November is a heavy month. We roll into winter, often sooner than I’d like. The sky greys, the time changes, and everything seems to be starting its slumber. But the last few years I’ve been hyper aware in November. Watching for the Facebook memories to tick through some of the most grueling moments in my life thus far. Ticking through the moments of joy and celebration as well. An endless emotional roller coaster.
This year I realized I haven’t really been paying attention. I’ve been busy with school, and work, and working out, and trying to get my head on straight about all of the changes around me in different areas of my life. I haven’t been cognizant of my emotions or memories. I don’t feel like I’ve stuffed them down, but I definitively haven’t kept them at the forefront like I usually do. Not sure that is good or bad–it just is.
But earlier this week I was reminded about the anniversary of the passing of a dear family friend and it jolted me into my typical “November habits”. I texted Shelly one morning to let her know I was in a heightened emotional state (we have a “crying pact”). And I did some remembering of this family friend in hopes of sharing some solace with her daughter, which lead to this:
But I still hadn’t gotten to the point of fully embracing November. This year mom’s birthday falls on Thanksgiving. It happens every so often. So we will be together as a family. And a month or so ago I texted a handful of people and asked them to specifically reach out to me next week because I’d surely struggle (thankfully I have an even smaller handful that would/will do this without me asking). But last night I knew I wasn’t giving myself what I needed. I offered to do dinner with people in my cohort–most were unavailable or bailed at the last minute (totally okay). And I felt relieved, because I could just take time for me. I did. I went to the gym. Got tea for a friend and had a quick catch up. And went home and vegged on the couch with Shelly (who I’ve barely seen all week).
But I was reminded that I need to notice my emotions and the time of year. I need to consciously not forget. I woke up at 4am this morning. And I knew. I could feel my brain acting like a fly swatter saying, “alright, I get it. I see you. I feel you. I. Get. It.” Not terse, but tired. And so I start the remembering. Because she’s too important to forget. Because I’m fueled by emotions (the ups and the downs). Because I fully intend to be the same kind of spirit that tugs on sleeves, and wakes people during the witching hour, and refuses to be silenced. Because this is her time.
I see you.