Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
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Friday, January 13, 2017

Obviously I've been having a rough time

and last night I was actually the furthest down I've been in years. Too much stress, probably weird hormones, and funky brain chemistry are conspiring to make me less resilient than usual. Ironically, I started back at the Family-to-Family class that I've taken and taught, this time as a resource person, and I'm finding that maybe my friends should be taking it rather than me, because I seem to be having issues and it's hard, maybe, to be around me just now. This is the first time I've actually been on the laptop rather than my phone in quite some time, attempting to write something a little more substantial than I have lately.

Stressors the last few weeks have been:
  1. I'm losing my job as of March 31st. I have an entire library to shut down before then. I've been applying and interviewing, and it's becoming desperate.
  2. My mom's been very sick. She's back in a center right now that will hopefully get her back home, but it involves a lot of ups and downs.
  3. I've had appointments or places to drive to (either for me or for my friends) almost every day for at least six weeks. On the rare days that I haven't been busy, I've been so tired, I crashed.
  4. I'm very low on personal time off as a result, and while my bosses have been very understanding, I've been short on my pay at a time when my finances have been difficult.
  5. I really need to get my brakes fixed on the car, and don't have an emergency fund to tap into. Friends can help, but my half is taking awhile to gather, and I'm already behind on bills.
  6. I've been trying to be there for months for a friend who has been going through a very difficult time, but I don't have any other real network of my own to help me when I get overwhelmed.
  7. I'm going through perimenopause and have had some issues as a result, and a possible cancer scare, and my health in general has suffered over the last few weeks, because my eating and diabetes care has become more haphazard, and I always seem to be running somewhere. If I sleep, I sleep poorly, and usually no more than four or five hours, because I'm trying to make up hours, get things done, take care of all the things I feel I should
So last Sunday, I broke, and finally told my friend that while I wanted to help out, I hated doing my Sunday cleaning list every week. So he said I don't have to do it anymore. Seems good, hmm? No, because now he feels like he can't rely on me at all, I think, and it also means that he had declared that I can't do any of those things for him any more, and he's not really up to doing them at the moment. So I feel like I let him down. Funny, he always quotes the phrase, 'the truth shall set you free', but I don't feel that way at all. I should be happy that after fifteen years or more of coming over on Sundays and cleaning for five to six hours, that I should be relieved. I feel unwanted and miserable. He actually referred to me as the lady who took him to appointments, and I felt like that meant that was all I was to him, after nearly thirty years of friendship. I may be reading stuff into it, but I know he's unhappy with me, and he's pretty much my world. I've focused my life around him for decades. And I'm seeing that as a major problem. I've never found the balance of living my life and being there as a friend, too. And with all the stuff going on in my life lately, everything--my emotions, my housework, my handle on my health--have totally fallen apart. I feel like such a screwup. I'm not sure where I even start putting things back together. But here's what I'm trying to do:
  1. Exercise helps stress. I did some earlier this week in our fitness centre at home. But I have to do it very early to be assured I can get it in, and that cuts in on my sleep a bit.
  2. I'm trying to sleep for at least six or seven hours, shooting for eight.
  3. I'm trying to read (a pleasurable activity I enjoy greatly, and stimulating) at least 30 minutes a day, including listening to audio recordings of books being read.
  4. I'm trying to be better about checking my blood sugar, taking my meds, and eating, using a couple of applications to keep track of meals, glucose, medicine, etc.
  5. I'm going to try to write more. Writing is a release for me; I've gotten out of the habit, and while my days are not always fascinating reading, it helps to put the words down of what happens and how I'm feeling.
  6. I'm going to try to spend time with my friend doing things that are fun for both of us, and help him without sacrificing my own needs.
  7. I'm going to see if I can move up my appointment with my psychiatrist, which is three weeks away.
  8. I'm going to work on small discrete projects, like taking down the tree (no, I haven't begun to do that, yet), laundry, watering plants, cleaning the bathroom, etc.
  9. I"m going to try to breathe and enjoy life as much as I can right now. Because the last few weeks, I haven't been living so much as reacting to problems that arise in life.
It's a start, I guess.

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