Historic sites always intrigue me. From old homes, historic downtown areas to National Parks where the battles that are the bases of our country, I enjoy roaming them all. I'm not sure you would call me a history buff...I know probably just about as much as anyone else. And if I don't I will look up the information.
It's the roaming all these sites that I find the most fascinating.
Ever since my first encounter with Valley Forge I find myself drawn to the sites more for the 'stories' that come with them. Sometimes just sitting quietly amongst the sites I find myself wondering who had walked there before me.
To think about all the men and women who gave up their lives for our country's freedom, for it's principals...sometimes it's very hard to put into words what I feel at that moment. My imagination goes wild...and I am in awe of my surroundings.
Today as I walked down the paths at Vicksburg, as I walked among some of the rows of soldiers graves from so long ago I try to picture the principals that we were waging a war over. It was such a different way of life...something most of us probably would not understand. But yet, sacrifices were made and a bloody civil war tore our country apart....it's unbelievable.
Later I wandered the historic district and found it just as fascinating. Even had an early dinner at a place that was called "Walnut Hill" that had to have the best fried chicken I have ever had!!! And I won't even mention the fried dill pickles...yep...fried dill pickles. You have to have lived in the deep south to understand that food. Today I'm determined to find fried green tomatoes. And next week I will work all of this fat and carbs off helping my daughter-in-law clean up the old house and set up the new....
In the mean time...I'm enjoying it all...
Thursday, June 3, 2010
Day two of this adventure and I am so very glad I did this. Yes, it was sad leaving Marco Island...my Mom and Dad, my friends and the beautiful beaches. But as I have said before, it was time. And when I was going down Barfield all I could think was that I was finally doing it.
Surprisingly I traveled over 600 miles that first day. Never planned on doing that many that quickly but it just happened. I did leave early and breezed through most of the major cities with little or no traffic. I made Tallahassee by 1:30pm and figured I would be twiddling my thumbs the rest of the afternoon so I kept on going to Pensacola FL. After a quick dinner I crashed. Sleep came easily and I woke to the familiar sounds of those early morning thunder storms so common to this time of year.
Today I took my time getting ready and was on the road by 9:30am. Alabama went quickly and Mississippi was quite an adventure. I decided to take the road less traveled and venture into the back roads of the Mississippi delta. Small towns, a slower pace and some beautiful scenery. Though all of it was beautiful when I reached Vicksburg I was ready to get out of the car and do some walking.
For these last two days I've had a lot of time to think. Mostly about what I am doing...this packing it all up and moving almost 1800 miles away. Yes, I've questioned myself, but I think that is normal. But as the miles were traveled I became more secure that I was doing the right thing. This morning when I woke up for the first time in a long time I felt like I was finally on the right path...a certain peace had come over me and a realization that no matter what happens it will be okay.
I can tell you what tomorrow will hold and frankly, I don't care at this precise moment. And that is the beauty of all this. Finally having the faith and the belief to live in the moment, appreciate the day and not worry about tomorrow.
For now I comfortably cuddled in a nice comfortable bed...Shelbs right beside me. She's dealing with all this really well. I'm about ready to turn off the lights and sleep. Tomorrow is another day and I am aiming for Oklahoma. Nice and easy...no rush. :)
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Wow...it's finally here. Tomorrow at 7am I should be on the road. Once I made this decision I put the plan in action and just moved forward. There have been some stumbling blocks along the way, but nothing that couldn't be handled without a major meltdown.
Saturday night was a bit hard. Last 'whoopie party' of my group. But it was good...all good. In some ways it was a reminder that it was time to move on...this group helped me get to where I'm at today and if it wasn't for that...well...I wouldn't be doing this.
The last couple of days have been busy ones. Packing, last minute shopping, saying good-byes....much to do. Today I stuffed a fraction of my life into suitcases, boxes and any spare space I could find within my car. Last count...2 suitcases, 2 boxes, 1 CPU with monitor, laptop in briefcase, a box of resumes and paper, 1 long Rubbermaid bin, 1 small Rubbermaid bin, 2 overnight bags, 1 strong box, 2 bags of shoes (yea...I had a hard time separating from some), 1 combo box of makeup and jewelery, 2 soft carryalls--one for kitty food and stuff and one for my snacks and drinks. And then there is the litter box for the car, the litter box for the hotels, the extra box of litter (I might have gone over board there) and all the clothes hanging in the back. Two pillows, one blanket, a set a sheets and my towels. Yes...and it all fit with some room to spare.
