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never ending winds of change
my husband retired. cam changed his mind. i've taken the steps to begin my business with my photographs.
these are ALL huge things, and they are all happening at once. it's ALOT to process. and i admit, i'm struggling with all three.
so first, my husband has retired after 30 years on his job. we are in our mid fifties and he was able to retire this early, due to ALOT of early planning and a wonderful pension that stopped being offered to employees where he works, just a few years after he got in on it. oliver has worked hard for his family, keeping a roof over our heads, clothes on our back, food in our bellies, etc. he DESERVES this so much, and for "him", i am happy. i knew this was coming, and i tried to wrap my mind around what it would mean for alot of things. but i wasn't prepared for the constant togetherness that we've suddenly been thrown into. i have spoken to other women, who's husbands have also retired, so i know that i am not the only one who feels like i've suddenly got another child under foot. new messes constantly. constantly popping up when i am trying to write or work with my photos, asking "whatcha doin?" he KNOWS what i'm doing! its like he doesn't know how to entertain himself at all, without work. and hear this is common for men to experience upon retirement. but, the general lack of space that i am used to, after being a home maker for the years that i have been is now compromised in a way that makes me feel like i'm gonna explode. i've worked hard too all these years, running our home and family, and i have a routine. or HAD a routine. i'm doing my best not to make him feel like an intruder in his own home, but everytime i turn around, THERE HE IS. it doesn't help that with the quarantine, we cannot go and do things, like we'd each like to do, whether together or apart. so...we are stuck...dancing around each other, trying not to get on each others nerves. one family member i spoke to about this, says that she and her husband STILL have issues with the constant togetherness and he's been retired for two years now. ugh...this is not hopeful, lol. and none of this even has anything to do with the issues between us, because despite the issues, we almost always get along and enjoy being together. BUT THIS MUCH? i am...and have never been...a person who can be constantly glued to someone. i've always needed my own space, and in our years together, i've managed to carve out those niches of space for myself while he worked, so that by the time he came home, i was ready and looking forward to his company. does this sound awful of me? i don't mean for it to sound awful. when i started this journal, i said i was gonna keep it honest, whether it be good, bad, or ugly....so i'm sticking to that.
despite all that, or hell...maybe even BECAUSE OF IT, i have managed to get all the first steps of beginning to sell my photography done. there are ALOT of steps to beginning a small business, but it's been good to have a focus that leads to many things needing to be done and accomplished. the day after my last entry, i bit the bullet, and took that leap of faith that i've been so scared to take. i spent a good amount of money, ordering the things i need to start this up from home, and as things come in, i'm setting up. and still...there is a long list of "must do's" before i'm ready to actually "open for business", but it's felt incredible to me, to be doing this. i wish i'd had the bravado to do it a long time ago, instead of letting the dream simmer in my head so long with no movement, because the movement feels "right". succeed or fail, i'm making an honest go of this, and that feels good. i don't know if this is easy to understand, but there have been so many nites in my life, when i lay down to go to sleep, where i feel so disappointed in myself, for NOT doing the things that live in my mind and heart as dreams. so many nites that i've felt like a total failure for letting fear guide me into corners, instead of letting hope and bravado take me where i'd like to go. i really have no idea how successful this will be, but i really believe in the end, even if it doesn't take off like i hope, that i won't be sorry, BECAUSE I TRIED. instead of remaining something i regret for lack of trying. how will i ever know, if i don't try? in this past week, of researching things, ordering things, setting things up....i've finally felt like i'm honestly LIVING a true piece of MY PURPOSE. and THAT...feels amazing.
and then cam. i saved him for last, because of how much he affects everything that i feel. i have struggled so much with the loss of him. we have remained in contact daily, but all those parts of us, that made us "US"...are missing from our communications, so it's like facing the loss daily. because those in my life don't know about cam, i've struggled to grieve in secret, and let me just say...that's one of the hardest things ever, because pain is hard to contain when it breeds the constant threat of tears or makes behaving "normal", akin to walking a tightrope when you never have before. its a double edged sword for me...hard to communicate with cam and feel the loss of "US", and hard to live in my "real life" while suffering that loss...so i often feel like i'm crawling and barely making it. AND THEN, cam turns the tables on me. a few days ago, he tells me that he changed his mind. he hates the idea of not having me and the unhappiness is making him crazy. he says he doesn't want to move on like he thought, because the idea of another woman goes against everything he feels. these are the sweetest sentiments and they reach deep inside me and squeeze everything i'm made of. i am not going to lie...it feels wonderful to hear such things from him and i just wanna fall into his words...and his arms...and his heart and be SELFISH. so, i am faced with a decision, and i feel like i know what it has to be, but again...that fleeting BRAVADO is not here for this, because i know that once i do what i have to do, he will not be in my life at all. it will end even our friendship that we have so desperately been trying to cling to. so...i linger in the "decision making phase", because as long as i don't fully commit to the decision...he's still here...loving me the way that he does. it's so hard. let me just point out something here that constantly awes me when it comes to his love...there is absolutely NOTHING special about me. i am NOT saying the things that i'm about to say as a way of "knocking" myself....i'm only acknowledging truth: i am 55 years old. i am not thin and beautiful. i am very ordinary, and alot of the living i've done shows both on my face and my body (the beginning of wrinkles here and there, and stretch marks/very soft belly, from having children). when i look in the mirror, i honestly and truly...from the bottom of my heart...cannot see why he wants me so much. cam is 20 years younger than me, he's beautiful, and i don't say this just because i love him. he's truly beautiful to look at. physically, i don't understand the way that he wants me, but he makes his hunger for me so evident that it cannot be denied. i'm not available to him the way that he deserves and should have, so i am a constant frustration to him. and still...he has loved me in a way that no one else ever has...in a way that i'd given up believing that i could even BE loved. and i'm baffled over how and why he loves me this way. but then i think about our bond, and i DO understand it, because in THAT....we are in it together and we feel the same exact things. the bond between us over-rides every single one of those other rational "visual" things, because the bond sees thru those things like they aren't even there. but there is one thing that that our bond can't over-ride...and that is, that i can't be what he deserves, and if i let this continue the way he is asking me to, then i'm letting him SETTLE for less than he should have. "I" AM LESS THAN HE SHOULD HAVE. how do you do that to someone you truly love? if i can't be the one to make his dreams come true, it doesn't mean that he doesn't still deserve those dreams. and to continue trying to hold onto him for my own happiness is the worst thing i can do here. i know that. and the idea that if we decided to just throw caution to the wind and "try" to have an "us" out in the open, knowing that somewhere up the road...he could VERY WELL, end up regretting his decision and resenting me for the things he'll miss out on...is something i cannot bear to think of. cam and i have a beautiful love story. and i just can't let it end with resentment or regret. but the idea of it ending is yet another thing that i cannot bear. and the clock is definitely ticking...i feel it. i never dreamed something so beautiful would happen in my life, and then to have to let it go? it was always supposed to be him leaving me, and i knew i'd just have to get over it. but NOW...i'm forced to be the one to do the "hurting", and i never wanted to hurt him. it wasn't supposed to be this way.
my life is a whirlwind, blowing all kinds of change at me, right now, reeling with emotions that are up and down every single spectrum of the human heart. how i wish that i could just go/run away for a while and not have to face any of it. but life does not work that way. so, i just keep putting one foot in front of the other trying to figure things out as i go, while trying to hang onto to MYSELF in the process. it is NOT easy at all.
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