Light at the end of the tunnel

March 11, 2009 at 11:27 am | Posted in In This Moment | Leave a comment

There is officially a light at the end of the tunnel now.

Let me explain. For the last year or so I've been writing weekly articles for an entrepreneurial site. I stress over these articles all week, to the detriment of any creative juices that might otherwise be flowing. Every week, I promise myself that I will get the articles done early and then do something creative during the time left during the week. Every week this never happens. So after much deliberation, I've decided to start writing them only every OTHER week. Someone else is going to pick up the slack so there will still be plenty of content on the site. So, no guilt there. I have to finish my writing for this week today and then I will have almost two weeks of NON guilty free(ish) time. YAY!!!

So what has been going on around here lately?

Not much. Snow, more snow….icy rain. A brief power outtage here and there (for a few seconds only).

Last wednesday I got the flu that makes you want to die. Barfing, pain in every bone, muscle, ligament. The kind of pain where lying down in any postion hurts. Sitting up hurts and brings with it the urge to barf. Standing was out of the question entirely. It was agony….intersperced with regular intervals of naseau. So, you know, good times.

Yesterday my littlest woke up with the horrible cold sickness that we all had like a month ago. She never got it when we did and now she must have gotten contaminated with a little bit altered version of the virus 'cause she is plenty miserable, poor little thing.

So after being flat on my back for four days, I rose to find the house in total shambles. If family services ever made surprise visits on common folk, they'd be taking my kids for sure. Richie didn't wash a single dish, the laundry that I ran the afternoon before I was kneeling over the toilet sat in the washer all that time getting mildewy….the vacuum wasn't run once. There was food and other flotsam and jetsom over every floor surface. The kids table was never washed once during those four days. It was GROSS. Not to mention unsanitary. Have I ever mentioned that my husband DOESN'T BELIEVE IN GERMS??? Yes, it is 2009 and this fairly well educated grown man does not believe in germs. (obvious expletitives here)

Legssexycrop I spent almost an hour just vacuuming just the KITCHEN on Monday. Our babysitting young friend was coming to watch the girls that night and I didn't want her calling child services. I spent all day cleaning and when it was time for her to watch the girls there was still a mountain of icky long-term dishes in the sink. I tackled most of those yesterday. It's going to take another empty-and-fill of the dishwasher before I'm totally caught up. Also trying to catch up on the laundry. I finished washing the last of the blankets and pillows that were covered in plaster powder on Monday as well. Washed all the bathroom rugs yesterday in anticipation of visitors on sunday.

So now I'm only mildly panicked over whether I will get the rest of the house clean in time for sunday. Time will tell!

Ticketstub On a mostly unrelated note, Monday night, my non-germ-believing-hubby and I went to see the Post Secret event that was being held over at the Bates campus. The guy that started the whole phenomena spoke to an auditorium of mostly college aged, fresh-faced, world-at-their-feet kids. I felt SO OLD. I was glad it was dark so the wrinkles weren't quite so obvious. For most of the 20 minutes that we were waiting for it to start, I was trying to decide whether I was one of those people that I used to think of as "old but still kinda cool" or just "sadly pathetic and pretending to be young". Well, at least I was there out of legitimate interest and not BECAUSE I thought it was a young-ish thing to do. Therefore, I've decided I'm just old and cool. Yup, that's the ticket. Old but still cool. (except, was I ever cool….hmm…not so much)

So ANYWAY….enough narcisistic prattle….

The show was really interesting. Sadly, it seems that, instead of accepting funds to support his project, he donates everything to suicide prevention. It's AWESOME how much he has managed to get donated to the 1-800 suicide prevention hotline. But meanwhile, he has 250 thousand postcards containing people's various artwork and accompanying secrets, most of which will never appear in the post secret books or on the website. They will never see the light of day at all. He hopes to someday scan them all and share them but doesn't have the funds to do so. THAT is a shame. Not just because they were created as a means to anonymously share your secrets. But because, each time we see a secret that speaks to us personally, our world seems a little bit smaller and less scary. Seeing evidence of a secret that we also hold makes us feel a little more human and a little less damaged.

Most of his time on stage was spent discussing how our personal secrets prevent us from connecting with one another and that this type of isolation is what inspires the one in eight people to attempt suicide. The figures he quoted where staggering. I think, in the US anyway, suicide was like one of the top three causes of death. My memory isn't great but I think car accidents was a little higher and something else. But STILL. Seriously?? THAT IS A LOT of lonely, desperate, isolated people!!! 

At the end, he invited people to come up and speak at the mics that were positioned in the audience. Some people had questions. Some people had secrets. Some were funny. Some brought tears to my eyes. Relatively speaking, the group wasn't all that big. If those were just the people who came forward to talk about their misery, I imagined all the ones who didn't have the guts and sat silent. The fact that only females had the guts reinforced to me the statistics on male suicide rates. They don't have the social skills or support network to reach out. Their rates are significantly higher.

The event was brought to a close with the idea that sharing our secrets sets us free and allows us to be who we really are. Suddenly my inability to filter anything I say and brutal honesty didn't seem so bad. I was kind of proud of the fact that I have almost no secrets, at least from my close circle of friends. So, in the face of all that misery and lonliness, I feel pretty blessed.

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