Sunday, August 28, 2022

Stress, Celebrations, & Choice

I'm in a tough spot. I've got a lot of thoughts in my head, but I haven't quite sorted them out yet. I don't know what to do and I can't write about what I don't understand. Needless to say, I am stressed and the weight of the stress and the unknown is weighing on me. 

This too shall pass.

I took a sabbatical this past winter to heal. My nerves were frayed, my confidence was shot, and I knew I needed to take some time for some serious mental rest. I used savings to pay my bills.

So wouldn't you know it... Now I'm having a home repair emergency. I need some major plumbing work done and I'm waiting on the estimate to see if what's left of my savings will cover the cost.

Logically, I can tell myself that everything will be okay. The repair is not a choice. It has to happen. So that leaves me spending my savings or shopping for loans. Both are doable. The other upsides to the situation are the problem was found, the problem is fixable, and the repair people have availability in their schedule to get it done next month. Lots to be thankful for. I just have to live with this constant level of stress until it's over.

It got me thinking... Is life ever NOT stressful? It's just felt so nonstop for the last decade.

And money and plumbing issues aren't even the whole picture. My relationship is a big part of the unknown as well. Changes need to be made, but those changes aren't in my control. 

And just like with infertility, I don't like my options. Stay with how things are? Nope. Break up? Not interested. A third option I've thought of is to change my perspective, but I haven't figured out how to do that yet. Probably because the changes that need to happen just really need to happen. Even if I change my perspective, I am still in an unsustainable situation. I guess we will see what this week brings. Or not.

Oh, hello again limbo! 

Because that's what it is. Limbo.
Waiting. Wondering what to do. Feeling uncomfortable and hating my options.


So with all that vaguely said... Let's celebrate the positive.

I moved out of my storage unit!!! I repeat, I moved out of my storage unit!!! In other words, for the first time in over six years, I do NOT have a storage unit. Mission freaking accomplished.

(The rainbow picture above was taken after we loaded up our last load and drove out of the city.)

Instead, I am surrounded by boxes. Again. 
Life can be so repetitive, lol.

So I'm out! It took three days, a rental truck, and two additional car loads, with each roundtrip costing at least eight hours in gas and time. But, I'm out!! That will save money every month, and now I can finally go through my stuff I've saved. I saved it all because I didn't know where I'd end up. Well, it's here apparently. I will get the plumbing fixed and then live the rest of my life here. So what doesn't fit in my home can be passed along to others. Or thrown away.

But I'm really thankful I get the choice about which stuff I keep, donate, and throw away.

Choice. What a powerful thing...

That's it! That's my empty unit.
Yes, it was so momentous of an occasion that I had to take a picture.


So, my break from school has been just that: a break from school. But it hasn't been a break. I've been moving, hosting family, and dealing with major plumbing issues. But hey, at least I had a break from assignments.

School starts again tomorrow. 

So despite my current stressors, sadness, and confusion, I'm relieved to be out of my storage unit. Also, I've been determined to relax this weekend. Can one be determined to relax? That seems contradictory... But, it's where I am at this point. Stressed but determined to relax.

My insides have been racing with anxiety, so I'm doing what helps me feel better. I'm sewing. I don't remember what I did before I started sewing in April 2019. I think I just lived with anxiety.

I picked out fabric on Friday and started a new quilt top. This quilt is for me. It will be all flannel for the top and the backing, and the batting in the middle will be wool. I made a similar quilt for my boyfriend last year, and it's the warmest quilt we have. So I'm making one for myself before winter comes. It's a simple pattern just made up of squares, but I'm already halfway done with the top.

It's not the greatest picture, but you can see the fabric that I'm using: scribble stars, polar bears, skiers, and textured solid blenders (brown, purple, green, and blue). 

Thankfully, when I choose to sew, it does make me feel better. It must be the repetitive motions, the purr of the sewing machine, and the soft feeling of fabric. It is all very comforting for me. I turn on the tv, watch 20th century movies and tv shows, and feel at ease. 

So, it's only appropriate that my mom brought me this sign when she came to visit:

How do people with kids afford life? It's just me and I am pretty stressed to the max right now. 

But I know how they do it. They just do it. They have to. Their kids depend on them. Just like I'll get my plumbing fixed. I have to. Functioning in my life depends on indoor plumbing at my home. 

