Archives for posts with tag: self-reflection

I am sipping my coffee and… yeah, just sitting here quietly, sipping my coffee as the minutes tick by gently. It’s pleasant and easy on my consciousness. Feels nice. I’m not pushing hard in any particular direction. I’m not trying to provoke suitably shareworthy words, or insightful thoughts. I’m just… being. Nice morning for it. I’m not specifically meditating. I’m also not not meditating. I am simply sitting here quietly with my coffee. Well, I was. Now I’m writing about that moment. lol

One of the things I’ve been wrestling with internally, for the last week particularly and also since I destroyed 20 years of pen & ink journals, is the question of “who am I?” or, more particularly, to narrow that grand question down a bit, who am I when I’m alone – the “real me”, the me that is mostly truly me, without the add-ons of external inputs, fears & doubts, insecurity in my relationships or professional role… the real actual me person that I am because this is who I have chosen to become over time. My “me”. How I see myself. As near as I can get to an understanding of this self that I am, and the woman I most want to be… without regard to what anyone else thinks about me – or her. It’s a surprisingly difficult exercise in self-reflection. It “feels important” right now.

…I’ve been through some shit over the course of a lifetime. A lot of it has “changed me”…but now I’m wondering what does that really mean? Changed how? Some of the changes that trauma makes on a human being, in addition to being “lasting” changes, could be described as “involuntary”, and potentially “undesirable” – what does that mean for “who I am” – or who I want to be? What parts of me aren’t “really me” or feels as though they “aren’t mine”? How much of me is me, and how much of me is “chaos and damage” and evidence of lasting trauma? Is that a fair question to ask – and what does the answer even mean? Yeah, I find myself going deep on this one. Not sure why it keeps coming back to me among all the many things upon which I could choose to reflect, but there it is. I want to understand this better.

Why should anyone at all – or any event – have more say over who I am than I do myself?

I think about it awhile longer. I don’t have any answers today. It’s just a Friday morning and a good cup of coffee in a quiet place. Seems a worthy opportunity to reflect on this journey of self.

I glance at the time. This doesn’t end here…but it is time to begin again.

Here we are, a new year. Today is my first day back to work after the New Year’s holiday. I sip my coffee and wonder what sort of year this one might be…

The weekend was filled with year-end sorts of things, including the massive journal-disposal project that I’ve been mulling over for a long time, and honestly didn’t expect to sit down, start, and finish so… “soon” isn’t the right word. “Unexpectedly” also missed the mark. I just… I guess I’m glad it is behind me. Surprised I pulled it off, perhaps. 🙂 After wandering through many hundreds of thousands of words across something like 15,000 pages, I’m glad to be done with it and free from the storage and “document security” headaches that went along with keeping those journals all these years. There were some worthy observations of life in those pages, for sure, and some beautiful, poignant, or insightful turns of phrase, and I’m glad I took a look back. Those details were sparse compared to the tedium, the tantrums, the madness, and the committing-to-paper of details that generally do best lived-in-the-moment and not written down for later review. I mean… damn I was angry a lot. Bitter. Disappointed. Frustrated. Lusty. Struggling. Did I mention the lustiness? Yeah… I could have made a career writing pornography, I’m sure. LOL

…In some sense the hardest part about letting go of these journals and the years of writing was discovering that I already had

It was interesting to see the change in my writing at the point at which my Traveling Partner and I had gotten together. Before we were lovers we were friends, and it was at that point I also began tapering off the various psych meds I was on at that time, (in part due to his encouragement and fueled by his astonishment at what I was taking and at what dosages). I really couldn’t write easily (or paint) on those meds; my creativity was severely impaired. To get that back, I had to go off the meds I was on (and it would be until very recently that I stayed wholly off all those medications, generally). My partner was very supportive of my painting and writing and my wellness.

At my most heavily medicated, I wrote very little.

