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Lonely Girl

Loneliness.

At one point in time, in everyone’s life, we all come face to face with the formidable opponent called loneliness. None of us are immune from experiencing seasons where we feel like we have been hung out in the storms of life all by ourselves. I wish I could change that but it is simply a fact of life that we all must learn how to wade our way through. No amount of wishing will ever change that reality. We all will face loneliness. Each of us will be alone at some point for whatever reason.

I must stress that it is imperative to say, loud and clear, I have had tremendous support and friendships throughout my life. I have been on the receiving end of some of the greatest outpourings of love in my life. I am extremely thankful for the people who joined my life and provided support whether it was in the form of friendship or money or just a phone conversation to let me vent my frustration. I am an abundantly blessed gal in this department of life. I see these loved ones. I acknowledge their gifts and help in my life. I am in both debt and gratitude to some superb people.

I am not speaking about having a life void of family, friends, loved ones and all the brilliant, extended support they contribute to our lives. I am talking about the loneliness that shows up right as you are about to fall asleep and in the dark, you come face to face with the stark reality that despite generous love and support, when it comes down to the grit of life, it is only you.

Your life may be full of loving family and friends but when the gnarly, huffing, beast of loneliness stares into your soul, you are stripped of all pretenses and you know, you are the only one who is responsible. You are the only one who is going to catch it when the shit hits the fan. You are the one who will feel the brunt of any bad choices. You are the one who has to muster the strength to carry it, whatever it is.

Loved. Supported. Encouraged. Helped. Alone.
Truth is, we can have all the extended love and support in this world but still be alone.
At least, I have always felt this way. Maybe this is my truth.

I had one of those lone moments again today. Only this time there was added element. I’ve been looking for housing in Prescott. It is turning into a nightmare. Any place that we can afford, doesn’t take pets. Any place that takes pets, we can’t afford. That is only part of the problem. The few places that we can afford and allows for pets don’t have rental units open for months. Which means, if we move and have no place to live, I am spending our savings on a hotel while we wait for a place to live and I can’t do that because as a mother, as a human being, this reality makes you the biggest failure. Ever.

I was on the verge a major meltdown today when I stopped myself, closed the bedroom door and applied for a job in Prescott. When I successfully applied for a job, I sat staring at the computer screen and was overwhelm with the ugly glare of that haunting, burdened beast. I uttered, to myself, “I never thought I would still be alone at almost 50 years old.” That’s the blaring, cold reality. I am still alone and responsible.

When I was a naive, 23 year old, single mother whom struck on her own to make the best life anyone ever had come true, I envisioned a life that blossomed and grew as I headed into my senior years. I dreamed of a large loving family and a warm, picture perfect home with a roaring fireplace. Life did not turn out like I tried to make it happen. Instead, I am alone, carrying more responsibility, handling one crisis after another and just starting over again. Hell, I’ve started over so many times, I can’t even remember how many times I’ve done it.

I don’t know what this is but it is not the life I set out to create and the older I get the colder it gets and the more alone I am.

Just not cool, life. Just not cool.

Be brave.
Jamie Christine

 

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Where are you?

Sunday, December 17, 2018

It has been a long time since I have had time or energy to write. The seasonal job proved to be more than I anticipated. It was a tremendous struggle to work the job and complete the temporary assignment. The job itself was not difficult but it was physically demanding. I spent many nights in pain, unable to sleep and barely able to function for days. I am happy to say that I did fulfill the job assignment and it ended on a good note. I am now in recovery mode physically but happy to have seen it through to the end.

I thought a lot about writing, photography, crochet and moving while I was shipping out all those custom order Christmas cards. I find it humorous that some times an easy way to identify what is important to us is by the things we miss in life. If we do not miss some thing, it must not have been that important. Photography, I knew I would long to do again. There is never enough photography in my world. Crochet, was a bit of a surprise but I do find it relaxing. I also enjoy making practical and useful items. Blankets, scarves, hats, those sort of things. Writing. This one really surprised me because for the most point I have fostered a love/hate relationship with writing. It is something that comes natural to me but I have resisted it with a fierce determination for the majority of my life. I often have words, sentences or paragraphs rolling through my mind. I think about words just like I see photographs. Typically, I push them aside till they fade away into oblivion. I was caught off guard when I discovered that I actually missed being at home pounding at the keyboard. I literally stopped in my tracks when the desire to go home and write filled my mind and heart. So, here I am.

Moving.

