>An extraordinary thing happening today. Something that completely caught me off-guard. Something that I could not have been prepared for even if I had been warned extensively. And yet something that gave me great inner peace.
>I don’t want to be one of those people who resorts to discussing the weather on a regular basis. The weather is a space filler; something to talk about when things are awkward or crappy or boring. And I don’t want to be someone who blames bad things on the weather, either. But to be really honest, I am sad it’s not very sunny. I put away the winter blanket last week. Tonight I pulled it out again. I am sad that it is supposed to pour on my birthday.
>The timing of the ‘selfish’ post could not have been more ironic. Just when I go ahead and announce to the world that I am not good at sharing, all of a sudden it is “teacher appreciation week” at ARC.
Today when Todd the Telus Guy came to my house, I awkwardly blurted out to him that I am really selfish. It was a statement, and hardly an answer to a question. All he had said was, ‘Do you live alone?’. I don’t know what came over me; it was all I could think to say, though. I think Todd the Telus Guy felt a little awkward after that.
Do you ever feel like some people look at you and create this perception that doesn’t quite sit well? I don’t know if it’s because I am so hard on myself or what, but contrary to what others say about me, I really am quite selfish. I am not a good share-er. Maybe I should ask my mom when she gets home from Germany if I was good at sharing as a child. My brother and sisters are not close to my age, so I certainly didn’t have to share my dolls or anything.
I think that in theory we all want to be generous and strive to put others first. At least, I hope we do. But you have to admit that there are those moments when you hold two chocolate chip cookies in your hands and decide to give the smaller one away. Or when you hide your favorite tea when your friends come to visit. I get like that sometimes. A lot, actually. It’s hard to be sacrificial, isn’t it?
But then I think of my Lama. She is thee most generous person on earth, who would literally lay down her life for her friends. She gives away her possessions and money and time and groceries. She goes completely out of her way to help anyone in need. It is quite inspirational.
Not to mention…convicting.
This culture, this suburbia, this inner-focused world we live in teaches us the opposite, I think. Everything is about comfort, security, satisfaction, gratification. How many of us can honestly say lately that we have gone without? We are blessed and we are cared for. We work hard to get there, too. I can honestly say that every sip of coffee is “well earned”. Whatever that means.
At work we have Secret Pals. It’s something I have been taking along with me to every job I have worked at these past few years. The concept it basic. Draw name. Read profile. Watch for signs of needed encouragement. Purchase/create something special. Surprise pal. Completely and utterly enjoy seeing pal’s spirits lift. Kapiche.
Sometimes it is the only nice thing I do for someone else in a given week. Otherwise I just look forward to the end of the day when I can get home and be alone. And I just don’t know if that’s normal. It feels normal. But it also makes me seriously question whether or not I am cut out to ever be in a serious relationship. Maybe not. I just can’t imagine having to share everything when all I want to do is keep it close and to myself. And I am not just talking about worldly goods. I am talking time, energy, remote control, the works.
It’s something to think about.
My parents are coming back to Canada this week and next, thankfully. I really missed them and have admittedly shed a tear or two. It’ll be good to see Lama and Mom in their philanthropist armor loving people and sharing with them. I have a thing or two to learn.
PS As you can imagine, Todd the Telus Guy came to fix the internet. This is my very first post to you in my new house. : )
>It’s Monday morning. Just another manic Monday. Only it isn’t just another manic Monday this time. Because this week is different. After this week is over, my life, my routine, my schedule, is going to change drastically.
I have 5 preschool classes, 1 baby playtime, 1 Safari Zone shift, 2 mornings in child minding, and viola, contract 4 with the City of Abbotsford officially expires.
Of course, I have already signed contract 5. But that’s besides the point.
For now, I want to focus on finishing strong. The last few weeks my work performance has been pretty sketchy. I’d say 60% of the time I am flying below the radar. Ever since we got home from California I have been feeling blue and it is reflecting in my work ethic which was once upon a time pretty good.
Some of my coworkers deserve both an apology and a giant thank you. One of them told me last week that whenever they notice me slipping away they round up the cutest baby in the preschool wing and place it in my arms as soon as possible. It seems to me that the CoA has some pretty amazing people working for them. The other preschool teacher has probably been affected the most by my dissipating enthusiasm. Thankfully she is one of the strongest people I know and has encouraged me to stand in the wings and take care of all our administration and parent-related issues. This has served us both well. Of course, when I am with the kids I am reminded of why I love them. Nothing beats those sticky little hands reaching for yours. I will genuinely miss this bunch of kids.
