For the last few days I’ve repeatedly sat down at my computer, typing the beginnings of an essay only to delete it after a paragraph or two. As of late I’ve been feeling exhausted, not burned out per say, but tired of being on the offense all of the time. I can’t focus all that well and my patience has failed me more often than I care to admit. Having to constantly multi-task, stay up to date about world events, and being unable to turn off the neon list in my brain of “Important Things To Take Care Of!”, has drained me considerably.
And now with the escalation of anti-racism protests how can I not turn my attention to what’s happening all around me? This is a momentous chapter in time.
I’m not here to make global issues about me. But I do want my readers to understand why this post is a bit different than previous writings.
This week I have for you not prose, but an update on what’s been going on in my little bubble.
I recently went out of town with my parents (who, might I remind you, are divorced) to my dad’s property in the middle of the woods, less than a tank of gas away from home. Last week was Dad’s birthday. With travel restrictions being lifted a bit and us having the privilege to remain socially distanced while on our getaway, we took the opportunity with gratitude. I was appreciative to spend time with my parents and be outdoors without having to worry about bumping into other people. I’m going to be honest though and say that it very much was not a true vacation, at least for me. With Mom there I was still “on duty” most of the time. Only on day three did I leave our property to go explore a forest service road a few minutes away. I was rewarded with my first (!) wild bear sighting. I’ve been to every state except Alaska and have never seen a bear until now. I was ecstatic.
Upon arriving home from the trip Mom and I very quickly realized that I had locked us out of her house. I was tired from driving for several hours, grumpy from the heat wave, and a bit worn thin from being on duty during my “weekend break”. Mom started cussing at me about having locked us out and I snapped. We ended up getting into an argument. After I climbed through a window and unlocked the front door we both needed time to calm down. By the next day we were back to normal, both suppressing memories of the ugliness we bared.
Yesterday, in between my attempts to write this blog post, I took some time to cut Mom’s hair and do her makeup. She never was one to wear much makeup pre-dementia, but I felt like being creative and gifting a small small gesture to counteract the weariness weighing on me. Afterward I picked up her request for dinner: sushi. I can’t say I was disappointed in her choice. As much as I love it, I’m tired of cooking.
That’s all I’ve got for you this Sunday. I don’t expect many people to read this as there are way more important things going on. But if you do see this please tell your friends, family, and community that you love them. Hug the ones that you safely can. Call the others you can’t hug. Lift up yourself by lifting up others. And remember that even in the days and weeks and years when situations are trying, time is always guiding us forward.