Moving has been an adventure in my own mind. It always is though, isn’t it? Relocation, whether from one house to the next or one city to the next, it turns everything upside down. My decision to move proved to be no different. In the past few weeks, I have researched a variety of cities, in a few different states for a kaleidoscope of reasons. I’ve been to Maryland, Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina. I have scoured coastal cities, mountain towns, bustling downtown neighborhoods and quiet college towns. I have cried a little, laughed much, wrestled with anxiety and had a few “hell no’s” for good measure. I have crunched numbers until my calculator up and walked away disappearing forever.

Through all the researching, discovery and indecisiveness, where have we landed?
Arizona.

The thought of leaving Arizona proved to each of us that this magical state we live in is indeed home. As I explored the idea of living anywhere else, my mind quickly focused on counting the days till I could get back to Arizona. The more I considered leaving Arizona, the more I realized that I just wasn’t done here. There is so much more that I desire to do and see here. I would often tell myself that adventure lies anywhere but my heart just could not let go of the fact that I wasn’t finished here. As the weeks hurried by it became very evident that we wanted to stay in our home state of Arizona.

And where is Arizona? Believe it or not, that is only about 99% decided, maybe 98%. There is a slim chance we may only move a far as a different apartment in Chandler. We are however aiming for Prescott or Prescott Valley area. We’ll know in 12 days if we make it.

Be Brave.
Jamie Christine

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Morning After Doubts

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I can not speak for everyone but whenever I make a huge life changing decision the morning after is always filled with doubt. I think it is pretty normal, pretty human thing to do so I do my best not to beat myself up when I find my mind swirling in doubt and confusion. I wake up in a panic, often mumbling out loud, “Did I do the right thing? Is this the right choice? Is this a mistake?”

Here’s the thing…
Personally, I think doubt can be useful when used in the right way. I think it is healthy to examine our choices, sometimes we have to do it multiple times. I think doubt causes us to do that provided we stop, control are racing thoughts and re-evaluate our decisions. Every time we have normal doubts then we are being presented with an opportunity to adjust our course or continue forward in our choice. It is important to recognize it as an opportunity to pause and search with in our hearts, minds and desires. Are we headed in the direction we want to travel? Is the life we wish to build?

I know that people say not to doubt, however, I think, that there is no harm in asking the important questions of our choices because we are responsible and accountable for our choices. Every decision we make defines the road we traverse on and manifests our lives. Our choices create our lives so why not take a few minutes, a day even, to re-examine our decisions because they are changing your life.

I think fear is a far worse culprit than doubt. Fear can seize our minds to the point that we never even make a decision. We just stop or even worse, we fear our choices which results in never taking a step. It is okay to use doubt to re-evaluate our life path. It is not okay to live in fear of our life path.

For myself, I asked the necessary questions this morning. I looked within again and said, yes, again. If I don’t seize this window of opportunity, I may regret it. I don’t want to look back on my life and say, “I had a chance to know you, to value you, to love you but I let fear of change stop me.”

Twenty years from now, I won’t regret the decision to move.
Be brave.
Jamie Christine

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Tired Tuesday

It is 2:58 a.m.
I have been up since 6:30 a.m. Monday morning.
I am still awake. I am tired but can not seem to climb into bed and go to sleep. I wonder why?

I have always had strange sleeping habits. My parents would often tell stories about me, at 2 years old, waking up in the middle of the night and going outside to play. I had the terrible habit of getting sleepy then falling asleep under the cars in our neighborhood. My mother told me that she had locks on the top of the door. I would stack chairs and such to climb up to the top of the door and unlock it. Fleeing to the great outdoors in the middle of the night.

My parents warned all the neighbors about me because one crisp morning, a neighbor almost ran me over if it was not for a tiny piece of my Dad’s stark white t-shirt that caught his eye. I wore my Dad’s t-shirts to bed. He brought me home and woke my parents with his knocking. The neighbor found me, sound asleep, near the front tire, oblivious to the danger around me.

After my parents managed to fasten a lock that I could not open, my mother told me that I would wander the house at night. She told me that because I was in my Dad’s white t-shirts that she would often see me flutter through the house. More than once she thought I was a ghost. Ghost girl in the white Fruit of the Looms. She said I was one of those creepy kids who stared at you till you woke up. I was always scaring the crap out of her.

My father worked over nights. He once told me that my mother would spend all day cleaning the house and I would terrorize it in the middle of the night. He would come home at 6 or 7 a.m. to find the house turned upside down by the little ghost girl. His favorite recollection was the morning he came home to find that I had discovered the 8 mm home movies and strung them around the living room like party streamers. He often cleaned up the house before my mother ever woke up so she would not be upset.

