A real world of unknowns

An image of a bench under a tree, overlooking the water, to go with my post about my real world being upside down.

I’m in a contemplative mood as I write this. Unknowns fill my real world. The uncertainty, the pain and fear, the sorrow and worries are getting to me, and pulling me down. Not all the time, but the down feelings come in waves.

Tears are closer than smiles today, and have been for a couple of days now.

This makes me want to escape to a place where there’s only happiness and smiles, love and laughter.

Everything else fades in the face of what we are going through. Or maybe it doesn’t fade; I escape to a place I created inside the real world — a place I need to get me through.

Writing keeps me going, whether I write fiction or fact. Reading occupies my mind and allows me to think of other things than my fears.

It’s difficult.

Life is difficult.

Taking care of my husband is what my real world is about now. That, battling the pain in my body, and also telling my son daily he will be okay. His toxic relationship has ended, finally. I’m thankful for that, but it means he now leans heavily on me. It’s okay, because I’m his mom.

I never admit to myself how difficult it is to be the rock in everyone’s life, until I do.

With the help of a coach.

I wouldn’t have been able to do it without her.

I’m allowed to feel. Allowed to say it’s hard. I have to set my boundaries to protect myself.

Setting my boundaries doesn’t mean I’m taking away care from those who need it. It only means I’m putting on my oxygen mask first. Taking care of myself so I can keep on taking care of them.

This is not my natural state, though, and it doesn’t come easily. It needs to be a conscious thought, and it sometimes comes too late.

Like when I go on social media.

About fifteen months ago, I distanced myself from Twitter. Sometimes I long for the conversations I had on there, the caring, the laughter. But, it’s not the same anymore.

I am not the same anymore.

I steer clear of the negativity. Negative messages, no matter what the subject. No, not everyone is negative. There are many people I like, really like. It’s just that I seem to miss the connection I had in the past.

I know I should just get into it and tweet again, like Master T says, and I try. I do, but still feel disconnected.

It’s me. Not them. My real world is upside down, leaving me deprived of the mental room to commit to a conversation.

I return to escaping from my real world — Master T’s cancer, my son’s lovesickness, and my painful body — pouring myself into my writing. Into creating.

In my not-so real world, I see myself on a beach, alone, looking at the crashing waves and allowing my hardships to flow away with the water. I’m in the desert, wandering through the sand, only aware of my physical tiredness. I’m on a cliff, looking out on the beautiful nature below, and feeling one with the universe. I’m on a bench as the sun sets over the water.

In my world of escape, I long to be in a place where there’s no hurt, no uncertainty, no worries. In my mind, I find myself in a world filled with warmth and love, only to be pulled back to my real world of taking care of everyone around me, and being reminded I need to let go.

In taking care of myself, and letting go, my real world fuses with the not-so real one… and that keeps me going. That’s my reality now, losing myself in my creativity to survive living with uncertainty.

I need to be in the moment. Even the uncertain moments. Moments where we don’t know what will follow. I need to sit with those moments and let them penetrate my being. Maybe it will be easier to handle. Maybe.

This is my life now… and no matter how hard, I need to live it.

Live it, while taking care of others, and myself.

Written on 02.10.2021

© Rebel’s Notes
Image from Pixabay

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31 thoughts on “A real world of unknowns

  1. Unfortunately, you have to be strong. Including, in order to be a support for your husband and son. It is generally accepted that women are weaker physically than men. It may be so, but women have much more fortitude and patience. And often this is what allows a woman to experience what a man breaks down on. There are, of course, exceptions to the rule. But that’s what the rules are for.
    Many people support you morally. Send you kind words of support and virtual hugs. Does it make it easier? Hope so.

    1. Thank you, Mary, for your kind words. Virtual hugs are always welcome, and it helps to know my words are read and understood.

  2. You are dealing with so much Marie and I am in awe of the way that you hold it together. This piece of writing is beautiful despite the difficult content and you show such a good understanding of yourself and of what you need to do. Living within boundaries makes so much sense but being able to escape at times to somewhere else sounds like a life source for you too. Keep doing what you are doing and remember you. There is so much love for you out here my friend. Missy x

    1. Thank you, Missy. I am overwhelmed by the love I am receiving after writing this xox

  3. “Setting my boundaries doesn’t mean I’m taking away care from those who need it. It only means I’m putting on my oxygen mask first.”

    I love that you’re startjng to feel this Marie. Keep practising, and don’t beat yourself up when you struggle to maintain them.

    As for social media, like friendships in our offline worlds, the ones worth sustaining will be there when you’re ready to ease back in a little.

    I love David’s comment, he sums it up so clearly. Sending love and warm hugs N xx

    1. I am learning a lot of things at the moment, about myself, about how to take care of myself and not feel guilty about it. It’s a journey, and one which slowly peels away the layers I have had around me all my life.

