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Dream a little dream of me.

I stayed up all night accidentally and now, suddenly, the sky is light and the birds are chirping away and it’s 4:57. My numbers.

I never got tired. Even now I’m not so tired. What a weird night. And a weird morning.

It feels like it was supposed to happen. This May turned June. This hallowed space and time.

I’ve been hiding for the past month. My vortex May turned into Chris’s vortex May. And I just spun.

I simultaneously floated and dragged my way through the month. Feet never properly touching the ground. I tried. Sometimes. And I succumbed others. Mostly I used those fine-tuned self-preservation skills to compartmentalize the month. Two months. Three.

I was kicking ass and taking names. At the start. And then some weight got heavy and I got tired. And then I chugged along. And then more weight. Until moving was the only thing I had. So I just kept doing that.

Kinetic Jill.

And it wasn’t all self-preservation. Those parts don’t make the mindful parts any less significant or successful. I’ll take it all. It just means a whole bunch of different terrain to navigate.

For now, I’m going to sleep for a few hours. And take the terrain again come (late) morning. It feels light again.

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Don’t let it go to waste.

I wanted to get out and run all weekend. But I didn’t. I was kind of afraid.

All last week I walked the neighborhood with S. And I started running being I was brave for S, who was self-conscious to be running outside.

Then it was my turn to be brave alone, and I was like, well, no.

I did use that time to stretch. I stretched all freaking weekend. I did still walk Friday and Saturday. But I didn’t brave the run.

S got back today and I itched for it and made him come with me. I don’t think he loves it. I think, full on, he is humoring me. But that’s okay. I’ll take it.

But so today we walked and at the ten minute mark, I took off running (without S). Up a huge freaking hill. One minute. Check.

We walked some more and came to the huge downhill and we ran it together. One minute. Check.

We walked to the end of that cul de sac and played ball down there for ten minutes. All of which I never stopped jumping or running. Walked back. Ran one minute. Check.

Down another cul de sac and back. This is where S told me he could run down to the corner in a minute. And he fucking booked it. Another minute run. Check.

He took the street in a minute four and was wiped! I told him I aspire to his greatness and that one day we will run it together in less than a minute. Goals!

We walked a short distance more and I told him I was ready to run again. He wasn’t. I told him I’d loop back around. Run one minute. Check.

Almost home now. I feel so freaking good! I want one more run in. He’s dragging. I tell him I’ll loop back around again. One minute run. Check.

Holy moly. I walk it off for a couple more minutes and that was 40 minutes total, including the 10 minute ball playing pause. Six one minute runs. Check.

I’ve never in my life moved my body like this before. I always quietly knew my body was meant for this, but a lifetime of weight (emotional and physical) kept me from it. Life was heavy. Life is lighter now.

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Strong as the oceans and I couldn’t explain why.

Every now and again I wish I didn’t have the memory I do. I wish I wasn’t so adept with numbers and dates. Wish old pictures weren’t so clear.

Today marks ten years since that ridiculous night. Ten years since a day I remember nothing about preceded a night that is still too sharp in my mind.

He pulled a knife on me.

And the whole thing still seems like a nightmare that couldn’t possibly have happened.

That fucking misguided, broken boy. I’d feel sorry for him had the whole thing not broken me so hard. Had he not reopened the wound so many times after for so many years.

I navigate that moment and the many moments after pretty well the rest of the year. But May always hurts a bit. Today always hurts a bit.

I know hope bloomed within all that darkness. I know growth eventually thrived. I know I turned terribly poisonous lemons into the most amazing lemonade I ever tasted. But even still. I mourn.

I don’t mourn the life I once had. Nor do I mourn the future I once pictured. I mourn the addition of yet another person’s betrayal. I mourn another part of me being bound and scarred. I grieve all of that manipulation. My heart hurts to think of all the security that was ripped out from under me.

I have created so much goodness out of the hell that night caused. But I wish I hadn’t needed to.

Tonight, I knew I needed to get out of the house and just walk. S came with me. It drizzled some of the walk. Rained some. We walked some. Ran some. It was cathartic as fuck.

10 years.

Still, one foot in front of the other.

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Looking for my door key.

