|Posted by Tricia Drover on December 28, 2016 at 2:10 PM||comments (0)|
A year later and things certainly don't look any rosier; at least not in terms of what is happening in the world.
A year ago I was afraid and that was before Donald Trump was going to be president.
A year later and yes, I am still struggling with anxiety. I still fear the future. I am still avoiding the news.
However, the actual events of the past year have actually been really wonderful for me personally.
Career-wise, this year was probably the biggest of my life. I achieved a major career milestone with my CRSP designation. I received a raise and promotion at work, with the promise of more of the same in the coming years. I love my job. It is fulfilling and challenging, yet I don't feel that it creates stress or tension in my daily life. I like my office. I like my co-workers. I like the owners of the company. Work is a happy place for me.
At home, things are wonderful. Odin is finally getting the recognition and help he needs for his ASD. Arlen is a happy and intelligent boy who has shown great promise in many areas (reading, math, swimming, etc.) Donald and I are happy and hoping for another baby to join us in the coming year. My father is in better health and spirits than he was a year ago. My sister and her husband moved to a beautiful piece of property and now have a charming farm full of animals for us to visit. My other sister is happier than I think I have ever seen her. We have many friends in our lives, including some new friends we made over the past year. Our lives are filled with people that we love.
I was able to make some really beautiful memories this year. Weddings, babies, weekend getaways - 2016 was full of amazing moments.
Financially we are secure. Overall we are healthy. We live in a beautiful space in a beautiful place.
We have health, wealth, and safety.
It is perhaps this near-perfection of my current that makes me so apprehensive of the future. Life cannot stay so good forever. Maybe in some ways it is easier to think of apocolyptic, world-ending events than to fear the more likely things that could rob me of my personal happiness.
We do not know what the future holds. It is inevitable that all things will end. In the fullness of time we all become anonymous. To waste today being fearful for tomorrow makes no sense. Tomorrow will take from us the reality of today. But tomorrow never really comes. Today - this moment - is all we will ever know. We do not have to deal with tomorrow's reality yet. Worrying about it will not make tomorrow better.
Live concious that your decisions will have repercussions, but do not live in fear of things that you cannot control. Tomorrow is - and always will be - something that you cannot control.
Give thanks that today is here. It is a gift.
|Posted by Tricia Drover on January 8, 2016 at 12:40 PM||comments (0)|
Unfortunately the overwhelming sense of impending doom and chaos in the world has not improved much in the past couple of months. The hardest part about this generalized anxiety is that I am not the only one experiencing it. It is harder to move past the fear when it is validated in others.
However, fear for the future is never logical because you simply never know a) what will happen and b) what impact that event will have on you personally.
As much as it feels like a cowardly move, I have decided to create a bubble for myself until I can either deal better with what is happening in the world or the world seems a less terrifying place.
That being said, I can imagine this bubble being in place awhile...
However, regardless of the state of the world or the amount of clonazipam I am taking, the fact remains that life is short. Even if none of these terrible things happen, one day this life will end for me. I will not always be here. The people and places I love will not always be here. All things are transient. All things are temporary. All moments are one moment.
While I struggle to accept that, I also know that it means I need to do a better job of focusing on what I really want in life. What do I want to accomplish? What do I want to do with my life? If I were to die tomorrow, or next week, or next month, would I be happy with the way I had spent the hours between then and now?
These are the goals I am setting for myself. Not New Year's Resolutions, but just goals on ways to help me better enjoy my time on this planet:
1. Write a book and try to publish it. For real. No more saying that I will do it one day, or that I almost did it once. Time to become a real author.
2. Meditate daily. Although I also want to continue with yoga and mindfulness, it is the mediation habit that I think will truly change my life.
3. Have more (and better) sex. Focus on my sex life. Try new things. Enjoy my partner. He is pretty amazing
4. Cut out social media as much as possible. I am not going to get rid of my Facebook or Instagram entirely, but I would like to go down to checking them only a couple of times a week. And definitely never, EVER facestalking anyone anymore. That is a complete and utter waste of time, and time is the only precious commodity that we have absolutely no control over.
5. Be more mindful with my children. Not only do I want to be more present when I am with them, but I also want to set a better example with my actions. I want them to grow up to be compassionate people that are amazed by the world around them, so I need to be that person too.
These goals are ambitious, but as someone that has set (and successfully achieved) goals since I was eleven years old, I feel confidant that I can look back on this entry in a couple months and feel like I have made some real progress.
2016 will be the year of being the person I am meant to be.
|Posted by Tricia Drover on November 25, 2015 at 12:05 PM||comments (0)|
The world is an absolutely terrifying place right now. War. Climate Change. Terror. There is almost no good news. I feel like we are on the verge of catastrophe.
And yet my life is so wonderful. I am so happy. Everything is exactly how I want it to be. I couldn't ask for more.
I suppose if the world had to end, that is the note I would want it to end on. Rather pessimistic and dark thoughts, but at the same time I have to admit that I have my happy ending.
