This week it happened.
I knew it would come.
But I don’t like it.
“It” is what I lovingly call “the Funk”, or the wall or the rabbit hole. Everything – and I do mean EVERYTHING – hit me this week.
Last Friday was two months since my Nanny’s death and next week marks 6 months since my Mom’s death. For those of you in the Hospice world, I even got my 6 month” thinking of you letter” from my Mom’s Hospice – along with “You might be feeling……”
“It’s about time you felt it.” One of my close friends says me.
“It’s just OK to be sad and be there” James stated.
To which I replied “What are you, married to a therapist or something?”
He smiled and said “See, I listen.”
Oh how I know this is normal.
This place where I can’t find my footing and the ground seems to be falling in around me.. I called it the rabbit hole with my clients – where one thing just happens and then another and another. And before you know it, you are 50 feet down a hole and not sure where you are, how you got there and not sure if you can get out – or if you even want to get out of it.
Last Friday I got in my car to go to the grocery and I wanted to call my Nanny. (It was a ritual to often call her when I was going to work or between visits). Going to the grocery store is hard. Who do I call to ask how to tell if the fruit is ripe or what can I substitute if something isn’t there? I don’t want to figure this out alone, or with some app on my phone which will tell me when something is ripe.
I want to call her.
And I fall a little bit down the hole
So I do the normal things I do to care for myself – spend time with friends who understand, take some walks, exercise. I try to work on my classes and it takes me three hours to update a syllabus on my computer – everything takes longer than it should, is harder than it should be. I get frustrated and sometimes angry.
Grief brain at work.. It isn’t pretty.
And the fall continues.
The weather is crappy and it is unusually cool for August. It rains and rains and rains. I’m not a fan of the upcoming fall weather.
I contact a family friend who is a realtor and tell her I need help in regards to thinking about an estate auction or simply selling my Mom’s things. I go to my Mom’s house to make sure I’ve gotten everything I want to take.
People ask me about buying different things.
People ask me how I am doing.
I simply say “I’m standing” Because that is what I am doing. I continue to get up, get dressed and show up. It’s becoming difficult. But it keeps me from going farther down the hole.
James discusses plans for Thanksgiving (because he loves me and wants to make things easier) but I don’t care about Thanksgiving. I’m just trying to get through the day. November is three months from now.
The realtor and I meet with two different people in regards to opinions about sales, auctions etc. I act like this isn’t hard for me. This is just something I must do in the long list of “to do’s” But it is hard. And I am tired. So very tired of making decision, of everything having an emotion attached to it.
I try to not go farther down the hole.
And I make a decision to sell my Mom’s things rather than go to auction and perhaps not get what I would want. We will finalize the details soon. The house will be empty of what is left (minus the things I have stored in a few closets) by the end of the month. And we will prepare to put, what was basically my childhood home, on the market.
And this makes me sad. I’ve written that what is left is just stuff. But it was her stuff. Her things. For a split second I understand those who want to keep everything of their loved one. I have what I need of hers. Those items left are not my Mom.
My aunt wants to go through my grandmother’s two cedar chests this weekend She wants me to be there. I tell her I will help but I remind her that if she doesn’t feel like it on that day that she doesn’t have to. She is feeling overwhelmed. I try to be supportive but I”m not sure how successful I am at the feat.
So the funk, the free fall, continues.
- I continue to work out – not much help but it maintains me.
- I work on classes – only because I have to.
- I don’t want to get up early but I have an appointment to provide supervision – I tell her I’m not in a good place – and then she makes me laugh, and I”m able to make sense of a problem she is having – perhaps I’m not as bad off as I thought. I’m not falling.
- I allow myself to sit in the recliner and watch back to back episodes of Criminal Minds – I rarely watch the show and I tell myself it is research for the psychopathology course I will be teaching.
- I don’t want to eat – nothing sounds good, but I do find some great cookies that are dairy and gluten free.
- I have a hard time falling asleep – I recommend NyQuil Z’s
I tell everyone that I’m in a funk
My friend allows me to say all of the negative self talk I’m hearing in my head – and then says “You know it’s not true.” Well, yeah, I know it’s not true – but that’s how I feel right now. She’s a great friend and loves me even when I’m in this place. I remind myself I’m lucky to have her. One of the blessings which helps me not go farther down the hole.
It’s been almost a week with “the Funk”.
The sun came out today and I spent the morning with a friend sitting outside at Starbucks. We laughed together. I felt lighter. I might be climbing out of this hole.
I came home and ate lunch on my patio, read a magazine, finished a book and wrote in my journal. Just sat for awhile. Allowed myself to feel. It wasn’t that bad.
The wind chimes rang in my back yard – which I feel is my Mom’s presence. Birds chirp from the tree (My Nanny loved the birds in her back yard). They are both still with me.
I am no longer falling down the hole.
Tomorrow I meet with a fellow instructor, I meet with my realtor, I plan to workout with a friend.
And if none of that works for me – I will just allow myself to be. It isn’t comfortable and I don’t like it but I know in time, I will not continue to be here.
I will climb out of this hole.