Life Two-Point-Ohhhh…I Get It, Sorta


Yours truly, caught in a rare candid moment.

Yours truly, caught in a rare candid moment.  I know, you can’t capture dynamite fun like this.  Cram it with walnuts, Up With People!

My name is Paul, and I am 43 years old.

I have a wife and two young boys.  A dog.  A house.  I go to work.  I pay taxes. I cook, clean and help to manage the household.  I help neighbours when needed, I support causes when needed, I rest when needed.

I am also an alcoholic.  Recovered.  I do recover-y things like go to meetings, write, read, do stuff online, help others.  I pray, meditate, do daily reflections.  I do my best to eat well and exercise.

A few odds and ends perhaps still need tying up from the past, but all in all, I have a fairly tidy life.  Nothing Interpol would be interested in.  Or the RCMP.  Or even the security guard down at the local mall, guarding cell phone cases and discount shoes.

I don’t consider my life boring, but it certainly isn’t an episode of Hawaii-Five-O.  Or even The Golden Girls.  On the outside, it might seem dull.  Anyone that asks me what I do and where I go and how I play, will hear my response and will usually concluded aloud that I am not very much fun.  I’m a bit Ned Flanders in their eyes. And that’s Okily Dokily with me. I too use ice to add flavour to water.

im-so-bored

Don’t worry dear. We always have snack time.

The reason I bring this all up is two-fold.

The first is that I no longer judge myself against others and their own lives.  I certainly do compare at times – that I will admit.  I might find myself a bit envious of the younger chaps doing their things (or having their things done), or of others my age who are doing their fourth Iron Man competition while raising nine children and running a kennel for wayward Irish Terriers, writing seventeen novels a year (none with the letter “e” to make it more challenging) or remodelling their apartment for $150 and still making the cover of Home & Decor magazine (“SupaStahz” edition).  Then again, this is the sort of Facebook glossary of our lives, indexed to the shiny and glamourous bits.  Reality need not apply.

I also don’t go out much – I am a bit of an introvert and still have difficulty talking to strangers or getting too close to people.  Also, I don’t have anywhere to go, frankly.  Other than meetings, or hanging out with family, I don’t have any need to go anywhere.  I don’t go to pubs or drinking parties (why would I?) nor do I have any sort of club-like interests like macrame circles or Fight Club (yeah, I am aware of the first rule.)  But then again, that is my choice.  There is nothing stopping me from joining a Civil War Reenactment troop, or learning to play the lute, or being a part of a competitive cheese eating league.  If there is no sparkle and fizz going on with me, then the man in the mirror is to blame.

Whoa! Slow down there, Todd.  Let's leave some vacuum repair for when the other fellas show up!  Let's not have all the fun!

Whoa! Slow down there, Todd. Let’s wait for the other fellas to show up before showing me the Dirt Buster Original 9X-21A!  Let’s not hog all the fun!

Now, there is this thing that says that in recovery we are dullards.  Same in and out every day.  No colours and hues to the picture.  A drab load of laundry in a glittery ABBA-esque masquerade ball.  You know, feeding the thirteen cats before watching a few episodes of Coronation Street and some lovely biscuits before bed at 8 pm.  (I won’t lie – that kind of appeals to me.) It’s the feeling that perhaps the lights of life fade away to a dreary wash of grey and we stroll across a minefield bereft of drama blasts.  Might as well perfect shuffleboard now and get on with the Denny’s senior’s discount card application forms, right?

I know what you’re saying, you young, hip, newcomers to team sober – where’s the F-U-N? “You’re married, you have kids.  You have obligations and responsibilities. You have things to do.  I don’t,” you’d say, with your “You Go Girl” Friday night outfit on, wondering whose heart you’re going to break tonight.  And yes, you’re right – I do have those things. And yes, you’re right – I don’t have to worry about dating, moving in or out of places, relocating to different cities for jobs, going to social events where there is booze, etc.  You see, I enjoy my life precisely for those reasons.  I am grounded in something different.  I have a center.  I have a place that I am supposed to be.  I am taking care of people who mean the world to me.  I don’t have to worry about the next kegger or consider if that woman in the Match.com profile is really who she is or if she’s really a psycho, or if my ironic hipster beard is the right (or wrong) length.  Do I have enough Axe body spray on, and where are my quarters for the laundromat?