They bravely fought the midnight battle with me until the morning they woke up and I was not home. They searched all the normal places I would be sleeping. I was no where insight. A neighborhood search ensued till someone found me and another little boy. I have no idea where I found him. We were walking in our diapers and me in my white t-shirt along the side of major road. My mother asked me where I was going. I replied, “Dairy Queen.” It was at this point they started locking me in my bedroom at night.

It is safe to say that I have always loved the night. I work best in the early morning. When I was working the newspaper route, I loved being outside during the night. I was thrilled to see the nocturnal animals roaming about town. I always gazed at the stars. I soak in the coolness of the morning. The silence of the city has always been music to my ears. I always hear the moon call my name. Being awake while everyone else is sleeping is the best time to be playing in the night.

I am a long way from 2 years old but I still find the best time to go to bed is just after sunrise and a delicious breakfast. The moon and stars still catch my dreams. The magic night still calls to me.

I often feel like I am locked in a room. I despise the feeling of being forced to do something I don’t want to do or being confined. I will rail against being “trapped”. I have never reacted positively to locked doors. To people who tell me I can’t. To places I can’t go. Makes me wonder, how much do we really change as we age?

Be brave.
Jamie Christine

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Connections

October 3, 2017 – Day 3

I am moving in slow motion this morning. I woke up with one of the worse migraines ever. Nausea, eyeballs hurt, dizzy, blurry vision and my head felt like someone was pounding on it with a sledge-hammer.  Iced my head for an hour, took some medicine and drank some coffee which is my magic combo for chasing away migraines. Currently, it is down to a soft roar of a headache. I am doing my best to function as much as possible.

I am also moving slow because of something I did yesterday morning. Typically, I keep my blog and Twitter separate from my Facebook page. Sounds silly, I know, but I do it. I do not let A know what B is doing or more precisely, what B is saying. There it is. I may honestly share my thoughts with a few but there a few folks that I just do not tell things too.

I have a problem speaking up. Sounds absurd because if we are close or I really click with someone, I never shut up. I could talk for hours. However, if the situation or person causes me anxiety, I clam up. Sharing my blog with my Facebook has my hands shaking and heart pounding. Tremendous anxiety at the thought of connecting the two worlds.

What am I afraid of? Rejection? Abandonment? Judgement? Maybe all of these or none of these.

When I five years old, I entered kindergarten like most kids. After two weeks, my mother receives a phone call from Mrs. Flood, my teacher. Mrs. Flood inquires if I am deaf and can I speak. My mother laughs and tells her, at home, I never stop talking. My mother thought that perhaps all the recent changes in our life had something to do with it. In the world of anxiety, it is known as selective  mutism.

Selectivemutismcenter.org describes the conditions as follows:
“Selective Mutism is a complex childhood anxiety disorder characterized by a child’s inability to speak and communicate effectively in select social settings, such as school. These children are able to speak and communicate in settings where they are comfortable, secure, and relaxed.”

Me in a nutshell. I’ve battled this all my life. My most recent scrimmage was the job I just walked away from in a flurry of tears. It was a customer service job processing insurance claims on the phone. The closer it came to me getting on the phones, the greater my anxiety, the more tears and panic attacks until I simply could not move. Paralyzed by fear, unable to articulate my situation and fears so I had to walk away, crying.

Connecting Facebook, Twitter and my blog is something I have never been able to do because I either can not speak or the fear of people hearing what I think or feel or say is just too great. Seems so stupid doesn’t it?

In so many ways, I am still that mute five-year old girl and no body even knows it. I make excuses for a get-together or clubs or jobs or lunch dates. I never know when it is going to strike. I’ve spent the majority of my alone because of anxiety. Sometimes, it is so great that even simple things like paying the rent or getting a tire fixed is just too much for me. I must have help but help in a way that nobody knows they are helping.

It sucks. Anxiety so severe you can not buy a tire sucks. In one way, I do not want people to know. I just want to be normal. In another way, I wish I could explain it everyone so that they would not think that I was just lazy or using them or whatever ill thought they think of me when I don’t behave like they think I should. My own family doesn’t know severe it is. That’s terrible.

And so, now I realize how disconnected I am and have always been.
Connection. Yeah.

Be Brave.
Jamie Christine

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Change of course

Hello,

I must, first and foremost, apologize for the delay in getting this blog up and running daily. It was not my intention to get lost on the road I was on. However, as I was preparing to launch Bent Blossom, I had several experiences that shifted my thoughts on the blog. I found myself careening off in a brand new direction. The odd thing about it; the new direction was more in line with my heart. I consider it a little nudge in the right direction from the universe.

So, I am working on getting a plan together about how I am going to proceed with Bent Blossom. I hope to get my petals all together very soon. 🙂

Hang in there. Please.
Jamie Christine