Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Do you know how to swim?

Well, suffice it to say my feet are firmly planted in “life is too hard to live right now” Land. Things are definitely not going according to plan BUT – get this?!

I’m not sinking. Not even close to drowning. Don’t even feel the need to put on a life vest. Haven’t even felt a gush of water fill up my lungs enough to make my eyes bulge out.

If you’re thinking that’s not impressive….well, for me it is.

You see, I’m a control freak. And a routine whore. And damn near OCD about knowing what’s going to happen before it happens. I put the P in planning.

Spontaneity is my evil step-sister. It doesn’t belong in my family.

I detest things that “just happen”. I’m the kind of girl that needs a warning…so I can prepare.

When things like migraines pop up and force me to take days off work and sleep half the day away – not only do I physically shut down – but I mentally lose my grip too. When Rambo works so much overtime that the girls and I don’t see him…my heart starts to hurt – physically and mentally.

When I’m too tired and worn out from the exhaustion of dealing with things that happened that I didn’t plan or couldn’t control…I start to shut down. I don’t work out like I planned to. I don’t get work done on my PT jobs like I should. I don’t comment on blogs like is my routine. I don’t do anything I normally do.

And the downward spiral begins. I start to regress. I back away from anything human unless it’s Rambo, my girls or Jenny. I stay home. I give up. I stop moving, eating and drinking…because Drazil says, “What’s the point? You plan and plan and it all goes awry. Give up. It’s just easier.”

I get angry. I get sad. I get irritated at life. I question my work and my worth. I want to let go of the effort that life takes to live.

Except this time – I don’t.

This time – somehow – my brain is telling me, “Meh, hang on…just a little bit longer and you’ll feel better. You can do this. You can outlast this stint of shit and get back to roses in no time.”

My brain is telling me that instead of hating these things I can’t control and these things I hate like colds and migraines and plans going wrong – that I should take them all in – and literally embrace them. I’ve long known it’s not good to be so stuck on routine. Being that way means when things don’t go as planned, I literally feel shell-shocked, almost paralyzed...unable to cope.

That’s no way to live because we all know – life never goes as planned.

The fact is I can deal with these things. I cannot work out right now but dammit I will again soon. I’ll be damned if I’m going to throw in the towel. So I feel like elephant shit? So what? That doesn’t mean eating Twix will fix it and I know that. I can still control my diet.

I have to realize I’m stronger than any bad day or week or feeling. I possess the inner will to conquer whatever comes my way – be it planned or not. Life isn’t about planning…it’s about rolling with the punches and being open to whatever happens in every moment.

The truth is – in planning – I lose sight of the unplanned. I lose sight of little things that happen that I couldn’t control that could change my life. I focus so much on the planned that I miss the unplanned moments.

It is true I don’t feel well – physically or mentally – but even so…I can say I am okay. Something in me knows this is temporary. Something in me knows there is a lesson here…and God is trying to show me something – if I allow myself to listen I’ll hear the message….and I’ll be stronger and wiser and more complete if I can get through this.

I’ve heard it said before that if you’re out in open water and you can’t swim – the worst thing to do is panic and start flailing. You’ll surely drown – out of fear or exhaustion.

It’s the same for me now. Everything seems out of control. I have no desire to write. No desire to open my planner. No want to complete tasks. No need to work out and sweat. No initiative to do what it takes to be me.

Normally – warning bells would be ringing loudly in my ears by now after typing the above. It signals a depression relapse could be around the corner. Strangely, that’s not happening this time. The bells are silent. I almost feel confident in not knowing what’s on the horizon. I am looking forward to meeting this upheaval in my life with focus and drive and the intent to come out a better me on the other side.

I’m not going to panic. I know how to swim.

The truth is all I have to do is find the courage to use the tools that I already have. Like my legs. If I’d just believe in myself enough to stand up…I’d realize the water is only knee high….

…and I can walk onto dry land any time I’m ready.

So how about you?  Are you drowning....or do you know how to swim?


Laura Belle said...

Well. All I can think right now is WOW. Very inspirational!

You use those legs to run your skinny butt straight to the beach! Once there, you need to lay on the beach towel, put on your shades and bask in the warm summer sun. With a margarita. Or 6.

Everyone has bad days, or bad weeks, or bad years. It's what you do to get over those 'bad' times that makes you, you. But it sounds like you've already figured that out. That's half the battle Chica! Good job!

Karen Butler Ogle said...

This post is more like I'm feeling that I feel comfortable owning up to. We have so much in common Drazil and this is a down time for me too. However, I try to keep reminding myself that I've been through this before and I've come through it every time so far. I haven't drowned yet. I always manage to swim at the last minute. It is easier for me though to not think too far ahead. I just need to learn not to have expectations because life turns on a dime and if I don't learn to turn with it, I am likely to get trampled. Hang in there, my friend.

Amanda said...

What a great post! Keep swimming, Drazil!

I know how to swim! Well most of the time. I am in a little bit of panic mode right now but that is because I am babysitting for my 2 year old God daughter for a week and it is tough work when you aren't used to it! Wowser!

Blossom said...

Many times I just feel like I'm treading water, staying in one place (at least in my weight loss and love life, of which right now there's nothing happening in both! lol). These are the two areas of my life, if I could JUST get a handle on them, everything would be pretty much perfect (because right now the rest is pretty darn good....I wonder if that means the bottom is going to fall out soon? :-/ ).

Ms. Chunky Chick said...

This is one of my favorite posts! Draz you have made such strides. You are so beautiful! Your doaughters have an amazing role model to learn from

MandaPanda said...

In the words of Dory from "Finding Nemo"...just keep swimming...just keep swimming...swimming. You got this!

amandakiska said...

Love it!

LDswims said...

Would you think it was funny if I said I know how to swim?


I teach, too. And lifeguard, too. If you were drowning, I'd come for you - and I know how to make sure you don't panic or even stop you from doing so if you already are.

So if we take our lives to the ocean, I'm a good one to have on your side.

Course, life isn't in the ocean or even in a pool. Life can't be controlled nor can it be dictated (I know you know). Everything happens for a reason (I know you know). Maybe you are going through all this to finally see for yourself first hand that you ARE as strong as we all know you can be.

Love you!!

Stacey said...

What a huge step! I am so proud of you! :)

Sarah Williams said...

Great post! Keep swimming girl and keep that head up and you can do it!

Beth Ann said...

Wow, Drazil. What a great post! I get the same way when things threaten to change my little planned out days. I'm getting better at being flexible, but I still have a ways to go. Maybe I can't swim, but I can doggie paddle...? :) Hope you get to feeling better soon!

Ronnie said...

If you had asked me a week ago, I might have sputtered and drown myself. But today, I think I'm gonna get up outta the kiddy pool and walk to shore with you. :)

Cindylew said...

Proud, Proud and more Proud...that's what I am of you.

Stephanie said...

I know ow to swim, butit's nice knowing I have a crap ton of lifeguards out there always willing to toss me a life preserver when I need it. You ladies are my water wings!!

Jen from Oregon said...

amazing post! I hope I can write something like this someday... (Still in the baby pool)

Food Freak said...

Magnificent post. You're evolving, adapting, changing, and more--rapidly, before our very eyes. Thank you for taking the risk to post this entry. You're safe now, and I believe you can progress quickly down this new path.