Sunday, January 2, 2011

A Cranky Christmas and a Happy New Year

Yeah, so, I was really crabby at Christmas, obviously.  It was a rough holiday.  I was lonelier than I have ever been before, at Christmas, and maybe any other time, too, and it wasn't because I was more alone.  I spent about the same proportions of time with people and alone that I have for the last few years.  I haven't spent a Christmas with my family for something like nine or ten years, so I'm pretty much used to that.  I'm used to my one package in the mail and coming home to the dog after Christmas Eve services.  But I felt so, so lonely this Christmas.  Which I think probably has to do with how completely heartbroken I've felt for much of this (I guess it's last now) year.

See, when you're used to thinking of yourself as a person who is alone - not just someone who is single but someone who lives alone and is separated in one way or another from people with whom one might normally do things like spend holidays together - you just sort of know that you're going to be alone.  You adjust.  At least, I did.  I learned to appreciate my quiet time and my non-traditional holidays.

Then there was this...interruption in my self-concept.  I started to ponder a possible future with someone else in it.  Prematurely, as it turns out.  Going through the re-imagining of possibilities and then the squashing of them has changed me.  It feels like something is broken that I hadn't even known was there.  So, now I have this weird, fragile part of me that has been exposed that I don't really know what to do with.  I'm not really over the whole situation that caused it, which is painful and bewildering and annoying.  I now have this revised idea of myself as someone who could be in a lasting relationship.  But around that soft place that says, "Yeah, I could maybe want this" has grown all of this scar tissue that closes up tight and says back, "No way are we going there again."

That's not really a place I want to be.  I'd like to either be open to looking for something meaningful, or back to the person who didn't really expect or think about that.  But such is life at the moment.

Anyway, I'm far less sad and cranky now that Christmas is over.  I had a great week after Christmas, traveled around and saw a couple of concerts, went to a fabulous New Year's party.  I got a grip and remembered that I do have friends and things to do and better things to think about than my own current internal weirdness.    It was good.  And now it is a new year, which seems a way for us to mark the new beginnings we would like to see in our lives, even if they're not happening yet.  I don't really make resolutions, because they generally last about two days for me, but in an effort to continue the upward climb from my Christmas rock-bottom, I'm thinking of some new beginnings I'd like to see in the next year.

Most of them have to do with being more intentional about areas of my life.  For example:
- Finances.  I'd like to have a budget of some sort rather than scrambling about all the time.  I'd like to start being more mindful of how I toss money at things that don't matter, thereby ceasing to nickel and dime myself to death.
- Vocational considerations.  It's time to start thinking in a more focused way about what might be next, not because I'm leaving anytime soon, but because I know I will leave eventually, and I should be prepared.  The random, "This looks like fun!" method of choosing continuing ed is not helping me.
- This rearranged self-concept that might not be eternally single...I'd like to stop being afraid of it.  I believe it's possible to be open to being in a relationship without becoming one of those women who drive me crazy because they think of almost nothing else, so it should be possible to embrace that in myself.  Maybe.
- Health.  Denial about aging is also not helping me.  I would like to find a balance of making choices that are healthy for my body without becoming obsessive about numbers on a scale or calorie counter.

On the whole, I would just like to be more thoughtful about how I spend myself - my time, money, energy, and thoughts.  Maybe if I can stop being so haphazard about some of these things, I'll also stop feeling like such an emotional mess.

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