My Traveling Partner and I had met many many years earlier – we resumed our friendship when we reconnected, working for the same employer in 2009, but didn’t start hanging out until early in 2010. By March that year we were nearly inseparable friends, jovially sharing our commute on public transit each day.

I was tapering off the psych meds, and both my writing and my painting were becoming a bigger part of my experience.

In October, after we each/both broke things off with other relationships, we moved in together. By May 2011 we’d gotten married. My writing exploded in an environment in which I felt emotionally safe to just write, to just fucking be. It wasn’t always comfortable; there were times when my Traveling Partner would actually choose to leave rather than be around me while I was writing or painting. There was so much “bottled up inside me” that finally “had a voice”. It was an intensely creative period.

2011 used a lot of pages!

When I think back on that time, and I think specifically about how much my current partnership has both inspired and supported me creatively… I’m astonished, and filled with love and gratitude. My Traveling Partner, as much as any one person ever could claim to be, has been my muse. My inspiration. My day-to-day “driving force” – for change, for momentum, for growth and progress, for continuing to begin again. Love makes it all matter so very much. He is also more uniquely capable than any one other human being of hurting my feelings in an instant, moving my heart, pissing me off, and being part of my journey. Fuck I love this guy. I could say more… but I think I’ve said it all at some point… I mean, just based on the amount I’d already written down since we got together…

My partner’s presence felt in every volume. Inspired by love.

I’m not sure…, but it could be that this post is sort of a love letter to a human being who played an important part in freeing me to truly work on becoming the woman I most want to be… finally. That can’t be an easy part to play in this messy life of mine.

If I could have easily done just one additional thing with all those journals it would have been to run the entirety of the content through some sort of algorithm that could reduce it down to just the unique observations – removing the duplicates, the mad spirals, and the redundancy, leaving behind only the things I said, wrote, and observed, each just the once. I wonder how much would actually be left? What wisdom have I gained (and lost) over time? I sip my coffee and think about that… and the way redirecting my writing to this space, this practice, has improved the quality of my writing. (It’s easy to see, having taken the opportunity to compare those volumes to these posts more or less “side by side”.)

I actually “write more” these days. It’s not always obvious; no clutter to measure by. lol I’m also much happier – and it was clear flipping through those pages that the deeply conflicted, traumatized, chronically unhappy woman I once was has been transformed over time. I still have challenges. I still have work to do. I’ve still got an eye on my mental health – and probably always will. I’m also doing pretty splendidly most of the time, by most measures. It’s a good place to be, and I’m grateful to my partner for sharing this journey with me. He’s a hell of a good “traveling companion” for a trip like this. lol I gotta remember to say thank you. 😀

In the meantime, I suppose I’ll just begin again… again. 😀 I wonder where this path leads…

I’ve got a cup of coffee and an open water bottle next to me. The morning began earlier than I expected; the heat in this hotel room came on, I rolled over in bed thinking nothing of it, then woke to a sneezing fit. Well, damn. I’m awake. I did make a half-hearted attempt to continue to sleep, but it didn’t work out and I finally just got up and made this cup of coffee. It’s not a great cup of coffee, it’s just definitely coffee. lol

…A little later this morning, I’ll shower, dress, pack, load the car, and head home…

The sun is not yet up. The holiday lights on the pier that juts out from the restaurant next door are still lit. In spite of the darkness, it’s clear from the street lights up the block reflecting back from the pavement that it has been raining. I yawn and sip my coffee, staring at this blank page until I finally begin with a common starting point: an observation about this moment, and my coffee. lol

Same view, different night.

