August 21, 2013 by Marj Hatzell
If you’ve been reading my pointless dreck for any length of time, you’re well aware that the past two years (well, heck, the past thirteen years) has been anything but fun. We’ve had more than our fair share of difficult situations and family upheaval. Naturally, when times are tough, the first thing to go is ME. I shove myself to the side and focus on the issue at hand. I mean, it’s tough to take care of yourself when you are taking care of sick parents, sick children, sick spouses. It’s tough when everyone else is needing SO MUCH. I know how important it is but it just isn’t realistic to expect that I’m going to focus on myself during those times. I suck at it.
I was resentful a few months ago. I was so sick of being NEEDED and wanted to be the person that needed others for a change. I wanted to know when I WAS THE ONE that someone took care of, when MY mental health crisis could occur (since I’m always hanging on by a thread). I shook it off quickly, however, when I realized how selfish I sounded. But I had valid feelings. I still have valid feelings. My therapist tells me so! (That sounds so NYC)
So a few months ago, I declared this the YEAR OF DG! We all know how that has turned out so far. If you don’t, I’ll give you a hint: It hasn’t exactly been the YEAR OF DG. It’s been the YEAR OF EVERYONE ELSE NEEDING DG. Sigh. Just like every other year. And while I’ve been working diligently on saying NO instead of YES, sometimes it just isn’t possible to say NO, if you know what I mean.
I’ve been struggling to put myself ahead. I’ve been struggling period. No, I’m not exactly ok. I’m a work in progress. I’m still very sad and I’ve lost my mojo. I feel like I’ve lost that spunky spark that makes me, well, ME. I miss my parents terribly. I’m frustrated with my situation sometimes and I miss sleep. My house is a mess and under construction constantly. Things are broken. I want to go back to school (BWAHAHAHA! AS IF!) and I want to get a job outside the home. I want to feel like I’m DOING something. I want to do things FOR ME. But all I can muster is an occasional massage, a twice-yearly haircut and a nap Monday through Friday, when Bugaboo isn’t on break.
No, there isn’t anything you can do but give me a hug or a smile once in a while (just don’t touch my hair). It’s just the way things are in my life and they aren’t going to change. I’ve learned to accept it and focus on what needs my energy the most. My therapy sessions have helped me to do that. Instead of worrying about ALL THE THINGS I have shifted to, “Yes, I care about that stain on the floor but Bugaboo and Bug Boy need me to be calm and rational.” So I shrug it off. Sometimes The Guy I Live With takes that to mean, “I DON’T GIVE A RAT’S ARSE!” But that couldn’t be further from the truth. The truth is I care. I care VERY MUCH. I care so much it keeps me awake at night. But I can’t care about ALL THE THINGS, ALL THE TIME. I need to realize what I have control over and what happens without my control. And I’m getting there. I’m a work in progress!
The past few weeks I’ve gotten better at it. I’ve printed out my chore list and have gotten more done around the house, without becoming obsessed with it, as I tend to do (OCD FTW!). I have been keeping everything on my calendar on my phone and have been setting alarms. I have a regular routine again. I’m feeling more accomplished. I’m more patient with my children and feel like we have a better bond these days. I feel like I am closer to my husband (and boy oh boy, do we rely on one another). Life seems to be moving along pleasantly and we’re content. With few speed bumps. Honestly, it’s the best it has been for a looooooooong time.
That’s why I decided that it was ok to cut my hair. I know, I know. I shouldn’t DO those things when I’m depressed! I can’t be impulsive with these things when I’m emotional! I promised I’d wait all summer until I made any changes, thanks to the orange Wendy’s hair debacle. But I didn’t make this decision under duress. In fact, it was well-planned. Honest! Yesterday, I went for THE HAIRCUT and planned to color my hair (because I don’t let salons color my hair, I can barely make it through the cut without wanting to barf). Y’all know how much I LERVE people touching my hair!
Anywho, this is what I ended up with:
Yes, I’m aware you can’t see it. That’s because my awesome hairdresser of fifteen years is no longer going to be my hairdresser, see. I hated it. HATED. IT. I asked for one thing, got something totally different. And the truth was, it was just a shorter version of what I had, except choppy and uneven. I didn’t want to look like a forty-one-year-old mom (even though I am one). I wanted to look refreshed and happy and more like myself. But it was an awful cut. I climbed into bed for a nap, frustrated and wondering if I should go back to have her fix it (she was in a hurry, many personal problems) or go someplace else or just leave it and pull it back every day for a long, long time.
Then I started watching videos online about cutting hair.
See where this is going?
Then I got up, went into the bathroom and hacked my hair off. More of it. And it wasn’t short enough so I hacked a little more off. Then I colored it (well, my teenaged neighbor did).
And in the end, I ended up with THIS:
I totally love it. LOVE. IT. I LOVE IT SO HARD. I feel ALIVE. I feel AWESOME. I feel LIKE ME. I should have done it months ago! Why didn’t I do it months ago? Because I wasn’t ready. I wasn’t ready to reinvent myself. I loved my long, hair. I felt safe in my long hair. I miss my long hair. But this? I LOVE THIS. I FEEL THIS. I AM HAPPY WITH THIS.
When the boys go back in two weeks, my plan is to go to the health club and make an appointment to get set up on a program. I am ready. It’s time to get back to ME again. Because I’ve been to paradise, but I’ve never been to me (you’re welcome for the earworm).
Wish me luck.