It's been a long day. And yes...putting your life into suitcases and boxes does seem to put things into a different light. It made me realize that I can be happy with the minimal. The materialistic things are great, trust me I have a big storage unit of those. But when it came down to picking what I 'needed' to take with me...there really was very little.
I like my creature comforts and they are with me. But I'm also very ready for the simpler things in life. Or maybe I should say I'm looking forward to simplifying the complicated life I created. If that makes any sense.
So, tomorrow bright and early I"m off. I doubt I sleep much tonight but that is okay. It will all be okay.
Saturday, May 29, 2010
The other day a friend posted on face book asking if she should be embarrassed by the fact that she wanted to go to the new Shriek movie by herself...sans a child or grandchild. Everyone agreed...she should go. And I volunteered to accompany her. After all...why be embarrassed by yourself when you can take a friend along.
As I've gotten older,wiser or maybe it's indifference...but going places by myself is not an issue. Sometimes I even prefer it. Now don't get me wrong, I enjoy the company of others, but if there is something I want to do, to see, to experience and no one wants to go along...I'll just go alone. Not an issue. But there was a time when isolation, being a lone was more than just comfortable for me. It was a way of life.
The demons, those green monsters of life had taken over my existence and it was easier to numb everything, to hide from life rather than experience it. I had buried myself into a dark hole that I had no desire to come out of.
Sobriety had me climbing out of that dark hole step by step, learning to face the monsters without running from them. At first I still did not feel comfortable in social settings or even crowded spaces. Still found comfort alone and away from those that I felt did not understand me.
Once I learned to love myself again, to actually find out who I was it became easier to mix into society again. To the point that sometimes I just don't give a damn what others think. Not sure if that's a great idea...but it has it's good points!
Anyway, the other day a friend and I ventured into the local movie theater to watch the new Shriek movie..we even went to the matinee....sans any children as decoys. We were the only brave adults that didn't need the security of a child to see a animated movie. We ordered our coffee, Perrier and yes popcorn. Yep...popcorn with coffee. It doesn't matter...you have to have popcorn in a movie.
We got comfortable, settled in our seats and laughed our way through a great movie. Best part...rolly-polly Puss in Boots. Well....actually he had a hard time fitting into those boots with weight gain. But he made me laugh...a lot.
It was a great afternoon, with a friend. No embarrassment necessary. It's just another valuable life message that this program has taught me. Being comfortable with myself and most important, friendship. :)
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
No matter how often you tell people something, unless they are receptive to the subject or it's about them most don't really comprehend what you are saying until it is staring them in the face. And this move of mine is no exception.
This move, as improbable as it might have seemed to most, was always something I was determined to do. Especially if I could not find a job that did not fit all of my qualification. And as the days past and the offers were not coming in...well...it was only a matter of time. For my family, my parents, I don't think they really thought I would up and move over 1500 miles away...especially where it gets cold. I guess they thought I would stay here no matter what.
My mother has even said I need to find my own life...I guess she just didn't think it would be in another state. So today I think it hit her hard that I'm actually doing this. And trust me...as much as I want to do this, there are parts of it that are darn hard to do. Leaving my parents here in Florida is one of them. They are of an age that having one of their children close is a good thing. The problem being is that it was their choice to move to Florida, away from all of us when we were young and raising our families. Southwest Florida can be a logistical nightmare when it comes to traveling via air or road. I can't put my life on hold while they hold on to their illusion of independence. It may sound cruel but it's reality.
My mother even tried to use the 'how can you leave your support system and friends card.' I don't thing she wanted to hear that I would have a support system no matter where I ended up...the beauty of my program. And friendship...well...one thing I'm learning is that friends encourage you to live your dreams and will be there for you no matter what the outcome. At least I hope so...:)
When today started I had no idea I would be dealing with all this...today was for car maintenance and some travel shopping. In between I took down the curtains in my parents bedroom and dining room...washed them and then re-hung them...don't ask...it's a long story. But I did it because it made Mom happy and it was one more chore I could do.