I have an amazing husband, joyous children, and a beautiful home. I see the people I love most in the world on a regular basis. I have a positive relationship with my family and friends and they all know how loved and appreciated they are. I have a job that I enjoy and I am on the path to a career that stimulates me. I have the opportunity to explore a variety of interests and experiences. I have safety, shelter, nourishment, and indulgences. Other than my far-reaching anxiety about the state of the world I have no real on-going problems. Life is truly, honestly wonderful.
Things could change tomorrow. In fact, they likely will. Probably not in the way I anticipate but change is one of the few definite things in life.
Another definite thing is the fact that the only moment we can guarantee that we will have is right now. All of the moments past are gone, all of the moments to come are only possibilities. Right here and now is all that we know we have. Spending it regretting what has happened or afraid of what will happen means that your entire life will be wasted. Life is only right here and now. There is nothing more than this moment. Being afraid of tomorrow is ridiculous because there simply is no tomorrow. There is only now.
Sometimes I wonder if there is any point to any of this. I mean, why bother planning for a future that I have no control over? It is possibly a future that will never come.
And then I read this today:
It is a good reminder that, no matter what happens, we cannot truly be destroyed. Even if we are vapourized by the end of the world the energy that made us still exists. We will always be. Life will always be. Humans can destroy a lot, but we cannot destroy everything. There is a purpose beyond day-to-day existence. I believe that. And believing that makes my fear of tomorrow seem rather insignificant.
We cannot control a lot in life, but we can control how we think. And obsessing about things that are happening that I have no control over is not going to help me enjoy my life at all.
Every moment that we experience love is a moment that we make the universe a better place. One day we will no longer exist on this crazy, mixed up planet. One day we will drift on - whether it be individually or collectively, everyone currently existing on this planet today will one day cease to be in their current forms. That is a certainty. But what is also a certainty is that none of us will cease to exist entirely. The pieces that created us will live on in some form. We are all a part of the great existence. We are all a part of something much larger than ourselves. Something that cannot be destroyed by war or human ineptitude.
The moments that I spend with my loved ones are the moments that matter. No one can take those from me. It is in my control to appreciate them. I have the choice to enjoy my life here and now, and not be afraid of what might happen. I have the choice to be present.
|Posted by Tricia Drover on October 28, 2015 at 5:10 PM||comments (0)|
Now that I have been able to significantly reduce the amount of stress in my day-to-day life, an interesting side effect has occurred. Now that life TODAY is so good and I have come to terms with the issues of my past I find myself continually distracted by fear for tomorrow.
Ironic, isn’t it? I finally get to a point in my life where I am happy and functioning and I end up handicapped by general anxiety about what might happen.
This has to stop. This is no way to live.
I know that when I look back on my life my main regret will be that I didn’t enjoy the moment enough. I have spent far too much of my life afraid. Far too much of it waiting for…what? A happy ending? A promise that everything would be okay? Someone to turn off my anxiety switch?
I need a new answer. I need to find a way to rewire my brain. I can’t change the fact that bad things may (indeed, will!) happen but I can change the way I live my life so that I can enjoy it as much as possible in spite of life’s inevitable challenges.
ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) is a recurring theme in my life. So is mediation.
It is time to see where those paths take me! A new journey of self-discovery is about to begin.
|Posted by Tricia Drover on August 25, 2015 at 1:45 PM||comments (0)|
Art is your expression of the meaning of life. Art is how you express your experience on this earth.
I have been doing a lot of thinking about why my art doesn’t resonate with very many people. Is it because I have no talent? I cannot answer that. The very definition of the word “talent” is subjective. Is talent the natural ability to do something? Is it the ability to do it better than most? Differently than most? Or is it all of those things and yet still something more? I don’t have the answers to any of those questions.
However, talent does not equal appreciation, however you define it. People like what they relate to. They respond to the familiar. If someone creates something that mirrors their own experience, they have a reaction to it. Popular art is art that speaks to the masses.
I am not someone that deals well with the masses. I have never understood what it felt like to be a part of the crowd. I have always been different. A little awkward. A little misunderstood. It makes sense that what I create has these qualities as well. It is understandable that my life experience is not one that is understood by all.
However, I refuse to believe that it isn’t understood by any. Just because I am not typical, that does not mean that I am alone. There are others like me. I know this, because I have responded to their offerings in the past. And some of them have been relative appreciated and accepted by the world at large, because deep down perhaps we are all a little awkward and misunderstood.
I don’t care about being popular. I don’t care about having everyone like me. I would just like for someone to respond to what I have to say. If I could touch just one life it would be enough. If something I wrote made someone else catch their breath and go “yes, yes that is exactly how it is!”; that moment alone would validate all of my efforts.
But why do I need validation? Why isn’t creation an end in itself? Why must someone else relate to the way I see the world for it to have value?
Perhaps it isn’t the validation I crave. It is the connection. Art is also there to make us feel less lonely. It is a way for us to express ourselves so that others can say “yes, yes that is exactly how it is!”
Art is connection, and division, and a million other contradictions.