This is exactly how I feel these days. I do not think any explanation is necessary.
It's not been a bad day and in fact, the part of it where Jessie brought her boys out was wonderful. They both gave me hugs when they burst through the door and as expected, they immediately asked, "Where's Boppy?" and "Can we watch TV?"
Knowing those boys as I do, this doesn't bother me in the least. I know what grandchildren are like. They love us but that does not mean they want to hang out and chat with us. Especially not the littles. Yummy treats and Netflix for Kids makes them the happiest. So after some lunch, Jessie and I let the boys sit in the Glen Den and watch that TV while we talked, which was great. And when she told the boys that was enough TV, they deigned to let me read them books which I love more than anything as they curl around me while I get to be their own private narrator/actor. August rubs my arm and Levon sticks his foot out for a foot massage. Well, at least that's what happened today. Maurice sat on the back of the love seat in the library while we read and of course both boys are quite leery of her, as well they should be. Not wanting to admit that he was scared of Maurice, Levon said, "That cat is distracting me."
"I bet she is," I told him.
But Maurice was a good girl and did not swat or bite anyone.
But Maurice was a good girl and did not swat or bite anyone.
It began to rain while they were here and is still raining now. It is cooler than it was yesterday and that's nice. Last night Mr. Moon and I sat out on the front porch for a martini and it was so lovely. No mosquitoes and cool enough to enjoy it. I took a picture of this little guy on one of my giant Bird's Nest ferns.
He was enjoying the evening as much as we were but I am sure he was wishing there were more bugs.
And I don't have much more to say. My spirits are still low but I am pondering the comment Ashley left on my post yesterday about how her husband gets kidney stones frequently- some of them huge- and how they deal with them by waiting until one starts moving and then they seek help and treatment. I think this is good advice. As the doctor said, that stone may never move and if it does, I'll know what it is. But I also know that this last one bothered me with vague symptoms for months before I figured it out and this makes me think that I'll probably be anxiously analyzing every twinge and pinch in that side forever.
Back to Shoe and the comfort zone thing- I really do feel like I have to at least try to pull myself up out of this rut I'm in, to try to allow myself to experience things and places beyond my tiny little world. This is the time of our lives when Mr. Moon and I absolutely can travel and go and do, free of most of the responsibilities that have held us back our entire lives and here I am, getting more and more insular and (let's face it) agoraphobic with every passing day. Add to that the fact that going to medical appointments and having a "procedure" have only made me cling even more desperately to my safe place- my home, my yard, my tiny world.
My etched-in-stone routine.
My etched-in-stone routine.
No pun intended.
And meanwhile, my dreams at night have become one version or another of the same subjects- needing to clean a filthy, trash-filled house while at the same time, tending to small children. I worry that they are not getting the right foods to eat, that their diapers are not being changed enough, that I do not know where they are at all times, that they do not have beds with clean sheets, or bathtubs clean enough to bathe in, or clean towels to dry off with. Some of these children I seem to be related to but many appear to be neighborhood kids who just show up and they, too, must be fed and kept safe.
Am I trying to take care of myself or is it worry I have that my children will need me and I will not be there to take care of them?
Is this about travel anxiety or death anxiety?
Is it all of those things or none?
Am I going insane? Am I already there?
Eh. I think too much. I worry too much. It would best serve me to remember that I am a minuscule bit of animated stardust on a minuscule planet that is traveling through a vast universe, capable of far more cognitive ability (though it is fading every day) than any primate needs, fussing and trying to fit together the unneeded unknowables into a coherent fashion that is not even there.
Or something like that.
I’m glad the boys distracted you at least a little. What you’re going through is tough. Sending big hugs your way, Treaders (in France - and in bed too)!ReplyDelete
In Bed In France could be the name of a book. Or a poem. Or a movie.Delete
I don't think there's any obligation to get out, traveling, doing. Mr moon gets around happily plenty already. Maybe just breathe for now? You've been through a lot lately.ReplyDelete
I know. But the man does want to go places with me and so that's a whole other part of the equation.Delete
Your last paragraph pretty much summed it up. It spoke volumes to me...about me...for me. Thank you!! You're not alone, Mary. You haveReplyDelete
good company. We'll do our best and forge ahead. I'm right behind you!
