Better Late Than Never (or, Happy Valentine’s Day)

It’s never too late to say “I love You!”

I had a package arrive two weeks ago. It was sent on December 10th (guaranteed to arrive by the 16th), arrived the last day of January. It’s a box full of Finnish chocolates for Christmas. (Fazer Nougat will always say ‘Merry Christmas!’ to me.) it’s annoying that they were late- but that doesn’t mean I should throw them out. They did quite nicely as Valentine chocolate substitutes. 

About a year ago, I got off of the social media carousel for a while, my brain needed some serious healing from shocks and bumps along the way. I poked my head up once in a while, but went back into hibernation very quickly each time. I’m pleased to say that my brain is much happier than its been in a long time, and my psyche is following suit. 

I keep feeling like I should catch up with my life in order to participate in things again, and it has ground me to a halt each time. To push the analogy, it’s one thing to hop onto a moving carousel, it’s another to run circles around it first to make up lost turns, and then jump on. So I have given up catching up. I haven’t been able to do what I should , and would like to have, done. Facebook posts and messages, Christmas cards, offering condolences, birthday presents, retirement parties… The list is long. I can’t catch up. Trying makes me unable to participate in the now. There are a few things that I must catch up on (taxes..?), but I am so very sorry that I also have to push the old ‘should haves’ into storage. I think of my friends all the time, but haven’t been able to follow through on those thoughts. Carrying this ‘should’ve’ weights around stops me from acting, and it’s just not working for me. 

In truth, I’m more functional today than I have been in many years. My underlying MCAS is still as awful as it has been. I have accepted that for the foreseeable future, this is as good as I can expect. I hope for more, but I’m not waiting until I’m ‘better’ to do stuff. The amount I can do is very limited, but I need to be more engaged in the world, I’ve become far too isolated, I’m sick of being sick. It’s hard to describe how I feel, but you know day four of a five day cold? The fever is gone, but if you overdo it, it comes back? You have a bit of energy to get up and do something, but you stand up too fast and feel light headed? That’s kind of how I feel every day. For eight years. I have better days and worse days, good hours and bad. But it’s relentless.  As well as feeling constantly wiped, there’s always something new to deal with medically. It’s been a bit of a farce- we try to figure out something, and we find another issue. “I have a brain tumour, oh, okay.” “A nodule in my lung? Oh well..”. “Half my tooth just fell off, alrighty then.” Just another day as the Walking Allergy. Taking care of ‘me’ is a full time job. One I didn’t train for, didn’t apply for, doesn’t pay well, and there is no vacation time. 

It’s a matter of fact that I can’t catch up with my old life. It’s gone. But looking at what I used to have makes me not appreciate where I am now. It’s hard- but there’s plenty of opportunity for joy, love and living. While I can’t ‘make up’ for neglecting my loved ones, I can ask for forgiveness and tell them how wonderful they are. To let them know that the real me isn’t gone. I’m here, and I’m going to do my damndest to grab that carousel and hop on as often as I can.

For those of you who noticed- it’s Feb 21 as I’m posting this. I was distracted, didn’t get it up that night, and then thought ‘Well,  it’ll look silly to post that now, I’ll just put that with all the other posts that didn’t get up in time.”. I told that thought to get lost. It’s never too late to tell people you love them. 

So, to all my friends, new and old, close and far away, even if I haven’t shown it recently, I miss you. I think of you. And I love you. Happy Valentine’s Day! 

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