Who holds your umbrella during the shit storm?

umbrellas art flying
Photo by Adrianna Calvo on Pexels.com

Wanna freak people out? Thank them for being in your life.

I had a bloody awful morning. The waves of physical, mental and emotional exhaustion were sweeping my ass out to sea. It was bad. And… in that place, with the few gasps of air I could manage in between being pulled under, I was able to see people who are here for me.

I was sad about someone who wasn’t. And that’s dumb.  No one is obligated to check on me, or care for me, or anything, even if I’ve done it for them, there is no law saying it has be reciprocal.

So, I sent a few messages to a handful of people (we’ll call them my umbrella holders), ranging from “thanks for being my friend”, “sorry I’ve been a shitty friend to you”, “thanks for checking on me”, nothing major or long to anyone. And I think people jumped to very bad conclusions, which is fucked up for a few reasons. Is gratitude so uncommon that when it is shown to us, we assume the worst?

I posted a while ago about uneven significance. Some of my umbrella holders are people I have never offered anything to, really. And they are still steadfast to me. And that’s not fair. It’s amazing. I’m deeply humbled by that. And I intend to try to do better by them, as much as I can. And the person I was sad about, I’ve not only offered him an umbrella but I fucking built him like.. a deluxe shelter house with free wi-fi when he was going through shit, and when I vocalized my shit storm, he was MIA. And that’s okay. I unfriended and blocked him as an act of self-care. It’s not always bubble baths and face masks and time in nature.  Sometimes it’s… taking out the emotional trash, cleaning out stagnant, unhealthy energy. No drama, no hard feelings, just.. protecting my bubble. If people cut me out/off, I’d get it.  You do you, boo, if that don’t involve me, no worries, light and love to you.

The most amazing thing is, I know, in my core, the people I reached out to, were truly just like.. a drop in my umbrella holder bucket. If I canvassed my social media, my coworkers, my landscape, asking for support, saying I need help, reaching out, I know, without a doubt, people would rise up, they’d open up their umbrellas and keep me dry during my shit storm. Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable.  Let people surprise you. Good or bad. Either way, it’s a lesson, it’s a story, it’s a starting point for change and growth and improvement. And for the love of God/Goddess/Spirit, say thank you. Say it more often. Appreciate liberally. Love profoundly. Live openly… full assedly…  😉

“Now that it’s raining more than ever
Know that we still have each other
You can stand under my umbrella”  Queen RiRi

“Thank you for being a friend
Traveled down a road and back again
Your heart is true, you’re a pal and a confidant” Golden Girls Theme Song

 

What Passing Out and Throwing Up Taught Me About Love and Friendship

It was my birthday a few days ago. Not an exceptionally exciting one. 33. Big whoop. But, a birthday nonetheless.  I, even when I was young, didn’t much care for the hoopla of birthdays. Like.. hooray, I was born… woohoo.. basically if I got a slice of cake and a gift or two, I was more than content. Super low-key is kind of my scene.

I have been in pretty much back to back to back super sad, controlling, borderline emotionally abusive relationships, so I didn’t have much of a social life for most of my adult life (I was allowed to go out, but the amount of grief and questioning and hassle I would have encountered, and then the amount of guilt I would have felt and.. it just wasn’t really worth it.) It is only recently (within the last year or so, but kind of ramped up the past… 4 months, I’d say) that I have really kind of gotten out and about on my own, out of my shell and into the world. And I have been so very, very lucky in that, the people I have found, the people who have found me, are gems, true treasures. I’m #blessed.

So, birthday. Yes. My birthday fell on a night that our regular Wednesday night hangout was doing 80’s karaoke. I wish I had a pun here using an 80’s song lyric, and I apologize for failing y’all. I drank. A lot. More than I should. More than I ever have previously. Or ever will again. (I’m not doing one of those “I’ll never drink again” things, cause let’s face it, we all know that ain’t true, but I am never drinking to that extent ever again. Seriously. Promise made here) And it was not great. At all. I don’t mind being Tipsy. I do that well. But drunk me… ugh.

So… I drank a lot. And I basically fell asleep on one of my new best friends. He’s a trooper, and I love him, and I owe him. He was so sweet. And then I threw up a little. One of my other new best friends was nice enough to call it spitting up, which doesn’t sound near as awful or embarrassing, so I love her too. I had a few people help me clean up. I had a friend help me home, help me shower, put my ass to bed, made me breakfast the next day (which I was still too sick to eat) and let me nap before driving me back to my car, still at the bar.

I am a control freak. Thoroughly. I don’t allow myself to be out of control, ever really. It freaks me out. Not only do I have issues giving up control, but I then feel guilt about those who have to jump in and help me. So it’s kind of a double whammy of uncomfortableness for me. But I was out of control and you know what? I was taken care of. Incredibly well. By multiple people. Some of whom I’ve only really known a few weeks. And I had a few people check on me the next day. And no one is shaming me or making me feel bad (they probably know I’m already taking care of that enough all on my own…) Not only am I control freak, but I am so blind sometimes to the love and support that does surround me. Maybe it’s a pride thing, I convince myself I’m so capable and so strong and that I don’t need anyone, and that doesn’t allow me to see truly how many hands are held out to support me when I do need it.

So, while I’m not suggesting you go out and get black out drunk and puke on people, I am saying that maybe sometimes it is okay to be vulnerable (maybe you can tell that friend about your past, maybe you can let that co-worker know about your sexual preference, maybe that person genuinely does want to hear about your bad day, or whatever it is for you). Again, I will not put myself in that exact position ever again. But the level of love and care that was shown to me did truly bolster my faith in people. To see so many people step up and give me their best, when I was at my worst… that was like.. the best gift I could have ever received. Also, not eating for two days/puking I did manage to lose 4 pounds, which is a pretty awesome birthday celebration, though right now I am kinda… hungry like the wolf… sorry, I had to.