I was at my sister and ‘bils’ house [for some insight, read “Nostalgia” posted 5/15] yesterday putting a fresh coat of paint on the interior doors listening to an awesome radio station {101.7, that played music *not just a revolving playlist of the best either*  that I grew up with (70-80s) almost commercial free} with the sun shining in the windows, my ‘bil’ whistling somewhere in another room and a fragrant breeze billowing through the house.

We had exchanged ideas of what should be done next, what the next plan regarding making a truck-trip to the new house would be, etc. and during these discourses – in the far reaches of my brain – I wanted to talk about my future plans. I wanted to circumnavigate what this move means for me and how I was thinking I’d (maybe) deal with it…in the future. But the enthusiasm – or anxiety – that the conversations were floating on just didn’t allow me to derail the dialogue into areas about my feelings.

Then I started feeling ‘left out’, no…left behind is more like it. My sister and her husband were planning a new stage in their lives and it didn’t include me. It leaves me behind with my adult children who are busy with their lives, a job I almost can’t tolerate and a very, very limited social life. Yes.., I realized I had not been an integral part of their lives but they were in my thoughts and our tentative plans for the future almost every-single-day. I was moving, albeit slowly, toward the goal we (again, see “Nostalgia”) had discussed.

Yes, I was having a self-pity moment.

I don’t really like to see myself as self-pitying. Who does? I took a few moments to think about that. Here I am supporting their new adventure together, their new home in a new state with new friends far away from me. They’ve paid their dues and are now finally getting to the ‘good’ years; the ones where the kids are grown and you’ve made some investments and paid off the house and now have some capital and decrease the number of hours you work, if you need to work at all, and take the time to do things you’ve always wanted to do before you get too old to do them and just enjoy each other and the life you have built together and….blah, blah, blah.

Yeah…I’m feeling a little sorry for myself … still, maybe a little bit. I mean, I’ve paid some pretty hefty dues myself but I still have a mortgage and need to work and don’t have anyone with whom to share all this joy.

So, then I thought more.

Okay sad-sack. Here I am, single, all the parts still work, I make my own plans, do my own thing, have my own money, answer to no one. Not bad. I can move ahead with my own life and see where it takes me and stop re-evaluting it based on what everyone else is doing with theirs. I realized I was being a little bit of a parasite in that I was attaching my future plans (maybe some small bit of happiness) onto someone else’s life. I do have a tendency to ‘compare’ when hearing about what other people are doing, where they are going and see who has the better ‘deal’ & ‘why not me’. It’s kinda pathetic.

I had a moment of grace. I realized the sad feelings I was having – although justified, I mean my only family besides my children are moving away – were or could be transient if I allowed for life to take it’s natural course, as it will do, and just learn to go with it, make lemonade with the lemons. I can feel sorry for myself that I am alone, in debt and often-times lonely or I can capitalize on the fact that I am independent, self-sufficient and I am capable of changing what I don’t like. My children are close to me even though it feels like I am emotionally isolated, my work is…well, it’s a paycheck, I can figure out how to make a small circle of friends if I am determined to do that and I can visit my sister and bil and create more good times in the future. I’m not stuck, it just feels like it sometimes and feelings are transient; they can be changed with perspective or time or intention.

I’m happy for my sister and bil. I am happy with myself and my accomplishments and my wide-open future to do with what I want. At least it appears that way from here.





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