Thursday, August 19, 2010

Spittin' Nails

Oh I am in a particularly cantankerous mood today! On top of everything else I am mid-cycle and that always makes me grouchy. I feel melancholy and negative and under-goaled and unproductive and directionless and generally unsure of the who, what, when, where and why's of life. This entire week has been a terrible backslide and last night it hit me hard, and boy did I get mad! Having nearly escaped death 3 weeks ago is so very strange. Stranger still is that with the exception of playing puppet to a plethora of prescription meds (and the merry-go-round of side-effects) and taking time off work, everything seems to have returned to normal. Dysfunctional as normal. My husband and I were renewed upon my discharge from the hospital to change our lives, priorities, focus. We knew the quality and speed we were barreling down the highway of life at was self-destructive, having crashed us into so many walls of devastation already. He used up the last of his vacation for the year to take care of me that first week home. We really deconstructed our lives as we attempted to wind-down and digest the events surrounding my strokes. We assessed our key behavioral issues that are standing in the way of the health & happiness we want, no screw that, NEED at this time in our lives. He is still so shell-shocked and bewildered by the sheer horror of nearly having lost me. I am encouraging him to talk about it and then to give that burden away, it is too much for him to carry. He says that sounds too religious.
That first week he went back to work we blazed determination to change, and we did really good. We were going to bed on time and I was cooking dinner each night so that when he came home from the gym we could eat immediately and try to enjoy the illusion of a few hours together before early lights-out. We have been going to church on Sundays, not over-eating, I am walking the dogs every morning and have been productive with both the household and my personal pursuits (blogging, can't you tell?). So I sat there all proud of myself at a local burger joint Sunday evening, listing down how much we have really improved when he complained we were just back to the same-old same-old. Putting it out on paper was a fabulous reminder that we were indeed making progress. So in my Prednisone-high manic overdrive I flipped the page over and constructed the list for this week that needs to be built on top of the accomplishments from last week, pretty much making us those perfectly organized, on the ball, super-hero people that we simply are not. Then came the stroke-scare headache later that night that de-railed the whole plan and this week has been a disaster!

We have been up late, my husband back to his 4-5 hours of sleep a night, I have had to medicate to calm down and avoid those stroke-inducing headaches and am now wanting to lay around and eat...BAD NEWS. I have not cooked dinner once nor has he been to the gym. After gorging on Chinese take-out, and entirely too much of it, I hit the roof when I saw him climbing into bed at 11pm last night. Right back where we started, right back on track to put us in the oh so familiar zone of 1 impending health or financial or emotional crisis after another. Right back to the habits of un-success that we know so well. It is so hard to implement true and lasting change. Whoever said it takes 21 days to form a habit must be on drugs or an alien, I say 8 months is a good indicator that it might stick. So there I was, Chinese food impacted from the top of my pelvis to the bottom of my bosoms, making me bloated and thirsty with it's high sodium content, the realization of all the aforementioned hitting me, and I FREAKED! I started ranting and raving and carrying on about how mad I was, how arrogant I was! I grabbed the list from Sunday night and screamed at him while shaking it in my fist that I was screaming at myself HOW DARE I? How dare I think I can just pile perfection on us and life would just be OKAY? The neuropathways of self-destructive behavior run so deep and well-luged in both of us, it is going to take years to form new ones that can even begin to compete.

He settled me down a little, and we agreed that the list of had done was all we were going to focus on until the end of the year. Real progress built on real and lasting change. Not some perfection based, exhaustive criteria destined to fail with its sheer volume. So as I sit here moody, not wanting to answer the phone when it rings, dreaming of devouring the rest of that Mongolian Beef even though I am not really hungry, I think I am going to do us both a favor and restore calm, focus and balance to the household. I am going to print our our Mission Statement on pretty paper and make a collage of our aspirations and goals and get caught up on General Hospital. After all, Brenda is back...

Thanks for joining,

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