All right, John. You push me off my ass and I'll run around and push you off yours. Sound good?Delete
Dear Mary, queen of the boring kidneys who will trouble her no more, I declare it so. I’ve been reading your blog for a decade from my sometimes messy life in TX and I absolutely understand the dread and fear that medical things can do to a completely ok person. In fact, our story is always complicated and rather fucked up medically. It’s so hard to peel back another layer and lean into a new diagnosis, but I will also tell you this: these things grow all over our bodies, sometimes for decades. We talk about gallstones, but the exquisite pain of kidney stones makes one remember their labors…similarly to bringing our babes. You’ve been there, and now you know what to do. These stones, unless they are massive, won’t hurt you besides coming out, usually. This is helpful to my anxiety brain because my husband was military for a career, and I was always so worried about what could happen to him; once he retired, we just switched military for medical and it’s been a long, hard road. Talk to your urologist about signs (flank pain, labor-ish pain) and have a plan IF that thing goes on the move, THEN go seek help, but IF not, it is unlikely to damage or hurt you when hanging out in the kidney. In fact-they popped that 20mm stone back into the kidney while we waited for surgery to go get it. I hate giving medical stories, but I hope it eases you to say that right now, my husband who was hospitalized and surgeried for stones last year is conservatively watching an 8mm stone in the left kidney and I am not so anxious because we know what to do. I’d rather have the devil I know-and it sucks to know him so well.ReplyDelete
Also-I’d be remiss in my recent comment postings not to tell you what an absolute joy and privilege it is for me to read your words and understand the wisdom and perspective of someone like you. I am made better by reading, and I’m sorry that I’ve never felt it appropriate to chime in before recently. You are treasured and you should feel it, so thank you.
Ashley- you have given me more than one gift lately. The well-earned advice about kidney stones is so appreciated and has indeed soothed my anxiety. I appreciate that more than you can know.Delete
And now I thank you for the words you've given me about reading here for ten years. It means so much to me to hear of your enjoyment in what I write. Thank you, thank you, thank you. So very much.
Your feelings are quite understandable and relatable. As we get older we realise that we can now do the things we always wished we could. That is exciting and terrifying in itself. But it also reminds us (at least it does me) that this means that so much of our life has passed and we are heading towards the inevitable and, while I have no fear of dying, I would like to hang around a bit longer to enjoy what we are finally able to do. Throw health issues into the works and it just becomes that bit more to cope with.ReplyDelete
So very true. When we are young, it is almost impossible to believe that a day will come when physical or mental problems may arise that will prevent us from doing what seems so easy and natural then. And yet...here we are.Delete
But I DO want to be able to experience what I am capable of and when I think of what all you and your husband are doing to make one of your dreams come true now, I am inspired.
My desire to travel boiled down to trips to WI to visit Ann, a trip to TX to visit a dear cousin and then some broken bones that side tracked me and eventually limited me. So now I'm 80, and stuck here in retirement village, unless children or grandchildren take me somewhere. For the present I'll keep on weaving.ReplyDelete
Yes. And so it goes. Keep weaving, keep writing, keep being part of your children and grandchildren's lives. You humble me sometimes, Joanne. You truly do.Delete
I had kidney stones for probably about seven years and then they just stopped, thankfully. I do drink a lot of water because of the memory of those stone, although not as much water as I used to. Your story is a good reminder to drink more water.ReplyDelete
As for your dreams, I think those children and babies are the parts of you that your own mama never took care of or kept safe. Of course I have no degree in dream interpretation:)
That's got to be so stressful, having that kind of anxiety. I get depressed and even suicidal but not anxious. It sounds awful, to have that free floating feeling of danger, fear and anxiety.
Gracie has gone off the rails again so Jack is back with us six nights a week and his auntie, one night a week. On the plus side, he's back to our daycare full time and he likes it much better.
Sending hugs and love sweetie.