I consider going back to bed…but I’m not actually sleepy, just a bit groggy, and also in pain. My osteoarthritis doesn’t care for weather that is both chilly and also rainy. I take my pain medication with my morning coffee, figuring it’s early enough for it to fully kick in long before I’m driving. I sip my coffee – it’s honestly pretty bad (instant), but just drinkable enough to still be called “coffee”. I find myself wondering how much longer coffee will even be available as an easy-to-buy beverage…

Did I get what I needed out of the weekend? I came seeking two things: sufficient quiet to hear myself think, and time & distance to get used to my new medication without the constant stress of also meeting someone else’s expectations and needs moment-to-moment. I mostly got what I needed. My solitude was interrupted with conversational moments over chat with my partner; he misses me, and I did not set any sort of “no contact/offline” boundary – I knew he had things going on he might want to communicate or talk about or share. There was also the call from the bank, pretty routine and nothing to be massively stressed out about, though I have experienced an unnecessary amount of anxiety over it, simply because it brushes past ancient trauma from my first marriage. In all cases, these interruptions in my solitude were very practical opportunities to practice some practices, and that’s how I took them. No resentment or agita. “Mission accomplished” then, I guess. Good enough. 🙂

I listen to the heater fan running. It mingles with the higher pitches of my tinnitus. There’s another noise in the background with a cycle that differs, setting it a bit apart… the mini-fridge? I think so. An alarm goes off in an adjacent room. 6:30 a.m. on a Sunday morning? The alarm is quickly silenced and there are no sounds of movement. I smile to myself, recalling times I’ve overlooked shutting off an alarm on a day I could have slept in. I sip my coffee, taking a moment simply to exist in this quiet early morning space. The world beyond the glass door to the balcony is very dark, but I’ve got an inside light on, so… yeah. I do like watching daybreak become dawn, so I switch off the light in the room. It’s too early for that to matter much; it’s just still quite dark. LOL

My phone pings me softly about my morning medication. The intent of the alarm set for each individual medication is as a training tool, not a permanent solution. I am succeeding at rebuilding my timing and habits for taking each one with the correct timing each day (both individually and relative to each other). I feel a small moment of accomplishment every time my phone asks me if I want to cancel the alarm for the day, before it goes off, and I can “say yes” (because I’ve already taken that one); I know it means I’m learning my new timing. Eventually, I’ll cancel each alarm one by one as it becomes clearly unnecessary to have them. 😀

It’s now been almost 3 weeks for the change to my thyroid medication and the addition of the beta blocker. It’s been two weeks since I added the anxiolytic. Everything feels pretty “normal” now – a new normal, with more energy and less anxiety. Nice. Was this short getaway worth it? Yeah. Definitely. I was feeling pretty raw and aggravated, and it was all me and shit I needed to sort out for myself. My partner doesn’t benefit from having to endure that needlessly. I got home in a much better state-of-mind than the one I was in when I got here “days ago”.

I “got my steps in” on this trip – walked a bit more than 13 miles over two days. I got plenty of sleep, too. I wrote. Meditated. Reflected on this-n-that. I read not one word of Proust, and very little of anything else. Though I started reading a couple times, I generally ended up lost in thought, or taking more pictures of the view. I took quite a few pictures – I hope one or two of them are good. 😀

All that’s left is a bit of coffee sipping and waiting on the dawn (I don’t feel inclined to rush home such that driving in the dark is necessary, and I don’t prefer it). So yeah… this adventure wraps up nicely with a few words and this cup of (fairly bad)(instant) coffee. It’s a good moment to begin again.

Note: this is a long one (>1500 words), figured you might want to know that before you get started. LOL

I’m on the coast with my camera for a couple days solo. I definitely need this sort of break from the day-to-day relatively frequently – one of my most easily identified regrets in life as an adult is that I waited so long to begin making a point to take this time for myself. I’m fortunate that my Traveling Partner recognizes the need, too, and supports me taking care of myself. The change in my medications has been a good thing, generally, but it also seemed to have accelerated my need to “take a couple days” to pause and reflect deeply on my experience, and to indulge in some time spent alone with my thoughts.