It suddenly just got really hard.

Yesterday and today and the upcoming week and May have been on my radar, but I’ve been okay. I’ve navigated, knowing these are usually hard days for me, but it hasn’t been hard.

It might not be hard in five minutes.

But right now it is. For a long time I hated May. I hated Mother’s Day and all the things he tainted and ruined.

I saw him today and I tried to not be triggered, but…here I am. Navigating extra hard.

I’m so much more than the hell he put me through.

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Pick up the flashpoint.

I felt so much clearer after I wrote on Thursday. It was almost alarming how quickly I felt clear again.

I called the tax guy and made an appt for the following day and by 1:30pm yesterday, our taxes were complete and filed and printed. And I have a copy now that I can submit for my student loan deferment at the end of the month.

Breathing.

I also had some calming thoughts regarding L and my stress paths. It doesn’t really matter how these things unfold. I can do my part and everything else is out of my hands. Sure, maybe there was things I was “supposed to” do sooner. Or maybe those things are right on time. Even if they keep me (or L) from something else. How can we know what is supposed to be? Maybe everything that is is supposed to be.

So, I’m breathing.

And I still haven’t talked to Chris about any of it yet. Because life upheaval and his dislocated shoulder. But I feel better about it without the conversation yet and that is the point.

I haven’t even leapt into the dislocated shoulder conversation here!

It is finally (presumably?) back in place. He has an ortho appt in a couple weeks. He hurts a lot. (Understatement of the year). He can’t take the anti-inflammatory til he finishes the steroid or else it causes severe nausea. But here he is with unfathomable inflammation causing an incredible amount of pain. Furthermore, the pain leads to lack of sleep and the lack of sleep leads to seizure activity. He’s his own walking nightmare right now.

I’m in my element with all of this and I know all of it is completely out of my hands and so all I see in this situation is the universe saying to Chris, “I’m not making myself clear here, son” and then shazam! Clear picture comes into focus. Make boundaries (especially to protect you from you). Delegate. Let people help you. Learn new ways to realize your usefulness. Let who you are define you, not what you can and can’t accomplish with one arm.

And, honestly, I just feel blessed to be along for the ride on this one. Chris is kicking ass and taking freaking names in the self-development department. Yeah, it totally sucks and there’s some kicking rocks, but mostly? Mostly he is stepping up and well surpassing all I’ve always known he is capable of.

He was thrust into this seemingly impossible situation, and knew he had to shift mindset or drown. And in the face of it being so. freaking. hard., he is freaking doing it anyway. And I think that is so freakin’ awesome. I couldn’t be prouder of him.

We both have had such fundamental progress during this quarantine. We are thrivers. I’m so in love with us and our relationship and all the goodness we are capable of.

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It took some time to survive you.

I’ve been disconnecting my why and my who from my present the past few days.

I’m sure there’s a reason. I’m sure that reason is important. But I haven’t tread there yet. I haven’t come here to pick it apart.

I know part (most?) of it is stress. I know it’s some of the little behind-the-scenes stuff happening that is out of my control. Or was once in my control (sorta) and I didn’t fight then to turn overwhelm into action. And so now there are multiple overwhelm categories all sneaking to the forefront at once.

I could name them, but that is scary. I’m not there yet. Even tho I know it’s helpful.

So I’m checking them off slowly without naming them.

But even still, I find myself here, now, facing the fact that my why and my who have not been congruent with my relationship with food. And that’s okay. There’s no shame in that. It’s observation. And still, it’s my present truth.

And that’s not to say that has to be my truth the next time I eat or tonight or tomorrow. It’s just the truth of what the last couple days have looked like. And part of my personal development is that I’m self aware enough to notice and acknowledge these things, and then decide where I place my foot during my next step.

I’ve noticed and acknowledged the last few days. Of course I have! I no longer have the luxury of not seeing it. And still I’ve made the decisions that the ideal, future, healthy version of me would. not. make. And to make it worse, when I make the anti-me decisions, I tack on preposterous words like, “future me would give herself a break right now and eat this” and “future me would allow for self care to be this one cookie”.

FUTURE ME WOULD. NOT. SAY. THAT.

