We did just that. But of course we did it in December and January (in the most brutal winter in Chicago in a long time). I love the space in the new place. I like the idea of really making it our own, but, and I mean BUT I am not sure I am ready for the work. I'd rather be quilting.
Yup! It is all happening, selling the current place and moving to a much much much bigger place in Andersonville/adjacent to Andersonville. If all goes as it is supposed to go, we will close mid December and move less than a week before Christmas and our christmas card will probably be a moving card.
Maybe I will get better at blogging again and blog the putting the new place together business.
I say mostly because, I totally did change up my job hours/availability, and by change up I mean dial down. Which was great! Is mostly great. I mean it would be great if I hadn't gotten a phenomenal opportunity to help put together the quilts for a fairly famous quilter's first book of quilt patterns. It is awesome, and I cannot believe that I am getting to do it and it is fun. BUT.
But I am only ever working or sewing. Sometimes I am sleeping. And I am basically not at all working on my own projects, so that is not awesome. However, there is only about two months left and my life becomes my own again AND I am getting paid in the meantime.
And it is fun and a good opportunity. Although I broke my sewing machine, so right now there is not a lot that I am getting done.
I have been letting things get me worked up that are none of my beeswax and also things I can do nothing about. Other people make choices I think are bad. I cannot change their choices. I CAN change how I react to them. Ummm, this week that has been harder. I'm working on it.
I'm also working on a few other things to get myself in a better place.
Among other things, I'm taking my schedule more into my own hands. I have two part time jobs which sounds awesome until you realize that two part time jobs usually mean working 6 days a week and occasionally seven (but often for shorter bits). I had a talk with my boss at the job that has flexibility and am working on shaping that schedule for the better. I also am going to take responsibility to build in me time. The bonus of my part time jobs is that I can sort of take time off whenever I want. But I have not been doing this and sometimes getting only 2 or 3 whole days off in a month. SO OF COURSE I AM FEELING WORN OUT!!! In 2013 I am going to take time off in one day me times hopefully every month and definitely every other month, and I am not going to let myself feel bad about it. Just because I can work everyday does not mean that is a good idea for my well being, and I am fortunate enough to have a boss that appreciates that my well being is good for my working.
I have had both a wonderful year and an emotionally rough one.
Wonderful because my job(s) generally make me happy, we got married, we had an amazing honeymoon, and we are very lucky people to have such comfortable and fortunate lives.
Then its been emotionally rough, and I don't know why.
I got a concussion in August, I suppose it could have something to do with that, some sort of post-concussion syndrome. But it has happened before unrelated to concussions, so it hardly seems fair to blame it.
It has gotten worse since I cut my finger and went to the ER last month, but I am not sure if it is stress and anxiety related to that or to sleep deprivation from the business of retail in December.
It could be anything. I definitely feel unlike myself. And I have struggled to behave like a reasonable human, especially when tired.
When I was about 20, I confessed to my sister that frequently when driving I would have these unbidden crazy thoughts where I would see in my mind terrible accidents take place between me and other specific cars on the road with me at the specific moment I had the thought. I would see a tanker truck and a fiery explosion engulfing me as I drove past it. I would see a pickup swerve over into my lane.
These things weren't real and they never happened but the thought flashing into my mind was a pretty regular occurrence. It should be no surprise that I was an especially nervous driver and to this day hate to drive.
I told my sister that with the feeling that you know everyone has thoughts kind of like this. They just happen. They're normal. My sister was horrified, and then tenor of her reaction told me that this was not in fact normal. She'd never ever ever (pre Taylor Swift) like ever had that thought or anything like it, and she was pretty sure most people don't think like that.
I don't own a car and rarely drive, so the car thoughts are not back.
But thoughts like that are.
Since the finger incident. I see it happen again and again and again. Sometimes I know it is a replay of the bit of finger I accidentally amputated. Sometimes I know it is a new fresh imaginary amputation. The worst of the cranky emotional attitude breakdowns I've been having date to about then.
Was it the pain meds?
Is it the anxiety?
Is it the lack of sleep caused by the inability to fall asleep amongst my mental amputations?
Is it all of the above?
Or is my brain chemistry just kind of fucked? And has it always been?
Like me and my constant what to define my life with struggle. The last post (months ago--sorry ya'll) was all about it. And my friend Jim posted in the comments that to define myself by a single line or word seemed limiting, and he asked if I really wanted to limit myself? He's absolutely right. I don't.