      Thank you for always being there with words of wisdom, N xox

  4. It is easy to dismiss the connections we make online as not real. We can dismiss the friends we find there are as inconsequential but sometimes they are the best friends. Sadly they are not always able to make you a dinner when your day has been long and tiring and you don’t even have the energy to open a can of beans. They are not always able to give you a hug and hold your hand through a tough time but they are the people who know exactly how tough things are. They are often the people you are completely honest with about your pain and struggles. I wish I could be the person making your dinners and holding your hands. Like so many above we love you and the dedication you have to your blogs and the community you have created. We want to be there in the physical for you.

    1. Oh Gemma, you made me cry. Thank you so much for your kind and true words. I don’t even know what to say, other than thank you for being you.

  5. Love your writing Marie. Life isn’t meant to be easy, is it?
    I’m a fellow chief cook and body washer. 45 years caring for wife’s illness and its consequences. A child needing heart surgery at 18 mths. Lost my kid brother at age 45 with Hodgkin lymphoma, then a brain tumor. Approaching retirement, just when you think it is the time of life to relax and enjoy it, had to cope with and care for father with mesothelioma, then mother with dementia, then mother-in law with age and dementia. Now wife is almost wheelchair bound. Thank goodness we get government funded home-care one day per week. But we grin and bare it – that’s love.
    Like you, I need to remember to make some time for myself (self-care) and writing is an outlet.
    Sending you love and prayers sister!

    1. Sometimes so many things come on our path, and we wonder ‘why me?’ but we just carry on and do what we know we have to do – not only for the other, but also for ourselves. And, the main thing in all that is to remember that we also should take care of ourselves. Sending you love and prayers too, Sir T!

  6. I am reading a book The Wisdom of Uncertainty by Jean Carles Melich
    That it is helping me a lot to understand myself and to understand life in general.
    I understand that it is a current moment is quite complicated and painful.
    I firmly hope and hope that you will find the strength to continue living the whole situation fully.

    1. Thank you for your kind comment, Rafael. I have looked for the book, but could only find the Spanish version of it. It sounds like something I would like to read.

      1. I will send you an image of the book by mail so that you have more information and can do the search better. He is a contemporary Spanish philosopher, and it is a philosophical essay precisely on that uncertainty that grips our modern society.

  7. I am thinking of you, Marie. Life IS hard, and right now… you are really facing difficult times. I was trying to think of some way that I could brighten up your world and I realized that while I comment on your blog often, that perhaps I have not told you just how much I enjoy your writing. You have a way of drawing in your reader and making them experience the emotion you are writing about. The way you articulate emotion is incredible. Very often as I read your work, I think “wow! That is EXACTLY how this or that feels”. I really admire you, Marie…as a writer and as a fellow human being. Sending you lots of hugs <3

    1. Oh Nora, thank you. I just write things as they are, as I feel them. It makes me happy that it comes across, that I can help others to understand their own emotions, but also mine. It helps me when I know people understand. Thank you for being my friend xox

  8. A very eloquent and thoughtful piece. I personally share the tactic of distraction as coping mechanism. It’s a good one because it lets our minds rest from the stresses around us while letting us achieve positive things like writing or whatever we choose. Those who know me well might say my entire life and work is rooted in distraction of one kind or another.

    As for negativity? You are absolutely correct that it is the first non-essential to be jettisoned. Who needs it? (My problem is that overly positive interactions have a negative affect on me as well. If someone sends me something that reads like a motivational poster at some yoga boot camp, I want to vomit. So………………….distraction, distraction, distraction.

    1. It’s good to read that I’m not the only one using distraction to be able to cope. I need to escape into my writing, otherwise the thoughts about my husband’s illness will drive me crazy.

      I also agree with you on the overly positive interactions… those mostly make me feel like those people have never been through any hardships in their lives. I prefer to distract and distance myself from those too!

  9. This is a wonderful piece of writing – you have conveyed so much here and looking at David’s comment i too want to say “breath” and that focus is important for u right now. Focus on those that need you – but also focus on yourself to keep strong. And also the strength to seek help if u need…
    Lots of love to you dear Marie

    1. Thank you, May. We will get through this thing one way or the other. We have to xox

  10. Hugs
    Virtual hugs.
    Life is hard.
    We do hard things.
    With the help of love we get through the hard.
    Isolation hurts. We are social beings. However, it’s wise to limit external distractions like twitter when you have to focus.
    Remembering to put your oxygen mask on first is difficult for some. But essential.
    Watch the water come in and out as the waves lap the shore.
    Let the breath flowing in and out remind you of the waves on the beach.
    Seek peace
    Love and be loved

    1. Beautiful words, thank you, David. It’s not my standard ‘mode’ to put my oxygen mask on first, but I am learning. Breathing has become part of my ‘regime’, but I will follow your advice and let it remind me of the waves on the beach. Thank you xox

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