Friday, September 24, 2010

Ups and Downs

Some things have really been going my way lately. And yet, today is definitely a down day. I woke up feeling discontented and anxious, grumpy and annoyed.

I received a clean bill of health from two doctors this week, definitely a happy thing. I felt good earlier this week. I felt like things were falling into place, like I had clearance to move forward with my life again. I felt good about continuing towards starting our family.

A house came on the market that our realtor emailed us about. We're seeing it this weekend. It could be really awesome. I keep trying to picture us in a home instead of our somewhat cramped apartment. I also know that we don't have nearly enough saved yet for the down payment we want to make, and even though we could get a house for less down, we cannot afford the monthly payments if we do that. And so we wait.

Donald has been really frustrated lately with his job and his career. He has a very leadership based personality and loves to be in charge and to direct forward progress. He's very good at it, too. So it's frustrating to him that he doesn't have that much control over his career path right now. And it's frustrating to him that he isn't making a salary on par with his education and experience. Especially when we know that more money could put us into a house sooner.

I really want a guest room. And a yard.

And then I feel selfish and ungrateful. We both have jobs, and in this tough economic time, that is huge. We have a safe and comfortable place to live. We have a great marriage and we make a great team. We have two wonderful cats and an awesome (although sometimes pushy) dog. We have a good social life. We eat well and we're healthy.

That is so much good. Why aren't we happy with that?

Donald is also impatient. He feels like he's constantly moving toward better things and never arriving at them. I try to help him see that he has choices about how happy he is with what we have now. He only sees compromise and giving up his dreams. I have been where he is. I hope he can find a way to be happy now without giving up the dreams of the things he wants for himself and for us and for our family. It's a really hard thing to do.

My discontent is not connected to what we don't have yet. Instead, it seems to be more connected to a sense of disconnect, of floating, of not knowing what I want out of life. I don't feel rooted, even though my weekly yoga practice encourages rootedness so strongly. I try to remember to plant my feet and reach for the sky with my hands, like a tree, but as I do, I worry that my feet aren't planted in the right place and that what I'm reaching for isn't actually something I want.

I get in this place where things I have been absolutely, positively sure about are no longer clear to me. Like having a family. Like what I want out of my career. Like what I want to be doing with my time. And while these might seem like normal questions, they arrive in the context of wondering why we do any of these things, why I am here, what I am supposed to do with my life that will give it any meaning.

The silly part is that I have an important role in my job. My daily activities are appreciated and needed. They are at home as well, and Donald does a wonderful job of telling me how much he appreciates and loves me. Somehow that doesn't help. I don't see how my actions or activities matter in the big picture. I don't see any lasting change. I don't see a reason for being.

Before you get worried, I am not suicidal. I do not think of ending my existence. I simply float, from hour to hour, day to day, wondering where the meaning is. Wondering how I can regain my happiness, when I can see the world for the good things and feel like I have a place in it.

I feel like such a drama queen. Like I should knock it off, stop indulging these feelings and get back to reality.

I'm calling a counseling service provided by my employer this weekend. Maybe that will help. I know I need some guidance. Thanks for reading.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

What's the Point?

I ask myself this question more and more often these days.

What is the point? Why am I spending my time the way I do? What am I really trying to accomplish?

I have lost interest in some things I used to enjoy very much.

I get easily frustrated and emotional when things don't work out the way I want them to. For example, Donald and I spent two hours in the car trying to run an errand, but because of traffic, we had to turn around empty handed. By the time we got home, I was in tears.

I get excited about things, like a trip to Europe with Donald I'm trying to plan, but then I lose all interest, feeling like it's probably a waste of money or that our family planning might get in the way or that we won't be able to take time off work to make the trip worthwhile.

So what's the point in trying?

I know how blessed my life is and I know that I should be feeling grateful for what I have.

But sometimes I don't. Sometimes I just don't know why I get out of bed in the morning. I feel purposeless.

I know I am loved and I know that people care about me. I try to smile and keep my head up.

But sometimes I'd rather cry until I am empty.

If I knew what was wrong, maybe I could move forward. Maybe I could say, ok, this is the hand I have been dealt, now I can figure out how to keep living. But I don't know what is wrong. I don't have the information I need.

So I float, in limbo, on automatic, until I find a way to bring some light back into my life.

I'm not unhappy, I tell Donald. I'm just not happy.