Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Hardest Part of Blogging Is Honesty

I'm learning that one of the hardest parts of writing a blog is putting your life out there. You start off thinking you're willing to tell the whole wide world how you're feeling but then the reality hits. You start asking yourself question's like "Do I really want to talk about my sex life, my finances, my favorite foods?" Alright so maybe not favorite foods. But talking about really personal issues can give you pause, to say the least. I'm 56 but I talk like I'm 96. I constantly refer to myself as old and if I looked in the mirror (which I rarely do) I doubt I'd recognize myself. I think it's a combination of having retired and being on disability at the same time. Everything happened at once and all of it too fast. It's taken me four years to face the reality of who I am now. I think I've finally waded my way out of the Swamp of Self-Pity although I understand now how people get lost and never find their way out. The cliche "it's like swimming through mud" comes to mind alot.

In the past I arrogantly said things like "If she really wanted to change she would." I feel like i should hunt up all the people I said things like that to and apologise. I've gone through some pretty dark times in my life but these last four years have been among the worse. Still, I have been extraordinarily fortunate to have a devoted husband and good health insurance. The good health insurance brought me the medical and psychiatric help I needed to climb out of the swamp. I decided to treat retirement like a business that I really enjoy. I'm helping two non-profits I respect with grant searches and possibly grant writing. I've also signed up for something called Volunteer Match. I figure at the very least I can help non-profits find grants. I've been complaining to my husband that no one wants my 25+ years of grants experience. What I really meant was why aren't people pounding down the door or calling me on the phone begging for help. The truth is no matter what your field except for a few people our time in the spotlight is brief. That's a hard thing to accept. I keep thinking that the problem with Hillary Clinton (stay with me on this) was that she couldn't accept that her time to be top dog had passed and it was President Obama's turn. She's got an amazing job now but it's not President. I was once so popular I actually turned down requests to sit on non-profit boards. I once had breakfast (many many years ago) with the Chancellor of the State University of New York. I don't know which left me feeling more speechless - his apartment or the woman waiting on me hand and foot. I was all that and thought I always would be. Boy was I wrong. Things change and time runs out. Most important of all the old ones were right. They used to always tell us "at least you have your health." I never understood what they meant until I suddenly didn't have my health to count on.

So anyway the journey continues. The pulmonologist said that, although my lungs are down to 50% capacity that's still alot better than he expected. In fact he was down right puzzled about it. I figure with all those people saying they were going to pray for me or at least think good thoughts about me it really helped.