I've been a mental patient these past few days. If nothing else, I'm pretty self-aware, and one thing I know for sure about myself is that I cannot freakin' handle stress. You'd think that with 15 years of yoga under my belt, I'd somehow manage to come up with coping mechanisms, but no. Everything is a million times more intense to me than it should be; there's no such thing as "no big deal."
(As an aside, I'm pretty much convinced that the people who tell you to "just relax" are most likely the very ones who are causing you to stress in the first place. Just a random observation.)
The holidays always freak me out, and starting a new job with a frustrating on-boarding period didn't help. Travel--no matter how fun--adds to it all. I've developed a pain in my scapula area that I'm pretty sure is a combination of too much time on my laptop and, of course, stress. I'm not sleeping well; most nights I wake up in pain and can't get back to sleep for at least an hour. Neither Advil nor Aleve seems to help; applying heat worked for a while, but not anymore.
Last night I was a mess; I couldn't get to sleep at all. I know that I can consumed with worry about my friend Chuck who is on the waiting list for a kidney-liver transplant. My sister Lori and I visited him in the hospital yesterday. It's so upsetting to see him in such tough shape. I know that's weighing heavily on me, and there's nothing I can do about it. I'm just so sad.
So at 4:30 this morning, I was wide awake, depressed and in pain and unable to get comfortable. I had talked to Mike earlier, and would have called him again, but it was 1:30 a.m. Pacific time. I needed something, I needed somebody to talk to, somebody who could help me put things in perspective and offer words of encouragement. Nobody in the country would be up at that hour--who could I reach out to?
I thought of you, my readers. I could peck away at my iPhone and create a post there in bed. I could talk to you. I decided to take my phone downstairs to my sister's couch and create a post from there, where I might be more comfortable. And I was more comfortable, so comfortable I... fell asleep.
I didn't post last night, but I knew you were there for me. You, my blogging buddies and readers in Las Vegas, some of whom I've had the pleasure to meet. You in Regina, Saskatchewan; you in Sioux Falls, South Dakota; you in Bloomfield, Indiana; you in Brookfield, Illinois. Edmonton... Chicago... Port Coquitlam, British Columbia. Irving, Texas. And of course, you in St. Francisville, Louisiana. You're all over. And I know that you're there for me. And last night, I really appreciated that.
Tomorrow night I'll be back in Las Vegas in my own bed. Things will look different. And you'll still be with me.