Oh Pixie I'm so sorry Gracie has gone off the rails again, but so glad you have Jack safe and sound at home!Delete
Pixie, I thank you for those words. I don't know if the dreams are about un-mothered parts of me or anxieties that will probably linger forever about not having been the best mother I could have been. Could still be. Impossible to say.Delete
Gracie's going off the rails is not a surprise although not what anyone would want. In some ways though, I guess it may be a little easier when you know exactly what you're dealing with and being able to keep Jack safe with you. What would that child do without you?
No, I don't believe you think too much or worry too much. It's just the concept that we are all just *stardust* (bless Carl Sagan).......... that is overwhelming to fathom. Thank goodness for your grounded and loving family and life to help you through.ReplyDelete
Yes. Thank goodness!Delete
I am also becoming more insular and I worry every day that I might be unable to help my kids if they need it. Especially the youngest, with the twin babies.ReplyDelete
We never stop worrying, do we? Our babies are our babies forever and ever.Delete
I am also more insular but have decided not to worry about it and just enjoy each day. Don't put so much pressure on yourself. That feeds your anxiety. You have a great bit of the world to enjoy and a lovely family.ReplyDelete
I do indeed have a great bit of the world to enjoy but I know that my husband, especially, would love to travel with me. He says he would, at least.Delete
When our bodies stop being what we consider reliable and healthy, this obviously throws us off course. Suddenly there's npredictable stuff happening and what about our plans and hopes for the future which we made when our bodies were functioning ok. You have every reason to feel upset and to worry and don't question it, you are not going insane.ReplyDelete
You'll figure out how to trust your body again, health is not always a given, but coping is what we can do, and indeed, coping so well that life continues to be glorious. Take every day as it comes and don't let this issue take over. It's merely a chapter, the story goes on.
Sabine, your comment has brought tears to my eyes. You speak from knowledge and from the heart and from the soul. Thank you.Delete
i feel like i'm too much of a homebody too these days. i don't know if it's age, or the lockdowns, but i like my house a lot more then i like other people besides tony and the pets. thinking of you. xxalainaxxReplyDelete
I think that when we grew up in extremely unsafe and frightening conditions where we had no control that when we do finally create our own safe place that it is hard to leave it. When I am here with my man and my cats, I am most content. And I think you're right- getting older does seem to increase that desire to be in the safe place.Delete
I adore you, lady.
I traveled every summer for six years in a row. the last was in 2018. apparently that was enough for a while as I've had no desire to go anywhere since even though the twins invited me to go with them to Ecuador when Autumn was there and Jade was going to meet her. I would have loved being there, it was just the going that I couldn't get over. Just as well as Jade missed her flight because her covid test hadn't come back yet (she got a later flight) and Autumn got covid right as they were returning.ReplyDelete
It just gets harder to travel as we get older. I like my own bed and my own bathroom and my own kitchen. I don't know. Both of us will probably do more traveling before it's all over.Delete
Oh, I think I've missed some kidney-related news. I will keep reading.ReplyDelete
I'm not a psychologist but it would be interesting to have an expert interpretation of your dreams of needing to "mother" the world (or at least the neighborhood). I think dreams DO say a lot about what we care about and where our anxieties lie.
I found during the pandemic that the more I stayed home, the more I wanted to stay home. But if I get out and about I feel like doing more of that. It's easy to slip into that rut, in other words.
I agree with you about dreams. Whatever it is that we dream about, especially frequently, has meaning in our lives for sure.Delete
I'm glad you're moving about in the world more easily now. It is SO hard to get out of the rut.
Glad the boys stopped by bringing their happy silliness with them. It's so good to be distracted that way. Do they love vehicles (re: the trucks on their shirts)? Two of my grandsons LOVE vehicles and spend hours drawing vehicles or making Lego vehicles.ReplyDelete
We need to be happily silly more often, I think.
Feel all the feelings, Mary, and enjoy what you can...
If I could be what I wish without hurting anyone but myself, I would be forever solitary with my books and my paints and my sewing machine. And my pick of mountain to live on. But I can't. This world is not meant for thus. For humans must interact with other humans to complete themselves. And, to discover new ideas and wishes and tasks to do on one's life journey.ReplyDelete
There is much truth here but we are not all the same. I think that there has to be some interaction, for sure, between us and others, but I also think that some of us are just huge lovers of solitude and I think that's okay too.Delete