oldsunbird

"I have been more outrageous and more alone and more courageous than the world has known. Passerby, my heart is like your own."

Panic

Forrest and I met when we were both seniors in High School.  Four somewhat stormy years later, we were married.   We started having children two years after the wedding.

When Forrest was a graduate student at Purdue University, I stayed home with our baby.  It was great while Forrest’s best friend, Dale and Dale’s wife, Connie, were there.  Connie and I had been close.  We’d shared meals, shopped, done everything together during my pregnancy.   Forrest was a good student and seldom available.

When Chris, our baby, was just months old, Dale graduated and moved to another state.  I was alone.  Even when Forrest was home, I felt alone because he was busy with his research and other school work.

After the birth, I had postpartum depression.  I began to have panic attacks.  I was afraid to stay alone, afraid to go outside.  I wouldn’t go out of the house, not even into the back yard.

After months of fear and panic, I pulled myself out of the depths by sheer force.  I had to stay alone after Forrest accepted a job.  I distracted myself by watching TV–our first TV.  I looked out the window often, searching the area for people, feeling safer if I saw someone near.

One day, I decided I’d take a bus to the square, go into a department store, Heers, and buy a lipstick.  Then I’d get on another bus and return home.  That’s what I did.  I can’t tell you how hard that was.

I gradually licked my panic and fears and was able to enjoy life once more.

Forrest and I spent 59 years together before he died.  He’s been gone for five years.  During that time, I’ve lived alone and with my son.  I’ve never liked being alone, but now, I find myself nearing panic again at times when Ken, who is now living with me, is at school.

I never share how uneasy I feel, not even with my best friends.  But I’m sharing it with you, my blogging buddies.  I’m fighting it again and find it easier this time.  Some days are worse than others.

I hope to explore reasons why I’m afraid to be alone.  On some level, I believe I already know.  It probably begins with the illnesses I had in my childhood that kept me isolated much of the time.  Maybe even before that.

A month after I was born, my seventeen year old mother became pregnant with my brother and sent me to another state to live with my grandmother.  After he was born, I was sent to live with an aunt.

Who knows how such experiences affect the psyche of a developing human being?  I hope to find some answers by writing about my life.  I hope to find some answers, and solutions, to my problems, because the problems close doors to my being all that I can be.

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17 thoughts on “Panic

  1. Brave story. If you need help, I hope you find it.

    • I’m so sorry for your loss. Ember sounds like a sweetheart. I send my love and lots of hugs.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words. I don’t need help, at least not now, but if I do, I know where to go. I’m dealing with my fears and can function, but each day is a new effort. I hope to get to the point where being alone is not an issue.

  2. Blogging is a great help with friends and new friends at every turn, isn’t it. Some days pass quickly when there are so many interesting people to interact with. I hope you continue to write about how you feel. It will help.

    • yes, you’re so right about how time passes quickly when there are so many great people and their blogs to follow. When I started this blog, I had no idea what a blog was. I just wanted a place to keep my thoughts together and to keep a record of my days. What a pleasant surprise to become a part of a family of bloggers with interests and concerns like mine!

  3. Thanks for sharing. Fifty nine years is a long time to have a partner and so it will take time to heal from that. Even five years later – there will still be some healing to do. It helps to know others are going through life’s dramas; and then you do not feel quite so alone. Blogging is a wonderful outlet. You sound like a strong person and I am sure you will find your way forward, given time.

    • I am so glad you ‘liked’ my post because it introduced me to you! I have gone to your page and read part of your story; and want to read more. I’ll be following you on this new journey of yours. I’ll be trying to rediscover myself, along with you. We’re never too old to change, or learn. Thank you and my best wishes for you!

  4. It takes courage to talk about inner wars. Since you obviously have it, oldsunbird, you must surely have more than enough to get out and bask in the sun. That’s what you’re meant to do, after all! Much regard from India.

  5. Please hang in there, I truly enjoy your honesty. My guess is you have more to offer the world than you realize. You are more than a mom and wife, your special. We see that.

  6. your sharing is very courageous. life is full of challenges, obstacles… and blessings too.

  7. Sharing your story encourages others to open up. I enjoyed your post. Thank you.

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