…Of the unemployed.
Of course, it’s a little different for me. Frankly, Quite. Different. I am unemployed entirely by choice: I’ll be starting nursing school in June and in the interim I am traveling to Argentina and then coming home to pack up my life (hopefully, downsizing dramatically) before moving cross-country in a little hybrid named Pedro. Not a bad next two months by any stretch of the imagination. But it is really hard for me to leave work behind! Each day so far, since my “last day” I have thought about my residents. I wonder how Addie’s* deep vein thrombosis is doing. Is she using her walker or wheelchair? What game did the ladies play at social? Mostly I feel a tremendous void in the absence of my resident interactions that nothing can suitably fill. Even as I feel surges of nervous butterflies when I imagine myself working as a nurse with patients, I crave that day too, knowing that it will satiate my hunger to help and heal.
In the meantime, I am trying my best to truly embrace and cherish each moment. As a human being, naturally my tendency is to gravitate towards all things happy and comfortable. To get past the pain, anguish and discomfort. But life is full of ups and downs and I don’t like feeling like I have been wishing away half of my life, or hurrying through it. While I don’t need to enjoy discomfort (unlikely, really) I can still let it wash over me without fighting it. The gist of this is something that a yoga teacher once taught me, and I am trying to instill as a value, as a new Chapter in my life is about to begin.
This is an excerpt from an email I just sent my sister:
It’s obvious, yet still so ironic, how much more you appreciate something once you are on the verge of losing/leaving it. The other day was our first real Seattle spring day…you know the kind– sunny but still a crisp bite in the air, puffy white clouds on a perfect blue sky. Perhaps there is a shower or two, but it is always followed by a rainbow…one of those days that would make your teeth hurt if it was sugar. Except that, thankfully, beautifully delicious days aren’t bad for you. Anyways, I went for a short jog in the park which (quite honestly) i practically had to drag myself out of the house to go on. I get stuck inside and then feel to lazy to move, or like I simply don’t have “time” to squeeze in the exercise portion of my day. But as I crested the first hill in the park, facing the water, I saw at least 5 people flying kites on Kite Hill, a smattering of kiteboarders riding the breezy waves on the Lake and a few owners being walked by their dogs. It was too pretty. I felt surrounded by happiness and beauty and it just spilled over in me! I started smiling and wanted to beam joy onto every person I passed. So silly, maybe, but I felt like I was finally shrugging off that heavy woolen overcoat of winter that had been weighing me down (and depressing me) more than I knew. It felt so good.
I wish I could just wrap that moment up like a candy bar and take a bite whenever my own personal rain cloud comes back to haunt me. But in the interest of embracing the discomfort a little more gracefully, I’ll take the rain cloud and the rainbow, because the presence of one makes it so much easier to appreciate the other.
One side story of today that made me smile:
Today I was hurrying (always hurrying lately, it feels like) to drop off a package at a UPS store. I parked in a little strip mall parking lot and cut diagonally across it, making a beeline for the store, skirting in between two bushes that made a nice little shortcut out of the parking lot. Guess I wasn’t the first one to have that idea, though, because two people stepped through the hole in the bushes before me…and then…a crow hopped out in front of me, and made his way through the secret passageway too! Oh, but of course, Sir Crow, you first! It was silly and funny and it made me smile. And helped me to slow down and appreciate the moment, even though it only included me and a crow.