Oh crap - totally forgot about my goth horticulture meeting is tonight. Figures that I'm out of black lipstick and that Morlock the Destroyer still has returned my eye hoe!

Oh crap – totally forgot about my goth horticulture meeting tonight. Figures that I’m out of black lipstick and that Morlock the Eater of Hearts still hasn’t returned my garden fork!

I know I am not selling this, bear with me. Maybe it’s a middle-aged thing, but from this side of the field, on the bleachers and out of the game, so to speak, it’s all good.  I enjoy the lack of drama, to be honest.  I don’t enjoy the web of lies, of lies upon lies.  I don’t miss the arguments, the lack of sleep, the lack of serenity, the World War going on in my head all day, the drain of energy trying to be a chameleon, the constant sheet of black ice that was my self-loathing.  Sure, there were some gin and tonics thrown in that mix, and I may have actually enjoyed a few.  But in the end, there was no joy.  More importantly, where does my happiness lie now?

And while this is not necessarily about the perception of “boredom” in recovery (that’s another topic), it does tie into what I am experiencing these days.  The idea that my life, now sober, is forfeited of fun, is ludicrous.  The externals may have changed, the playmates and playgrounds may have change, but that is immaterial.  What has given me a hall pass into happiness and contentment is being comfortable with who I am, and not what I think I should be comfortable with.  Or what my social media splash page should resemble.  For this cat, life isn’t all fireworks crashing and splashing the sky with vibrant shades of shooting orange sherbet or snazzy turquoise.

Life is sparklers. Lots of little ones.  A laugh at the dinner table, a pat on the back, a smile to a stranger, a helping hand in the yard, a kind note from a fellow alcoholic, an unexpected hug, a made jump shot on the first try, a recipe that worked better than I thought, a call from an old friend, a handshake from an older foe.  I hold a sparkler when I find peace within the madness of a long lineup, I hold a sparkler when I read something that touches me, I hold a sparkler when a friend teases me about something only because he or she cares about me.

bad-parenting-02

Now that’s a new level of fun, if you ask me! Now, let me call Child’s Services.

My sober life is as dull as I make it.  And redefining “exciting” was all a part of seeing things in a new way.

Which brings me to the second point of this whole stepping back and hitting “pause” on it all.  Or at least, “check batteries”. This new life that I have had the blessing to have, this two-point-oh version that I get to embark on is something that is still new to me, and I still don’t fully get the why and how of it.  It’s like a new pair of jeans just washed – tight fitting, but knowing that at some point it will give and allow me to feel more comfortable in it.  It’s about walking about and trusting the process.  Trusting that the material will soften a bit, stretch out.  But it requires me to move about.  Taking action.  Seeing a point in the middle distance and making my way too it.  The jeans won’t release by sitting down and thinking about walking.

So what does that all mean?  I guess where I am at in this journey is the wonder of where does it go from here?  I know that my life was saved from one of ruin for a reason.  I could easily be dead, or in jail or still suffering a slow painful death out there.  I was given a reprieve for a reason.  I know it in my heart and much as I can look to the horizon and see the clouds rolling in just before the storm.  I know it in my heart as I can look into my son’s eyes and know that he’s about to break out into a smile and then lunge at me, landing a big karate chop into my belly (he does that a lot lately).  I know it as much as I knew that I needed to stop drinking.

This is Eye of the Tiger stuff.  Deep stuff.  I had to look deep within to find my truth.  And this is one of them.

This is Eye of the Tiger stuff. Deep stuff. I had to look deep within to find my truth. And this is one of them.

