||[Dec. 8th, 2011|11:08 am]
It must be in the air – I started this post last night, and then Dread Pyrate posted about small things. It’s so damn easy to forget! But so very, very important. And sometimes just a picture of a toad in a toy airplane is enough. Especially if you're as fond of toads as I am. (I'm not the only one who kept them as pets, am I?)|
First though, I have to clear up something – many of you know, many don’t – the Captain and I, while still great friends, have split up. I know that a certain percentage of you will not believe that we’re both fine, and amicable. But you’re wrong. Luckily for me, I think I choose to have relationships with people who can maintain a friendship after the fire burns out. It takes skills on both sides and almost everyone I’ve shared my life with for any length of time seems to be able to make it work with me. You want proof? I have witnesses that will verify that for the neighborhood Thanksgiving I hosted, present at the table were my ex-boyfriend, my ex-husband, and the woman formerly known as my husband’s mistress. I will spend Christmas Eve with my parents, my brother’s family and my ex-boyfriend from college and his family. So there. It doesn't/can't always work out that way, but I've been very, very fortunate.
But I’ve had some locked posts recently and that’s led to some speculation that…nope, sorry, no drama here, it’s all work-related for the most part, and ranting and raving thereof. My job is really stressful this time of year and I blow off steam – but I like to keep that childish stuff just between people who know that I don’t mean anything by it. Ripping out livers, really, as if I would…well, there was that ONE guy. But none of it had anything to do with my relationship or complications related to that. Really. So, chill. Already there are dozens of posts I haven’t made because while they had nothing to do with us splitting up, I didn’t want to deal with the drama of someone misattributing the theme or lesson or whatever, in hindsight.
Now, back to regularly scheduled programming:
Never underestimate the power of small things. Wallowing in the funk of long days at work, short days of daylight, rain and damp and feeling completely overwhelmed by what I need to get done at work in the next two weeks…I bought a dozen red tulips and plopped them in a vase on the desk. They made me feel better instantly. And they bring a smile to every person who comes to my cube. And boy, can we use that here. Look, flowers that other people send you are lovely and special in their own right. But they’re a symbol of someone else’s feelings for you. Flowers YOU buy to cheer yourself up – THAT’S a symbol that you’ve had the strength to get off your ass and do something for yourself. That first and crucial step out of the self-pity wallow: you are in control of doing what needs to be done to make yourself feel better.
Of course, it’s easier to take that first step out when you’ve got a friend at your back. I am ridiculously averse to asking for help. It’s a huge family joke (hey, that’s my family: you have a crippling fear of something? Counseling, schmounseling, we’ll humiliate you out of it.) and many phone conversations with parents end with this little dance: “But, so, is everything okay?” “Yeah, sure, I’m fine, Dad.” “Are you sure?” “Yup. A-Okay.” “You’d tell me, wouldn’t you, if you needed anything…” “Sigh. Yes, Dad.” “Because I know you hate to ask…” “Auauauaggghhh! Iloveyoubothtalktoyounextweekgoodbye!”
But out of character, I reached out, got a virtual hug of support and a jumpstart. Which was just what I needed. It still amazes me: I have a lot of people in my life right now who will do that for me. Next life, I need to not wait so damn long to build that network. Cause it’s sort of nice. Although still damn scary to ask for help. Seriously, it’s all I can do to ask you to help set the table when you come over for dinner, much less scary interpersonal stuff. Anyway – buy yourself flowers and remember that you have friends.
My post on swimming did manage to shame my lungs, apparently. Yesterday they delivered a straight 400 yards, without flinching. I could have pushed it, but I wanted to show my appreciation, and took a stretch break before continuing. Now – tomorrow morning I get to see if that was a one-time stepping up to the bar, or actual progress. But still, I thought it would take a bit longer and had a fair amount of fear that after all of this time, what if I couldn’t push through?
An additional victory: I’ve finally managed to memorize my payroll login and password. Of course, they change next month. Some small victories are fleeting and brief. But treasure them anyway, because sometimes that’s enough.