Archives for posts with tag: love

For awhile now, I’ve just been sitting here, staring at my monitor. It’s not quite 3:30 a.m., now. My heart is still pounding, and my hands are trembling. There’s nothing actually wrong; I woke up triggered, around 2:50 a.m.,  and I’m fighting off both confusion (from being groggy) and panic. It’s not personal, and it’s unlikely that any detail of waking me into this state was intentional, at all. I’m awake, though, and sleep won’t return in the short time left before my alarm would go off, so… I’m beginning again, a bit early, is all.

“Purple Tiger” blooming on the deck. Life is filled with small delights.

…Just yesterday, I was relaxing and giving thought to how content I am, how lovely life is, how comfortable I feel in my own skin day-to-day, and how fortunate I am to have the healthy relationships that I do. The contrast with my internal state this morning is a useful reminder that emotional wellness is built over time, and that taking it for granted is not an ideal approach to maintaining it. The phrase “the damage is done” seems fitting here. I can heal a lot of chaos and damage, over time, and doing so is a pretty extraordinary quality of life improvement, in general. What I can’t do is change what I’ve been through, or eliminate the trauma in my history, and even now, sometimes it “comes back to me” in a problematic way. I still have disturbed sleep. I still have some uncomfortable moments. I still don’t “bounce back” as easily from some emotional experiences as someone else might. “Much improved” still doesn’t mean “forever and always symptom free”.

Early hints of autumn approaching have turned up in the garden.

What a great weekend; in spite of both my partner and I being in considerable pain, we had a great time together. A local power outage ended our evening, last night. It didn’t seem necessary to stay up until power came back on. Rather unfortunately, I went to bed without really considering which lights had been on, when the power went out. I woke abruptly to bright light (when the power came back on?), confused, startled, and frightened. My Traveling Partner was up, apparently trying to make sense of whatever mess the bed linens were in, also awakened by the return of power, but at the time I was trapped in my confusion, and still startled, and I felt “trapped” in the room, and my panic started to build, quickly. I was on my way to a serious over-reaction, and chose simply to go ahead and get up, instead, hoping that pushing myself through regular morning routines would soothe me quickly, and help to calm my nerves. I was not clear on what time it actually was, in that moment.

I started coffee and dressed myself, still sort of bumbling around clumsily, not yet fully awake or entirely calmed, and doing my best to stay focused and present in this “now” moment. My heart was still hammering away in my chest, and I was feeling short of breath. My partner approached me, and asked “aren’t you coming back to bed?” I felt my jaw clench and un-clench, working to shape words that fit. I tried “the way I woke up… I won’t go back to sleep, now”. I felt self-conscious, and dreading that anything I said could “make things worse” (What things? More chaos and damage – that hell was a long time ago, in a very different relationship.) I did what I could to explain that I woke triggered without placing any blame; my PTSD isn’t something my Traveling Partner caused, and there is no circumstance under which he would trigger my symptoms deliberately. Nothing personal in any of it. I felt tears start. Neither of us reacted to that; we’re experienced with emotionality as a shitty byproduct of my chaos and damage. I turned toward my studio. He went back to bed.

One of the most horrible things about PTSD is how often there is a negative consequence to people who love us, who didn’t do the damage that made us who we are, but so often find themselves paying a pretty high price to love  us, anyway. Spectacularly unfair. I try to be considerate about that sort of thing, when I can hang on to the presence of mind it takes to do so. :-\

Meditation continues to be a key practice supporting my emotional wellness.

…It’s just two minutes shy of 4:00 a.m. now. I’m not shaking any more. My heart rate is back down to 62 bpm. My breathing feels relaxed. I feel calm. I could probably go back to sleep now, if I chose to… but the alarm would go off in 30 minutes, and I’d likely wake groggier and less well-rested feeling than I am now. I sip my coffee, and rub the sleep out of my eyes, and hope the day ahead is not an overly complicated one. I feel my anxiety surge in the background. Small things are likely to set me off today; it’ll need to be managed attentively, compassionately, and with a commitment to caring for myself skillfully. I breathe. Exhale. Relax. I set a couple reminders on my work calendar to take 10 minutes to meditate during the day. Each moment today may be a needed chance to begin again; that has to be okay with me, to really get this handled well. I feel my shoulders relax. “I’ve got this…” The reassurance swells from within myself, built on experience. That feels pretty good – solid, and reliable. Safe.

