Saturday, September 12, 2009

I thought I had it in me, I used to be so sure

"When you go through a huge change in life, there's always a transition period, there's always a period of shock." ~Amy, marine biologist, The Colony: Arrival and Survival

I thought the problem would be with those I love, those I live with. I was capable, I knew the reality of things (and the unreality); I was prepared. I understood.

I was wrong.

I have spent the whole of today wandering around, staring vaguely at the structures of the grid, having no idea what to do in any given moment. A hunt was announced at Twisted Thorn Textures, earlier, and I had to force myself to think through what I formerly considered the basics: getting dressed; changing tags; teleporting. It's not that I'd forgotten, it was more that my thinking process seems slowed.

It's as if breathing takes up the whole of my available resources, and it is the greatest struggle to do anything else.

I know I pushed, I know I pushed myself, harder than I've ever had to before, to get the packing done, to keep going, to keep everyone organized and moving. I know I pushed to my limits and past them. I know after a while I was stuck off in the sidelines, watching everyone move and lift and pack and carry, concentrating on breathing. Exhausted to the very core of my being.

But I was fine after the move, I was okay. We were leaving; everything else would resolve on its own. I was moving through it...

Nobody ever said you couldn't lie to yourself.

So it's back to recovering. I haven't looked through the calendar yet; I hope to do that at some point tomorrow, see what bids I can, in all honesty, take. This is going to be a slow, gradual recovery, I fear, of body, mind and spirit, and it is going to take time I can ill spare to get where I need to be, again.

I'll get there. Sadly, I have survived worse. So I know I'll get there, in time. It's just that it's going to take that time. Time I did not, in all honestly, want to take to recover.

I'm really, really not good at being gentle with myself. I'm better at gauging my limits, and pulling back just before I collapse, before muscle shreds from bone. This move took everything I had, and then kept taking.

So it's going to take a while.

If I'm grumpier than usual with anyone, that'll be why. Impatient with myself; impatience with the process. But all things in time.

Next up: why do cats levitate in Second Life? No answers, but a lot of questions.


Sphynx Soleil said...

{{{HUGS}}} It always takes a while for me to "destress" when a bad or stressful situation ends. Part of it is, I think, that I end up over-analyzing the would I/could I/should I have type scenarios. When I get to the point where I can just "box up" the stressful parts - and in a few cases, I can easily just never EVER deal with them again - and move on, it's much easier.

Hopefully that helps you somehow?

Anonymous said...

>>Hugs<< Be gentle with yourself, Emilly.

Rhianon Jameson said...

I've found moving to be extremely stressful every time I've done it - and I try to do it as little as possible. (Next move, God willing: retirement home.) Every time the exhaustion from packing, the mess, the inability to find anything, the move itself, the unpacking, trying to find homes for everything...gah, after that recitation, I'm going to have to sit down and have a soothing cuppa. And every move I've made has been a piece of cake compared with what it sounds like you went through.

So take the time to adjust, decompress, make the new place your own, be grumpy - you've earned it all.

Emilly Orr said...

Sphynx: normally, I'm that same type--push it to the back, deal with it later, if it dissolves or disappears, wonderful, we move on.

I can't do that with this, because it's not just mental or emotional stress. Lifting, moving, sorting anything goes immediately into making my fingers numb; my carpal hasn't been this bad since I was working for my uncle, typing in entire product manuals by hand (and he's been dead easily a decade at this point). Add in that part of how I get up every morning is push myself off the mattress on the floor on stiffened wrists and fists, and bent knees--and that takes its own toll.

But I'll get there. It's just going to be the long way, with breathing, and stopping when I'm tired, and not kicking myself (too much) for not helping "as much as I could".

The one good thing? Realizing that this is a handicap-friendly place; right now, the girl is busy making lunch, at a counter she can roll right up to for ease. She can get her own iced tea most of the time. I still have to help her from the chair, sometimes, to shower, but she can shower by herself, and all I need to do is bring the chair out, and bring it back when she's done.

She feels more useful; I feel like I don't have to do everything for her, all the time. So it will improve, I just have to be...that now-dreaded word--patient.

Emilly Orr said...

Otenth: And I am the worst person for being gentle with myself. I'm better at prodding and yelling and pushing, getting myself to do things by sheer mental force if necessary. I am not good at sitting on the sidelines, resting.

*hugs you back, and hugs Sphynx since I forgot* I'll get there. Time, and time, and understanding, and not getting in my own way (hah!). But I will get there.

Emilly Orr said...

Miss Jameson: By the time I was starting high school, we had moved twenty-five times. I did my best to put my foot down--never easy to do with a parent--to insist that at least my high school years were in one place.

Sadly, that place was an agricultural town near the foothills of the Rockies, but hey. I spent, in all, six years there.

From then to now, we've moved--either with my mother, or later, with the girl--a total of fifteen times more (counting this last move). So moving stress? It always happens. Losing things? It happens, too.

This was only the second time, though, in an entire life of uprooting and packing for some elsewhere to come, that it felt like we were escaping rather than moving out.

And the first time that happened? I did escape, by throwing everything into the back of my car it could hold and living homeless for four months, rather than live with my abusive boyfriend at the time.

At least, this time, we escaped (but put most of what we owned into storage) and were able to drive to a hotel. What a difference money makes. :)

(And, to be fair, when I shoved clothes and camping gear and books into my car and drove away? I was that oh-so-wise age, twenty-two. I likely had other options, I just didn't see them!)

Magdalena Kamenev said...

Even the most neophilic (?) among us must respond to the stresses of change, even wanted, needed change. Yes, you will recover, yes you will be impatient and it will take too long, but it will still sneak up on you. In the meantime, there are hugs and massages and if you flail about too much, you might get a nose lick (or whatever your equivalent may be) from someones who think you're nifty.

As to why cats levitate in SL? Depends ... are we talking plain or buttered cats? The physics of each are quite different, I've been told ...

Emilly Orr said...

Miss Kamenev: for the cats, they are unbuttered, but Damiani scripted--does that help?

And for the rest of it--thanks.