I am aghast with gratefulness, truly I am.
That’s the danger, isn’t it. Not being able to stay in a place of gratefulness because of all the other things going on.
Today, for me, it’s immense anxiety.
There’s a lot going on and I feel like I’m standing on one foot, atop a rickety staircase built of rotting wood at the precipice of the tallest mountain peak in the world and I’m juggling large, heavy chainsaws.
Did I mention I get height-sick, have a bum knee right now, and can’t juggle?
The best thing, the greatest cure, is silence.
I went for a drive to run errands and in between being panicked that I’d get knocked in the head while carrying a decent sum of cash that I was taking to the post office to buy money orders (long story, but I need to pay for a service over the weekend and the only options were cash, money order, or cashier’s check and money order was the safest and least expensive), being panicked that I’d get knocked in the head while carrying the newly purchased money orders, or that I’d get knocked in the head just because, I listened to some wonderful jazz. I felt better for a while.
But then I had a meeting and now I’m in between meetings and have another on the way and there’s too much to do and I feel overwhelmed even though I’ve done so so very much already.
Did I mention we’re moving? Yes, the whole kit and kaboodle as the saying goes. The animals, the humans, and the stuff are leaving California.
For me, it’s been 15 years of living here. My dogs and the cat were born here, as was my beloved. He at least has lived in other parts of the country, so it won’t be all new.
I’m keeping written and mental checklists all over the place, about all sorts of things, like ‘get a better control collar for Boy Dog’ and ‘figure out which box(es) will go in the U-Haul thing and not get taken by the moving people’ and ‘don’t forget to think about turning off utilities here and turning them on there’.
And of course, there’s the whole ‘will we leave early enough’ and ‘will we make our daily expected driving distances’ and ‘will the animals behave themselves the whole way’ …
It’s a lot.
I trust that it will work out. I really do.
There’s that voice, the one that whispers so quietly that it’s deafening. The voice that says you didn’t do it right, or that will never work, or it won’t matter because things won’t be better.
That voice mumble-whisper-yelled all morning. It’s still there, but not quite as pressing.
Instead of saying things, I feel the physical grip on my body, like I need to dash away from something. I want to sleep, but my mind is busy because there is too much still to be done.
Being anxious makes me very tired. I want to lay across the bed, but there’s the meeting and the call after the meeting and more things to do this evening to get ready for the weekend to come that will be full of activity.
We’re living in the year 2022, which is the future: where are the teleportation devices?!? If I had one of those, I would have something entirely different to be anxious about (the disassembly and reassembly of atoms — go watch the 1958 version of The Fly and you’ll get what I mean; not dissing Jeff Goldblum’s version, but the original was genious).
Just imagine being reassembled as part of a couch, or that box with miscellaneous cleaning products in it. Or as part of the litterbox. Ew.
Anyway, I’m anticipating what is to come and that entails anticipating some of the worst. I’m trying to talk myself off that ledge, thinking positive thoughts, reflecting on all the wonderful things I’ve managed to accomplish up to today.
And yet, the struggle is real. The tension is real. The feeling that I haven’t done enough, that it will be as stressful as the last day when my family moved from the east coast to here, that I’m not making a good choice — all of that.
I got to spend an afternoon with my son last weekend. He was very supportive of my going and his house mom and I talked about him flying out for his 30th birthday, which would be two years and some change from now. It seems like forever and yet it seems too soon. He’s never flown alone and the idea of him having to change planes and all that is a lot to take in for me. Yes, he’s an adult, but one with special needs who has had support all round for his entire life.
Like I said, it’s a lot.
I try not to think of it all, to take it in chunks. That helps when it works.
In the meantime, I rest my eyes and take deep breaths. I hobble to the bathroom (did I mention I did something to my knee and am using a walking stick much of the time, which means I can’t heft furniture or other belongings like I was doing when I started packing, so now I feel pretty useless?) and back, fussing at the dogs. They are out of sorts because it’s so different in here. There are boxes everywhere and some of the furniture is gone.
And let’s not forget we just passed 4 July — not that the specific date means anything — and the fireworks have been real. Seems the folks who figure if they’re going to do something illegal, they might as well make it worth the trouble. There have been more M-80s this time round. It all started well before the 4th and continues even now. But hey, at least we learned there is a YouTube channel just of music to help calm dogs down when there are fireworks (cue massive eye roll here).
Anyway, that’s my rant and I’m sticking to it. At least for now, and I hope not for long.