I give thought to my Traveling Partner, and hope that he has returned to a deep and untroubled sleep, and wakes well-rested. I finish my coffee, and prepare to face a new day. It’s a good time to begin again. 🙂

I’m sipping my coffee and trying to recall where I left off, last time I picked up Proust. I’ve never finished “In Search of Lost Time” (also published as “Remembrance of Things Past”). I’ve made progress. Started it a number of times. Enjoyed the bit of it that I’ve read; it lingers in my consciousness. This morning, though, I don’t recall where I’ve left off, and find myself contemplating starting it entirely over. 🙂

It’s a gray Saturday morning, a bit muggy. We had thunder and lightening on the horizon yesterday, before dawn. There is rain in the forecast for later today. My hair is blue. LOL These details don’t contribute much to each other… I’ve only just awakened from a heavy uncomfortable sleep, waking with a stuffy head, and when I woke I had forgotten about getting my hair colored. My reflection in the mirror startled, then puzzled me, until I remembered an honestly unforgettable 8 fucking hours in the salon chair. omg. So much time. lol

…My hair looks great, lustrous shades of teal, cobalt, aqua, and electric blue. I’m eager to see it in the sunshine. I’m eager to see the startled wide-eyed gaze of a child who, for a moment, wonders if blue hair is “real”. 🙂 It looks “real”, with the shades and variations, and tousled from sleep.

I arrived home to so much done around the house, and garage. Wow. Oh. And a list. My Traveling Partner left me a very short “to do list” of a couple things he’d asked if I would take care of, previously, which I had managed not to get to… so… convenient reminder, right there with the mail. lol I guess my Saturday plans are covered! (Note to self; don’t say yes to something you’re not prepared to be reminded to do…or…here’s a thought; fucking do it. You said you would.)

My coffee is good. The morning is a relaxed one. Somehow, already time to begin again. 🙂

I woke with the sunrise. It’s lovely and still cool, this morning. My coffee is hot, and I am appreciative of the good quality of the coffee beans I had selected. The morning is still quiet. The day unscripted. There are a couple things I’d like to get done (fold laundry, grocery shop, get the car washed – routine weekend sorts of things). There is no particular “excitement” in this moment, and I’m okay with that. Contentment is generally not built on moments of excitement so much as moments of well-handled ordinary routine events.

I sip my coffee, smile to myself, and silently remark “enough really is enough”, and let the morning slowly unfold.

I hear the coffee grinder, in the kitchen. My Traveling Partner is awake, too. I am so ridiculously in love with this singular human being. It’s hard to describe easily. 🙂 I’m content with the feelings; there’s no reason to explain them (or even to try). Love is enough.

I think about a friend who blurted out, in quite a genuine and spontaneous way, that he loves me. It was beautiful, heartfelt, and sincere. It was unexpected in the office, and I found myself feeling more awkward than I otherwise might – not because the sentiment was unwelcome (it was not at all unwelcome!), it was more a weird little voice from within my own heart saying “did you bring enough for everyone?” – and I wasn’t sure I had. lol I find myself thinking I need to “make it right” with my friend. Platonic love is something we all very much need more of. 😀

…I’m still not entirely awake. Groggy from deep sleep and strange dreams, I keep drinking this coffee, and already I am thinking ahead to the next cup. “What shall I do with the day….?” The thought crosses my mind absent any awareness that I already asked – and answered – this question for myself. It’s going to be that day, is it? LOL