And that’s where the word “patience” comes in for me.  I know that there is something in the works for me. The Creator has set something out.  He’s stamped something on my spirit that echoes and taps at me, but I am not quite sure what it is.  I believe we all have it – that special something nested in our hearts ready to be unearthed when the time is right.  I just wished I knew the time.  And the treasure.  Perhaps it’s something already in front of my face, but my ego or my unwillingness disguises it.  Perhaps it’s already in play in my life and I have yet to meet it on the terms He sees fit for me to have them meet. Perhaps my heart and mind are too closed at the moment to see the real reason for me being here.  Or it’s just not time for it to be revealed.

It’s in our hearts and spirit that the answer lies in.  I spent my life looking for this thing in the external world – booze, jobs, women, status, etc. What I have come to see is that it was always an inside job.  I just don’t have the whole picture right now.  I liken it driving down a road at night – our headlight can only illuminate the next ten yards, and that is all we see, but somehow we drive hundreds of miles on the road.  Ten lit yards at a time.  Trusting in the process, again.  Trusting that things will be disclosed as needed.  And I have to find the patience to find that trust and hold it close and know that all will be fine.

So I live my life, and sometimes it feels that it’s measured out in school lunches, or dishwasher loads, or the work punch clock.  But I know that there is something greater at work, and that my life is being measured out in those sparklers too.  One shiny, shooting sparkler at a time.  Lighting that road up ahead of me, getting me to my destination.  I wish I knew the reason for the ride.  I wish I knew the pit stops ahead.  I wish I knew what I was really meant to do in this new life, this life 2.0.  I wish I had the owners manual for this new way of being. I wish I had the answers so that I can get a jump on it and really go to town on it.  I wish, I wish, I wish.  But I just trudge the road of happy destiny.  More will be revealed.  I have to wait.  Sit in the stillness and just listen for it.

You hear that?

That’s the sound of a new life…and a new way of being breaking through the darkness.  Like a sparkler, or the light seeping out from within.

sparklers

40 responses to “Life Two-Point-Ohhhh…I Get It, Sorta

    • I want patience NOW!!! Ugh. Doesn’t seem to work that way, does it? As my friend Kristen from Bye Bye Beer and I are oft to say – time takes time. I know, sounds trite and twee, but it’s the case. Hey, I am still learning it and I think it will be a lifelong lesson. But at least it’s something that I can keep improving. That’s the cool part.

      It will get there, Lucy…don’t you worry 🙂

      Thanks for being here.
      Paul

  1. You nailed it Paul. I love my quiet, tidy life now. My kids are grown and my hub and I can sit and be boring watching reruns of the Sopranos each night and that’s enough. But I’m 60 years old and I’ve done all the partying that I wanted to do. I imagine a sober life for the 30’s and 40’s would be a bit more challenging eh?

    • I think we all have our thresholds. Some of us were partyers, some weren’t. I am sure we all found the party scene a great way to be introduced to alcohol, or at least drink it in a way that didn’t seem out of place. I think alcoholic or not, we slow down any way. Who wants to be *that old person* at the club…ha ha. (there’s always one).

      I know single folks who are in recovery and it’s a bit more difficult for them. Even in 30’s and 40’s – dating and that sort of thing tends to traditionally revolve around some sort of alcohol – going for a drink, cocktail party, etc. But they find ways around it. Not everyone drinks. Most of the folks I know, all in their 40’s and with or without kids, don’t drink much. No party animals. No over-the-top antics. Sure they might have a bit too much Christmas cheer, but that’s about it. Once in a blue moon stuff. So it’s easier for me.

      But I agree, it can be challenging for some.

      Thank you for being here and commenting 🙂

      Blessings,
      Paul

  2. First off, if I hadn’t said hello before (I may have, but I don’t remember if I did or not). At any rate, I’m saying hello now.

    I’m 43 as well, never been an alcoholic, but alcohol abuse has touched my entire life – my father, step-mother, step-father, and my husband (who was a binge drinker). I guess the term is “para-alcoholic”.

    I had my own addictions though and I can so relate to the addiction to drama. I was a rescuer type, to, so I spent most of my energy trying to pick up the pieces of other people’s messes, and, in doing so, became codependent as there was always one drama after another around me.