My timing is a bit awkward for this getaway; it’s the weekend before Giftmas. My Traveling Partner’s planned work while I am away was almost immediately derailed by a fulfillment error in a part shipped for his CNC machine; it’s the wrong part, which stalls the build entirely while he waits for that to be replaced. Fuck. Furthering his frustration, a recently added (and carefully measured & placed) outlet turns out to be in a less than ideal location (even after taking tremendous care with measuring) and has to be moved. The end result? Well, I potentially should have planned ahead for a couple days after the fucking holidays, if nothing else. …But…I really was seriously struggling to get acclimated to the new medications (and change in timing of existing medications), and I was feeling very short-tempered and cross with… just every-damned-thing, honestly, and wanted to be well away from people in general. So… good timing? Poor timing? Hard to be certain.

I visited some interesting places. The gulls at Boiler Bay were happy to pose for me.

I am certain my partner misses me. I feel very loved. His attentiveness at a time when we both expected minimal contact with each other for reasons isn’t unwelcome – and it forces me to explicitly practice reasonable boundary setting with the one human being in my life with whom I most definitely struggle to do so; my partner. He can’t see what I’m up to when I’m away, so it’s entirely on me to choose to take a look at a message, or to set my “do not disturb” setting on my phone, or set expectations that I am – or am not – available to chat. That’s not even unexpected or unreasonable; it’s part of skillful adulting. Just happens that some of the emotional debris of my trauma history results in some fairly poor boundary-setting with those closest to me, and it’s something I need to practice. Kind of a lot.

Here’s one way this matters, as an example. I won’t text while I’m driving (it’s very dangerous), so if he messages me while I’m in motion, I often find myself parking the car to respond without even checking in with myself whether the conversation even needs to happen in real-time (most often it does not, and frankly when it does he calls me so we can just talk hands-free). It can add a crazy amount of “travel time” to a short errand if I fail to communicate that I’m driving and he’s not aware that I am; he will just go on having a conversation with me that feels reasonable to him, while I seek out a parking spot every couple minutes like I’m lost or something. LOL I even know this is neither necessary nor practical; it’s something I need to work on. Just one example of why the expectation and boundary setting can matter so much. There are for sure others.

…I’m working on it…

When I am reading, writing, painting – all of which require focus – I sometimes get exceedingly frustrated with interruptions. Same when I’m “at work”, at home. Interruptions wreck my focus. This is not “a me thing”, it’s true for a lot of people (including my partner, when he’s reading, or doing complex calculations, or taking measurements). Interruptions break focus. Well… who “owns” that? I think if a clear boundary and clear expectations have been set, the person doing the interrupting owns that shit, and it’s pretty rude (if there’s no actual emergency). More often than not, though, I find that I’m the one who has erred in some way, by failing to ensure that I have set a clear expectation that I’m not available, along with a reasonable explicit boundary established with regard to interruptions of specific sorts of things. It’s for sure not reasonable to be irked with someone who did not know I was engaged in focused work, or needing to be left alone awhile, if they interrupt me unaware of those details.

In more succinct terms, if I don’t silence my ringer it’s not fair to be annoyed with a person who calls me at a bad time; I had another option that would have preserved my focus!

My earliest beach walk began at “first light”.

Yesterday, in the morning, I left for the coast before dawn. I arrived far earlier than “early check-in” for my hotel room (because the prior night’s guest hadn’t even checked-out yet). I spent the morning walking beaches and taking pictures, and in between I drank coffee while warming up in my car. Chilly morning. I drank 3x as much coffee as I generally do, and I expected I’d most likely messed up my sleep, later, but… nope. I checked into my room before 1 p.m., and managed to crash twice for longish naps, and then still went to bed early (like, for real early – around 7:30 p.m.). I slept deeply, waking around 3 a.m. to pee and immediately went back to sleep.

I made a point of snapping a picture of the holiday lights on the restaurant near the hotel during the wee hours. (It’s not a great picture; I was half asleep and never put on my glasses!)

