I think the next thing I should work on is I need to stop feeling embarrassed that I cry when I run. It's ok. Really. Many spiritual traditions believe that grief is held in the lungs. Running makes me breathe very deeply. I have a lot of stored grief. I'm feeling very nervous about that. I am running with friends this weekend. I don't know how that will go. I'm nervous. I don't like for other people to actually know how sad I am. I want to get to pretend it is invisible forever.
We had a really good weekend. I feel quite good about myself for successfully managing to get through babysitting with a smile on my face. When I left the little boy with his parents he told me, "Goodbye Mama" and "I love you". Now, I don't think I'm his mom. But he recognizes me as a caregiving woman in his life that he loves. He doesn't have another word yet. That makes me feel so good about myself. (For the record when we cuddled I said, "Krissy loves you" even though I felt idiotic. I was *not* trying to introduce myself as Mama.) Ahem. End defensive side note.
I can do this. I can take care of people. I can be nice. I can be generous. I can be loving. I am not someone that small children feel fear around. I'm an intimidating person. I'm also a very kind and understanding person. If you need to cry I'm not going to show irritation with you. I'm going to sit down with you and hug you and tell you I know you are sad. I love you and I'm here with you. And that is actually enough.
He was calling Noah Daddy and he didn't want us to leave. He was even cuddling the girls by the end. That is how family acts. I got to hold his sister less than twenty-four hours after she was born and promise her that I will take care of her too. I'm going to take that seriously.
I'm good. I'm kind. I'm smart. I'm good enough. I can take care of people. I can bring them comfort. I can make it easier for them to get through their days. I make their lives better.
That's really hard to believe. I'm not mean. I don't hurt them. I scare teenagers. I scare adults. At least, that is what people tell me. I feel slightly bewildered every time someone feels the need to tell me how much I scare them. It's hard for me to deal with the fact that they should be scared. I would very easily and quickly hurt an adult who did something that was a problem for me. I don't hurt kids. Adults may need to be taught a hard and fast lesson in manners. I don't have patience with adults. I don't know where I am finding it for the kids.
It was really weird this weekend. I felt good enough. I felt appreciated. Shanna's birthday party was lovely. Cooking and clean up were non-stressful. Noah cleaned the whole damn house as a way to thank me for the party. I felt very appreciated and loved. He and I both try hard to meet the others needs. He really needs the floor to be picked up or he trips and hurts himself. I keep the stuff off the floor for him even though I'm fine with walking around landmines. I need the floors to be clean. It grosses me out and makes me feel bad about myself if the floors are really dirty. He doesn't notice in general. This weekend he vacuumed and swept and mopped. He doesn't do that very often. But it means that I have a much easier week. It feels like such a kind gift. He went out of his way to lighten my load. Just because.
It's really weird for me to realize that Noah isn't used to people liking him any more than I am. He's weird and difficult and abrasive as well. We really are a lovely match. We are both blunt to the point of brutality. I will say that he has learned how to not make me cry. He's willing to try as many times as he needs to in as many different ways as he needs to in order to communicate his actual meaning to me. That's not how communication usually works. He wants to make sure I understand his intent. On the first listen through I rarely do. I'm trying. I do better than I used to.
At the very core of me I understand that I am hearing the world through a broken filter. I think everyone hates me and that I deserve all the mistreatment I have ever gotten. It's my fault that people treat me so badly. If I were less of a bitch maybe I would deserve better treatment.
Noah tells me adamantly that people are indifferent to me and are acting in self-serving ways and I should be equally indifferent to their actions. It's a useful perspective. It causes me to think hard about the fact that very few people know me. Of course their behavior isn't about me. I take up very little space in their lives. I take up a lot of space in Noah's life. He's really nice to me.
Noah comes home from work and tells me "thank you" for the things I did that day. He takes time to stop and look out the windows and appreciate out loud what I have done in the yards. He likes hearing what the different plants are and what my future plans are. When I ask him for help he is unstinting. Mostly he just lets me do my thing and he does his thing.
Ack. Time to go to the park.