My normal

I’ve been pondering the concept of my “normal” recently. As I’ve mentioned, the last thing Ron ever did for me was to be my friend. I wrote to his mother to tell her this, and in her response she asked me to reach out when I returned to DG. I was ready this past August, so I did. Talking to my mom about these plans, she made a comment about this not being expected or common. Then she said, “but you’re a social worker.” As if that made my seemingly un-normal plans with Ron’s mom, something natural for “somebody like me.”

Talking to his mom about the last time I saw him, the last night anyone saw him, I remembered Ron as calm, patient, present. I remembered myself as anxious, distracted, and unhappy.  I don’t want that to be my normal again.

The past few weeks I’ve had moments of sadness. It’s hard to know who to talk to sometimes. I don’t have Ron with me now, but I’m  lucky to have words he sent me in Oct. 2014.  I wrote them in my journal and have reread his thoughts often. His personality was often filled with humor. When he expressed compassion it was meaningful. Reading this today, what strikes me most is missing past emotions, of personal growth, and Ron’s mention of a future he was not able to live:

“I’m having a flashback to better times in my love life and thought of you. Eventually you stop missing the person and only miss the emotions that were felt. I don’t miss him, but I miss that feeling. I don’t know if I will ever have an experience (with Sinatra) to overshadow that, but I try to keep in mind that saying…’Smile, because it happened.’ I realized that I didn’t miss him, but the ghost of a relationship long dead, that helped me immensely. I mean, think of it… you both have grown and changed the past year. Would you take him back if it happened? It took forever to get there but it happened. And once it happens everything suddenly seems so silly.

That’s part of growth. You get smarter, wiser, not so foolish, a bit apprehensive, and a lot more cautious. When the time comes to let your walls down again you will be much more savvy about it. The person will have to prove even more worthy. You will take longer because you’ve been burned, and if he is worth anything, he will understand, and maybe he has been burned too.

I guess it’s my acceptance of being single. I also don’t view life as happening so swiftly. Everyone seems to be getting married and having kids…we are not even 30 years old! Maybe it will take me until I’m 40 to find a guy I consider to be the love of my life. That is a long time from now! I have time to work on me, and if I’m not good with me, things with a guy are not going to be as great as they can be. Every day, every week is a growth. I’m not the same person I was 4 months ago but I’m always better. Life is a lesson and I will learn no matter what card is dealt. Right here is where I would normally say, ‘and I’m trying to get back to my old self,’ except that I’m not. I have no interest in my old self. My old self was weak and suggestive and not at all who I am now or want to be. Instead of ‘getting back to my old self,’ I’m paving a new path.”

Celebrate

Saturday was my Colorado Party! I was surprised how many people came out to celebrate. My heart felt so full.

Today I realized it was more than “Becca in Colorado turns 4.” It was celebrating myself, surrounded by the people that showed up in my life when I needed them. As I’ve written, this year threw me overboard. While it’s hard to lean on others, I acknowledge the importance of supporting each other when things are tough, and being grateful, joyful with each other when things are great. I remember earlier this year worrying about being a burden, being a downer, looking miserable. A few things I was told: “They’re your friends, they want to be there for you,” “Most of us are therapists, everyone in this room can handle your tears,” and “Don’t worry, we’re your family.” These words came from significant, yet not expected, stellar people in my life. It felt so wonderful to invite my people together, in my home, looking happy, simply because I asked them to.

As a female, I do my fair share celebrating significant life changes as they occur for people around me. Don’t get me wrong, no emotion compares with feeling intense happiness for another person. In the same breathe, I want to celebrate other things that happen in our lives, from accomplishing career goals, performances, buying property, or simply feeling better after a crappy few months- life can have so much to celebrate.

My 92 year old Great Aunt recently said, “You better hurry up and get married.” And while yes, that is the path society tells me I should take, (darn you romantic comedies!) how can I be upset with my single, adult life? If I were to regret not having a husband, it would be regretting the multitude of adventures I’ve experienced, the people that crossed into my life, and even the plain ole personal growth that has made me who I am. How could I ask for anything more? That is more than enough reason to celebrate.

#respectmyjourney