Assess my situation, huh? Hmmm.
My situation began about seven years ago. It kicked into crisis mode two years ago. Now the dust has mostly settled. Nothing is the same.
I suspect it never will be.
Some things are better. Some are worse. It’s like trying to get back to life before the tornado, the hurricane, the earthquake, the fire. It’s simply not possible to put it back together the way it was.
During this prolonged season, I lost touch with many of my friends. Not completely, but gradually.
At the beginning I called everyone. I think I wore out my welcome, even as I tried to dole out the trauma judiciously. Talking to me, getting the latest update on my unfolding crisis, must have been exhausting. When I’d ask my friends how they were, most of them were noncommittal. Did they not want to burden me? I longed for someone else’s burden!
So I stopped talking. Too many lunches with too many friends, after which I practically ran to my car, sobbing, because I couldn’t stand to get that look again, that, “oh my god” look.
I stayed busy. Waited for the two people who never fail to call, not in nineteen and twenty-six years of friendship. And both of those friends always share their burdens.
There is one good thing I did during this time, and that was start going to exercise boot camp once a week or so. I’m a morning person, and pretty much everyone who attends a 5:30 a.m. exercise class is a morning person, too. I found my people. And I discovered chitchat.
Can I tell you how much I needed chitchat? With a group of people who, for the most part, didn’t know me, didn’t know my story, or were too out of breath to ask questions beyond, “Get much rain?”
We tease. We laugh. There was a joke this morning because someone said “my cousin’s wedding,” and someone else heard “my husband’s wedding,” which led to more jokes.
It may not be a heart-to-heart connection, but sometimes heart-to-heart hurts too much. It can make things worse. Chitchat and jokes are healing for me. So bring on the trivial. Get out your rain gauge and let’s compare. Somebody say something funny.
This is a modified reprint of a post that first appeared at Have Tea. Will Write. You’re invited to join us as we write our way through a series on self-care. You can find the list of prompts and publication dates here. Have something to say? Please join us. Simply drop a link to your post in a comment on the corresponding post. We’ll repost the ones we especially like. Like this one.
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