I know what I want to say, but I'm having trouble finding the words. Maybe I should stop staying up so late to write.
(I've started staying up a few hours later than my normal bedtime to be able to take Koo out once or twice. As of the night I wrote this, I still can't hobble out of bed quick enough to take her out when she whines - once I'm in bed, I kinda have to stay there. But if I stay up a bit later, Matt gets at least a few hours of uninterrupted sleep, though I'm hoping now that Koo is feeling better post-surgery, she'll start sleeping better again.)
I'm grateful for the things that haven't come easy. How's that? Or maybe it's that I'm grateful for things that happened as a result of something not-so-great happening first.
I spent quite a bit of this year struggling to find the right anti-anxiety medicine. Part of me feels like I "lost" about six months of the year, due to either being too sleepy to function or dealing with other side effects. It was a real struggle, because all of this not only messes with your body, but your mind as well. Sometimes it felt like things were only going to continue to get worse, and that I was too broken to find something that worked. To be frank, if the medicine I'm on now hadn't worked, I may have asked to either go back to the first medicine I was on, or to try going without. It was awful.
But, this medicine works for me - works really well, as a matter of fact. I think I experience a little more drowsiness than I would without any medicine in my system, but it's nothing I can't shake off if I need to. (Or, hey, sometimes I just indulge in a nap - especially on weekends.)
The funny thing about anti-depressant/anti-anxiety medicine, they don't make you actively happier. You don't start twirling around the room singing to bluebirds on the window and seeing rainbows everywhere. (In fact, if you do, maybe you should call your doctor) It works more like a defrost setting in your car. You feel something approaching normal - though this can be a strange feeling, because if you've struggled with anxiety or depression for any length of time, you have to figure out what "normal" is.
This can also make periods where you actually feel sad or upset extra distressing, because you're not sure if the medicine has stopped working. You have to re-learn how to deal with emotions, to an extent. This is where, again, I think the defrost analogy works pretty well. You still have these emotions, but you can see clearly enough to deal with them in a healthier manner, or sort through your needs, and so on.
I'm at a really GOOD place emotionally, I feel, and it's been a hard fought battle.
There's this little calico cat sleeping peacefully next to me on the couch tonight. A year ago, I didn't know she existed, and now I don't know how she hasn't been with us all along. I don't like that she had to wait so long for a family, but sometimes I wonder if she was always meant to be ours. Alternatively, if she had to wait so long for a family, I guess it had to be a good one.
But getting her to this point where she spends almost all her time with us, plays with us, talks to us constantly, and enjoys being touched, has required a lot of patience and love. At times, I really thought we had taken in a cat who would be more of a visitor that we had to remember to feed.
It was clear from the day we got home that she was friendly and had the potential to be social. But whatever she's been through made her really guarded about accepting us as hers. She always loved to see us and obviously enjoyed affection and food - but she always seemed a little surprised when we had special food for her, or came to the back room just to see her.
Then we went away to Michigan, and when we came back, boom! GWEN. I'm not sure what clicked for her. Was it that we left and came back, so she figured that we were the real deal? Or that she really missed us and wanted to show us? I dont know. It's probably less complex than that, along the lines of "hey, your half of the house is better climate controlled." ...But I like to think that she had some big epiphany about love.
I'm glad we didn't give up on her. I'm glad we didn't pass her by in the first place! She is so much fun, and such a treasure.
To some extent, I'm even grateful for my sprained ankles, though I can say that I haven't seen the bigger picture yet. It sure has made me slow down and appreciate time with my three furry cuddlebugs. It's helped me to see Matt at his best and realize what a compassionate caretaker he is. It's given us a lot of time together, and we've picked up a hobby (gaming together) that we haven't touched in quite a while. I'm also (VERY) grateful that nothing was broken...so it's a relatively minor inconvenience in the scheme of things for a lot of love. I'll take it - and I have a feeling that I'll appreciate exercise all the more when I'm able to get back into it.
So, all that said, through a lot of reflecting, I have a lot to be grateful for, and many things that I haven't written about here.
I hope you all have a good Thanksgiving, however you're celebrating it. Happy Thanksgiving a month late to my Canadian friends.
Take care of yourselves.