Starting over

September 28, 2011 · 8 comments

I hate writing the post that explains why I haven’t posted in four months. There’s not a way out of this.

Life’s been kicking my ass lately. But after a lot of thought, I realize how this year has been all about starting over…and not by my choice.

After six months of knee pain, I thought “I’ll go to Physical Therapy, get a little treatment, and I will be back running in no time. I still want to run a 10K and a half marathon in ’11.” It took four months to complete therapy (Starting in January), and I’m still not 100%. Not all of it is relating to my knee pain. Even after all the work I’ve done, I was encouraged to think about running a 5k late this year. I laughed when I heard it – I would routinely run 3.1 miles every time I hit the treadmill or the park.

I’m not a fast or lean runner, but I used it as part exercise, part therapy. I loved getting away, having time to myself to workout and think about things. I loved having an hour or so where I wasn’t needed. Didn’t need to answer questions, answer phones, or do anything. Missing that time to myself made me realize how much I relied on it for stress relief. A few people have recommended meditation. The second time, I started to download some podcasts. Even 15 minutes would help quite a bit. Now, if I could work up the courage to try some yoga, that would be pretty cool.

I’ve been working on a new client this year at work. Very different. For the first three years, I knew all of the terminology, all of the processes, I was comfortable with everything and was not surprised by anything. Now, I’m feeling a little more comfortable, but it took almost eight months and a lot of struggling to get to this point. Many days months I didn’t know what I was doing or why I was doing it. I didn’t know any of the processes, people, or terminology. There were some changes that didn’t make sense to me, and it took me a long time to understand the reasons behind it.

Also, I forgot how difficult it was to work with some people. I had a six week stretch where I was working with someone who just never gave an inch, communicated poorly, was condescending and flat out rude sometimes. Every day was a new urgent deadline with no explanation. I had ten to twelve hour days that left no time for anything else. Lunch. Work events. Getting home to tuck the kid in and see my wife. There was nothing fun, nothing that captivated my interest or attention. Every day felt a little like torture. But I figured that I wasn’t quite grasping the work, and I should not complain. I told myself “Buckle down, work harder, things will work themselves out.”

Until they don’t. I was burned out. I gave serious thought to quitting. Instead, my exasperation led me to ask for a little guidance. It turned out that some of that wasn’t my fault. A lot of it, actually. Things improved from there.

I’ve had to start over some other ways. Some I can’t discuss even here. (yes, there are things I don’t discuss publicly.) When I explained all of the stress over that time period, two people asked me “how are you still communicating coherently?” When I heard that the first time, I thought, “maybe I need to cut myself some slack.” When I heard it from the second person, I really had to step back. I didn’t think much about all the stress…I keep going cause it’s what I have to do. But I do realize that I have to give myself some credit, but keep moving forward.

All the stress has contributed to my RA flareups. That’s forced me to slow down. I have this complex where I try to do too much, and make up for lost time. It’s unsustainable, so I have to readjust my goals again. I have to carve out some time to connect with everyone, take time for myself, and recuperate.

So it’s time to stop kicking my own ass. Starting over.

Lessons in all of this:

  • Ask for help, but work your ass off first.
  • Don’t be afraid to speak up for yourself.
  • Know your limits, and respect yourself even if other people don’t.
  • God laughs at your plans constantly.
  • Be thankful for those folks who look out for you. I had some people go above and beyond for me, and I can’t forget that.
  • Ask for forgiveness from people you love. But forgive yourself first.
  • Stop feeling defeated when assholes wanna drag you down.



Bella 09.28.11 at 10:50 PM

You’re backkkkkk. I love the post! Im glad you have found a point to start over. Life has its sucky parts and I hope it brings the peaceful parts back to ya

Brittany 09.29.11 at 2:32 AM

Glad to hear that you’re taking better care of yourself. You deserve peace and happiness.

austinpixels 09.29.11 at 2:57 AM

Keep your head up bro. Never met you but I’m positive you are a strong guy. That 1/2 marathon is yours!!

The Jaded NYer 09.29.11 at 3:02 AM

If you lived in BK I’d drag you to my yoga place; they’re awesome!

Glad you’re learning some lessons and finding a way to find peace 🙂

Maemae 09.29.11 at 7:41 AM

Wow, Ty…reading this was as if I was reading about myself. It’s amazing how we can allow stress to alter our lives. I’m glad you’re taking the right steps to smell the roses and not let it overcome you. Congrats!

Deanna 09.29.11 at 6:04 PM

Ty – been there! It’s a lesson we have to learn for ourselves unfortunately… and those of us with chronic illness often take the longest to figure it out! You’ve taken great stock of your life and I know you’re going down the right path. Keep the faith! 🙂

Sheila 10.07.11 at 6:48 PM

Hey, Ty, I’m glad you’ve made the decision to stop “kicking your own ass” and start over, because you deserve serenity and a sense of happy accomplishment. And congratulations on writing your new post ~ it’s not late, it’s on time, because that’s when you chose to write it.

Congratulations and remember, you can keep starting over as many times as you want in life. As long as you stay true to yourself and those you love. Peace.

Serene 11.12.11 at 11:28 AM

Good post! Great lessons learned. I too want to do more meditation but it’s either train for a marathon, work, travel, or get some sleep.

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