I met with my new medical doctor today. She’d actually read my chart and knew I’m bipolar and have been hospitalized for suicidal ideation. I’ve never had a new doctor come in prepared like that. It felt good to not have to bring it up myself, especially since I’m so prone not to.
On my way to pick up lunch today I saw this man in his car rocking out. Like, really just getting down with his car dancing. It made me so happy to see someone having so much fun in such a regularly dull part of the day.
This afternoon I had a customer come in and first thing she came up to thank me for the help I gave her the day before. She said it was just the boost of confidence she needed to get her jewelry legs back under her. I was so glad that I helped her and so touched that she took the time to thank me again.
I am so glad that I found the perfect graph paper notebooks in bulk on Amazon sometime a couple years ago. Spiral bound with perforated edges. That off-white color that makes you feel like a real mathematician. The perfect cardboard backing for taking notes while sitting sideways and writing on your knee. They are fabulous and I buy them by the case.
In math today I asked my professor to go over a question. I found myself tremendously pleased that I am at the point in my life where I will actually ask for help in front of other people when I need it. I always want to just know things and not need assistance. And if I do need help I don’t want to ask for it in front of a group full of people I assume are smarter than me. But I did it today and that is awesome.
Big shout-out to Justin from my pre-calculus class who, after I asked that question, leaned back in his chair, smiled, and said, “Thanks for asking that. I was lost, too.” He didn’t have to say anything. Didn’t have to make me feel any less alone. But he took that little moment to say, “Hey, me, too.” People should do that more. I should do that more. Today, he did.
Spring loaded. I push away from anything that might hurt me eventually. Wrap up in myself and say it’s for the best. Try instead to salvage open wounds disguised as relationships. Tell myself I am not deserving of the goodness of being safe and loved.
But sometimes I learn to grow instead.
So I drive back to Andrew’s house and tell him about who I am. How I get scared and run away instead of facing it. How I always pick the biggest shift available instead of working on the small things. How I seem to always choose wrong when it’s flight, fight, or freeze. He follows up with me.
Surprised, I listen to him describe the kind of person I am. He unearths the flaws in my system with delicate precision, but lacking accusation. Does not leave me with instruction on how I can be different. Not even the hint that I should be. Instead, his voice is doused with a tenderness that says he understands it, it’s okay, he loves me.
“Everyone gets scared sometimes,” he says as he curls his fingers up in mine. I plant my trembling feet next to him and together we continue putting down roots. Interwoven.
Photo courtesy of Li Yang.