I wasn’t sure if I could make it through today. I was not looking forward to this Thanksgiving. I gleaned something about my myself and my Pops. He is in the things that I do. He lives in my heart and soul not in any one thing he ever gave me. That cowboy hat I have in the closet does not hold his essence; I do. He is not in the Army trunk that once housed his khakis. He is in my thoughts while I peel the potatoes for his favorite stuffing. He is in the warmth of the kitchen as things simmer. I can hear his laughter amongst the laughter of my guests enjoying the football game.
NEW TRADITION ALERT! I decided I was not going to make a turkey, so I didn’t. This year for the first time I prepared a spiral ham. I needed to step away from all of the memories that I associate with this holiday. Many of them are NOT pleasant. I wanted to be free. Many past Thanksgivings have been ruined by my quintessential family: arguments, flying food, insults, drunken behavior and trips to the ER for stitches. Thanksgiving makes me grumpy and short tempered. I do all of the work. I am the one who allows herself to get frazzled. I am the one who obsesses about everything being “perfect”. No one else cares. They just want to eat, relax and have some fun.
I let go of my old tired tradition and ate, relaxed and had some fun.
What happens at Book Club stays at Book Club ; )
Growing up I desperately wanted to be “that girl”. The one all the boys wanted to date and all the girls wanted to hate. I foolishly dreamt that one day I would figure out how to be the smartest, prettiest, most wonderful example of femininity the world would ever hope to know. Instead I turned into the hater. On the outer edge of every social group one can imagine. I spent a lot of miserable years being unhappy about who I was instead of embracing who I was becoming. I never did become “that girl”. Time, love, and life experience have turned me into something more rewarding; ME ! I have had to learn some very tough lessons in life about loss, love, acceptance and friendships. It is important to the people in your life to know that you value them.
On my way home from work today I was thinking about all the wonderful women in my life. I couldn’t help but wonder if I had told any of them how much I enjoy their laughter, their companionship, their insights. My friends mean the world to me. Somehow I never seem to tell them that. Shame on me.
I have recently fallen into a group of women who like to read. Well, I throw that out there loosely because truthfully I think we like getting together to enjoy each others’ company. There is a lot of laughing, chatting, gossiping( a tad), eating and enjoying an adult beverage or two. Eventually as the night wears on we get around to whatever book was supposed to be read. I belong = ) These women have allowed me into their circle. At first I thought that maybe I shouldn’t join. I had only attended one or two book club gatherings as a tag-a-long. I tagged along with my bestie. I hadn’t formally been asked to join but I was curious and my BFF assured me that the “girls” would love me.
I have a touch of social anxiety that I try to keep hidden. I make terrible first impressions. I feel uncomfortable surrounded by people I am not overly familiar with. I fidget. I give the false impression of over confidence when in truth I am just trying not to fall in on myself with embarrassment. I didn’t have many friends growing up. I guess I have never learned what it is I am supposed to do with them? Being myself seems to work so I am trying to do that more.
I love belonging. I looked forward to going to club night. I have read all the books. Some I liked, some not so much but I like my new friends. The ladies of this book club are amazing. I am honored to be part of you. I enjoy our time together. You have taught me things when I wasn’t looking to learn. I am more relaxed in myself. I listen better. I am learning to enjoy the moments. I am blessed.
Recently I haven’t blogged very much. No, I am not bored, duty called. I am my Dad’s primary care giver. He is not in great health, is nearly blind and has dementia. Every once in awhile LIFE (that bitch) throws us a curve ball and I am forced to think on the slide. I do my best to run two households. I shop, clean, do dishes, meal prep, pay bills, run errands, and attend to everything else that pops up, blows up or stops working. Sometimes my circuits overload and I STOP functioning. Fact of Life.
Dad passed out March 30th. I called 911 after he passed out on me the second time. Did I ever tell you just how much I hate ER departments? Imagine if someone in our lovely government had to WAIT for endless hours before they were seen? Big changes would soon follow I am sure. Anyway I had no idea what might be wrong with Dad but after many hours of waiting I was (we were) told that Dad had an UTI. He was going to be admitted, medicated and hydrated. I went home for some much needed tears and sleep.
Dad’s initial hospital stay was 3 days. I say initial because shortly after the hospital discharged him into my care I had to return him to the ER. I knew the moment we climbed into the Jeep something was really wrong. I mean wrong not because Dad was swaging a Foley cath either. He was hallucinating. It has been a few weeks but Dad is on the mend. He is home again. I am trying to get outside help to come see him while I am at work. Hopefully I will have that up and running for him soon. If it all works out he will meet new people and I, I will have the occasional night off . Things now are happily getting back on track.Yippee
I feel badly sometimes that I blog as a way to vent my frustrations. I might, to the occasion reader, seem gloomy and/or depressed. I assure I am not. What I am is OVERWHELMED some days. I need to start posting the great things and not just the things that tweak me. There are moments that need to be shared that show the better parts of my life and who I am. Not for you but for me so that when I re- read some of my missives I may see that there is more to me, to my world, to my Dad.
Stay with me I promise you lighter days filled with laughter and song and not just because weed is legal (for medicinal purposes) in Massachusetts. = )
…And in case I have never said it before THANKS for reading and being there.