If you had asked me what I was going to do this weekend, I never would have described what I ended up doing. But here it is:
Friday, I hit a movie on my way home, and managed to vacuum upstairs and the stairs. The dog and I took a walk when I got home from the movie that kind of bummed me out— he got ambitious and we went pretty far out, and then could barely get home, walking a few feet and laying down again and again. And some nasty lady came and yelled at us when he sniffed her porch, like we were stealing from her. She’d gone all-out decorating for St. Patrick’s Day, and I admit that I was admiring her decorations, and the dog did have one paw on her patio, but it’s not like he peed on it, or anything. So, depressing dog walk. Let’s say I spent 30 minutes vacuuming.
I went to bed relatively early, for me, for a weekend, and got up relatively early. I took the dog out, but he didn’t want to go far. So I sat with him in the sunshine, listened to podcasts, did his physical therapy, and visited with the neighbors who were also out walking dogs or just being out and about. If you’re new here, you might not know that I’m naturally fairly antisocial with my neighbors, so it’s beyond bizarre that I spent hours chatting with them, having the dog’s picture taken, letting them give him toys, talking about our lives, and generally being neighborly, but there you have it. One of the podcasts I listened to, this week’s episode of Dear Sugar, got me to thinking, so when I coaxed the dog home, hours later, I tried to write. He was having none of this “sitting in the house on a beautiful day” business, so I grabbed a paper journal and wrote and wrote about my thoughts, sitting out in the sunshine with him. I did about 10 pages. I finally brought him in the house. He chewed up an audiobook case, as his response to being left in the car while I ate dinner after his first physical therapy appointment, and I had another one overdue, so I headed for the carwash, then the library (add $10 for the media case he destroyed to his tab), then I hit a Starbuck’s with a great patio to write some more. I got a (for me) lengthy poem, plus journalled several additional pages to get to the bottom of some things that are bothering me.
From there, I went to a favorite restaurant. I brought my journal, ordered a cocktail and a meal at the bar, and thought about whether I needed to journal some more. I concluded that I was good (plus my hand hurt), so I read for awhile. While reading, I started to respond to the ideas and needed to write more, so I stopped and did so, writing another couple of pages. I feel like I’m in the middle of something life-changing, and I thought about catching “Wild” again at a discount theater, but wound up settling for watching “Eat, Pray, Love,” again at home. Again, for me, I went to bed early, and slept longer.
Even at noon on Saturday, I would not have predicted that I’d spend the day in a spiritual/writing Retreat, but it felt really healing to do so. I even wrote some more when the dog parked in the yard and didn’t want to go anywhere, again, Sunday afternoon. Sunday, I managed to empty the dishwasher, reload it, and hand-wash a ton of stuff the dishwasher wasn’t going to clean, plus the stuff that must be hand-washed. I also cleaned up the counters and took out the trash and recycling. Let’s call it an hour. By the end of the weekend, an outburst from mom at dinner last night notwithstanding, I felt awesome.
With that said, despite going to bed early again, I slept restlessly, woke up with an eye swollen, red, and light-sensitive and not feeling rested at all. I’m not sure if it’s allergies (a reasonable assumption this time of year) or something else, but all of my hard-won self-actualization is out the window, and in walking to payroll to correct my direct-deposit for the third time in as many months, I just nearly burst into tears, I’m so exhausted by all of this. The weight I lost while doing the low-carb thing? I’ve basically found it again. Nothing is staying done. I’m not making progress with the house, I’m not making progress with the dog, I have to do the tiny tasks again and again at work (not repeating my work activities, trying over and over to make my direct deposit functional or trying to install my conference call software a dozen times without it working) on a loop that doesn’t seem to end, and my mother is yelling at me in restaurants misrepresenting something I said between 5 and 15 years ago because I ask her not to tell me graphic news stories out of which I’ve intentionally opted (I don’t watch news I can’t do anything about. I am aware of big things going on nationally, but not, for example, the trend of homeless people fatally stepping in front of light rail trains in my city), because they make it difficult for me to stay positive enough to function, and I don’t have a choice about whether to function.
I don’t want to cook dinner for her tonight, I don’t want to coax the dog to walk around the complex, I want to go to bed and sleep for approximately 20 hours until I feel like I have something left to spare. I might be coming down with something, she says, as she listens to her co-workers cough.