Future me would say, “find a different way, sister!” (Because future me will sometimes talk like Rachel Hollis and randomly call people sister.)

Future me would also take the time to write because it’s my therapy. Because it brings me back to me. Because it brings me closer to living and breathing my idealized me.

So I sit here writing. Because it’s important. It’s vital. I need it. And I take breaks for self care.

Today I took L to the doctor and re-set myself on a stress path. I need to solidify some research there and put pen to paper. That will help. Today I will also call the tax guy and re-set myself on that stress path. Actively being on those paths is a lot less stressful than knowing I need to get on them. My higher functioning brain knows this, but the whole rest of my being fights it.

And I should also talk to my husband and speak some stress paths because that may be helpful even tho I keep adamantly dragging my feet about it and it’s the very very last thing I want to actually do.

So. Time to jump.

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Like the ceiling can’t hold us.

Before I even make my coffee this morning, I want to share what my life affords me.

I woke up this morning to this.

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There are clean dishes in the drain board from 24 hours ago. There’s crap on the island. A day’s worth of dirty dishes in the sink. Nothing’s been disinfected.

The living room was scattered with papers and some haphazard books. Gym blocks in disarray. Bath toys littering the carpet. There’s a load of laundry to be folded and another yet to be washed.

You want to know what this represents to me?

A day well spent with my attention elsewhere.

My life–my amazing freaking life–my I practice and practice and practice life–my I get back up again life–affords me this moment. I could focus yesterday without micromanaging all of the home tasks. I could eat a meal without care if the dishes were washed. My routines (even taking a day off from them) afford me only an hour of catchup time today to get everything back to normal. My mindset work afforded me the ability to not even consider that someone else should wash the dishes yesterday. Never did I play the victim and think, “well, if no one can even give me the damn day, I guess I have to stop this important conference to wash a dish.” Never did I even think to entertain “I just want to watch the speakers, but L wants attention too and now I have to give up my dream!”

No! I am so much more than that.

I didn’t give a shit about the dishes. I didn’t think someone else should do them. I was grateful for the times Chris took L to play in the other room, but I was just. as. grateful. for all the moments L spent with me too! I incorporated him into my conference. I welcomed him. And he loved it! He felt loved.

My conference ended around 6:30. I was freaking glowing. Chris was on a call outside and L and I danced around the living room for the hundredth time, as my calves burned from the day.

I could have cleaned the house then. I even considered it. Wanna know what I did instead? I went outside and I played with my kid. Because even tho I spent a great part of the day with him, my attention was split. My life affords me that too. So we went outside and chased monsters and threw Spiderman webs and enjoyed the beautiful weather.

Later we went to the store. Still no clean kitchen. Later L went to bed. Still no clean kitchen. Even later than that Chris and I had amazing freaking sex. Still no clean kitchen.

And it was never a freaking thought in my head.

And so today, when I woke up and saw my home. It was the prize. It wasn’t the burden. It was the freaking prize. Because yesterday I lived in abundance. And I loved in abundance. And today my house, which is easily pickup-able, represents all of my progress. All of my glorious progress. And there is just nothing better than that.

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I don’t know where they come from.

I hate that it’s been so many days since I’ve written. Ya know, last week it didn’t even occur to me to write. The whole week just blinked by. I don’t even know where it went.

So much time was spent doing my normal routines and helping S with school work and–oh my god–L had a week long meltdown of meltiness.  And Chris worked all week. And R and I logged her four driving hours.

Suddenly it was Saturday morning and I realized I hadn’t written here, nor had I called my sponsor or done any step work. It was just school and badminton and icing my knee and driving shotgun and staying up too late watching Grey’s with R. Chris and I didn’t even manage time together til Wednesday. It was the strangest week.

There was one significant marker tho that struck Thursday. I took Mouse to the vet because he suddenly developed a huge lump on his neck. The doctor biopsied it and it’s cancer.

So, that sucks. My sweet Mouse. The lifespan of a rat is usually just a couple years. I’m blindsided a bit since he’s just 24 months old.

I brought him back home with antibiotics and a steroid. And we’ll spoil him til he seems uncomfortable or stops eating. Then I’ll take him back to the vet and let him go peacefully.

