I've been thinking tonight about the fairness of life, the courage it takes to live, and the choices we make.
I've had such a rough year. We all know that. I started planning my escape last year, just about this time. I knew then I was leaving, even as I was hopeful I wouldn't have too, and hopeful I would. Such a mixed bag, breaking up your family, and hurting someone you love.
It seems as if my life went in fast forward in June and hasn't quit. I can't think about it too much or I start feeling like the wimp I know I am sometimes. I want to be one of those strong brave women that break through barriers, not the woman that sits home whining because things are happening to her. This late in life, I am starting to feel the value of choice.
For the last four years, I've been pondering going back to school. Always thinking, what's the point of finishing my teaching degree, when I don't want to teach? Would it put me further ahead financially? Will it help me??? No...the answer has been no. Every time I've thought about it...a resounding NO.
Then when my body collapsed this summer. Literally fell apart. I had to rethink. I told my lovely (I do mean lovely wonderful doctor) that I thought my body took a dump because my soul needed a break. She chuckled and said, "no" you caught a staph infection...I know I did...I also think my body caught it because my immune system was so beat up it couldn't fight anymore. That's what I think. I think I was one punch away from dying. I nearly died. I did. I had some bad shit, and it cost me dearly.
So the last month I was home, I would think...worry about going back to work. Sometimes it sucks beans to be at the top of your pay scale, because it takes away options to move around freely. I pondered going back to school. School has always been hard for me, then I realized in a moment of great Cancer clarity, that I have always chosen to study stuff that bores me to tears. Stuff I had no interest in whatsoever. In college, I was a liberal studies major, but I didn't take many classes for my major. I took Sociology classes by the boat load. I took art classes, English classes, world religion classes...but when I would get in a class for my major, I'd fall asleep. I took and dropped out of philosophy 4 times....I could never get past Jean Paul Sarte....every semester I'd start out swearing I'd get through it "this" time...I never made it past week 4. It bored me to tears.
I still remember the first time I read the Bagavad Gita...that one I couldn't put down, nor could I put down anything written by my soc professor, Dr. Samuel Oliner. I'd sit in his class, my big huge mug of earl gray tea, and be over the top fascinated by his stories, this discussions, and I took every class of his I could get into.
Why didn't I see it then? I've let myself float through life. I've let things "happen" to me, and I have not taken control of my own destiny. I've worked jobs that I found terribly boring and mindless because they paid well. I'm doing that now.
But I'm done. I will fight with this asinine boss of mine until I can get out, but I will not let him make me feel like shit, which he seems to love to do on a daily basis. You know what I did Friday? He was gone, so I didn't work. I worked on my own stuff, my applications, my resume, researching stuff re: university. He's put me, the hard worker that really does work, in the mindset of all the other state employee's...do as little as you possibly can...because if you run out of work, you are destined to sit there in a dumb fog all day while the entire day creeps by.
My life is running past me. My son is six...my baby is four. Still very young, yes, but it's flying by. It seems like yesterday I was nursing my baby boy...feeling the pull of his mouth on my nipple...gazing at him in the kind of adoration that I've only ever felt for my children. Seeing the gentle motions of him gobbling at me, and me being the only one that could satisfy that need, it was so primal. I must have thought a million times...memorize this...you'll never get this back...the way his small hands would work my engorged breasts, and I'd begin to feel that tingly let down feeling, and the final relief that would come as my breasts emptied and my babies tummy was full. I did this. My body feed him and it was one of the most precious things I've ever done. He and I had the easiest of nursing relationships..it was pure joy. It's impossible to describe...and it's gone. Now I have this amazing little boy who says things like, "actually mommy", and then goes on to tell me some complicated story. Where did my baby boy go???
My little girl is four..and she is so tall, like a blond gazelle with ringlets and startlingly blue eyes...she is beautiful. When I take her places, people constantly comment under their breath..."Look at that hair." "She is beautiful"...so many things are said, and we draw a gazing crowd when we go out. She is oblivious to it, but I am not. I think to myself that I made this wondrous creature, and did you know she started life at 2lbs 5.6 oz?? Of course I rarely say it, but I think it...
Where am I going...I'm going to choice. I'm going to choose to be happy. I'm going to choose education and running up student loans again so that I can be happy and provide for my kids in a way that doesn't make me miserable.
I'm going to prove to myself I am smart, that I have courage and that I will not be beat down. I feel my grandma's stubbornness running through my Okie veins....I feel her tenacity running through my spine....strong white trash women are the backbone of my family and I'm one of them. No pretenses here. I love nice things, but I always remember that I was born from a woman who was born in a chicken coop in Oklahoma...and is still alive at 97...