Struggling

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Photo by Fernando @cferdo on Unsplash

What strange times we live in.

Just four weeks ago I was going through the stages of grief after losing my job.  I was struggling with keeping my days structured in order to keep my brain from melting so I would stay hireable.  And things started to look up as I was finally able to relax and enjoy the “time off”.

Now as the world stands still, everyone is in the position I had just gotten over, except this time it feels like nothing matters.

Living alone is usually blissful, but right now I’d give anything to have a companion to hunker down with, if for nothing else, to feed my cats if I dropped dead, but more importantly, to prevent my brain from taking off into anxiety land at full speed.

Video chatting with friends has probably made all the difference.  Whenever I’m talking face-to-face with someone, the anxiety melts away.  The nausea goes away, I’m no longer about to die.  I’m so grateful for the technology that allows us to connect with each other virtually.  But that technology is also what’s fueling the worry and panic that’s taking over life as we knew it.

It’s hard to find a balance between being informed and being obsessed with the news.  It’s hard to think about anything else when I have the slightest, tiniest fever, or if my stomach is upset.  It’s almost impossible to think about trying to find a new job right now, or even to do anything productive.  Right now I’m just trying to survive by any means possible.

I was out for my usual walk around the bike path and passed by a restaurant where, only a few months ago, I used to go with my sister and nephews.  I walked over the grass where we used to see big, fat crickets hopping around, and joked about capturing them for the kids’ pet gecko.  I wiped a tear away thinking about how that seemed like a lifetime ago.  No one worried about touching a door knob, sharing drinks, or hugging each other.  The world is completely different now, and this is our new normal for a while.

It’s OK to grieve for that life, and to accept that’s it’s pretty much gone, at least for now.  It’s OK to feel lost and unsure of yourself.  It’s OK to sit on the couch and do nothing for a while as you fight back the panic, but I think we also need to realize that this is a new normal, and we have to figure out how to navigate it without going insane.

I read an article about how many mental health issues are going to come out of this, and how children’s future emotional well-being will be hugely impacted.  It’s important that we reach out and be there for each other and help keep the damage at bay as much as possible.  I think that everyone is experiencing a little bit of panic right now and feeling lost and confused.  No one cares if you’re not wearing makeup or if you’re unshowered.  Even the most hardcore introverts need human interaction.

We all have to be in this together for it to work.

 

Curveballs

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Photo by Ross Findon on Unsplash

It’s funny how life throws curveballs at you.

Since my last post a lot has changed. I’ve lost my job, which was a good chunk of my life.  Not having a family or anything, it was really what defined me.  I’ve been spending a lot of time laying on the couch trying to plot my next steps, but I feel lost and unsure of how to proceed.

I feel like I’m going through a breakup.  It was six years of my life that just didn’t matter in the end.  I busted my ass for a company that ultimately didn’t give a shit about me, and wouldn’t hesitate to put others on the chopping block just to save a few bucks.  This is peoples’ livelihoods that are being fucked with.  It almost makes me rethink my political beliefs, too.  Basically everything about me is different now, without that anchor that was holding me in place.

The thought of starting over from the bottom is overwhelming, to say the least.

My bike was also stolen out of my garage, two days before I got laid off.  That alone was bad enough.  I lost faith in the goodness of people, and going into my garage brings the rage back each and every time.  Why do people think it’s OK to take something that’s not theirs?

I’m waiting for the third bad thing to happen, since bad luck comes in threes, right?

But in other news, I’ve been seeing a personal trainer and it’s having very positive effects.  I’m much more active than I was, and I feel stronger in general.  Every Friday at 7am I push myself to my limits, walk home trying not to vomit, but then feel like I can take on the world.  It’s only 40 minutes per week, but it’s the accountability that makes all the difference.  I want my trainer to see me improve every week, and laying on the couch isn’t going to move me forward at all, so I try to keep the momentum going throughout the week.  Sadly, I had to cancel my sessions with her, seeing as I don’t have income anymore.  But hopefully I can keep going on my own.

I’m also glad I didn’t book my trip to South Korea already, what with the virus panic happening around the world.  Had I done that, I’m sure I would have lost money trying to cancel it.  Plus, now I have a bigger cushion in my savings account.

I’m not religious or even really spiritual, and I don’t believe in fate, but I do believe that everything happens for a reason.  I had such high hopes for 2020 and I watched all of it disappear in a poof before my eyes.  Wondering what life has in store for me next.

Rainy day thoughts

 

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Photo by Nick Cooper on Unsplash

 

I haven’t updated in a bit because nothing has really happened.

I’ve been feeling in a rut lately, going about the same habits, revisiting failed attempts at changing my eating (low carb, no dairy, etc.). I’m realizing just how much harder it is to a) lose weight and b) change your habits, the older you get.

My sister and I often talk about the “all or nothing” mentality, which is definitely part of what’s holding me back. If I can’t hike up a 4000+ footer, what’s the point? If I can’t be 100% vegan, I’m not just going to cut back on dairy. If I can’t do everything, I’ll just do nothing.

In this age of technology, we all want instant gratification. Not seeing results immediately must mean it’s not working, right? The reality is that it’s the smaller changes that are most effective, and even though I know this, I’m still getting in my own way.

I’m going to focus on starting out tiny and plan for the long term. Going for a 10-minute walk every day is far better than doing nothing all week and struggling through a hike on the weekends. It’s like when I told my friend 20 years ago to put a couple dollars into savings every month. She automated the process and now has a much bigger savings account than me!

Baby steps. A little bit is better than nothing and will create lasting lifestyle changes.  Hell, there’s a little old lady with a walker that I see walking around outside every single day.  If she can do it, I should be able to!

I’m going to keep this top of mind going forward.

In the meantime, what do y’all do to get yourself out of a rut? I could use some motivation on this rainy day.