The day ended with a wonderful dinner with a friend...a very good friend, at CJ's at the Esplande at sunset. A friend I'm going to miss sharing things with. But I know she will always be there...no matter what. And that is also another story. Anyway...even though it was a realization on both of our parts...this wasn't really good bye as much as it was a quiet celebration of that friendship.
Monday, May 24, 2010
Seven more days...truly I can't believe it's upon me so quickly. Having mixed emotions. Glad it's finally here but it is going to be hard to leave here with the intent to move permanently to Kansas City. It sounds so final even though nothing is ever final. I've been living each day as it comes and hope to continue with that thought in mind.
So today was organize the clothes. I've decided to ship the majority of my clothes via UPS so that they will be there before I get there...seemed to be the smarter thing to do. This allows me to pack more in the car...which is getting pretty full as each day passes. When I did this trip in Feb I found I took too much with me...I'm trying to play it smart this time. I am taking things with me to make my life comfortable as I transition. It may be a while before all my personal effects are with me again, so in the mean time I am taking the things that give me the most comfort.
But back to the clothes...I have too many. Seriously I can not believe I have so many and I haven't even checked the storage unit for the winter things that I need to get ready too. I know...winter is quite a bit time away, but not knowing when I'm shipping everything I need to have them ready to ship to me if I find myself still not completely settled. The key here has been organization and it truly amazes me I'm actually so organized. But I've had all the time in the world to plan this and it seem to all be coming together.
So...it's seven days and counting...and I'm ready to go...
Saturday, May 22, 2010
It becoming increasingly clear to me that in preparation of this move there is a lot more to do other than packing and changing my address. Everything has been in storage for a few months now so that is all taken care of. I've made list and yes, checked them more than twice, keeping myself on track and organized. In the back of my mind have been the goodbyes I would have to say...nothing permanent, but harder to deal with than just a casual...'see you soon.' It's all been on my mind daily, but nothing that has caused me stress or pressure to change my mind.
Today at a noon meeting one item that is still a festering wound opened up some making me realize that old resentment is still very much taking up space in my head. Actually hearing someone else, new to the program speak about resentments sparked this sore to bleed some more into my rather peaceful existence.
As with most resentments it is with another...someone whom almost two years ago decided she had an issue with me...which in turn had me resenting her for resenting me. Yes...it's a vicious, ugly cycle that is so easy for any of us to get caught up into if given the chance.
I know all about resentments. Very early on in my program not only my sponsor but everyone I talked to told me that resentments could kill the alcoholic. I heard what they were saying, it's just hard to understand what they mean until you actually have one and are trying to figure out what to do with it. First time I had one I was told to pray on it. That didn't go over to well and I lived with the resentment for a while till I let it go out of sear frustration at not finding the answer that I wanted.
And as time went on and steps were taken I truly did learn to pray on resentments, mostly praying for the other party. Yes...that worked. But this last resentment just doesn't seem to want to go away. Or should I say I don't want it to go away. And that seems to be the issue.
I use to have a friendship with this person. Not a great friendship...but she was a friend and I had respect. I kind of lost that when I realized what she was capable of and I should have let it go at that. But, true alcoholic that I am, had to take it to the next level and feel she had no right to do what she did to me. And I'm sure many have gotten tired of listening to that fact.
So today, after the meeting we had our normal Friday afternoon lunch and I sat across from another that at one point I had lost some trust in...but it's repaired now. I'm not sure that was even a resentment, more hurt feelings...but never the less, things are okay. As it should be. I can't change the past, just change myself in hopes of a better future. But it got me thinking. I need to let this resentment go before I leave here. I want to exit this part of Florida, this part of my life with only happy, pleasant memories...as it should be. I have nothing but wonderful memories of this place...I came here to get sober and I did. It's where my new life started and I don't wish it to be tainted with one unpleasant memory. So...it's gone....out of my life. No longer an issue because I can't let it take up the space it's squatted in over 2 years ago. It can't follow me to Kansas...when I go over the bridge leaving Marco I will wish it off at the top. Gone, taken by the warm breeze to the waters below. Life is good.