Thank you Universe for sending me love in unexpected ways and reminding me what is truly important.
So my dad has continued to make leaps and bounds of recovery since his stroke. We just got back from a father/daughter gym session. He has to go very slowly and carefully but he’s going and he’s not giving up either.
I’ve committed to being his caregiver for the month of October, which by the end of he will hopefully be doing even better than he already is doing and I will be ready to start working at a big kid gig.
I’m trying to take advantage of this time that I have with him. I’m using the time to get to know him more and bond with him as much as I can. The universe has given me this time with him so I’m trying to take advantage of it as much as possible.Trying to see the positives in a super shitty situation. It’s hard but I know it’s what I need to do.
Anonymous asked: Hello C, I've been a long time reader of your blog. Your recent posts about your Dad have broken my heart, but also have inspired me. You have such a pure and beautiful strength - there should be more people in the world like you. I recently found out my Mom has breast cancer, and I also lost my Dad to cancer 10 years ago. At the same time, we are selling our childhood home, I'm moving to a new city, and I have a history of depression and anxiety. I feel like I'm on the verge of a mental (cont)
(cont) and emotional break down. It’s all so much to deal with at once. I have a great network of friends, and a great sister, but I feel like my anxiety is getting a hold of me and I feel like I want to sit in a corner and stare at the wall and not deal with everything that is coming at me like a wrecking ball. I feel small and fragile and unable to handle all of this. How do you mentally handle each day as it comes and not let it overwhelm you and beat you down? Thank you for your blog.
Dear anon, Your story breaks my heart as well. I’m really really sorry that you’re going through this. I understand the feeling of being completely out of control of what’s going on around you, watching someone you care about suffer. I think it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever been through. Watching my mother die from cancer and my father suffer in his stroke have been the most heart wrenching things I have ever gone through. And somehow it has built me into a strong and resilient woman. I have been stretched to limits that I didn’t know I had.
But the truth is that you can’t bypass the saddness and the suffering. You can’t will it away and you can’t ignore it either. The only thing you can do to help yourself right now is to “consciously suffer”. It sounds really awful but it’s the preferred alternative to thinking that the emotional pain can be put in the back burner. Let it be okay that things are falling apart and that you feel like you’re “on the verge of a mental and emotional breakdown”. Go ahead and breakdown. Break down hard because no matter what, that pain will find a way out. Sometimes it finds a way out through addiction, or depression or compulsive behaviors. And we don’t need any more problems than we already have. But also ask for help. Let that great support system that you have know what you need them to do for you.
I told each of my friends what I needed from them, when things fell apart. I let some friends know I needed them to hug me, others to take me out, and others to just listen to me cry. Literally, just listen to me while I sobbed into their shoulder. Others, I learned weren’t able to help me and that had to be okay.
Most importantly, I learned to take care of myself in a way that I’ve never done before. I spent a lot of time teaching myself that all my thoughts and all my suffering was okay. I was okay to feel this way. The more “okay” it was for me to be the way that I was, the lighter the pain felt. It doesn’t mean that all is perfectly fine now but it means that it’s manageable. So be nice to yourself. Be kind to yourself. I’m going to tell you a secret I didn’t tell anyone. After my dad’s stroke I needed a lot of self care so I got 4 massages in the span of ten days because I needed a way to let go of the tension, stress and sense of doom that I was carrying around with me. So if you need 4 massages in ten days, give them to yourself. If you need to reread the Harry Potter series or meditate late at night when your mom is sleeping, do it. Obviously you know what you need and you need to be brave enough to give it to yourself. It’s really really hard to put your needs first in these types of situations. But you need to be well so you can be there for your mom and be there for yourself.
