Sunday, March 28, 2010

What Kind of World Do You Want?

It is a cold Sunday morning here. We went from 60's back to 40's, even though it's supposed to be 70 later this week.

I feel like my cold is back, and it doesn't seem like it ever really left. I dont know what it is--but it seems like I haven't felt completely right in a month. Maybe longer.

I had a great weekend. I really like my softball teammates, well, the ones I met on Friday anyway. We are a team entirely of new people, and I was surprised that most of them have lived here for a long time. I thought it would be maybe all new people to the area too. I was also pleasantly surprised that no one seemed like a hardcore athlete :) It's a good mix of guys and girls, and we're all roughly the same age. Our first practice is Saturday, and I made plans to go throw the ball around with some of them at some point this week.

We drank a few together, and there was a promotional thing going on there at the bar and reps for Sam Adams (the beer) were there and they kept giving it to us for free. It helped to break the ice between us, and we compared stories together and I noticed from reading between the lines that most of us were just simply looking for something to do and more people to meet. It made me think of that line in "Piano Man"--they're sharing a drink they call loneliness, but it's better than drinking alone.

And it was definitely better than drinking alone, and then I went to meet a friend of mine to continue the night. That turned out to be alot of fun too, and I spent Saturday just around the house. I went out to watch a little basketball, and came home and called it a fairly early night.

This morning, though, I woke up with my old friend--the Sunday Sadness. It's gray, it's cold, so-and-so didn't text me back last night, should I really break up with W (it's better than drinking alone), why am I always sick, and why is my face breaking out again?

I got myself in a really good place - emotionally, mentally, physically - around the fall of last year. Now it's spring, and it's slipping away again...I still have it, but I am not sure what's on the horizon.

For the last several weeks, I've woken up in the middle of the night in panic attacks. I wake up with a pounding heart (around 3:30 or 4), with all my fears and stressors running amok in my mind. I am having strange dreams, nightmares really, but I can't remember them the next day. I lay awake until about 6, and then fall hard back to sleep and sleep through my alarm at 7. I wake up in a panic around 7:45, shower and get ready in 20 hurried minutes, and then sprint to the metro (hey....I'm exercising at least), and make it to work fifteen minutes late where I drag through the day. Then rev up at night, go to sleep late, and do the same thing over again.

This has got to stop, and I don't know what to do to fix it.

I'm re-reading a book by Don Miller (Emily knows where this is going now). It's his first book, and it's about the first time he left home and his journey with his friend across the country.

This book inspires different things in me at different times, and it seems especially poignant now, when I just made a move myself. makes me long for the kind of adventure that I am needing so desperately in my life.  I realized this morning as I sat in a coffee shop with my bagel and tea, that I haven't had a vacation since 2002.  I have constantly worked from the minute I graduated college, and I have never taken any of my vacation time to go do anything fun except go home to Kentucky or visit a friend or something over a long weekend.  I've never taken a week off.  Never.

Now, I know many many people are in the same boat.  And its partly  my fault--because it's like...where would I go?  What would I do?  I have no significant other to run off with, no friends who are really quite as free as I am to just up and take a week at the beach with me. 

I am longing for just a break.  I want to turn off my blackberry and disappear and have adventures and not worry about where I need to be tomorrow. Or what will happen in six months.  I want to stop waking up with panic attacks and I want to stop thinking about certain people, and I want to stop spending money hand over fist just to pay the bills.  

I want to roam around and meet new people and leave the country for awhile.  I have wanted this for SO long.  I want to go to Austrailia, or Africa, or Alaska and just GO. 

I just freakin got here to DC.  I don't want to turn around and leave again.  That's not what I mean, or what I want.  I just want to STOP for a minute.  No--for more than a minute.  I want to not feel sick anymore.  I want my face to stop breaking out again because I KNOW its just a manifest of the stress I feel inside. 

So I am doing what I can today, to be ok.  I went to the farmers market and got potatoes, eggs and homemade organic probiotic yogurt to put in smoothies for my breakfasts this week.  I did my errands early, ate my bagel and read my book, and put clean pajama's back on when I got home (yes, it's only noon....)

I am going to cook chicken and potatoes today, for my dinners this week.  Freeze up veggie soup for my lunches and clean the kitchen, drink tea and do the laundry.  I might turn off my phone and be quiet, or maybe not.

I will turn up the music, and dream of adventures that maybe one day, I will have.


Angie Muresan said...

You NEED a vacation! How about going to one of those travel and write programs in Italy or France? There are other people to meet, delicious food to eat, beautiful architecture to see. I have a friend who travels like that all the time and she loves it.

I get Sunday sadness too. It's horrible, really. I am so sorry to hear how it affects you.

By the way, Don Miller lives in my town and goes to my church (whenever I go, which really isn't often). But I did meet him a few times and he is a wonderful human being.