I woke feeling quite rested, around 7 a.m. or a little after, around the time my Traveling Partner woke and pinged me a greeting. I wouldn’t have been at all surprised by how much I slept if I had felt that I was exhausted, or had felt deeply fatigued. Lacking those sensations, it caught me a bit by surprise to sleep so much. Still… it’s my time, my hotel room, I guess I can do what I like (within reason), including sleep the day away, which I definitely feel like I did, although my fitness tracker logged almost 7 miles of walking before noon. LOL

It’s been exceedingly pleasant (even luxurious) to have so little contact with other people for a couple days. The loudest sound in this hotel room is my fingers on this mechanical keyboard. (My tinnitus is infernally loud, too, but no one else would ever hear that.) The hotel staff go about their business. We don’t exchange words, just smiles; I’ve come here before and they are very respectful (and friendly if approached). I’ve managed to enjoy this trip to the coast without conversation beyond “can you fill it with regular please” or “16 oz Americano, please”. Yesterday was sunny. Today is gray and overcast. I spent yesterday sleeping (and walking and taking pictures). I’ve spent today meditating and writing (and walking and taking pictures). Time well spent all around, and mission mostly accomplished.

…I miss “home” (already), and take a few minutes to reflect with immense gratitude that I experience that feeling when I am away from the house I now live in. It’s already very much “home” – and filled with love, and memories of love, and the presence of this other human being who is so incredibly dear to me. I feel my heart fill up with my affection for my partner and spill over as “happy tears”. I am struck by how easily even the thought of this human being I love so deeply can move me with just the recollection of the love we share. That’s powerful. I miss him greatly any time we are apart – even when we are apart specifically because I just need to be alone for a while. It’s part of who I am. I am grateful that I’ve learned how to meet that need, and grateful to have a partner who “gets it”. I chuckle when I consider how often I do return home earlier than I had planned to, when I have gone, simply because I am so eager to be in the good company of my partner again. How very human. 🙂

Same location, different visit.

I watch the tides rise and fall on each of these trips to the coast. I am amazed by how much the view changes with each visit. The seasons change. The sunrise and sunset changes. The hour of the day for the high or low tide varies. The weather, too. Each detail paints the picture anew. I sip my now-cold coffee and think about that. So many variables. So many small details. I keep expecting to become bored with a single view or perspective. It hasn’t happened yet. I return to some locations with every visit just to see the view with “new eyes” on a different day. There’s something here worth understanding more deeply. I make a note on the notepad I’ve kept with me on this trip, and let my thoughts wander on.

I reflect awhile on the things that have held me back in life. Some of these were pure circumstance, others clearly my own doing or decision-making, few of them were the sort of non-negotiables that were unavoidable or immutable. I’ve had an enormous part to play in where I’ve landed in life. When I’ve chosen wisely, I’ve done well. When I’ve chosen poorly, I’ve often paid the price in consequences. This seems reasonable and “proper”, but when I reflect with care, deeply and honestly, and quite thoroughly, there have also been situations in which my good fortune “over-compensated” for my poor decision-making, and I’ve found my life improved thereby, anyway. Other times, seemingly good decision-making and actions that could be viewed as necessary, appropriate, or “right”, nonetheless resulted in… consequences of a wholly problematic sort. I have had an “enormous part to play” in where I’ve landed in life…but it’s also been a matter of “luck” more often than I can count, and some cases it’s been the help of friends or associates, or… just a coincidence that I’ve done as well as I have. Sometimes I’ve found myself standing in some unexpected moment in life struck by how unprepared I am to be there. Other times, extraordinary happenstance still manages to feel quite… ordinary. It’s hard to know in the moment which events are truly significant and meaningful, and which are simply future memories. Sometimes, when I’ve thought I was being “held back”, the passage of time has revealed how fortunate I really was to follow the path I did. Perspective has proven its worth more than once.