My injured shoulder aches more this morning than my bad ankle. Yesterday, and the day before, it was the other way round. The arthritis in my spine leaves me alone, for now. The chill of autumn will return soon enough, and change things up again. Almost everyone I know is in some amount of pain, much of the time. Is that peculiar? It certainly provides some perspective. I am eager to fully return to strength training, again; I feel like I’d just started to make real progress, when I got hurt. Perhaps that is an observation colored by the experience of getting hurt, itself, and the pain that has followed. I breathe, exhale, relax, and let it go. 🙂

Funny the way planning works… I value having a plan. I consider things in detail, when I make plans. Often my plans don’t predict real life in any noteworthy way; real life has its own plan. lol My equinox camping trip on the coast may need to be canceled; the ankle, the shoulder, and the time taken traveling for work the week before I’ve planned to go camping, have me rethinking my plans. I’d miss a lot of time with my partner.

We have this long weekend here, though. 3 days together to relax, and enjoy “us”. It’s enough. I glance at the clock… and smile. It doesn’t really matter what time it is. Today is enough time. 🙂

I came home tired last night, ankle aching (it’s mostly built of imagination and wreckage at this point, so… sometimes it aches ferociously), cross and irritable over the commute (I got stuck behind an exceedingly, obviously, impaired driver, who veered back and forth, randomly stopped while straddling lanes, drifted into the bike lane repeatedly, and drove very slowly) and just generally – I wasn’t at my best. I had stopped at the store for dinner, though, and I was happy to be home.

…What the…? I pull into the garage… the clean, tidy garage, which is… clean… and tidy. I know I didn’t leave it that way this morning… Huh. Wow. Yep. Both “huh” and “wow”. Nice. I walk into the house, and… oh damn. House looks great too, like, top to bottom. Clean. Tidy. Some small changes in the way things are arranged that really improve the comfort of the floor plan. I’m in mid-exclamation (and appreciative thanks), when my Traveling Partner becomes aware of my physical discomfort with my ankle… out comes a handy ice pack… he makes sure my foot is elevated… then goes to the kitchen, and makes dinner for us. It was a lovely evening. I definitely went to bed last night feeling well-loved. 😀

I’m sipping my coffee this morning, contentedly; coffee was one of the handful of items on my shopping list last night. (No tea? Nope – tea is generally for when it isn’t time for coffee. LOL Personal preference. Although I may yet, one day, switch permanently from coffee to tea, that day is not today.) It’s a lovely morning. I’m not taking anything personally, or struggle with the details, or fussy to myself over some small thing – it’s just me, this coffee right here, and a new day.

It’s enough. 🙂

Well… It definitely feels like summer, now. LOL In fact, it’s too hot, and it’ll be very nice to have the A/C back. 🙂

…Last night was lovely, anyway.

Here it is another morning. I managed to sleep, mostly thanks to the first rate job of keeping the house cool that my Traveling Partner managed, first cooling it off, then closing it up before the day began to heat up. I say a silent “thank you” – because it could have been much hotter in here, this morning. 🙂

I spend some minutes on my meditation cushion…”thinking cool thoughts“, aware things could be much worse than a couple summer days with no A/C, and appreciating how fortunate I am.

I sip my coffee and think about a friend whose life seemed to veer abruptly “off course” just as things were really turning around for him. I feel fairly helpless, a bystander on his journey, a fellow traveler who has walked a fair few hard miles; I would help, if I truly could. The choices, and the verbs, are his. I want more and better for him, and too see him choose wisely. I sit with my thoughts, remembering darker times, and the support and encouragement that were actually all around me, but that I could not see, and did not know how to accept. I wish my friend well, over coffee, and hope that he really understands I am here if he needs to talk, or even to just sit quietly in the sunshine. It can be a complicated journey to make alone, no map… I hope he remembers to begin, and then begin again, often. I hope he forgives himself.

I realize I’ve left a video of snow falling playing in the background. I grin at myself; I think I feel cooler. LOL

…Definitely time to begin again. 🙂