I’m just so tired.
Sitting here with all this week’s feelings, thoughts and words ping-ponging around my brain, that one just keeps rising to the top.
Grief is a heavy, heavy stone to drag around, and I’m tired. That sinister companion has changed so much, not just in my daily life but how I think about life altogether.
I’m been feeling the pang of midlife – maybe even late midlife if we’re honest here, as the big 5-0 hits in March.
50. I’m almost 50, and I feel like I’m starting all over again. I made a radical turn when I married Mike and escaped with him here in Hawaii in my early 30s. It has been home for over 16 years now, and yet, it will never really be the same without him. So much is not the same without him – including getting older, which I thought we would do together for a lot longer. I didn’t feel old at 44, the year before he died. He always made me feel young, and really I didn’t think about aging much. But since he died, the whole concept just makes me…tired.
It’s all coming to a head. I have spent the last year in an ongoing transition, but the end – or at least an end – seems near. I completed my certification as a health coach, spent several months back East away from my current home in Hawaii helping my mom care for my wonderful dad who is suffering the terrible journey that is dementia, and watched the foreclosure process make its stumbling yet assured way through the court. I also did considerable downsizing the stuff thing to make way for the inevitable move, which was hard, but a good thing, because we don’t have long now to find a place to live that will take dogs at all, whether I can stay or not.
And ultimately, still feeling the pull to be closer to family, and in a place with more opportunity, before I get really too old.
This weekend, my life here and all the big looming changes came to a head, as I said. What do I do…where do I go…when do I go…what do I do???
My older dog may have a year left, maybe less. I really don’t want to leave her. If we do find something that would make my, and her, transition, easier, I will take it. I will stay at least a few more months, depending on how things fare with her, and my parents. Do I feel like my new chapter needs a wider venue? How important is that to what I have to deal with right now? Can it wait past that revolting, mind-jarring realization that I will be 50 soon and I have no idea what I am really doing with my life?
These thoughts, this week, have both kept me awake and put me to sleep. In response to the stress, I think, I have just been napping a lot. Or at least, lying there trying to sleep. Trying not to think about it all…wanting to just not think at all.
My boyfriend is being really awesome. Truly, his generous support and practical wisdom means everything right now, not to mention his love and concern for the dogs. But of course he is biased on the side of me staying in Hawaii, so I have to be careful I am really and truly taking care that I am able to do what I need to do, and set out to do, for me, my life, my career and my family. Staying in Hawaii has become a financial struggle, both for cost of living day to day as well as the distance to travel to visit family. And he knows all those things, and wants what’s best for me.
But that doesn’t make any of this easy. I have to figure it out and be ok with whatever that is, knowing more changes are still to come. I’d like to say I’m cool to roll with them. But I just feel tired. What I wouldn’t give for one last conversation with Mike.