Why do I keep expecting to be someone who hasn't been through what I have? Why do I have these ridiculous expectations? Why do I feel less than because I'm so changed?
Maybe it's because I don't want to be disabled by this tragedy, but I am anyway.
I try not to use it as an excuse for my failures, but sometimes I forget that I am not as I used to be.
I am still in need of more rest than I was before. I get overloaded and overwhelmed so easily still.
I am more reactive to many triggers. Anything coming close to thinking about losing people I love makes me feel weak in the knees and helpless. I cling a little superstitiously to home base, fearing that the rest of what I have will be taken from me. My health, my cats, my home. If my PERSON could be utterly gone, GONE, in a millisecond, what else could disappear right in front of me?
I plan for disaster to the point that I expect disaster. When I don't experience disaster, after all, I'm not even that relieved. It just means there's still so much to fear.
I have the unnerving feeling most moments of most days that everything is so impermanent. Nothing will stay the same. Everything will change. I am more prone to depression and anxiety and I already had that genetic makeup before.
I mourn the loss of the person I used to be and am scared to be this person now. I'm scared I won't be able to do the things I want to do if I'm using up so much energy just to get by and heal. It's a huge fear for me. I can't complete that thought without tearing up. Every time.
But, then again, I can see my strength, too. I can see the evidence of just how hard I worked to be where I am now. How I never gave up on myself, not for one second, and fought for my second life. I took care of myself. I know how to do this. I somehow have been doing this.
I have to keep trusting that love will keep me afloat no matter what other tragedies I experience. I have to turn to love even when I'm scared to. It's all that matters and all that will save me from drowning in the pain and loss I fear so much.
I love how making art has so many analogies to life. The other day, in my 3D design class, we had to come up with a sculpture using a cheap household object. We were supposed to use as many of them as possible and create something interesting out of them. Straws, cups, sticks, whatever. I thought and thought and thought and thought. I bought some things, tried them out and decided not to use them several times. With time running out, I finally just bought several hundred white plastic spoons and thought well, you gotta turn something in for a grade, so just start gluing. I had given up on good and was beginning to settle on done on time. But then I sat there with those spoons and played and experimented and broke the spoons and glued the spoons, and what I thought was a lost cause turned out to be the coolest project I've made for that class yet.
I realized that I often give up on myself like I almost did on that art project. I think "too hard, too much, not good enough" thoughts even before I've begun. And then I do it anyway. I tinker, I doubt, I experiment, I doubt some more, but I keep tinkering, and I come up with something better than I could have imagined. Somehow, I keep doing it, because I simply try. There will be failures and fuck ups and messiness and fear and pain and loss.
There will also be love and surprises and art and projects of the heart (and spoons) that turn out even better than I ever imagined.