It has been a lifetime since I have written in this blog, well more than a lifetime has gone.
I wanted to take some time and write to an old familiar friend my blog, the one thing I think that has remained non – judgmental in my life. It’s almost New Years can you believe that? I certainly can’t believe that another year has gone. Two thousand eighteen has sure been a complicated and very confusing year for me.
Let’s explore the reasons why I am not overly thrilled about 2018.
Last year I was unemployed for most of the year, I have always had difficulty finding a job. I owe alot in school loans and its hard for me. I interview and interview and its just been tough. Others get lucky in some areas, well sadly I have had no luck. I am sure the right job will come around. Currently, I am right now working another temp job. I am very grateful.
During my time unemployed I became very depressed and very hopeless. As I often have felt doubts about depression, throughout my life, (it’s a genetic/ family/ history/ feeling too), I would stay up all night and sleep all day. I have very little interaction with people minus my online friends (on Instagram). I would go to stores like the grocery store and feel anxious because people would talk to me (say hello, etc.). I thought here I am 31 years old, and I have failed at my life. The word “Failure” has such a strong sense in my brain. A former friend once told me “You’re parents help you out at everything in you’re like what do you have to worry about?”. There’s a lot I have to worry. Often I have felt that I let my parents down, that I again “Failed” (there’s that old ugly word). For now, though before I spill my total heart, I have a job. I’m living the best way I can the best way I know how to.
During the time I was unemployed, my dad whom I owe alot too thought I should try the “trades” such as (electrical, carpentry and such others). My Dad works as a trade instructor (been in the trades since the 1980s). First off it’s hard for a woman to get hired in the trades first off. Its hard also without having zero construction in the past. I previously worked with a contractor doing some small jobs but nothing significant. I got hired by a company to be an apprentice (which means the low -end of the totem pole). The state of Iowa (non-union) requires me to go to school for four years (Log 365 classroom hours and 8000 work hours pass a test, and you’re licensed). So here I am an apprentice, and going to start classes… I had a hard time to start, and I was terrible at it. The problem with me being an electrician: I was slow, not skilled, and terrible at math. I am more of a creative person, hard-wired to be creative, and work in business.
So here I am an electrician, and I have a fall off a ladder. I fell, and a month or two later I had a Dr’s appointment, and I tore my ACL & MCL. I was going to need surgery. It was pretty bad, and It was terrible in the eyes of my company (who had been accident-free for awhile). I was not able to work for months, and when I did go back to work, I had a panic attack on a ladder and had to get down. I had some support from a local group, on Facebook, but it didn’t help me. I was doing excellent in the classes (because well according to some people “I’m a professional student”) but just one circumstance lead to the other, and it was a disaster. I ended up being let go from the job. However, it wasn’t terrible because I wasn’t making much and It was hard on my body, and some people can do it (not me). So that’s where the previous job I mentioned comes in I took a temp job.
Now you can understand where I was during my time at the electrical place. You can understand now about my knee. There however is another factor that plays into this too. Right after I had my accident the state I live in had alot of rain. I was at home in my apartment working, and I noticed water coming in my room, my other room and living room. That’s right, and my apartment flooded utterly. I had 15 mins to try to get everything up off the ground and save what I could. Doing this all with a torn knee (before surgery) was not fun. The whole weekend was a nightmare; I had to stay at the hotel 30 mins away because everything was gone. Facing homeless for a month, more money than I wanted to spend on essentials (food, toiletries, etc.). I was not the only who was flooded out, however; alot of Iowans felt the and dealt with the same things as me.
I was on the news and had received assistance from the red cross. I am utterly grateful to friends who let me stay at there house for one month, and my parents for helping me move out of my awful apartment with my landlord who was a complete slumlord asshole.
My parents and I ended up buying a trailer together. In the beginning, I was not more than thrilled being referred to as “trailer trash.” However, I need to learn to count my blessings. Its dry, safe and although we had to replace the roof right away it’s home. There are alot of bad DIY’s that the prior owners had done, but thank God for my Dad and his handy skills. We will make it/ change it/ do what we want with it. It’s home plus I got alot of great ideas from Pinterest and other sources.
Another shocking thing that seemed to happen in 2018 is that I lost my uncle to lung cancer. I am not very close to my dad’s side of the family, just because specific family dynamics have a spill in that. I have never felt accepted by my family. There are so many differences between them and me that it makes it that much more difficult.
