Wednesday, December 18, 2013

I'll Wait Here

I don't know what's wrong with me.

It's almost like I've just given up.

Or maybe ... more like I can't be bothered to bother.

Since we've been back from our last trip Joe and I have been out a fair bit in our local community doing things that need to be done to prepare for the holidays. This means, primarily, shopping. There are a couple of stores that Joe and I go to regularly, we both enjoy shopping there and we know the stores well. One of the stores and I came to an agreement a long while back, after I threw what they probably called a 'hissy fit' and I probably called 'impassioned advocacy,' that there would always be at least one open aisle that would cross the entire store and one that would go the length of the store. This is a promised made about holidays and holiday displays and I'm pleased to say that even with, now, three change of managers, the promise has been kept.

So, we were outside this store, getting ready to go in. I was feeling a bit tired from all the travel and from some of the expectations for work that I still had to fulfil. I looked into the crowded store, I could see what I've come to see as 'my aisles' there, free of displays, waiting for me. I thought about the fact that even with these open aisles, the crowds of people, the tremendous care that I have to take not to knock anything over, and it all just seemed too much. I asked Joe to go on ahead and I waited elsewhere in the mall.

I've done that three times this season.

I just can face the difficulties in getting by things and people.

This is a season where people are either extra nice or extra nasty depending on whatever stressors they are facing. Although annoying sometimes, I prefer the extra, and often unnecessarily, nice ones - even the ones I need to thank for help I didn't either want or need to the nasty ones. But the idea of the spinning the 'human spirit' roulette wheel can just seem to chancy. So ... I stayed out.

I don't do this.

This isn't like me.

I worry that I'm simply going to become content with waiting outside.

I worry that I'm going to give over spaces that I've fought to be in.

I worry that I'm building a barrier, in my heart and mind, that's bigger than any in the real world.

Or ... maybe I just need a rest.

Or ... maybe I just need to give myself a break.

Or ... maybe I'm just gathering steam.

I hope.


Anonymous said...

Needing your batteries recharged is likeliest. Consciously give yourself a holiday from it all and see if by January you aren't fighting fit again.

Unless you show signs of illness, only then are you allowed to be concerned.

By order of Dr. Internet.

Maggie said...

Oh, Dave!

I wish I knew you well enough to know what's going on in your head ... but probably only you, and maybe Joe, can do that.

I know a fair bit about what goes on in my own head, though. And I will tell you that, as I've gotten older (okay, so maybe it's 'just age,') and as the world has gotten more crowded (so maybe it's just overpopulation), I have gradually abandoned such excursions as shopping at holiday times.

Ten years ago, I was the one who could be counted on to go to the supermarket the afternoon before a major 'food-centered' holiday (the US Thanksgiving, say, or Super Bowl night) for some forgotten item. I could patiently wait my turn to get through a crowded aisle or wend my way between the rolling carts of supplies to replenish the shelves. I could stand in line, sometimes literally for an hour. I could smile at the musicians and jugglers that sometimes did their best to make such waits bearable.

But nowadays? I tell myself I could still do it, if needed, but the truth is that I no longer want to. I no longer feel so strongly that the missing pound of butter is worth it. I no longer feel so strongly that I must search out the perfect gift for so-and-so.

Mostly, I no longer am interested in, or even willing to put up with, people in huge numbers. While I like lots of people individually or in small groups, large groups just make me tired.

After all the @$#! we temporarily-able-bodied-and-indifferents put you through on a regular basis, I wouldn't be surprised if you found huge crowds of shoppers moving their way into the realm of 'no, thanks.'

So much love and light to you and Joe; may your holidays be delightful and delicious, and the new year bring many wonders.

Anonymous said...

I too don't know you...but I know a bit about you and from what I know about you, is that you are one of the most dedicated, thoughtful, and compassionate individuals I have the pleasure to know about.

I do know that you and Joe have an unimaginable conference/travel schedule. Public speaking in front of a crowd is very stressful add in the travelling you gents have been doing and that's overwhelming stressful. It's exhausting!!!!

It's okay to wait outside if you are more comfortable in doing so. That's your choice; you've fought for that choice.

I am positive, from what I know OF you- that once you have had some down time, sometime with your little ladies, an opportunity to just sit in your comfy chair and enjoy your David's Tea and embrace this season of love and magic

CL said...

I wouldn't worry unless you find yourself doing the same thing after the holidays.

Holiday crowds can be very stressful. I feel dread when I have to go to the mall this time of year -- a lot of people do their shopping online so they don't have to deal with crowds at all. Of course, your issue isn't just crowds but how people treat you, and how even aisles you can fit through aren't built to be navigated easily with a disability -- especially in a crowd.

But part of the problem is seasonal, so I predict you'll want to go back into the store once the holiday madness is over. In the meantime, there's nothing wrong with needing a break.

Anonymous said...

We're all getting older. Sometimes you just have to think "I've done that so the younger people will have clear aisles," and let it go.

Disability can do that - cummulatively sap your strength and your will.

Don't worry about it - if it's part of life, your aren't going to change it. Worrying won't help.

If it's something more than that, you'll figure that out. Things like illness and depression can come along at any time - and you will deal with them.

Right now, if that retreat is what your body, your mind, and your spirit need - take it! It doesn't mean anything more than that you are recognizing - and honoring - a personal need.


PS Have the same thing happening to me.

Laura said...

Feeling like that myself this year dave! Just wanted you to know that you are not alone. I'm just so tired right now. I'm hoping to rest up and get back to it. This winter although it tech. isn't winter yet has taken the passion for this right out of me!

wendy said...

Dave, I don't have a disability and I feel that way this time of year. Too many people, too much commotion, too much hassle...just too freakin' frakin' much! I'm not a scrooge but I have a limit and I hit it by November this year!

Deb said...

You've just come back from a busy and exhausting speaking tour, punctuated by an adrenaline-fueled drive home through dangerous conditions.

You, my dear friend, need rest. You don't have to be SuperDave, you can be plain Dave. Dave who gets tired and hasn't got the mental and physical energy to face whatever challenge presents itself some days.

Even people on their two feet feel the need to recharge at times. Don't demand exceptionality from yourself, it's not healthy. Be content to be an average Dave for a time. Then SuperDave can tear through barriers and jump two inch curbs in a *single* bump.

Promise us you'll rest, relax, let Joe do the bits that (while difficult for you) are easier for him.

Sending great warm hugs for the two of you from Calgary, where I'm housebound by the bitter cold and rutted snow and have to rely (so so hard) on my son to shop for me when I so badly want to do it myself.

wheeliecrone said...

Dave. Give yourself a break. Really.

clairesmum said...

In winter Mother Nature's world goes quieter, darker, resting for a gather energy to come forth again in the bloom, to grow, to begin the next generation and continued growth.
We humans are not natural in this modern world and act as if it is always spring ( literally and figuratively.)
If you still feel the same way in mid February....then it's time to talk to your doc.
Take care, take care of you and Joe. Peace.

Liz said...

You just came back after a boatload of travel to holiday frenzy. I am bipedally mobile and I don't want to face it! I'm doing all my shopping online this year.