…My mind wanders on…

When I sat down with my notes this morning, I had some specific things I wanted to consider. I walked the beach with my camera and my little notepad, thinking, walking, pausing now and then for a tidepool, a bird, or an interesting rock. I don’t know that I “got anywhere” specific – but I wasn’t following a map, or hiking a trail with a destination, or running an errand. I was, frankly, as much as anything, just giving myself the space and time to really “hear myself think”. Was I successful? In every way I that I needed to be, sure, I think so. Is this bit of writing the outcome of all that? Mmm. Doubtful. Not in any clear cause & effect practical sense. I wasn’t seeking to develop a plan of action, or practice a specific practice, or write an essay on a topic. I just needed, rather earnestly, some solitary time to hear myself and to just be, quite as I am, without any sense of needing to chase a change or measure up to a standard. In that sense, it’s been a wildly successful bit of time away. Would a get away of this kind do wonders for you? No idea, honestly, and I’m sure it kind of depends on how well (or poorly) you are able to enjoy some solitary time – maybe that’s not your thing? Maybe you hate being absolutely alone? Your results would surely vary. Hell, my results vary and I greatly enjoy my solo time away, any chance I get make.

I breathe. Exhale. Relax. I check my oxygen. 99%. Nice. I take a moment to “feel where I’m at”, physically. Headache? It’s there, but not distracting. Arthritis pain? Managed. Posture? Yeah, okay. I notice it’s not great and “pull myself upright”. I gaze out the window across the mud flats of Siletz Bay – the tide is pretty low. There are a variety of water birds enjoying that, including a couple of larger birds – some kind of crane, and a heron. The gulls have taken their fun elsewhere for now. The water is flat, smooth, and very calm (what I can see), though I know if I step to the patio door and look out toward the ocean, I would see the waves gently kissing the shore.

I take a moment to reflect on a past that no longer wholly defines me (or holds me back) and to wonder what the future may hold, without becoming stranded in either. I sit quietly with my thoughts, poised in this “now” moment feeling fairly prepared to just “go with it” – whatever “it” may turn out to be. It’s a nice alternative to catastrophe, chaos, and despair. I breathe. In, then out. Then again. Some minutes later, I realize I slipped into meditation, fingers still poised carefully on the home row of the keyboard, expectantly. I’ve got a book (a couple, actually) that I also want to spend some time (reading)…

…Seems like a good time to begin again. 🙂

I took an unplanned fairly spontaneous trip to the coast for the weekend. It developed out of a conversation with my Traveling Partner, in his shop, Friday afternoon, after I finished my work day. He was neck deep in wiring a box, or programming a thing, or… something complicated. There was detailed technical documentation open on the computer near him. He had his “engineer face” on. I was definitely an interruption, and he was definitely doing his interrupted-best to be sweet to me in spite of that. “Looks like complicated work…” I said, or something similar. “What do you need?” he replied by way of affirmation and also getting somewhat impatiently to the point. “Would it be helpful if I went to the coast this weekend?” my mouth said, to my brain’s surprise (I no longer remember why I actually went into the shop at that moment – perhaps to ask questions about dinner preferences?). He said something encouraging without really engaging me 100%, and that was as much encouragement as I really needed. It was clear he needed room to work, and space to focus on the work in front of him.

Earlier in the day my browser had pinged me a notification about coastal “deals” at a hotel I like. I dug it out of the trash folder and looked it over. Seemed a reasonable price, and I settled on “the flip of the coin” and “letting fate decide”; if there was a room available still, I’d take it and grab my camera gear and go.