We just do it. Stress, celebrations, and all. 


  1. First off, I'm sending hugs. Life is stressful! Just when we think we've dealt with one stressor (like your unit, yay, brava, well done!), another one pops up. We also have a plumbing emergency (almost - it needs to be done this week or next) and have had to put things on hold as a result, so you have my sympathies.

    Learning how to deal with those stressors is a major advantage. I'm so glad you've found something that eases the tension, and calms and soothes your mind. And I'm sure over the next weeks/months you'll feel the relief of having emptied your storage unit too. And yes, you can be determined to relax! It sounds counter-intuitive, but it is not. lol

    Good luck for all the life thoughts/perspective changes etc. I'm planning to blog on some of my own on A Separate Life (and also on No Kidding in a few weeks) if I can put my thoughts in order. I think life is constantly growing, learning, and adapting - which often sucks when we're going through it. Hugs!

    1. Oh, it sucks!! Hahaha. I have so much to be thankful for, including the fact that the major repair can be done. The guy said they couldn't do these kinds of repairs last year because of supply/material shortages. THEN what would I do?? But daaang, I am stressed.

      A big part of it is my relationship. I kinda feel like I'm dealing with these stressors on my own, which is a terrible way to feel when you're in a partnership. It's honestly reminding me of my marriage in a weird way. :( July was a huge month for transformation for me (new jobs and home renovations I'd been planning and saving for for a year), and I suppose September is going to be pretty transformational too...

      I'm hoping for the best and reminding myself that I can handle whatever happens. Fingers crossed for my plumbing repair!! I'll definitely blog with a huge sigh of relief when that's done... After I take a long, hot shower of course!!

  2. I love the sign that your mom brought you!

    And I love the picture of the rainbow. In my country there is a superstition: whenever we see a rainbow, we make a wish (it is important not to tell anybody what you wish for).
    So, I hope you made a wish <3

    Congratulations on moving out of the storage unit!

    And keeping fingers crossed for the reasonable amount for the urgent raipair works!

    1. I did make a wish! Well, I said a little prayer of gratitude and joy and then made a sort of generalized wish. <3

      We are on the people's schedule! Things should start in about two weeks and the main guy estimates the job will take a week. I don't actually have to do anything. The job requires different people with different jobs, but I don't have to coordinate anything thankfully. I wrote a check for 50% yesterday, so we are in line for the repair. I'm glad that acknowledging all the good things to be thankful for doesn't get on my nerves, because sometimes that's all I can do to get through a situation!

      Maybe I'll just bury myself in schoolwork this month and try to forget about financial stress... I'll just think about school stress, hahaha, which isn't nearly as serious. :)

  3. Congratulations on the empty storage unit! That rainbow is so well timed. I'm so sorry that you are facing a house emergency... That's so stressful. And more uncertainty in multiple arenas? Seems you've had way more than your "fair share" of that. I'm sending so much love as you navigate these new difficulties and find solutions (I feel like you're REALLY good at finding solutions!).

    Love the fabric, love your mom's sign she got you. Love that you can always find a rainbow in a stormy sky, but that you also acknowledge the heavy clouds. Hoping for more rainbows.

    1. Thank you Jess. I majorly appreciate your validation. I don't want to whine, but it does feel like my experiences are out of balance (more stressful stuff than not). But one thing we can always count on is change! So it won't be like this forever... That's a small comfort when I'm so uncomfortable right now, but I will keep being thankful for the little things.

  4. P.S. Since I wrote this post I've really been thinking, "What DID I do to alleviate anxiety before I discovered my passion for making quilts?" And it was yoga. Feel free to roll your eyes, but when you find a good yoga teacher, it can change your world. Not the "fluffy" kind of yoga filled with stupid platitudes and not the "competitive exercising" kind of yoga which is completely opposite of what I call "real yoga." But the simple, connect your movement with your breath, move into poses, hold them, and breathe kind of yoga. When I started practicing yoga in 2007 or 2008, it was the first time I was ever able to manage my anxiety and depression without external substances (e.g., medication, sugar, alcohol, pot). So that's what I did. Yoga. I also read books and journaled about things that made me sad or mad. Just sharing in case that helps anyone!