Greening My Engine
So, six months later, how's the whole "aftermath" thing coming? Well there's me, and there's me-and-them. Let's talk about me first.
I got pretty stressed out around the end of the year. Come January, I wasn't stressed at all. I felt drained, a little fragile, very mellow, and extremely lethargic. I had started reading Dr. Seligman's book Flourish: A Visionary New Understanding of Happiness and Well-Being; at one point he talks about helping clients work through their depression. "I wanted to make them happier, but all I did was make them emptier." That fit me like a glove. But when you've spent a lifetime full of pain, sorrow, and anger, empty is a big improvement, and a necessary first step to anything better.
There's all these little fractures in my psyche that used to be full of poison. Now it's gone, and I can feel all the little abrasions the acid of pain wore into my psyche. They need time to heal, and I don't need to let more poison settle in.
I'm working on the exercises in Flourish. I've started a blessings journal, and I've found someone to send a gratitude letter to. I also bought a pretty journal at B&N & turned it into a phone log, with everyone's # on the first page and a log of who I talked to when and for how long in the rest. I need to add birthdays on the other side of the first page as well....
Keeping up with all these extra people is a bit of a nuisance, but better than the alternative.
I'm more patient these days and slow to lose my temper. I'm also slow to do anything else, easily fatigued, and not interested in -- anything really. What I do, I do extremely well, and I've caught up on a lot of things I let slide. I just don't care to start anything I don't have to. I've also lost all the health and exercise benefits I had worked on that gave me the strength to trigger this breakthrough. That annoys me more than anything else.
TBH I'm not much worried right now (duh) but my family is getting concerned. They're not used to seeing me so listless. And I do want to "secure the gains", finish healing, and make sure I don't backslide into cynicism -> depression out of habit.
I wonder what it will be.
But before I get there, I'll have to work on the me-and-them. This is going slowly and awkwardly. Partly it's because of the circumstances, and the accumulated traumas for all parties that go with the situation. But it's not helped by the fact that I have all the social intelligence of a brick. It took smarts, courage, persistence, and kindness to get me this far, but I need diplomacy now. I don't have that virtue.
But I do have smarts, courage, persistence, and kindness. I'll see what I can do with those.