Monday, September 22, 2014

Feel it all.

When I get super-busy and she doesn't hear from my husband, my mother-in-law jokes that she wants to put out an APB on us.

That's where I am right now. Busy. And grieving.

Our kitty Leo was hit by a car last week. I'm heartbroken, and I decided that I could grieve while still letting more joy in--so we have two new kittens. I just can't watch my little Skeeter be depressed after losing Leo, just nine months after he lost Brady. So it's a sad and happy time.

One thing I know, we were BLESSED to have Leo. He helped us do so much healing.

 Sweet Leonard "Leo" Gronkowski Fischer

And I'm super busy with work, hence the lack of updates.

Right now, just settling. Sometimes in grief, sometimes in joy. Always in love.

Emmett and Lucy

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

No bad days.

How is that even possible if you're in the depths of an anxiety attack, or going through the depression that can accompany it?

It's hard to hear, or believe, if you're feeling your worst. But I saw this the other day and thought that it had to become my new mantra.

Yes, there are "bad days," or "frustrating days" but that doesn't mean they're a waste. It doesn't mean they are necessarily bad. Those are the days when we are learning, or are in the midst of something we can learn from. They are valuable.

Same thing goes with rainy days. Lately it's been cloudy and cool, and I've been frustrated that I haven't been able to get to the beach. I mean, I can "get" there, but I wanted to enjoy as many "beach days" as I could this year, in September, when summer still exists and all the crowds here at the Shore are gone.

You know what, though? I need fall. It's time to take all the good feelings from summer and let them translate into another season. I need that change. I can't get stuck in this mode of semi- or non-productivity forever. While I've loved more lazier days of summer, I miss working. I miss being productive. I miss having time to take care of details instead of working my days around must-do projects. It was nice for the summer, to be able to relax more, but it's causing this unrest in me. Even though I'd rather sit in my beach chair or swim in the ocean, I also would rather feel more focused on my career.

Today it's cloudy, and I'm not going to go to the beach. That's okay, It's not a bad day.

I know many of you out there may be having a much worse day than I am. Just remember that whatever you're dealing with, it can be for good. That means there can be no bad days, no matter how much we want to write them off.

Think of it this way: Whatever you devote your day to is something that you give one day of your life to. Even if you don't choose it, we give our time to things--sometimes we have to, especially in times of crisis. Is that thing worth it, even if you don't want to do it, or enjoy doing it?

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

This is why.

Is this a blog about anxiety...or the beach? I bet you think it's a beach blog because that's all I seem to write or talk about.

No, it's not a beach blog, though.

It's a blog about anxiety. Life. And during the summer, expect to see photos of the beach. I live at the Jersey Shore, people!

And summer's not over, at least for me. Today I went down for about two hours, sunned out and swam. Watched others like me who refuse to accept that beach days have to be over because of the calendar. I met an adorable dog, Vinny, who was so very happy that he can frolick on the beach during the day once again (he can't during summer season). 

I've been blogging a lot about the beach lately because it's healed me this summer. It's brought me so much tranqulity and insight. It gave me a summer vacation. It's right here, it never changes. And even a few years back when it underwent its own storm during Hurricane Sandy, it survived. Just like me.

So it's all about the healing. And a few good tan lines that I'm still working on!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Perfect timing.

Been a very thought-provoking past few days.

I went to a memorial service the other day. Not a "funeral," technically. I was still sad. It was still moving. People still cried.

My mother's friend, Ruth, passed away after such a brave battle with lung cancer. I met Ruth separately, when I was house-hunting. The house she was selling wasn't what I wanted, but I swear I almost bought it because she was so nice and inviting. I told mom about her, and then was surprised when I went to church one day and mom introduced me to her new friend, Ruth. Instant connection.

Ruth was a connector. She was lively, busy, friendly, and always wore a smile. She was the type of person that would email you with information on something she knew you were interested in--even if you hadn't told her. Last year, she said I would be perfect to do a segment on local TV. She was taking a course with a senior group in video production. I was kind of terrified, but did it to improve my public speaking and use it as a building block. I am so glad I did that because it made her happy. She didn't have to offer to promote me, my writing or my books, but she did because she cared so much about others. Helping others. Connecting others.

At Ruth's funeral, several thoughts came to mind. First, I always fear that life is too short and I'm not going to get to write my memoir on anxiety. What if I suddenly pass away? My purpose wouldn't be attained. God better put the right publisher in front of me ASAP or I won't achieve my life's purpose. (I really do think that is to write my book, which is taking forever to complete not just in the time it takes to write, but in the time it takes for me to continue healing, and continue to write about that healing. And also to eloquently put into words trauma and show its truth as a positive.)

I realized that God's time is perfect. No one expected Ruth to pass quite when she did because she'd been doing so well. No one quite expected her to be put into Hospice so soon, but I tried to remember that this was God's timing. Not ours. It never makes sense to us. God's timing, though, is perfect. Who am I to doubt it?

I also thought about how people perceive me. Not in a shallow "OMG I hope they like me" kind of way. More of in a "I really hope I am having the positive impact on others that I so desperately want to give off." I haven't always been the kind of person I want to be...the person that I am now. I know that person isn't perfect, but I want that person to be someone who:
  • Inspires others to take negatives and turn them into positives
  • Shows compassion and helps others through their trials
  • Motivates others to go for their goals
  • Shows others that life's details matter
  • And if I'm good at all that, ultimately everyone will see that God is behind all of it, and they'll want to know Him.
I'm not going to be God-preachy here--that's totally not my style. I guess I just feel like funerals/deaths can teach us so much. I don't want Ruth's life--her legacy--to be forgotten. She reminded me about the kind of person I want to be, and to do my best to align that person with my actions and words.

That's no easy task. I'm emotional. I'm quite Italian! I have a short temper. I don't want people to remember me for that. I don't even want people to "remember me" when I'm gone, I just want to know that being here was purposeful. Maybe I can help others to develop a part of themselves, or do something, that they may not have done. I want them to be better for it. Not because I led them there or inspired them. But for their own self-worth.

I'm going to miss Ruth tremendously, as I know my mother will. They were activity buddies, and I'm so grateful for the time Ruth spent with my mother to show her that there's more to retirement than what's traditionally acceptable. You can serve. You can smile. You can impact others.

How we do that is up to us. But undoubtedly, it is all in God's time. We are enough. In our hopes and aspirations...and if those goals don't get accomplished, we have to have faith that God has us here for what He wants.

His timing is perfect.