    And often the boundaries between me and others became rather blurry. I had to let go of my male friends because of boundary problems. Seems like they reached their forties and turned to me to make themselves feel better about their own failing marriages. It took a while for it to become not okay, but it finally dawned on me the myriad was that was damaging me.

    Before the holidays, I’d started to go to Al-anon and Adult children of alcoholics meetings, but I wasn’t sure if I’m going to keep going. I’m listening to you and think that I will go to the ACA meeting tonight.

    I think you write so beautifully. Gorgeously even. And I appreciate the content of what you are saying, because I get it. I didn’t need the alcohol to have an addictive personality. I’d been addicted to people and I found my own ways of feeding that addiction.

    For me, I’ve had to learn a kind of sobriety. Relationship and drama sobriety. I feel both better and a little scared too. It’s hard to know what to do with myself sometimes. And when I feel tired, I feel sad. I always want a little ‘excitement’ to have that pick-me-up and I can’t do what I used to do get that. I don’t always feel like I know what I’m doing in life and I struggle with a kind of floundering around…

    So, since tonight is an ACA night…and your story warmed me up today, I’m going to go and not make any excuses to stay home.

    I just wanted to say thank you for that.

    Casey

    • Hi Casey…nice to meet you. I think I actually follow you in my alter-ego blog, A Gesture Less Impure. Nice to have the crossover.

      I have to say, nothing makes me happier than having someone read and comment and understand and who *isn’t* an alcoholic. There is something wonderful about that, something I can’t quite put my finger on it. But clearly you have that lineage – surrounded by alcohol and yet not one of us. Thank goodness. But you have been touched by what they call a “family illness”. I know many who go to Alanon and ACoA (my sponsor goes to ACoA). I have some Alanon material that I read now and then. I listen to some wonderful recovery podcasts from Adult Children. It helps me see things in a different light.

      And that is why I love what you said here.

      Alanon’s are not addicted to alcohol, but to the alcoholic. When the alcoholic goes sober, the Alanon is not sure what to do. Their “fix” is gone. It’s a strange dynamic, but one that is old as alcoholism is. Fixers, rescuers, co-dependants…all a bit different, but seem to latch onto alcoholics or addicts. (Have you read Co-Dependancy No More? I have it – it’s wonderful). Anyway, I am sure you know a lot more about this than I do.

      Alanons, ACoA, alcoholics, addicts, Narcanon, etc…we all suffer from many similar things – and what you mention about drama and boundaries strikes home too. Emotions Anonymous is for those who get a high from drama. And some alcoholics go there too. it’s amazing how much is crossed over.

      But I just wanted to thank you for sharing here. Thank you for showing just a touch of what it’s like to be on the other side of this. It brings a whole new brightness and illumination to this process.

      I am glad that what was said resonated, and thank you for the compliments and kind words. Made my day, especially coming from a “real” writer. 🙂

      Blessings, and I know our paths will continue to cross. I will make my way over to your corner of the world sooner than later.

      Paul

      • Thank you Paul. I’m really glad I went last night. I had unloaded a few things that were hard to admit about myself but that I’d know was going to get in the way of healing if I didn’t address the skeleton’s in my closet. It helped, a lot, I think.

        Though I wanted to clarify:

        I’m not a “real” writer(though it kind of sat nicely for a minute), at least insomuch as never having been published (though that might change). But I’m a “real” writer in that I write from the heart, as authentically as my level of development allows me to write. I may actually get my ADD-ish brain together enough to publish some day. Maybe.

        “Alanon’s are not addicted to alcohol, but to the alcoholic. When the alcoholic goes sober, the Alanon is not sure what to do. Their “fix” is gone. It’s a strange dynamic, but one that is old as alcoholism is. Fixers, rescuers, co-dependants…all a bit different, but seem to latch onto alcoholics or addicts. (Have you read Co-Dependancy No More? I have it – it’s wonderful). Anyway, I am sure you know a lot more about this than I do.”

        I’ve read some of CNM a while ago.

        I met my husband in college but dated him after I graduated. We all drank fairly heavily. It wasn’t something that I recognized as a problem, because it was only 2-3 times a year that alcohol became a problem. But this happened for 15 years before I realized how much it WAS a problem.

