Looking Inward

I was awakened sometime during the night by a little Chaser at the side of my bed. “Momma. Momma. I had a nightmare.” I scooped him up onto the bed and cuddled him to me. “Nightmares suck kiddo. You can sleep with me. What was it about?” But before he could get much out he and I were both fast asleep again.

330am brought the need to pee, and I had to carefully move Chase to the other side of the bed so I could get up. I wondered at waking in the middle of the night like that – I haven’t in weeks. I crawled back under my covers, noting that my shoulder still ached, as did my forearms now. And fell back asleep.

8am. My eyes pinged open and I noticed how light it was outside and quickly got up. I had wanted to be up earlier so I could get some planting done – last night I had planted the onions I had started in plastic bins into a bed in my garden, today I wanted to get the rest of the seeds planted. I quickly changed from pajamas into Capri yoga pants and my ‘dirty hippie’ tank top from Inkcarceration last year, adjusted my hair and threw a headband in so it would stay out of my face. I quickly slathered on sunscreen – I’m not Mexican enough to go without it, even this early in the day, – grabbed my headphones and while making coffee planned what I was going to do in the garden for the next couple of hours.

Garlic, pinto beans, tomatoes, more onions, hot peppers, corn. . . So much to plant, and so little time! I’ve let life distract me from this task of planting, and I’m rather far behind.

Last night I had fallen down a Pinterest rabbit hole of research on a concept that I’m not new to, but had new meaning during this time of my life. All of a sudden it was 1230am and my eyes were blurring from reading and taking in so much information.  While I’m not quite inclined to divulge exactly what I was researching, today’s quote really goes along with it.

“A healthful hunger for a great idea is the beauty and blessedness of life.” – Jean Ingelow

A lot of what last night’s research brought me was a knowledge that while I’ve grown exponentially from who I once was, and I know myself rather fucking well, I have more growing to do, more things to learn, more demons to slay. I’ve never been one to say I’m the smartest person in the room, nor have I ever thought that I didn’t have more growing to do. We, as humans, are never done learning – either about intellectual things or about life or about ourselves. But through my writing I have slayed quite a few demons, and I feel like I’m pretty healthy mentally. I have the ability to see the glass half full, after all. I don’t require a therapist or medication – not to say this is a bad thing, I’m just fortunate that I don’t – and I don’t try to run from who I am and what I’ve been through by self medicating with drugs and alcohol. . . I’m in a pretty good spot mentally.

Or so I thought.

Until I fell down the rabbit hole last night, and began to think of all the things I don’t talk about. About the things that make me itchy to talk about. About the things that trigger me to cry without warning . . . I didn’t even realize I had triggers until very recently.

Well, fuck.

I opened my quote book yesterday and wondered what the fuck I was gonna write about today. The quote in front of me was puzzling. And I opened it again this morning and was like “Oh, okay. That’s what that means.”

I’ve come to this realization that I have some shit to conquer yet before I’m ready for whatever it is that life is supposed to bring me, before I can figure out what my success is going to be. And it’s not going to be an easy journey, I have no doubt. I can’t force it, either. I know I have to let life take me where it’s going to take me, that I’m going to have to grow naturally. I can’t obsess about it, I can’t nit pick all the bad parts of myself to try and figure out where the growing needs to occur. I just gotta go with it and see what happens.

“A healthful hunger.” Realizing is half the battle.

I spent a lot of today thinking about the research I have done, and how to write this post. I showered and changed out of my dirty hippie gardening attire into my more girlie form – make up and curled hair, held back by a bandana because it was once again hot as balls today – I headed to Sophia’s for what was supposed to be a girlie day but ended up with me elbow deep in a pot of dirt. I wasn’t mad. Life always gives you what you need, and apparently I needed that dirt more than I needed a pedicure. I stopped at the grocery store on the way home, buying quick dinners to throw in the oven. I haven’t been able to force myself into the kitchen for a couple weeks now, but realize my kids need to eat, so pre-prepared meals have been my go-to. On a whim I purchased the groceries needed to make cheeseburgers, and a six pack of Angry Orchard Rosé. I came home, put together a pasta salad, sliced tomatoes, onions, avocados and lettuce, throwing corn in a pan of water and burgers under the broiler. I listened to music and text friends and drank my rosé and cooked, and for the first time in weeks I felt like myself. All the while I was thinking about this post. I had started it while sitting on my back deck this morning, and worked more on it while I sat in line at Starbucks this afternoon, and I was itching to finish it. Now I sit on my back deck once more, rosé at my elbow and Starset playing from my Bluetooth speaker, singing about ‘Trials’. “These trials make us who we are.” How fitting.

Realizing I have a task in front of me, not just the task of getting over heart break but actually a task that will have real, tangible results, put me in mind of everything I’ve done, all the shit I’ve accomplished, and that I’m meant for more.

Falling down the rabbit hole last night brought me the idea, and now I know what I have to do.

I have to fix me. I’m not completely at fault here, but I have shit to accomplish before I’m ready for anything else. And maybe that’s why I’ve shied away from relationships for so long. Because I know, deep down, I’m not ready. Now that I’ve admitted it to myself, the real work begins.

There’s beauty in recognizing one’s own shortcomings, and if you can look inward and say, “Ah. There’s a part of me that needs work,” you are blessed. Not everyone has that ability.

That’s where this quote took me today. Recognizing that I have to look inward and learn more about myself before I can move on to the next part of my story.

Happy Monday. Take a moment to look inward, and rejoice at what you find.

Published by: A. Elizardo

Single mother to two amazing boys, sister to an inspiration, and the daughter of two opinionated, sarcastic, fun loving individuals that are no longer physically with us. Music, writing, reading, my family - living and gone - are what keep me going as I put on my rose colored glasses and navigate us through this crazy world.

Categories Inner Strength, QuotesLeave a comment

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