…There was one room left. It was already 4 pm. It was a rainy afternoon, and a Friday. I felt my anxiety surge; I don’t prefer to be driving after dark (I’m sometimes blinded by oncoming headlights, which seems unsafe). I grabbed my overnight bag, my camera bag, and my laptop bag. I grabbed some seasonally appropriate layers of clothing and stuffed them into my overnight bag, along with my toiletries. I swapped my work laptop for my personal laptop and my laptop bag was ready-to-travel. Packing took a brisk 5 to 10 minutes, since I have things like my camera gear and laptop pretty much always ready-to-go, and a default “don’t care” approach toward casual clothing for solo trips (clean and seasonally appropriate is good enough). I put my gear in the car, double-checked that I had my keys, my purse, and the battery charger for my camera batteries. I added my Kindle. I was ready to go. I returned to the shop for a kiss and a departing word. My partner seemed both surprised (“Wow, that was fast.”) and relieved (saying, seconds later, “Just go already.”). There was no sense that anything was “wrong”, just that my lingering to share details was not well-timed. So… off I went.

The view from my room. I arrived in time to see the sun set on a rainy day.

I spent my time walking beaches and wild spots, taking pictures, enjoying some solo time for self-reflection, and thinking over “how anxiety works” without being mired in it. I enjoyed the time knowing that I was not any sort of distraction for my Traveling Partner, who likely enjoyed being free to indulge himself by being immersed in his project without an eye on the clock, or any concern about disturbing me. A win all around.

A new day dawning.

I woke to a text message from my Traveling Partner saying he is “ready for me to come home now” (less in the sense that his project is wholly completed, and more just that he misses me that much) and asking when I plan to head back today. I feel it too; ready to go home. Ready to be in my partner’s good company. Ready to drink good coffee in my own home. Ready to sleep deeply in my own bed. Ready to have life’s conveniences where I expect them to be (instead of tucked in a bag, or splayed across a hotel coffee table). Ready for my partner’s laughter and jokes. Ready to be wrapped in the safety and comfort of home.

The sky this morning is delicate shades of pink and peach, and the air feels soft and forgiving. The morning chill is pleasant after sweating through some troubling dreams during the night. This coffee, here in the hotel room? Dreadful. Quite terrible. Notably so. lol There is time for a shower and time to pack up with care – there’s even time to take a few more pictures and get one more walk on the beach. No rush. I’m just eager to be home. 🙂

I pause my writing long enough to step out onto the balcony to breath the fresh sea air, then make my way downstairs to the breakfast bar. It’s a meager selection here (no kitchen). Adequate. I’m grateful; the coffee is an incremental improvement over instant, which was quite a bit better (still bad) compared to the poor quality drip coffee pouches provided in the room. It’s good enough. For breakfast I just grab a yogurt. The dawn beyond the balcony distracts me a bit from words on a page; the understandable pull of what is real, just outside my reach. The yogurt (a brand-name peach-flavored item) tastes pleasant, and “goes down easy” – which is nice. I woke feeling mildly upset to my stomach after unpleasant dreams (which may have been caused by an upset stomach…?). Nice to have a breakfast option that has the potential to improve things, and is at least unlikely to worsen things.

…Do I actually have “an upset stomach” – or is it symptomatic of my anxiety, which I have been paying close attention to, while also seeking not to “engage” it in direct one-on-one “conversation”? Something to think over. I for sure don’t have all the answers. I can definitely say I’m “over” having my anxiety continuing to “be a thing”… which doesn’t at all change whether it is. lol I sip my fresh cup of coffee. Definitely better. Still not actually good. LOL

…Like my anxiety, “definitely better – still not actually resolved”…

My stomach feels much improved with the better cup of coffee and the yogurt… I think about anxiety. I’d very much like to reliably do something that results in my anxiety also being reliably much improved. I mean, improved beyond the improvements thus far – more improved. I see a clinician this week to discuss returning to an Rx treatment for the anxiety continuing to lurk in the background. Here’s hoping that works out well. 🙂 I’m at least hopeful after discussing it with my therapist (PhD, not MD, so he doesn’t prescribe medications and I have to go elsewhere for that).

I miss my Traveling Partner. 🙂 Oh, but I also enjoy the sound of the wind and the waves, and the gulls calling out to each other in the sky, and from the beach… I’ll be back. For now, it’s just time to head home and begin again. 😀

The tide has turned…