The Ideal Life

Two years ago when I stepped my newly determined foot on the pathway to the cure, I kept reading this phrase, it will get worse before it gets better.

At the time, I was feeling great. I had just started a detox program with my chiropractor, I was doing Pilates 3 or 4 times a week, and seeing amazing results. I was amazed and probably said something like, this is so easy, or, I’ve finally got a handle on it! Because all of a sudden the other shoe dropped.

A job was lost. Money dried up. After a few amazing months I had to stop everything, and try to control what I could at home. The anxiety that had become my constant companion was winning the day. I couldn’t run fast enough. The stone was crumbling beneath my feet. Despite the fact I never want to do that again, it was not the first time it had happened and I fear it won’t be the last.

You see, few things silence Carly more completely than stress. I can feel it even now, riding between my shoulder blades, gnawing on my spine. The weight of it presses me down so, that it’s all I can do to get through a day, and crawl to my bed. When I sit at the computer it whispers evil truths into my ear and binds the happy stream of words with the chains of my own idealism. Anxiety slithers along the back of my neck leaving shocking kisses that stop my heart. All of that is just distraction, it’s the first delicate tendrils of misgiving threading their way through my vision of tomorrow that do the most damage. I understand now, why she apologized when she call me an Idealist.

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I’m so dang tired!

You’re probably thinking I’m going to dish on something straight out of your Facebook feed.

Nope. I’d be crazy to weigh in on any of that crap.

I mean, I am tired. All the time. It started towards the end of April, my student reading her book out loud to me. I knew something was off when she opened to the first page and looked up over the rim of her pink glasses, “Don’t fall asleep!” She told me.  We both laughed, but she shook her finger and said, “I’m not kidding! Listen!” Two seconds later I jerked my head upright just in time to get another look over bubblegum pink glasses.

I wrote it off to stress, to work, to worry and declared I’d think about it tomorrow. Here it is August and I’m still dealing with it. GRRR You’d think I’d just pick up the phone, call the Doc and head in for some blood work. Well, I did. They can’t get me in till December 6th. Now I’m staring down four months of kindergarteners and I’m already exhausted. What is a woman to do? I’ll tell you. You pull out the voodoo, just like mom taught me, back in the day. I did some muscle testing. It’s my Adrenal Glands, my muscles tell me. I’ve ordered some pills and I’ll let you know in September how well my muscles know me.

See, now you’re judging. How do I know? I did it every day of my life when someone would call on the phone asking mom to test for them. Yes, she was well-known for her, um, ability. The most people know about me is that I don’t love doctors. I went the rounds with a few of them in Pittsburgh. I kept going in with, I acknowledge, vague symptoms and every single visit I head the same thing. “We can’t find a thing wrong with you. Would you like some anti-depressants?”

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Louise! If I had a dollar for every time I heard that. It took years of fruitless appointments for me to start asking myself, “What the hell’s wrong with you?” I’ve said that everyday this summer as I’ve sat down at my keyboard, only to be woken up a few moments later by the sound of my own allergies rattling in my throat. It’s beyond annoying, and I’ll think I’ve got a handle on it and the next week I’m back to square one. It’s made writing just hellish this summer.

The only upside, I’ve spent hours and hours in that vague place between almost asleep and totally asleep. I’ve some killer story ideas in my notebook, and as life pushes back up into Drive, I wait impatiently for the day my adrenals are ready to get off the bench and keep me awake at my keyboard.