I want to say how impossible all this is. But the positive freaky cheer leader that lives in me is waving those stupid strings on a handle at me, wearing a smile and saying, "Nothing is impossible!!! Nothing! Keep your head high! S-M-I-L-E!!! Rah! Rah! Rah!" Her incessant perkiness is making me want to use her obnoxious megaphone to knock her into the furthest corner of my mind; forever. I am really not a fan of hers right now. Not at all.
With the exception of a few that I am close to, I rarely reveal how I am feeling. Even then, I am usually filled with regret. Often because I think and feel I sense of disappointment. I feel like it is thought that I could be handling things better. And then sometimes I get angry, thinking, "who the hell do you think you are? If you are judging me and feel that I could handle this better, well then YOU have no idea who I am and how strong I have been! Everybody cracks, every once in a while." And then I rethink it all and assure myself that I am just reading into things and that really what I am upset about is my own insecurity about how my strength and endurance is being perceived.
By the way, strength is: NOT dropping several F-Bombs here. Believe me, I really want to. So please, feel free to insert them where you feel is appropriate. I have heard several choice "bad words" escaping my lips (not in front of the children!) more frequently, lately. Reflection tells me it's the anger making it's way to the surface. A slow release, I suppose, in hopes to avoid an inevitable explosion. Perhaps this mini break-down could have been worse if not for those few moments of, "I don't give a
I get why some older people are perceived as grumpy. I really do. All their lives, they were independent, active and full of life. And then they are no longer. The "youngsters" in and around their lives buzz all around them effortlessly and seemingly, tirelessly and seem to take for granted all they are able to accomplish. I can imagine the transition is difficult. So much of what they thought defined who they were all those years, all the things they mastered and aspired to master are suddenly and seemingly useless. There it is. Useless. I don't give a rip what you are thinking right now! And I know that I am useful, but if you want to know, really know, what your aging parent, grandparent may be feeling and want to understand them better, then read on. Sometimes truth is disappointing, hard to swallow and entirely inconvenient. Feeling useless, at times, is a reality. Like it, or not.
Currently, I am very limited. This time, it is not because of my RA. In a couple months, hopefully, I will be having a hysterectomy. When I say, hopefully, do not read that I either want or am ready for this. Because, I am not. That is a whole other issue. The hopefully, is because I don't know how much more of these limitations I can handle. If it was just an issue of the inconvenience and strange feeling of the "situation" that the hysterectomy is needed, I could deal with it. The issue is the pain. The more I am on my feet, the more painful things get. The pain is always present but way more prominent when I have been standing. The kind of pain that leaves you restless, and if I am to be honest, scared.
There is so much to be done and so much I want to do. If I could just let it go, I would. What is terribly hard for me to handle is knowing that whatever I am letting go of, someone else is burdened with. I hate that. My time siting here is consumed with finding solutions to the problems. I can drive the lawn tractor around and, well ok, so right now, if someone gets it, hooks up the trailer to it, and brings it closer to me, I can drive it. That's it. I can freaking drive the damn tractor. Someone get me a medal. All this [insert Passionately Expressive (PE) word here] time I have during the day and I am useless.
I just want to be on the other side of all this, look back and say, "Wow, that was rough, but I made it." We just got to the point in my RA treatment, where I feel I could have been/will be at the cusp of feeling the best I have in years and another hurtle is placed before me. My face isn't against the wind, as it should be. I firmly believe that we are never handed more than we can handle. However, I am tired. I will continue to push forward, because there simply is no other acceptable choice.
The weight of walking through this is proving too much lately. I've got that face on again. The "Everything is just Peachy" face. So not peachy.
I am really trying to make the best of everything. I was encouraged that maybe I am doing better that I think I am last night when DH had this to say to me, "I keep expecting to have that moment where I tell you to snap out of it, but even after all this time with everything going on, you are still holding strong." He tells me he is relieved in those moments when I break down and cry. Funny, it's those moments I feel so weak and exposed and again, if I am being honest, ashamed. I cannot believe he still thinks I am strong. Especially when I have been feeling so broken.
There is so much happening, so much coming at me and I am struggling to navigate my way through it. I can't find a balance I am happy with. I am realizing I am living with the balance everyone else is happy with. I feel like I am expected to just sit here and be content with what is. Count my blessing and don't complain. I don't complain much. I have and do count my blessings! Want proof of that? I am still here! I still fight and work hard to go along with everyone else's expectations, as well as mine! I am pissed that I sometimes can't say what I am feeling, because it may just make someone uncomfortable. Well, guess what? Life is uncomfortable. If I tell you that I feel like I am not as useful as I used to be, don't roll your [insert PE here] eyes and act annoyed! That is how I feel! Seriously! Some people are so wrapped up in their own world and expectations that they can't even see or hear how ignorant they are being.
That cheerleader in my head can go to hell! And with her, she can take all the unrealistic, inconvenient, and uncomfortable BS with her. Until she can come back with a cheer that goes, "It's a bad day and that's OK! Let's go kick some [PE] [PE]!! YEAH!", I don't want to hear from her.
When you come across that older person (or anyone, for that matter), try not to be so dismissive. Also, no pity please. That is not what we want. Remember that someday, you will be missing the person you once were. For some, it just comes sooner than ever expected.
***After writing this, I found this posted on facebook for me. Kristin, thank you so much. It is as if someone read my heart. xo Because of this, I am changing the post title :)