SJ said...

Angie, seriously??? That is so interesting! I didn't know you lived there. Guess what--I will be there in exactly one month, and I am already making plans to go to that church on Sunday. I'm so excited!

Angie Muresan said...

Well, whether or not, I will be attending church that Sunday, I'd love to meet you for a coffee.

Bethany said...

I'm sorry you're having those panic attacks in the middle of the night. That whole cycle sounds exhausting. I think you're doing great today though, trying to take care of yourself. Actually, I think you're doing amazing in lots of ways. Keep on keeping on my dear. And you DEFINITLY need/deserve a week or so AWAY, some place warm and pretty.
Love your honesty and sweetness.
Hang in there buddy.

Allegra Smith said...

So you are coming to Portland? Well then you and Angie must come over as I sincerely hope by then this horrible swine flu will be done with me and I with it.

Barry makes the most exquisite lattes and I make some good tea so you will have your choice and just let me know when to put the bells on my toes.

As far as the Sundays blues, well my best advice is to get up with a plan. Maybe a drive to a new nursery, a museum, try a new recipe that may take all day to cook. Find if netflix have that favorite movie somewhere and get it for a Sunday at the movies at home. I know all this sounds trite but it works if you really try to do it.

To be alone doesn't mean you have to be lonely. Did you know that many hospitals look for volunteers to be baby holders? As in preemies and some babies who just need human contact? It is a wonderful way to spend a Sunday, I am speaking from experience here.

I am looking forward to spend some time with you. Rebecca is coming some time in the near future and now to know that you are coming is a real treat. Take care of yourself, you are of value. Hugs from here.

SJ said...

Allegra -that sounds amazing!!! I can't believe you are there too, and that I might actually have a chance to meet you both! I have never been to Portland (or the west coast at all really), so I'm very excited. I will send you an email closer to the time and let you know my arrival/departure date and hopefully we can see if something works out.

Oh, and I know what you mean about finding something special about Sundays to help. I think the farmers market being here definitely is the best thing about it and I signed up to volunteer at it. :)

Maggie May said...

I say have a smaller scale adventure to get you going. Take a weekend vacation, fly somewhere you can get to in 6 hours or take a drive somewhere and stay over two days. You deserve it and more importantly this is your life and joy is have to choose it.


Mel said...

If I knew your phone number I would have called you instantly to talk about the early morning panic attacks. I want to tell you that I have them too, but not from panic. I have watched the clock move from 2 to 3 to 4 to doze off after 5 for a useless nap I drag myself awake from for years. I self diagnosed mine as hormonal or endocrine related, as they have occurred for years, regardless of my state of mind or stress - relentlessly, actually, for a decade now. When I was premenopausal at an age two doctors dismissed as too young, and through the narrows of full blown menopause by my mid 40's. Not every night, but many, many nights - heart palps, racing thoughts, or my least favorite, awakening from a really bad dream with my heart pounding out of my chest. Pending trips or life worries make them worse, of course, but aren't necessary ingredients to the mix. One of the triggers I'm sad to discover is wine, as I love to drink a glass or two with dinner. I can no longer drink alcohol as I did in my younger days, as my body can't process it beyond two drinks anymore. I just get sick for a day if I overdrink. I used to think it was just wine, but am learning that it is any alcohol that disrupts my sleep. And even more annoying is it isn't always just alcohol as a cause, but adreneline, hot flashes, brain chemistry and a myriad of things that I don't understand and that modern medicine hasn't fixed beyond medicating the symptoms. I'm just trying to say it may be physical and metabolic, as well as emotional. (They can get so tangled up!) And my face began to break out like at puberty, and I blame the hormones, as the outbreaks were cyclical. For me, the more disrupted my sleep, the worse my physical and emotional well being. I'm very sleep deprived and it doesn't take much for me to develop full blown symptoms of fibromyalgia which makes me depressed. It's really awful. But I wanted to tell you that over the counter sleeping pills and prescription sleep meds made me more tired, because they robbed me of REM sleep. Xanax left me with a brain fog that hindered my mornings drastically. Ativan in small doses allows me to sleep through most of it and I'm functional the next day. I've had 7 or 8 SSRI's or other antidepressents flung at my by doctors and I just won't take them. I prefer the devil I know and I'm not interested in withdrawal down the road. I also discovered much later than I wish that my neck discs were herniated, which was causing pain I attributed to stress, which ramped up the sleep disruption. OK, I've said all that. Sorry to go on, but I sense there's more to your night troubles than meet the eye.
I wish you sleep. Its crucial to wellness, both physical and mental.
Lullabye, and goodnight, go to sleep now and rest....
hoping for better for you soon! And hoping you have the grand adventures you crave.
ps I just got back from my grand adventure to DC, it was overwhelming, such a different city than Chicago.