Okay, so NOW I've officially been away from the blog for the longest time ever. I know a lot of you guys have sent emails and messages with concern--- thank you. I am alive--- and right now, at this very moment, I am well. This whole thing has been really quite a process. And I hate to say "I'm on the mend" anymore-- because it's never consistent. And as much as I would like it to be consistent and be able to say, with certainty, that I am improving-- well, I never know. Something always tends to happen. I'm at a point now where I feel neither positive or pessimistic about the ups and downs, but rather, I'm just learning to cope with the inevitability that something can happen to knock me down and I just have to be ready for it.
I had a good up week about two weeks ago-- it seemed everything was (slowly) improving all around. I started getting dressed again, I made it to a yoga class, I even made it to a friends house. And then, boom, before I knew it, something upset my stomach, attacked my head, and wiped me out again. What caused the down? I'm still not certain, but something hit my system hard and left my stomach very ill and feeling how I had felt in the beginning of this mess. Whats worse than the stomach down is the overall fear it strikes into my body. The stress I've been through over the past few months is undeniable. I hate to call it a PTSD because it sounds SO serious, but thats what the doctors refer to it as. I feel physically ill with each stressor that comes my way. On the upside-- I've spent many years working through my own anxiety issues and I'm putting each and every technique I can into action to try to calm my fears while healing my mind and body.
I physically had to step away from this space. Not that this place is stressful--- quite the opposite really, I love this place for me to use as a creative and time outlet. But the amount of brain power that has been left within me has been awful. I feel like half myself, or less. I feel like I've been knocked out in a rough boxing match and theres a constant whirl of stars and birds fluttering by with me, left trying to stand straight. Thats how it's been-- up and down-- throughout this 1/4 year process. Every appointment with doctor and specialist starts with me trying to explain that I now feel as if my head is disconnected from my body-- that I cannot, for the life of me, get the two to line up together. I was once sharp and quick each day and each minute and now I feel a lag between what's in front of me and how it's imputed into my mind and feelings. Luckily, today, as I type, I feel as though the gap is narrowing. That hopefully, once again, as each day passes, I'm able to move the world around me closer to my personal senses. As time goes by, I'm hoping to close that gap once again, and if I'm lucky (please let me be lucky) feel normal once again-- or better yet, new, renewed, and better than ever before. But we'll see. My lesson learned, is that only time and patience will tell.
I'm in Massachusetts now. It went from a period last week where we questioned if I would have to return to the hospital once again-- unable to stay at home, by myself for fear of illness, questioning if I would even make it on a flight north, to now, where I'm sitting comfortably at my moms kitchen table, with no one here except a happy-coloring Marlowe. I'm exhausted and drained, but I am okay. The time here has been good. Okay days, good days, and even great days. I feel like my head is returning here. I think the air and time outside has been good for me. The break from the (normally easy) stresses of life and responsibility at home, the sort of vacation feel with Alex, and the extra help of cooking and Marlowe care with my mother. Each day is new now, I know to never plan because anything can happen, but each day has been okay. Some days I require four more hours of sleep and two naps-- and there are days like last night, where I am able to stay up a few hours later, without the pushing nervous feeling that I may collapse.
I've trained myself to close my eyes and tune out. The stress, the fear, the concerns, the frustration, all of it. I have this constant fear of death---- but its been there long before this health scare. I've thought about writing about my fear multiple times over the years, but have stopped myself each time. It's not rational, I'm aware. We will all die. I'm scared of something that is absolutely inevitable--- I always have been and I always will be. But now, I'm hoping each day to find myself in a place where I can live life again-- as much as my body allows, without the fear nagging me with every breath I take or every bite of food I eat. My gut is damaged--- very damaged, the scans have shown that--- and despite the down days, my gut is healing. My body isn't normal yet, but I'm working my way there. Some days it begins to level out and some days it drops, and that is okay-- it has to be okay--- I have to be okay with all of it. I have been and will continue to tell myself that my life will heal and thrive again before death comes. I want to and have to believe it. I've also shut off from the internet a bit for this reason. Too exhausted to sit on a device and even more exhausted with the overload I would often times find there. I didn't want to get lost in more what if's that the internet brings. There are still question marks to my downs, but I didn't want more advice, opinions, or diagnosis'--- even with the best intentions in the world, it was just too much extra stress for my mind to handle. I needed to tune out all noise and just focus on breathing, health, and family. Alex left this afternoon, but M and I will be here for a good amount of time--- at least until our next family vacation in July and then we'll see where everything takes us. Life wont be the same again after this experience, I'm certain of it. That statement sounds so concerning and serious, but it's not. I do believe this experience will bring good change too.
I've taken more steps than I thought I could to heal. I've quieted my mind. I've learned to ask for help. I've embraced the fact that I can't do everything anymore and it's okay if I step away from trying. I've even meditated with buddhists. I've met with amazing people who have helped and doctors who has reassured me that I'm taking the right steps needed. I'm hoping to share a bit more of that process down the line. Again I'm trying not to plan, but for now, I'll be back in this space, updating as often as I can. I have a few posts I had written a long while ago that I plan to share--- and now newer pictures from our time here. We had originally planned to make our way north for vacation, but of course we have adjusted plans and ideas with each day. I do wish Alex could have stayed up here too--- we will miss him, but I'm grateful to be up here and taking care of myself when I need it most. Thanks for your endless amounts of support. It's always appreciated. Thank you for your emails, messages, and continuous good vibes. I needed it.
ps. while I'm here---- there was a name change on the cookbook and it's currently on a pre-sale price of eighteen bucks. Amazing, right? Release date is still the same though: mid october :)
pps. like my basement job tattoo? It's fancy, I know.