        He didn’t look like the kind of alcoholic my dad, step-dad and stepmom had. In fact, he managed to avoid a DUI for 15 years…but then finally got caught with a 0.20 BAL. Yeah, that surprised him a lot.

        And one last thing, I’m really learning how to stop being so damn self-sufficient and I’m learning (slowly) to let my ego defenses soften a bit so I can actually feel supported and trust that I really don’t have to do this alone and understand I am not meant to do this alone.

        So, thank you…

        • Sheesh, apparently can’t think well.

          “He didn’t look like he had the kind of alcohol problem my dad, step-dad and stepmom had.” I try not to use the term alcoholic. I don’t think it’s fair to use that term because I don’t want to encompass the person with the disease…so I see it as a problem a person has, not as something that defines his or her entire self.

          If that were the case, I’d be a love-aholic. Which just sounds silly, though I DID have problem with love.

          at any rate,

          “I know our paths will continue to cross. I will make my way over to your corner of the world sooner than later.”

          That would be very nice. =)

          Blessings to you, too

          Casey

  3. I relate to life 2.0 looking dull from the outside but it feels good from the inside. I wonder what season is next? There were no seasons in my drinking days. Everyday was pickled, held in place by the bottle. Nothing could progress or play itself out. I don’t miss the contrived drama at all.

    • Ooohhh… I like this new season thing you bring up. Love it! Never saw it that way. Assuming a static-ness won’t do then, will it? It’s quite a concept, this fluidity, this constant improving, this shifting, this coming into a new own again and again. Far from the pickled days where everything was matted down and just stuck…ugh.

      Thank you for the refreshing view on this, Karen. Love how your brain works 🙂

      Blessings,
      Paul

  4. Good post, and this time I had got my stuff underway before I saw your post in my email. Those that wish for non-boring ain’t figured it out yet. I have this overwhelming urge to say that what I read was that you got the attitude of gratitude realized, congratulations, that is a great place to be. Take care+++

    • “Those that wish for non-boring ain’t figured it out yet. ” Amen to that, brother. Amen. You pretty much said what I didn’t say, or at least between the spaces. Wise words, condensed to simplicity and yet broad and roomy with insight. That’s one of the many reasons I am glad you’re in my life, brother.

      Thank you – my gratitude includes you in there.

      Blessings,
      Paul

  5. Hi Paul
    I am totally in the same place, approaching one year sober and living my boring life one day at a time. Only thing, I’m miserable. This post is EXACTLY what i needed to hear today. I wish I wish i wish i wasn’t but that’s where I am today. But I’m gonna keep coming and wait for the miracle to happen.
    Thanks for sharing,
    Amy

    • AAmy – haven’t seen ya in a while…I am so glad that you’re here. Really. 🙂
      I am sorry to hear you’re not in the best place right now. I’d be lying if I said recovery and sobriety is bunnies and rainbows and fluffy things daily. or even weekly. I guess there are sometimes I barely hold on while the bull underneath me is bucking wildly and trying to toss me. Sometimes hanging on is what we do until it passes. Sometimes I just have to pray or talk to others or change something up so that I get that reprieve.

      Please do keep coming back. Let me know if there is anything I can do to help. Drop me a line at my email if you’d like 🙂

      thanks for the comments – I hope you are feeling better 🙂

      Love and light,
      Paul

  6. Wonderful and so right on for me as well now in my 23rd year of sobriety….. Boring? Sometimes but sobriety taught me to treasure each moment, and stay in the day even it if involves laundry and vacuuming:-)

    • Congrats on 23 years! Hard to fathom that time for me at times…but there it is, wrapped up in a wonderful smile and fantastic pictures there in your corner of the world. I will be visiting more often and not lurking as much 🙂

      I think you speak truth there – staying in the moment. I was just meditating, trying not to think about a court thing I have tomorrow, and I can hear myself (my other self) saying “there is no conflict in the now” – an Eckhart Tolle mantra. And it’s true. At this very moment, if I clear my mind and focus on now, there is no conflict. There is just this moment and nothing else. nothing attached to it. It’s when I impose a judgement or value on it does it become “good” or “bad”.

