Saturday, August 13, 2011

RSS Subscription and Follow via Email Added

I took a few minutes to figure out the RSS links and email sign up.  So if any of you who may be out there want up-to-the-minute updates on my 3x a month posting...LOL  Feel free!

Grief is Exhausting

I'm scanning photos today.  It's taken me a full 10 years to manage to do this, not because of time or technology, but because I needed this long to be able to mentally and emotionally do it.

And you know what, it's still not soon enough.

But I'm getting it done.  Because part of me needs to lay it to rest.  Part of me needs to fulfill a promise.  And part of me needs to get this house under control and the box of irreplaceable photos in my family room is not secure and also underfoot.

My parents were married on December 3, 1966.  The photos I'm scanning are from the official photographer's selection book that my Mom had held onto after 20 years, divorce, remarriage and several moves.  I don't know if she was saving them for my sister and I for "someday" or if they were just part of the things that never got cleaned out.  It was after her funeral that my step-Dad opened up the boxes of memories and let us have our pick.

***brief interruption for a good cry and a hug from the Mr.***

I took the wedding photos and promised my sister I'd have copies made for her.  My intentions were to do that while it was all fresh and new...and then Dad got sick and I was busy taking care of him until he died.

After that the next couple of years are really just a hazy blur.  Which makes sense, because lucidly managing that much pain is just not comprehensible to me, even now.  Logically I know that I have a lot more to process but processing takes energy, and often energy I don't have to spare.

Which is why when I take on projects like this, it feels just like the wound being re-opened.  Sometimes when that happens, it's hard to know if it will ever heal, or just have periods of dormancy where I can ignore it.  

I still don't know if losing someone slowly to illness is better or worse than losing them quickly, like in an accident.  I'm still confused as to how my sister can go through that same experience of loss of both parents in such a short time frame and still be okay with turning away from her only sister.  (Although, to be fair, I'm sure she believes that I did the turning away.)  I'm pretty sure that if she had been the one who had the photos I wouldn't get a copy.  I'm just not built like that...even if she doesn't care to have them, even if she doesn't want them because they're from me, I can't in good conscience withhold them.

And so I've been scanning.  Maybe because I want to be the better person.  Or maybe I want to remind her that despite how she feels or acts now, she was part of the family that I was.  And that no matter what choices we make now, that is a fact that can't be changed.

Mostly I think I'm scanning so I don't have to lose the pictures like I lost the people.  At least I have my memories...which I may even manage to write down one day.

One day.

**Edited to add:  But at least now I know why I've been sick for the last week.   It's always like this pre-processing.  I just hadn't had it happen for so long I didn't recognize.  


Friday, August 12, 2011

Belief

I've been thinking about belief lately, particularly with respect to the definition "a state or habit of mind in which trust or confidence is placed in some person or thing."  Other definitions discuss the trust placed after examination of evidence.


While trust relationships could be the subject of several posts, what I'm thinking about more is what happens when we actively show trust in people around us.  Trusting others with our feelings, our possessions, our esteem, even our physical well-being can be a really scary thing...since the very act of trust makes us vulnerable.  Even the word confidence implies a level of intimacy and care that should be implicit.  Which makes sense, when you consider that usually trust grows the longer we know someone.  Even when the trust is shaken or damaged, it's the previous experience that allows for even the possibility of rebuilding.


When I think back on my life experiences and how I got "here" from "there", I'm always amazed.  How much of what I've been able to endure, and how much of what I've been able to accomplish has been because someone believed in me?  From my family, to teachers, to friends, to my romantic relationships, to co-workers...the list goes on and on.  From the simple words casually said "you can do it" - to the unspoken lessons that reinforced to me my value as a person in others' eyes, my core personality has been bolstered, padded and fabric'd with my worth to others'.  (Yes, I'm a sofa!  LOL)


Which is not to say that I haven't had relationships or experiences that weren't devaluating...there were some of those too.  For the most part I've tried to remove those sorts of influences from my life, but that's not necessarily a choice that everyone can facilitate.  And I have to say that the overwhelmingly positive experiences where in the majority when it came to framing my interactions with the world at large.


It's truly heartbreaking when I think of all those people out there who have never been told and never been shown they have value.  How much individual potential is wasted because there is no belief or trust shown?   


Based on recent work experience, it can be a lot.  Obviously details are not appropriate, but as I'm attempting to work within a team where there is little to no trust given or received, it's damaging to the end result and makes the journey to it a whole heck of a lot of not fun.


So maybe it's the hippie in me, or maybe it's just my inclusive nature, but shouldn't we all be cheering each other on? 


By the way, my friends, I believe in all of you, and truly value your presence in my life.  :)