And I can’t say this enough but the universe has a way of working things out in the most peculiar and unexpected of ways. I know it’s not a comforting thought when the world as you know it is falling apart, but I’m letting you know that eventually things take a turn. They just do. You start to find meaning in things you didn’t realize could possibly hold meaning. You start to notice the little things that are actually the big things. Each moment with your mother is precious and every breathe we take on this planet is special. It doesn’t mean that what your going through is all of sudden going to be lifted but if you can find a tiny speck of hope that things will turn around, hold on to that. Hold on to the fact that people love you. Your friends and family love you. Your father loves you and the universe loves you. Your mama loves you. Damn, I love you. You are loved. You are cared for and the universe will take care of you.
Lots and lots of love to you,
P.S. Along with asking for help from friends and family, consider the possibility of asking for professional help. Even though I’m a therapist myself, when shit hits the fan…I’m a human being and I need help. Lots and lots of help. So consider asking for professional help especially if you have a history of depression and anxiety. Remember what I said, ask for help and be kind to yourself.
Friday I had a phenomenal date with Mr. Pizza. Let’s call him Mr. P since it’s hard for me to talk about him seriously while calling him Mr. Pizza. lol
So Mr. P and I met up at a local wine bar. Good conversation. Good food. And more good conversation. We talked for almost three hours. Everything was flowing. I learned that he lived in Dubai during his childhood, went to college in India and is now getting his masters in engineering. He’s close to his family and has a fantastic sense of humor. He’s nerdy but in the hot kind of way. And it doesn’t hurt that he’s quite attractive. After dinner we went back to his apartment to eat some mango sherbert and watch an episode of Sons of Anarchy. The night ended with some kissing and laying on his bed talking about things ranging from meditation to electrons to travel stories to calculus.
I hope there is a second date. So we’ll see what happens in the next couple of days.
Anonymous asked: Who's pizza guy again?
Good question. I met him 2 weeks ago. I only mentioned him briefly so here is a lil recap on him:
Two of my really good friends had birthdays, which I had promised to attend. Knowing I’d be driving around town to the different festivities, I decided to be DD that night. I attended both birthdays and had a sober blast. I attended one friend’s dinner and joined the other friend’s celebrations at a bar afterwards. I was chatting, laughing, having a great time and not really interested in flirting with any dudes feeling like I had had plenty of that the night before. When I least expect it, this guy comes up to me and asks me to dance. We ended up not really dancing but rather chatting the whole time. Let’s call him: Mr. Pizza. and here’s a really brief description: He’s a cute-indian-young20something-student-whosecutebutawkward-gooddancer-soccerplayer. We chatted the whole night which ended with a super awkward but adorable question “Do you like pizza?” To which I confusedly answered “Um yes”. To which he super super awkwardly replied “I know this place we could go sometime? I like you.”
I’ll make sure to do an update soon.
- Been switching off between 5 different books. This is getting out of control. I need to stick to one. But I know I won’t.
- I’ll be finishing ALL my community service hours by the end of the weekend. Horrah.
- Went on a date with Mr. Pizza, which culminated with me and him laying on his bed kissing and talking about electrons. More details to come.
- I received my first big kid job offer from my previous internship supervisor conditionally on me receiving my intern number. I’m anxiously awaiting for my intern number to arrive.
- My dad continues to improve daily post stroke. His walking and talking is miraculously improving speedily. We went to the gym a few days ago. He’s pretty much my hero.
Tiny Beautiful Things, By Cheryl Strayed
This beautiful little treasure was recommended by one of my best friends, who talked about this book with such excitement that I just had to give it a try. And he was absolutely right. The style of the book is question/answer, in which readers send in life advice requests and she does her best to use her life experiences and some wisdom to help them out. Cheryl Strayed has such a way with words and this book is such a reflection of that. This author paints pictures with words, sculpts emotions with questions and does it all with a down to earth sense of humor. She is officially one of my favorite authors.
Here’s one of my favorite quotes:
— Cheryl Strayed
You Should Read this book if:
- You’re going through a rough patch, if you’ve been through a rough patch and if you’re going to go through a rough patch