This week, though, is going to be different. I think the Welbutrin is having a placebo effect on me. It’s too soon to have fully kicked in, but I think the simple fact that I made a good decision has been helping me feel better. And I want to prove that this week. I want to smile more and I want to do my best. I want to write notes to the amazing staff at ARC and AEP. I want to reach out to each of my 55 students and hug them goodbye. I want to say thank you to those parents that kept us fueled this year, bringing chocolate or some other little treat on the days we thought we would lose our minds. It’s been a great year overall.
It might seem to you like I am acting as if the world is coming to an end. Obviously it isn’t. I just want to realize and recognize all the good that has taken place this year. But I am looking forward to the summer. I really, really am. Back in February I was hired as a coordinator for specialty camps and worked hard planning out the 8 weeks of summer. It’s so hard to believe that those weeks are right around the corner now. I think I am ready for it, though. The hours will be longer than I am used to, yes, but to work with kids who are a little bit older and don’t need nose-wiping assistance will be pretty awesome. I get to go on a field trip every single day! It’s gonna be sweet.
So here I am, ready to step out into a week of many lasts. I am ready for it. Can’t promise that I won’t cry about it, but I am ready.
I love it when life orchestrates itself in such a way that there is nothing distracting you from the harmonies and melodies that sweep through and around you. No matter how loud and chaotic your life may be, there are those special times when you feel like you are inside this bubble; this place where nothing can touch you or harm you. And that, my friends, is where I am at tonight as I peacefully type away, my sister-friend gently dreaming beside me.
She is visiting from Edmonton. They say having house guests is exhausting, that it is a strain on your resources and bills and time. But actually, having her here is like scooping up the freshest, coldest, most delicious drink of water from a clean and quiet stream on the hottest day of summer. She is pouring into me, loving me, building me up. And I am so thankful. Last night she cut my hair (trust me, if she lived in BC her clientele would be all of you guys, because I can’t say enough about her gift of making people look and feel like movie stars). So there we were in the kitchen, me in a hard wooden chair, and her behind me, loving me with her gift. Since the moment she arrived, there was this hovering little conversation that so badly needed to be had and yet so clearly needed to be brought up at the right time. The topic was anti-depressants. She reads the blog, but was in Washington at the time that particular post went out, so while she knew something was up that I wasn’t saying, she didn’t know what it was. So I took a deep breath and told her everything, right there in that kitchen chair as she snipped and measured and snipped some more. Needless to say, the news didn’t come as a shock, and she took it for what it was: her best friend needed help and was getting it. She was supportive and empathetic and encouraging. She knew that I needed to be looked right in the eyes and told everything is going to be okay. I love her for that.
So there I was, back at the good old doctors office (albeit 15 minutes late), my heart pounding once again, my friend waiting patiently for me. I had called ahead to find out if there was something special that I needed to do or bring in order to get a prescription for this filled, but the receptionist said no. I’m not a huge fan of my doctor’s bedside manner, which is fairly business-like and sometimes abrasive, so I was prepared to break her down a bit today and try to get her to see eye-to-eye with me. Surprisingly, it didn’t take much. My ‘all-business, all-the-time’ doctor actually sat down across from me and displayed what seemed to be genuine empathy and concern. I filled out a questionnaire and scored myself a ‘mild’ on the depression scale. That didn’t shock me; I don’t feel depressed…I feel tired and unmotivated. I thought after scoring mild that she would tell me no, that she wouldn’t prescribe me anything. But she didn’t say that. Instead, she ordered yet another round of blood work (um, I seem to remember having a full blood count done like 2 months ago, but what can you do?) and she gave me a 1 week sample of Welbutrin, the baby of all anti-depressants. Now, I am fully aware that 1 week isn’t nearly enough time to find out if this is going to be good for me or not, but she said it was just to test the side effects. If I don’t have any, she will give me a real prescription, but if the side effects are bad, she has other mild options. Simple as that. I have another appointment for the same day, same time next week.
Tonight my sister-friend and I were watching Corrina, Corrina, and I completely teared up at the end when Molly and her Grandma are sitting outside on the steps together. Grandma is grief-stricken after losing her husband, and Molly is gently encouraging her to sing This Little Light of Mine. Grandma just doesn’t have it in her, so Molly puts her little arms around her and says, “Come on. I’ll sing it with you.”
You have all, in some way or another, sang it with me. If life is a song, you are my melody. You are my harmony. You are my percussion. You are my song.
You’ve all listened faithfully to my story, and I am so thankful for that.
I am writing this late at night, my girl sleeping beside me, my eyes drowsy. I know that in a few short hours I will be taking that first pill to my lips. I will be hearing the sounds of you singing beside me. It’s a baby step, but it’s a step.