      So yes! treasuring the moment, seeing it for what it is, and enjoying it rather than worrying about the next moment…recovery has taught me that. And teachers like you remind me of this…it’s reflected in your own work.

      thank you for sharing of yourself.

      Blessings,
      Paul

      • Good luck Paul, with court tomorrow. It’s all good. There will always be things in our lives, that if we let them, will throw us off track. It’s all in how we choose to look at it. I’ve had more challenges in sobriety than I ever did drinking!! And I learned something from each one. Sometimes the lesson was painful, or difficult, but important for me to learn.
        Wishing you the best!!! And thank you for sharing as well!

        Tracy

  7. I love this!

    I have never been this bored in my life, yet I have never laughed so much in my life. And real laughs. Like down from the pits of your belly.

    I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

    xo
    amina

    • I love your thought here – never laughing so much in your life. It’s true, so very true, isn’t it? I remember the first belly laugh after I got sober and I never thought I would laugh again. What a gas! And when I catch myself with those laughs now – usually with my kids or wife – it’s a joy to have.

      I too wouldn’t trade it in.

      Thank you for this wonderful insight and peek into life’s joy, Amina. (I see it in your posts and pics, by the way!)

      Love and light
      Paul

  8. Awesome post! I couldn’t agree more. My hubby turned 40 yesterday and the card I gave him pretty much summed up our lives. Husband and wife out to dinner and wife says she’s going to go all out and order a cup of caffeinated coffee after 5pm – gasp! Yep, that’s what living on the edge looks like for me now and I wouldn’t trade it for anything!

    • Aw Chenoa – thanks for being here! I don’t get to see you here that often, so it’s always a blessing. And Happy Birthday to the lucky man! Welcome him to the 40’s club! I was laughing at the coffee thing – we are a bit like that too. We make fun of my folks at times because anything after 5 or 6 is forbidden, but I just know we will get there too…and then our kids will make fun of us as they stuff their face with anything and everything and not gain an ounce and stay up all night and still look radiant. Ugh.

      It’s a wonderful life…let’s keep it that way.

      Blessings and hope you guys had a great meal!

      Paul

  9. “And redefining “exciting” was all a part of seeing things in a new way.” So well said. Great post. I find my new sober life to be more exciting than ever because of redefining and I love it this way. Sitting at home drinking copious amounts of wine sounds so boring to me now.

    • Yes! Thank you Sharon for picking up on that – exciting is what we make of it, isn’t it? And the flip side is true – brilliant. Ever hang out with people who have been drinking some? THAT can be boring. And to think when we were in that state we thought we were having a blast, while others rolled their eyes…lol. The tables have turned, haven’t they?

      Thank you Sharon once again for bringing more clarity to our lives.

      Blessings,
      Paul

  10. Sparklers v Fireworks? I would choose sparklers everytime now.
    Fireworks are expensive, loud, showy, dangerous in the wrong hands and always an anti climax if I’m honest!
    I love that concept of little sparkler moments lighting up the path, not overpowering the true light, inside, shining out.

    • I would take sparklers too, Carrie. More affordable, easy to store, need no planning. Fireworks are overrated, but have their place – falling in love, having a child, etc. all demand fireworks! But like you, I enjoy the path begin lighted up like a little runway with the sparklers 🙂

      Thank you for the comments, my friend.

      Paul

  11. I love it! As a 9+-year sober chick who has a ‘boring’ life with sparklers and ‘exciting’ coffee mornings, I get this one. But I wouldn’t trade what I have for anything – I had the alcoholic drama and the revolving bed-mates and the excitement of ‘which bar will I go to tonight?’. Done and dusted to death, boy.

    Gimme the sparklers any day.

    • I love your 9+ years sober chick life! “Done and dusted to death” – love that line…may have to pinch it 🙂

      You live a rich life, Ms. Novelist. I love what you have done in these 9 years. Gives me hope.

