Thank you thank you thank you, to everyone who reads this and even to those who don't. I can't believe the amount of support that I have from the people around me. It really is so neat to issue a cry for help (because let's face it, that's what that last blog post was about) and then to feel such a warm response from the people around me. Thanks for the calls, the texts, the chats, the comments, and just your time and concern. I feel so very loved.
This weekend ended up being about what I expected it to be. I'm on an alternating sleep/no-sleep schedule, but not so much out of sadness, just thinking. I can't get myself to stop thinking, so I spend one night awake for most of the night thinking, and by the time the next night comes, I pretty much just crash. It's not so bad really, but I wonder how much it's slowing down my recovery from running 22 miles on Saturday (which went well, thanks for asking).
It's kind of a weird thing to be so well acquainted with a specific kind of pain and sorrow. I was counting up the number of break-ups I have had over the years and I think that there have been about 10 or so that I'd qualify as actual break-ups, and not just walking away from a misguided relationship. They basically fall into two categories, 1) the awful, horrific, earth-shattering kind that leaves you writhing in agony on the floor, the blinds drawn, with Celine's All By Myself humming in the background, and 2) the dull constant throbbing that follows closely your heart beat and ebbs and flows when something reminds you of that person, but is manageable. There were three of the first variety all with Becca, and others scattered here and there with others. The thing about breaking up when I'm 30 v. when I'm 22 or even 25 is just how much all my prior experience helps to guide me through the process. Anyway, nowadays, breakups don't really fall into the first category anymore. They're something that I think I've learned to deal with quite well.
I guess I'd compare it to getting the same kind of injury over and over, or suffering through a certain kind of illness or disease repeatedly. The pain and suffering might feel the same, but all that prior experience lets you know that not only are you going to survive through it and the pain will subside, but that life goes on and full recovery is available if you just give it a little bit of time. Knowing all of that makes the whole thing much more manageable. Everyone has gotten the flu, and while it always sucks to feel so crappy, you also know what foods you like, the medicines that you prefer, and you get through it. Above all, you know the prognosis, and you know that better days are ahead.
I guess it's pretty obvious, but it's still interesting to me that there are just certain people that everyone has for seeking comfort. This time around has been different than other times for me. Dave is always my #1 go to person, but I've also been able to rely on a few different people that I never have before, and I've just been so grateful for them and their listening ears and well thought out advice. Some people can say certain things and because it's that person speaking from his or her particular experience, their advice feels so wise, whereas other people saying similar things just feels so hollow.
What's been really cool is going through this experience with my new roommates and realizing just how awesome they are. One roommate in particular is just wonderful. He's such a funny combination. He's in the military, rides a Harley, goes fishing and camping all of the time, but is a male nurse. And I just love it when he introduces himself as such, "it's Shay, the male nurse." He's super funny, and I never realized this until the last few weeks of living with him, but he is so naturally geared toward being sympathetic and compassionate, that the nurse thing actually feels just so perfectly fitting. I am so glad to get to know him and become better friends with him.
In any case, I'm just so grateful to know the people I know, and I'm grateful for the experiences I'm having. In spite of whatever ups or downs I have in my life, I absolutely know that God is aware of me and is providing a path that marks the way to much fulfillment and lots of happiness.
I went to my bishop last week just for some counsel, but also to ask for a blessing with the intent of having my pain alleviated. And at one point in our conversation before I even asked for a blessing, he said, "I wish I could just lay my hands on your head and remove the pain that you're feeling, but pain is part of the process," and with that, I've felt content to allow the pain to persist. I think, for me, I usually spend so much time trying to avoid and rid myself of pain that I have almost entirely forgotten how valuable it can be as a teacher. What is it that C.S. Lewis said, "the pain now is part of the happiness then...that's the deal." I know that's true, and somehow remembering that it's not only something to be escaped but to be understood helps to make it all the more manageable.