I embarrassed Kate again today. This time because I started crying over my cup of coffee. We had a fabulous girly morning shopping. Then went for a coffee at Canteen. I always feel quite melancholy when we go to Canteen because this was the place I used to hide out in when we first arrived in Noosa. Not really hide because no-one knew me to look for me. Hide I suppose so it wasn’t obvious how lost I was. Or lonely. Or how invisible I felt. We weren’t set up at the house yet and Canteen is long and narrow and dark and cosy and at the back are computers you can use at your leisure as long as you order a coffee. Well, order anything. If any of you got those early I’m ok, I promise I’m ok emails, which I hope you never really believed, well they were from Canteen. Anyway, I think I felt a little of this emotion today, in fact I know I did, cos I always do. Then I checked my facebook, only cos Kate checked hers and we were waiting for our coffee and milkshake and anyway we’d been chatting non stop all morning so we had nothing left to say to each other. I read a status update from the Matt Golinski tribute page (for those of you who don’t know about Matt, he is a local hero and chef who tragically lost his wife and three daughters to an horrific house fire) which was in essence a plea for people to support an initiaitve to provide solace to those lonely or isolated, mostly the aged, by writing letters. Just a newsy chit chat letter from a stranger. With or without a reply address. Just an act of reaching out and making a difference to someone. Kate asked what I was reading so I started reading it to her and started crying. She said mom it is sad and you should write but stop crying now, its ok. And it’s embarrassing. It was but it just breaks my heart. That someone is so sad. And lonely. And that it can take so little to make someone smile. Just the act of someone seeing them. Even just a stranger. I think thats what really set me off. Because I know how sore it is not to be seen. And my guilt at knowing how much easier it is sometimes not to see someone. And my guilt at being away. And maybe I do need to up my meds. Anyway I’m going to write some letters. Maybe you want to too.
I read a fabulous blog today that brought so much stuff flooding back, stuff in my need to plough ahead in my life I avoid thinking about. Not deny ever happened but simply avoid. I’m sure by now I’ve mentioned often my recently acknowledged life strategy to you, that of avoidance?? The blog, her current journey with cancer and emotions associated are so familiar to me. So real. Yet so far away. But today they were right here. I now acknowledge how much time I’ve lost. Or gained. I lived, I was there, I was so very there, but also somewhere else. There was so much I hadn’t signed up for or hadn’t realised I’d signed up for. So much that I lost and gained, that I had to redefine myself in inordinate ways. Redefine probably isn’t the right word, but rediscover. Actually probably not rediscover either, but discover. Discover me. But before I could even take a breath from my last treatment, we relocated to another country. To no-one and nothing. I had to start again without even knowing who I was anymore. I’m starting to understand why I adopted avoidance as a strategy. It was just less painful. It’s four years now to the day (we arrived in Australia on 16 May 2008) and I’m still faltering. Still discovering. But I’ve decided, I’m no longer avoiding. But I’m also not ploughing ahead. I’m just on pause. And actually, that’s ok.