I never really knew how sick my uncle was till it was too late. The night he died, I had my phone off, and computer off. That night I received three emails, calls and texts from my Dad letting me know its important. Now if you have followed me for a while, you know that those kinds of requests I hate (they gave me major anxiety) because when my mom died, the same thing happened. So naturally, I thought it was my grandma or grandpa, no it was my uncle. The visitation and funeral were bizarre. Lots of people I didn’t know a few I did. It was also hard because it was feeling pain with my knee (crutches) The only thing I could think of during the entire funeral was a quote I heard from Disney’s movie “Pollyanna.”
What I have to say now is very difficult for me. But it must be said. I look out to you now, and realize, of four years in this congregation, I don’t even know you. I look out to you now not as my congregation but as people, and I say to myself” how sad it is it to have missed those four years” — four years when we could have been friends. I should have been looking for the good in you, and I failed you. I apologize for this. God is forgiving, but it’s not God’s forgiveness I ask it’s yours.” ~ (Swift, 1960)
All this time, I thought why couldn’t of my family get together like a family. Why did we have to be so separate? Why couldn’t we be together as a family? It just has a lot to do with family dynamics. The sad thing is I didn’t recognize my uncle at all; cancer had eaten him away. Sure, the funeral was nicely done, and it was nice to see extended family. I was also dealing with my internal issues, about my family and trying to understand God’s reasoning here. I felt like I made peace with my aunt, who doesn’t have a high opinion of my family. I thought that I did the best I could with that situation. However, the work doesn’t seem to stop there. I took up seeing a therapist this year, to talk about all the issues I’ve faced and talking does help.
I put a lot of pressure on myself. The reason behind this is because I need to lose weight or get rid of certain toxic things in my life. The trouble is that it’s me driving me to a better me or in my head what I think can be a better me. I often thought I’d want to be famous, but I realized I couldn’t deal with fame. I have a hard enough time with my life as it is, but fame only amplifies my anxiety more. I think that 2018 was not a year to remember. With all the issues I had it just made it so much harder.
There’s a quote from a popular Christian children’s program I want to quote about mental illness and those that suffer from it. Now I’m not the best Christian sure I’ve made a lot of mistakes, said a lot of things I don’t mean and had people that would think and say otherwise, but I do the best I can)
Mr. Whitaker: There are a lot of Christians who have a hard time dealing with unanswered prayer we want God to heal in our, and problems like mental illness make it even messier for us, we like happy endings we want these people to get better and get on with our lives like good Christians. You know the story of Horatio Spafford. Eugene: He’s the one who lost all of his children in a shipwreck when he wrote the Hymn “It is Well” in response to the tragedy. Mr. Whitaker: Yes, we love that story because Spafford showed so much faith and courage because of his circumstances, but it didn’t end with the writing of the hymn. Eugene: It didn’t? Mr. Whitaker: He died in the middle east under the delusion he was the messiah Eugene: That’s terrible. Mr. Whitaker: yeah it sure is but it happened We don’t hear much about it because it sounds like Spafford somehow failed at his life. Christians who can’t cope are like poor advertising they’re embarrassing to us. It raises questions We find hard to answer. Like where is God when We become mentally ill? Where is faith? Eugene. Have you come up with the answers? Mr. Whitaker: Me, I can only speculate like everyone else. Eugene: What have you speculated? Mr. Whitaker: Only that the various forms of mental illness are very complex and not easily fixed and like any illness, God sometimes heals immediately and sometimes He takes His time. Sometimes He won’t heal at all His reasons are his own. Eugene: where does that leave us? Mr. Whitaker: Stuck with the frailty of our humanness dependent on the power on the God’s will. ~ (The Other Women)
There are a lot of things in 2018, as I wrap this up, I don’t want to think about because I had a severe panic attack looking back at this year. I have set some small goals for 2019 so far. I hope to work towards meeting them and seeing them through. I leave you with the best intentions of having a happy & safe new year.
With all my love,
Swift, D. (Writer), & Swift, D. (Director). (1960). Pollyanna [Motion Picture]. Buena Vista Distribution.
The Other Women. (n.d.). On Welcome Home. United States : T. Busteed.