I’ve been thinking about this blog all day long…
Truthfully, I’ve been thinking about it for much longer than that….I’ve been thinking about it ever since I stopped posting to it. It just so happens that today, I really got the writing itch. I’ve got things to say, and it’s time to start saying them again– for the sake of my sanity, for the sake of my continued growth.
It’s been a month since I’d stopped blogging. And I’d stopped for several reasons. One was that some of the things I was writing were being misinterpreted by some loved ones and it was causing them further grief and anguish. Another reason was that so many things–good and bad– were happening in my life, and I didn’t know how to write about them. I had severe writer’s block. I probably needed the time off.
But this post is my re-entry. I’ve written about my grief, and I’ve shared my pain. And so many of you have responded to that grief and have helped me as I heal. I am grateful for that. So very grateful. But I wish to share my triumphs, my celebrations too. I have fought– so very hard– to not allow being a “widow” be the thing that defines my very existence. It is only a part of my story. A very painful part of my story. But just a part. It is one that I continue to embrace, do not ignore, do not push under the rug. But it cannot be the thing that affects every decision I make in this new life. And so it will not.
Here’s what I’ve been up to in the past month…
I cried when I walked off stage.
I made it to the competition stage! It was an exceptionally stressful peak week. Some things had fallen apart in my personal life and that caused an enormous amount of unwanted stress. Stress during peak week is the equivalent of holding a gun to your head and pulling the trigger, which is to say, it’s not good. As a result, I hit the stage with a body that was great by “normal” standards, but holding water and too soft according to bodybuilding standards. Nevertheless, I pursued. The day was long, hard, and not without tears– many tears. But I’d made it. Even brought home a trophy. But more importantly– I succeeded because I’d made it to that stage. I saw it through.
A week later, I vacationed in California. This was the first vacation that I’d taken in over ten years! It was also my first airplane trip. Yes, that’s right– this old girl had never been on an airplane. Including connecting flights, I’ve now been on four! Best part about flying– take-off. I LOVE the speed! I giggled, like a little girl, on all four take-offs coz the speed was breathtaking! Imagine if an airplane could be like a convertible and you could feel the wind zip through your hair while speeding up for take-off. How awesome would THAT be?!?! (remember– with a convertible, the roof goes back up; I’d expect the roof of the aircraft to go back up as we would rise further and further into the sky. DUH!!! LOL!)
|The beautiful skyline that is Santa Monica.
Off in the distance– the famous Santa Monica Pier.
I saw LA, Santa Monica, Venice, Malibu, Hollywood, and San Diego. The West Coast is the most stunning place I’ve ever been. I was surrounded by God’s great beauty. A drive to Malibu featured some of California’s most awesome terrain, as the highway from Santa Monica leading into Malibu featured the Pacific Ocean to my left and an assortment of hilly mountains with million dollar homes nestled within them to my right.
the most intimidating place on Earth!
And while in California, for the first time in seven months, I felt “normal.” There was no stress. There was nothing to think about. All I had to do was just live, live in the moment, and be grateful for my environment as well as my company.
Which brings me to the next most relevant “development” in my life– “my company.” I met someone. And he is kind and gentle and understanding and he “gets me.” And perhaps, more importantly, I am happy. I think I deserve that.
There is no timeline for grief. There is only one person’s journey. There is only one way that is “right” for the person on that journey. I am learning to accept that, without apologizing for who I am becoming or explaining what I am doing. I cannot live anyone else’s grief journey; that is solely the responsibility of the person experiencing that grief. This blog is about my story. It always has been. And that should not change; it will not change; and I make no apology for that either.
I am coming into a new normal. This doesn’t mean that I’ve forgotten. It doesn’t mean I’m “fixed.” But I am learning a lot about who I was, who I am, and who I want to become. And I am so happy that one day, several months ago, I chose life. Against all odds, I chose to get out of bed and to make something of my life.
After all, isn’t that what we’re all here for anyway?