Friday 5

5 things I want to do this summer, in no particular order.

1) hula hoop in the back yard

2) go on a day hike with my friend Jan and stop for a reading break

3) swim in a pond

4) have tea with Mom on her patio

5) have a long chat around the firepit with my friends

That’s one hurdle cleared

I was really dreading Father’s Day.

I’ve always felt bad about how everyone on social media changes their photos and writes a little post about how their Dad is the greatest. All I could think of was how terrible people who had lost their Dads or people who didn’t have the Dad they needed (or any Dad at all) must feel about that celebration of fatherhood.

Usually, my Father’s Day post would be about how it was ok to feel however you feel about the day – to celebrate if you felt good and it was ok to be angry or sad or whatever and to take good care of yourself while you felt those feelings.

This year, though, I wasn’t even up to that.

I was dreading the day – especially since I seemed to be getting so many targeted ads about Father’s Day gifts. I suspect that all my posts about my Dad’s death signalled the algorithm that I wanted to see things about fathers (sigh.)

So, I made a plan for taking good care of myself in case the day was hard.

I felt ok about some things but not about others.

I was ok with doing the usual celebrations for my husband and with making cookies and a card for my beloved Father-in-law.

But I knew I couldn’t go and visit my FIL and I couldn’t drop by my Mom’s place.

And posting on FB was out of the question – in fact, I knew I had better minimize my time on there entirely.

With those protections in place, my day went as smoothly as possible.

I had a few tears – especially when it occurred to me to call my Dad so he wouldn’t think I had forgotten to wish him Happy Father’s Day.

I felt a bit down and kind of stuck so I took things as easily as possible, with lots of breaks and lots of low-key things I enjoy (I did a lot of doodling yesterday.)

I had a good text chat with a dear friend of mine.

I went to bed early.

It wasn’t an easy day but it wasn’t nearly as hard as it could have been.

I’m glad it’s behind me though.

Three complaints

I’m not going to get whiny here but three things are getting on my nerves lately.

1) I keep forgetting to drink water throughout the day and then I wake up at night feeling like I have been in the desert.

2) I’m having extra trouble choosing where to focus so I haven’t been able to write some things I want to write. This isn’t writer’s block, it’s grief and I am trying to be kind to myself until this particular aspect passes. It’s frustrating in the meantime, though.

3) My body wants get moving, work hard, really get my muscles working. My brain and my metaphorical heart are insisting on moving slowly. If I try to push myself at all it either stirs up my emotions or I feel instantly exhausted.

I know these things take time but I wouldn’t mind if they took a little less time than this.

Today’s Monster

I’m a bit tired and grumpy today and so is today’s Monster.

Image description: a drawing of an orange monster with tendrils on top of her head. She has a blue blanket over her shoulders and is holding a grey teddy bear. One of her eyes is bigger than the other and her mouth is a bumpy line which makes her look a bit disgruntled. Black text on the right reads:
Penny is feeling a bit grumpy today
so she’s cuddling up with her favourite blanket and her teddy bear. When the world feels hard, she tries to find as much softness as she can
She hopes you will too.

Reminding Myself To Rest

No matter how many times I remind myself that work and rest are part of the same cycle, I still forget.

It’s not that I am so caught up in productivity that I refuse to rest.

And it’s not that I think that my value lies in my work.

It’s that I literally forget that doing a lot of things a lot of days in a row makes me tired.

So at the end of a flurry of busy days, I find it weird to be tired and my brain wanders off in search of the reason why.

And then, when realization dawns, I have a good laugh at myself and take some downtime.

Brains are weird creatures.