what I leave out

Whether the conversation is here or elsewhere, I save a piece for me. There has to be a part I don’t share. Often, it’s the thoughts that don’t make sense. Other times, the spiteful comments that I wouldn’t want you to hear. I want to be polite, I want to be seen as eloquent. I don’t think of it as censoring myself or editing it out, because it feels like it was never “in” in the first place. I keep something back because I feel like I can’t give everything away. Doing so feels dangerous, like I could lose something important.

Even if I don’t know what that is.

preoccupied

My mind feels split. I feel like I’m heading too many places at once, being pulled in all different directions.

I am stressing about my dad. I am frustrated by my job. I am excited and anxious for my vacation. I am nervous about my brother coming into town to visit.

February could potentially be full of extreme highs and lows. I don’t know what to expect and given that fact, I tend to let my mind get the best of me. I don’t know how to turn my brain off. Often, when I’m trying to sleep, like at 5 am this morning, I find myself preoccupied, unable to relax and quiet the bullhorn yelling in my head.

work woes

If you’re not complaining about work, well, you’re probably complaining about looking for work. Or so I’ve been vacillating between the two over the last couple years.

I do like my job, most of the time. I enjoy working with patients, I like the challenges my day presents me. I don’t like the fact that my boss is cheap. The resistance I face daily is draining. We need things, we need more staff, we need to update things. We are asked to make do, to stretch ourselves, to be flexible.

I try my hardest. I realize a 4 day week is nice, but I often have days that stretch beyond 10 hours. I am asked to be on call on the days off with some later to be determined compensation that doesn’t happen. I know I need to put my foot down, but if I step too hard, I worry I’ll be out of a job. My boss doesn’t like to be questioned and he wants to be in control.

I’m so looking forward to having a few days off next month. Yes, of course, a cruise is a dream, but just not being there for a few days is the real vacation.

misplaced relief

Last night, when I got home from work, D was shaky and visibly upset. I asked him what was wrong and he took me into his arms. I immediately panicked. Knowing my mother called my brother-in-law to have him tell my sister about my father’s cancer, I could only jump to conclusions. More bad news, I assumed.

As he started to cry, he told me a good friend’s husband died. I tried to console him, but as I hugged him, I slowly felt my lungs inflate, this was not horrible news of my dad’s condition. I felt guilty for feeling lightened by the news. There’s been a lot of death just outside our circle lately. My brother’s best friend’s brother, whom we grew up with, also died recently. It was thought to be a suicide, but after an autopsy this week, it was revealed he had an aneurism. He was 24.

I find myself saddened for those around me, but grateful it isn’t my turn to directly grieve yet. Even in saying this, I worry that I tempt the fates, I think of my mother’s superstition of death trifectas. I can only hope for the best, and pray.

Diagnosis

My father’s mother

My mother’s father

Two aunts

Myself

Now, my father. The official diagnosis came in yesterday. It isn’t good. I’m devastated.

running

I have a tendency to run from things.

As a child, I was non-confrontational. I would run to my room, shutting the door, shutting the world out. I would run outside, down the block to the high school track. I would run until I ran out of breath; or until my legs gave out, at which point I would sit on the bleachers and write.

In relationships I’ve run while retreating. My ex avoided conflict even more than I thought anyone possibly could. Sometimes I challenged him. Usually, I ran, because it was easier than being left behind.

I have learned, partially due to therapy and partially to D calling me on the carpet for it, not to run. I’ve learned to stick my feet to the ground and deal with the situation. But, I’ll tell you, sometimes I just want to take off.

Not from him, not from what we have necessarily; just from life. I want to run to a place where the only decisions to be made involve cocktail choices. I want to run away from cancer and sad parents. I want to run from indecisive bosses and demanding patients and acquaintances I just don’t know how to turn into friends.

When I was 8, I didn’t want to share a bedroom with my sister any longer, and I ran away. I ran down the street with my stuff and didn’t know where to go. After a few hours, I went back home and brought my stuff into the spare bathroom, where I promptly made a bed in the shower. Not the best plan, I’ll admit, but it was too cold to stay outside.

Sometimes I want to run. To escape someplace where no one knows me and I have little or no responsibility. A place that is warm but not too hot, where no guilt or obligation drive me. I want to go somewhere where nobody bothers me, unless I want them around.

Sometimes I want to run away from life. I just want to make sure this time, it’s not to a bathroom.

mish mosh

My brain feels clouded. I think it’s the cold. I’d blame the cough syrup, but I haven’t taken it yet.

I’m thinking about vintage typewriters and organizing papers. I’ve started and abandoned my to-do lists at work the last two days. My tree is still up and I feel guilty it isn’t cleaned up, but I joke about “good” Catholics not taking it down until the epiphany, so I’m safe.

I’m trying to figure out a plan for a February vacation, and look at shelters for dogs and hire a new assistant at work.

I’m feeling a little overwhelmed. My brain is like a pinball machine, the ball banging from one point to another.