And let's face it, a lot of the worry in that post had to do what other people would think about me, and I ought to focus on living a life (work and all) that I think well of. Well at the very least constantly aspiring to that.
I'm much better at ironing out my life so I get up and I accomplish things both for the household and myself. We've been eating very well at home lately. I have written basically nothing towards any romance novels, but I have finished what feels like a gabillion quilts. And actually, I am going to start selling quilts. Just baby ones and some throw quilts that are not time intensive, so I don't have to charge a fortune for them. It will be a start.
It stemmed from a conversation that the fiancee and I had over dinner last week about finances and worry about money. I am getting X amount to use to build up some stock and the idea is that if nothing else at least I will make quilting a hobby that is a wash rather than an expense and WHO KNOWS if anything more could/will come out of it. So, if you want fun modern baby quilts, call me! Or really email me.
Also we addressed some big clouds that had been hanging around off and on over the finances lately with the biggest fix being both of us accepting that just because he is good with money in manner A does not mean that I can be good with money in that way, but I can be great with money if we use manner B for me even though he thinks that I should be driven insane by living that way. Major lesson learned there: we are not the same and cannot be expected to do things the same way with the same degree of success. So we each are dealing with our portion of the family budget in entirely different ways! Yeah that was one we should've figured out MONTHS ago.
Well, I guess not reinventing my life, more of a reorganization of my life.
If you've been reading this, you can see that I have been working only part time in retail since May. Which is actually pretty great for my health and sanity. It lets me work on artistic and creative things, and it lets me get a good amount of sleep, and working retail means I am not sitting on my fat ass. Well let's face it my flat ass. I'm up and about. And I like all of that. It also gets me out of my house which is good for my emotional stability (if I was just not working I would live in a cave of blankets on my bed and not see other humans while I forced myself into a downward spiral of depression and an upward spiral of weight gain).
All of those are good things and mean that I have a life I am really pretty happy with. I could list the reasons why my life is not flawless but who's life isn't flawless? And that just gets petty.
So my life is good. But it has also precipitated a bit of an identity crisis for me because I haven't been a person without an identity wrapped in my own work since I was in high school, probably before, even at points when I was unemployed but devoted to some thing.
But now I don't really have an identity that I feel comfortable sharing when people ask what do you do.
I don't want to say I'm a part-time manager at a large national home goods retail chain because although I do that and I enjoy, I don't think it reflects what I am. Okay and maybe because I am a big snob. And maybe because I am embarrassed to say that to fancy people with fancy jobs who ask me this when I am out with the fiancee who's fancy job let's me work part time.
I'm a quilter is tricky because I am just an amateur at that really.
I'm a stay at home cat mom, but that just makes me sound cuckoo bananas. Although it sort of is the most true. I am in planning to become a stay at home mom for whence we have babies in the future. So I can't just stay home with the cat now. I don't even really want to. But I keep the place tidy, I make dinners and stock the fridge and run the show and do volunteer work. All of which would be acceptable as my life IF I had a baby or two, but I don't so I worry that I sound like a spoiled baby myself (and maybe I am, maybe that is the root of the crisis).
I don't even know exactly what I would want to be.
Well, that's not entirely true. I would like to be a romance novelist. I have several bits and pieces of novels, some of which are total crap and others that could be a good novel if I ever finished them. Before I didn't have time. Now I do, and if I set down to finishing them and refining them, I think--no I KNOW--I could get them published. And if I could replace my part time job income with a novelist income (I'm not looking to be Jennifer Weiner or Nora Roberts or Danielle Steele, I am just looking for a few books a year from like Blaze or Harlequin) then I would have my ideal life. I think (I know, I am so non-specific about this).
So that is the root of the reorganization. Changing/structuring the life I have today to give me time to/force me to write on the novels, so that someday soon I will have one to submit to publishers so that by the time I quit work to have babies or adopt babies or whatever, novelist income will be sufficient that I never have to go out and get a job again.
The reorg means no more sleeping in for no reason and getting up at a regular time each day. It means voicing the secret goals so someone somewhere will hold me accountable to them just by checking in on my status. It means using time to write each week a few days a week for a few hours a week. Which technically is what I should be doing now. But I plan to build all these steps in slowly so I work my way up into a habit (like I've done with flossing and my nightly face routine). I need to learn to walk before I enter a marathon.