This week I commit to writing about where my head has been lately and what thought paths I’ve been treading recently. Stay tuned for clumsy greatness!

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The voice that’s been calling me back home.

I had a panic attack this afternoon.

I feel compelled to write about it because I learned a lot of things. First, a panic attack is not failure. It is a lesson learned. Second, it’s not weakness. It is an opportunity to see how strong you were for so long until something got too big. Third, for me, it was a chance to see how far I’ve come.

In months and years past, a catalyst would have been icing on a cake that propelled me into yelling and shaming and damaging my relationships with the people I love the most.

Today, because of constant work I’ve poured into self-improvement, I felt all of the overwhelm, but I walked away. Never did I fall into a victim mentality because “no one helps me”. Nor did I walk toward anyone and spew venom. I didn’t do irreparable damage.

First, I asked myself why it hurt so much that it feels like my family isn’t showing up for me. And I listened. The answer was, even tho I’ve been showing up for myself, today I went a little too far showing up for someone else and it was at my expense. I hurt because I was mad at myself for not setting a better boundary.

Next, I asked myself why it hurt so much that I didn’t feel looked after. I listened for an answer. The answer was that, while it would be cool to have my family, or more specifically Chris, just omnisciently show up for me, it’s not reasonable. And just because sometimes I catch the glimmer of a grimace that he’s in pain and should ice his shoulder doesn’t mean he should catch all my cues. Hell, I may not even have clues. (And there are totally times I miss Chris’s clues.) Therefore, the answer to my question is that when I have needs, I need to voice those needs.

Today I had a panic attack and I invited Chris to sit with me. He showed up for me. I did it with him by my side. I didn’t have to feel alone.

Showing up for myself doesn’t just mean I run on run days no matter what. Part of showing up for myself means I tell other people what I need. I utilize my support system and let others help me when I need help.

Of course, it also means I get quiet and ask myself what I need. And then I listen and follow through.

I could view my panic attack today as a failure. Well. No. I can’t even do that. I don’t even have the mindset to view it that way anymore. I’ll say instead that, plain and simple, I had a panic attack today and it was a huge growth development moment for me.

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It may be quite simple.

What a strange and hard and beautiful weekend.

Friday was a long day after a long week. Saturday was me trying to learn to navigate in the face of all the everything….while also doing a 12 week goal challenge, maintaining my home, decluttering, mom’ing 24/7, attending virtual Al-Anon meetings, showing up for myself, backpedaling and flailing around in my progress, etc etc etc.

Saturday Chris and I successfully and safely walked through a conversation about overwhelm and needing help and support. Neither of us seemed to jump or get defensive and while I was reacting to the overwhelm, he wasn’t reacting to me and that brought us to a really great place.

I also talked to my sponsor on the phone for the first time. It’s something I wanted, but not something I felt “enough” to initiate. That’s an interesting thing for myself–not feeling my enoughness. I’m also navigating people and old friendships and new ones and common denominators and trying to feel a bit more whole. And I got to talk about that with someone who knows the right things to say back. Someone who is a good active listener and who can role model active listening. I need that. We talked for an hour on Sunday too. I could cry for how fulfilling it is.

Then Saturday night amidst all the pandemic and quarantine, we had a tornado touch down less than an hour from here. Downstairs we went at 10pm.

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Don’t let this happy face fool you. Just moments before, my sweet 75 pound pup had to be carried down the stairs because she was petrified.

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My favoritest girl. (And a trash run that needs to be made. Ha.)

The tornado (and R) helped me to realize that we need a better tornado plan. And I am ready to get back to work on the basement. I don’t know that it will happen soon, but I can at least put all that stuff in the car and make a trash run. Or I can start putting some of it out for trash little by little. But yes. No more basement stagnation, even with a bunch of other things going on. A five minute timer each day.

Overwhelm turned action.

Sunday brought us one last day of Spring Break downtime.

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The boys made a gingerbread cake and, later in the night–when it felt late and like the night should be wrapping up–S asked me to roast Brussels sprouts. I retorted, “help me then.” And he did! And we chopped together and took quality time and listened to Martin Sexton play on facebook and it was goodness and turned a hard weekend into pure beauty.