Everett. My best friend drove to pick me up after I had flown in from Dubai. It was a long flight and I still could feel the excitement of seeing her after over 4 years of being apart. I can’t remember a lot of the details, yet I can remember the faint taste of Ivar’s Clam Chowder on my lips after so many years of dreaming of that familiar taste and surrounding. I was home.
After many years of the same enjera and waat. Lentils and boiled milk. I will say the thought of any kind of juice sounded wonderful and a Starbucks mocha or Chai Latte was breathtaking. I was walking through the supermarket and realizing that there was cheese, meats, and a variety of desserts all for the picking. Overwhelming as it was it was also a relief to know that I could finally have a sandwich with the fixings. That most drinks had free refills. Oh and the fruit it would bring me almost to tears internally because I knew that the apple would be sweet and tasty. I was a child in a candy store with all the diversity at my fingertips and eyeballs.
To this day I tend to eat a lot of things in fear of not being able to see or eat them again. Chips and sweets are my weakness. The past thoughts of not being able to afford food until the next grocery trip is something that still haunts my mind to this day. I tend to make a small carton of ice cream last for at least 4 days because I am of those thoughts in my mind. It wasn’t that food was my enemy. No, no it was my friend but the fear of not being able to afford it now that was my true enemy.
I have been dealing with the anxiety that is connected with my PTSD from my divorce. I can tell you it is not easy. I take something to relax me at night so I can sleep. That doesn’t mean that the fearful thoughts don’t cross my dreams. I tend to listen to music, read a book, or watch something to distract me so I can relax and sleep at night. The hardest part is not knowing anything about my son. I dream at night wondering if the email I sent his father would be responded. Is he okay? How is he doing in school? What is his favorite subject? Things like that. I wonder if he even wants to talk to me. The last time I physically saw him was October 5th, 2013.
Everything I do from my writing to taking care of myself I do it with him in my mind. Yes I do it for myself, yet I want to be stronger so when I do see him he will see the eyes of a person who has loved him from the moment I knew I was pregnant with him. Each meal I cook I hope someday to share with him. I always hope that someday he will read my words and understand that I was a human being that loved him from the bottom of my heart. I have always wanted what was best for him. Even if we were separated by miles of land. He was always in my heart and mind.
So if I was going to describe 2018 it was the year of trying new things. Cooking, food, drinks, and most importantly taking care of me
One thing I learned was its okay to ask for help. Especially when you are learning to cook. I went from cookies to actual meals. It’s been a goal to learn to make things to eat that taste good. I took time to post photos on Facebook and also Instagram of my cooking projects. I am hoping next year to get a few more entrees under my belt.
The new month came and I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it. I ended October eating chocolate and fending off anxiety from my job search. I went to my therapist appointment hoping that my heart could find something to ease my nerves. The depression and anxiety were pushing me to points that made me forget how far I had come. After publishing Wounds are Wounds my heart felt at peace. I needed to tell my story and reach out to people. I didn’t want to sit twiddling my thumbs and wondering if I was doing anything good. My therapist asked me how I was doing. I thought about it and realized I was actually doing well. I talked about how proud of I was of writing and sharing my story. Finally giving life to what my heart had been aching about for several years. I decided to take some time to find a way to feel good about myself and how far I had come. We did an exercise that was supposed to help me feel mindful of things. In my mind and heart, I decided yes I was ready to take the next step in my healing. Honestly, I wasn’t quite sure what that step was. But I took my inner child by the hand and said okay let’s do it.
That was 13 days ago. I decided after my appointment that I would give myself permission to ask for help when I needed it. Whether it took time to be with my cousin whom I had never really met since we grew up in different countries. She and I were several years apart, yet living very similar lives. Our children are a year apart coincidently. She had invited me to come and stay a few days with her and her daughter. I said sure when I got a spare moment. That spare moment came last week and well I took it. Like most of my relatives, she wanted me to rest and enjoy the break. Honestly, that was something I was not used to. My mind kept saying do this don’t do that. Just sitting and reading a book or watching Gordon Ramsey’s Hell’s Kitchen was something I felt like I needed to do. I just needed to breathe.
Two weeks have gone by since I started this post. Several changes have happened. A job that I applied for called me for a screening interview. It was my dream job being a receptionist at the local H&R Block. I didn’t mind that it would be a temporary seasonal position. It would be near our apartment and within walking distance. My heart jumped for joy just to be picked. All the long hours of applying and waiting for a call back was getting to be difficult. Several of the positions were emailing me and saying that they were going with someone else. I had been talking to my cousin and also my roommate about how it was getting to be difficult to be turned down several times. I started to think twice about my skills. So that was why I started putting my attention towards other activities like watching shows I hadn’t seen in a while and reading books. I wanted to enjoy the little things in life and hope for the best. My goal was to be working or have an interview by Halloween.
It was after that when I realized that I was putting too much energy into it and being anxious about it. The day first was my therapy appointment and got a chance to express my thoughts and concerns to my therapist. It was then that she showed me the Calm app and I decided to give the meditation option a try. For several mornings I would try the free sessions and kept my self on a strict regimen. Whenever I got anxious I would put something on to help me find my center and help myself. For 3 weeks I did this exercise. I felt my body start to relax and my mind ease through things. As applications went out I kept my mind still and positive. There were days that I was cooking dinner and washing dishes. Reminding myself about how I would be celebrating my first year back.
It was around the milestone that I got the screening call for the receptionist position. In my heart, I couldn’t see myself working in retail again especially with the holidays coming up. I just wanted to be in an office and using my customer service skills in a totally different environment. I kept looking at my Indeed App at the jobs applied. Hoping that the next phone call or email would be an opportunity in the making. When I got the call I calmly answered the questions and I felt my confidence soaring. Then getting the request for an in-person interview was the confidence boost I needed. For the first time in a long time, I went to the interview calmly without feeling nervousness. My mind felt like an elementary school student getting picked to play on a team. I decided whatever happened I would do my best and let things just happen. Let my actions and resume do the talking. I can tell you that it went well and was told that I would hear something within the week. A week ago today I got the call that hey wanted to move forward with me and if I was still interested. I calmly said yes and I am waiting to hear about the next step.
One of the things I have learned this month was how much I was trying to get myself better and at the same pace as my peers. I have to be honest that is very exhausting. I didn’t look at how far I had come in the past year. I mean not only did I make up my mind to return back to America after taking a break to find myself. I need to praise myself for publishing a piece online that many people have been complimenting me about. I took a training course to help me brush up my customer service skills and completed it. I worked two jobs and learned how to get around Mill Creek and Everett. That is a lot to accomplish in a short time.
You might be wondering what I have planned next for December. Well, this time I am just going to do my best and not plan too much. I figured that way I won’t feel disappointed if things don’t work out.