I have always known that my family has unconditional love for me and that I would not have survived without it. I have serious issues that make it difficult to be around me in my alternating episodes of angry outbursts and lack of interest. I am grateful for the love and support my friends and family have given me. Our family has experienced true tragedy and grown closer. We also face "normal" challenges in life, like everyone else, most of which might be due to our own making. At times our decision making process is questionable at best. Somehow, something usually comes along to make it okay, or seem predetermined. But, if your fate is really out of your hands, why am I up at midnight blogging my sorrows? Shouldn't I just be sleeping with the comfort or utter acceptance that it is what it is and there is nothing I can do to change it? A huge part of me believes that things happen for a reason and all works out in the end. But, I continue to over analyze and make plans I don't implement. And, here I sit.
All that rhetoric leads me back to my gratitude for true friends and good people. Over the past year, I have had the good fortune to discover some true friends through times of bad fortune. Enter the local character who doesn't seem to realize that her actions and words adversely affect the well being of others. I just erased a full (long and boring I'm sure) paragraph explaining how hurt I was yesterday by this person I thought cared about my well being. The point I really want to make is how I found who I can count on and who should cause me pause. I have no filter and provide way too much information to people. Some they eat up like good gossip, if there is such a thing. Some they are appalled by and sometimes I can be down right shocking and offensive myself. But, I still find people who are willing to help me and be there for me. I used to be so cynical as to think I could count on no one, not even me, but I have learned better.
My aforementioned issues trigger anxiety that reduces my mental acuity. To those that care about me, I have shared a couple of startling examples. This week I forgot my own daughter's birthday! Who does that? The next day, I asked my other daughter if her cousin was having a girl or a boy. This cousin, my sister's daughter, is often referred to in the family as my third daughter. The crazy indicator is that she had the baby in December. I have held her in my arms and rocked her to sleep. It is times like this that my very good friend, who sacrifices time away from her family to help me, makes me realize how lucky I am. She empathizes and accepts me, problems and all. She expects nothing from me when she gives of herself and rearranges her life to be part of mine. I would like her to know how much I appreciate her love and friendship.
That is a familiar story when I go over it in my head. I have another friend who, during times of great strife and confusion in her own life, is there for me in actions and words. She never complains when I blow off steam or lose my focus, which by the way is much more often than most people would accept. Most people would have given up on me long ago. My friend uses her precious energy and expansive talents to help me personally and professionally. I love to see her in design mode. She makes me smile. She too has empathy for my emotional challenges and loves me in spite of myself. She and the group of her close friends, who I call the 3(+1) Musketeers, have been a support system for me all their own over the past year. There are many times when I wonder how I would have managed without them.
I have another friend who I can say anything to without her judging me. She is very classy and very unlike me in that and many other ways. Yet, I am lucky enough to call her my friend, we even jest about her being my BFF. The story has very funny roots involving another character I met though TPH. One of the 3 Musketeers was crafting with this very interesting character at my store and was adopted as her new BFF. We kid the other 2 in the close knit group mercilessly about it. The 3 very diverse personalities meld into a single unit when they are together. Their friendship is a bond held together with a common sense of humor and unconditional love. They make each other laugh and feel pain and experience joy together. It is an enviable relationship, perhaps evidenced by my use of the word 'together' in each of the preceding sentences.
I am very aware that all my friends with one exception I met at the store. It is my life, as my work has always been. I allow it to consume me sometimes, like now for instance. But, there are other times when my lover and reason to look toward the future and smile, brings me back to what really matters -- my home life and family. I have already lost everything monetary or material trying to make the store a success, so there really should be nothing to worry about except losing the store completely. I see the opposite happening, with the help and support of my friends and have faith that I will solve my main obstacle to success soon. One thing I can do is to stop what I am doing and send out an email to promote business, then get as much sleep as I can. Memo and I are headed to Savannah at dark thirty tomorrow (in a few hours) to attend her cousin's wedding. Blog at 'ya soon!