It has been a long and wonderful few weeks out here. My yard was dug up and held captive to the city’s contractors who took over it, my sanity, and my sprinkler system. This led to me giving up any ambition of doing the “homeowner” fix everything at once state of mind and along with pushing aside the dark cloud of work stress. I went running, played with the puppy, went biking, traveled with friends, traveled for work, ran with friends, rinse, repeat. Mountains sustain and satisfy the soul.
I lived life in full color and enjoyed every last drop. However, while the physical tolls of of our ventures may be immediately apparent, the mental and emotional fatigue of having fun and venturing socially is delayed in onset and even further delayed in recognition.
I have taken a lot of walls down this year, so while there is too much and yet always never enough said about this story, I want to keep sharing. When I was 17, I took a double digit number of sleeping pills, advil and promptly chased it down with some bad beer. A reaction to stress, that I’ll now describe as not wanting to die, but just needing the world to stop spinning, just to stop; no cognition of the selfishness that decision actually entailed until later in life. A reaction of wanting to do everything, that I could, physically, academically, and socially which was followed by delayed onset mental soreness that nearly destroyed me.
My father, forever wise beyond his (and certainly my own) years, kept me on a modified house arrest for a while after this. Citing fatigue, I’d had too much stimulation. I needed a break. Feeling physically fine, I wanted to get back into the tackling everything game, but fortunately for me, someone loved me and knew better. Over the years I have learned to love myself, so that I can then love everyone else. That means taking care of myself and forcing myself to not take part in every adventure… despite how amazing they appear to be. It has still taken me more than 15 years to truly learn this lesson.
It is still a battle to balance the physical, “hell yes!”, I want to go play with friends in the mountains with the emotional decompression that my soul needs, on a more frequent basis. So friends, please be patient with me as I stumble through this mess, I am still learning to take care of myself… and hopefully that means that I can be around to be a better friend on all accounts, not just one that plays in the mountains.