      Hugs,
      Paul

    • Thank you! I am glad that it resonated with you. I am always worried that the pics take away from the usually more “serious” tone of the piece, but it seems to be alright. So I will keep them.

      Thank you for being here 🙂

      Paul

  12. I have often said (and have probably written once or twice) that if you were an outsider looking at my life, pre- and post-recovery, it wouldn’t look a heck of a lot different. I probably was a bit more social in active addiction, as I would create excuses to drink, and, now sober, I find I prefer my comfie pj’s to getting all glammed out to go sit on somebody else’s couch, but otherwise the externals were basically the same. The mind-blowing difference is the way I feel about my life, the peace and serenity I experience doing the same things that once filled me with either terror (if I had to do them sober) or some other extreme feeling (because I was no longer sober). And the lack of consequences, the ability to wake up each morning and not have to frantically remember what exactly I did the night before, the lack of need to cover up lies with more lies… well, if that’s boredom, then I will take it, every day of the week!

    Thanks for the reminder to be grateful for my boring life, Paul!

    • I don’t even know what to add to the beauty and insight and wisdom that you just demonstrated, Josie. I am the same in many ways – there isn’t a great deal of difference in terms of my external existence. I am just present (for the most part!) and available. I am not jumping out of planes or running marathons (yet), but I am here for my family and for my employer and for my recovery friends and other friends. A much different way of living (and hangover free!)

      thank you Josie for identifying and bolstering my outlook on things.

      Blessings and hugs,
      Paul

  13. “Nothing Interpol would be interested in” – oh but Paul, you just don’t know these days, you so don’t!! Still, you made me smile, to think this could be so, still.

    Paul, this is a great post to me (of much meaning to me) as I have often measured my life against others, thinking I “should” be in touch with people more or “should” this or that – even down to being alone but with my cat both New Year’s Eve and Christmas, thinking “What’s wrong with ME” … I have only just, only JUST recently accepted that, hey, I am a bit of a recluse and so be it. My sister thinks I should have counselling like she has had LITERALLY for more than 20 years, and should this and that, and recently visited and “made me” feel sorry for myself for being alone at Christmas, what was wrong with me, wrong with me,

    But actually, Paul, I’m in a place where I am actually strengthening, quietly.

    After my sister left I had a cold shower, and then cried a bit, thinking “So I haven’t made any ground since our childhood, I’ve got nowhere because I’m not in counselling like her, in a relationship like her, because I spend a lot of time alone (how else can you write?)” – but then after about 2 days (that’s how long her visit affected me), I realised this is me, how I am now here today, and I’m doing yoga, working, and feeling okay. I am slowly, slowly getting there, MY way.

    TOUCHE – I don’t go out much either, HEY! 🙂

    I just love the way you write, Paul. Your posts are always of meaning to me – and so love the pictures in between, SO love them.

    • I have found a soul sister 🙂
      I was mentioning on another blog that it is just now, now after 2+ years, I am slowly starting to get the idea of not being perfect, of being myself, of that flawed person and not feeling BAD about it. I am only now starting to get the idea that my quiet life, introverted and all, is okay. It is. I knew it intellectually, but to hear it resonate in my heart and soul…that’s different. That’s a new journey. And like you, with the cats and chillin’ and yoga and all that, that is OUR way of being. You are not your sister as much as I am not your sister. My wife and her brother are much different than me – they derive much energy and joy being surrounded by others, strangers or not. I get worn out easily. Not that I am a recluse, and I have to get used to being around others (another area of growth), but in the end, I know where I am at. It’s baby steps.

      You are wonderful where you are at. You are the best Noeleen that you are. Many would kill to have your life. Remember that!

      Much love,
      Paul

  14. Now why would you pass up a chance at competitive cheese eating? WHY PAUL? WHY????

    Anti-drama rules ~ and even though I wrote about my life in the 20s, I forgot to add that a midst all that glamo(u)r, I love to do jigsaw puzzles, read and play Scrabble. It’s a thrill a minute! Oh and cats, I like cats – I might be a crazy cat lady in my extreme antiquity (when I’m eating a cannoli every day). It’s something to strive for.

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