Friday, October 29, 2010

Life After the Crisis

Eric off to see his Therapist and to see about renting me an office space - an escape hatch, a refuge, and also a place for my creative pursuits to take form, so to speak - in the same building right now.  We're canvasing candidates to take over most of the housekeeping duties here... that being the single biggest factor in my ever-increasing exhaustion due to lack of sleep (trying to keep up) and poor state of mind.  We're working on the issues with the kids too, especially the 'one'... in conjunction with both therapeutic, educational, and legal consultants, to form a strategy to stabilize our home and provide all of them the best care possible both as individuals and as a group. 

Things are going to get better.  Sometimes you have to hit rock-bottom before you can make the changes required to climb out of the hole and this is the first time that I truly experienced that phenomena.  It was horrifyingly awful.  I hope I never have to get to that state again.

I'll forever be grateful to the people who shared my crisis last week, pointing out the errors in my ways, and although I may not have seemed receptive to their ideas and their pain at seeing me like that at the time  (sheer nerves, lack of sleep, a rock-hard deadline that couldn't be changed, and exhaustion colored all of my responses, not helped by an infusion of the experimental poison the day before they arrived), I listened, I learned, and I am acting on their advice.  I know that some of them are still with me, some of them have already made it clear that I am no longer a part of their lives.  The latter saddens me, but even so, I know that the experience helped all of them too.  It was not the normal good times that we expect when I am involved in adventures, but it was still a bonding experience, even as I was left out of that bonding, and I hope that it does everyone good in the long run.

No matter what the future holds, I know my life will be better than it is today,  I've had more sleep in the past couple of days than I have had in months, and with a clearer mind and the pressure off, Eric & I talked this morning about how far we have come and where we are going.  My vision of what this family can become is strong.  Despite feeling like a hamster on a wheel, running faster and faster and going nowhere at the same rate over the past three months, look what we have accomplished!

  1. We have a beautiful home (structurally rotten at the core, but still beautiful) and  for the first time since I've met Eric, he is living in an environment where his most precious possessions are displayed, his house looks like home rather than a warehouse, and the security of living in a beautiful abode that does not look chaotic may, over time, decrease the internal stress level of all the members of our family.  It will take time for everyone to adjust, for especially the kids to trust either Eric or especially me, but just being able to lay your hands on what you're looking for without having to go through a million boxes to find it (or not) is an amazing first step.
  2. The kids are in new schools and mostly are adjusting at an appropriate rate.  We have quickly developed a good working relationship with the administrators in all of their schools, and I am rapidly assimilating the standards of dealing with them.  Dorothy, you're not in Oz anymore.  Entertainment Studio methods of handling management don't apply.  But the principals of management are basically the same and we all have the kids best interests at heart.  Even as I make mistakes in protocol, form, and content when working with this new population, they clearly understand what my intent is and are gently teaching me - as they are teaching our children - how to behave.
  3. We have a plan.  Eric & I both always had the vision and he has the savvy and know-how to schmooze people into helping us just as I supply the backbone and unflinching drive to move us forward.  How to implement the plan, and what is to be prioritized first has changed drastically in the past few days thanks to last week's emotional crisis and great loving advice from people who I respect and care for, but the goal remains the same.  We will get there.
  4. We both have great friends.  I am astounded at how many people came to our reception; people who I and Eric have known and loved over the years... many of them friends that I have not had time to see regularly for a very long time came to celebrate and cherish my new state-of-being, and now that we are prepared - finally - to receive them here in our home (see # 1), I will have the many get-together's that I had longed for in my condo (and Eric in his house) that rarely happened due to lack of space and terrible parking in my case, and chaos in Eric's.  These small 'parties' will not only be good for my own soul and Eric's too, but will set a good healthy model for the kids too.  We don't have to be isolated in our respective homes anymore because of the physical limitations of the environment or the chaos in our lives, and we are going to take full advantage of it.
  5. Eric & I are good for each other.  Even as I have been completely melting down and had lost myself to emotions and fatigue, Eric was there.  He loves me more than I deserve and didn't think was possible.  I love him in a way that he has never experienced before.  Our brains process information in a very similar manner, but our outlooks, our abilities, our talents are very different and compliment each other beautifully.  This is my first marriage and family.  It is his last.  It is my last too.
  6. Neither of us is afraid to seek help when we need it.  Eric needs help with his family and I can provide a strong influence in that regard.  I grew up in an exceptionally dysfunctional environment and know what not to do.  I just don't know how to do the right thing... yet.  I have overcome my desire to hide my weaknesses, and instead, express my vulnerabilities emotionally, and am open to suggestions and not afraid to change up my life direction when the idea and the opportunity presents itself.  That's what brought me here in the first place. Both of us have trouble accepting help from others, but both of us also came a long way in that regard before our relationship got to this level, and we will push each other on, forcing the other to accept the opportunity of generosity from others when one of us falters or flinches.
  7. We have opportunities galore.  I have received a lot of attention for my work in the past few months, public attention, and with an office to work in and the fear of losing medical insurance coverage lessened, I plan to capitalize on that attention and make my "business" what it could be and should be.  My jewelry design and execution is at a point, now, that I know that I am ready to enter the big leagues, and with some stability in my life, I can do so without reservation.  At the same time, with Eric's legal travails about to cease, and with support and back-up from me, he is ready to enact some of the fantastic business ideas that he's been harboring since I've known him.  I've never known anyone to have so many good ideas and the talent and the back-up to make them happen.  I expect that as I start having tremendous success at my passion, Eric will do the same with his.
  8. I even took 90 minutes to work on my orders last night with the full support of Eric, and although other crises in the home overshadowed that fact immediately after it happened, I look upon my output this morning with wonder and happiness.  It is a sign.  I'm not completely gone.  I do have the ability to come back and realize my potential even with the tremendous learning curve and culture shock that I am going through right now.  And I will.

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