I have watched enough Chicago Med to know that this is a panic attack, not a heart attack. I feel awful- my right side of my chest hurts and I have generalized pain. My medicine hasn’t been working lately. I am crying more and I am hurting more physically.

Or maybe it has something to do with my friend’s ex husband dying of depression last week.

Mim and I went to the service for Paul. It was amazingly beautiful which is sort of peculiar because he was a dismayed kind of guy. I can’t remember ever seeing him experience a positive emotion- which is tragic in itself. My friend spoke at his service and she explained about people who are twice exceptional – which is a term for people who usually are neuro-divergent and exceptionally intellectually gifted in particular areas. A really really smart person who is missing lots of cues at being a part of communities. The type of person who flies academically and rarely has a friend but does not have his needs addressed because schools only care about the smarts. If a child’s academics are not impacted by their disabilities then the school can claim that individualized education programs are not warranted and the child grows into an adult who is expecting himself to excel yet he lacks many of the skills to be a partner, friend and parent. The service was packed with people who are disability friendly and the service was able to focus on Paul’s personal gifts at relating with people individually. If my friend had wanted the service to be a 10 out of 10, it way superceded expectations. It was a 20 out of 10.

Mim opened her heart to the experience and she was all in. She stood up front as I stayed in the back. She listened and when Paul’s old friend spoke and choked up, Mim met him in the aisle and hugged him and told him if he needed anything, she would do it. His choking up, made her feelings bubble up and just like her mama- her heart was now exposed on the outside of her body. As the service ended, neither of us could process this grief and outpouring of love. She flipped me off, cussed, stomped in an out through the crowd. It was loud and I doubt few noticed her tirade. She settled onto the wet parking lot unclear how to proceed. I hoped and prayed, she would calm and stand. She didn’t. Or she couldn’t. I joined her. We sat on the wet parking lot and she eventually gave in to my pleading. She leaned on me and sat in my lap as much as possible and we cried. She buried her head and cried. Clumps of people stood waiting to hug a forgotten friend or old colleague.

Mim and I sat on the wet pavement. Sad. Dismayed. We mourned. My dad. Her birth-mom. Lots of old hurts. As people watched.

My chest is quietly loosening as I type.

In the fall, I get the wants. Cozy socks. A massage. A new wool sweater. A functioning kitchen. A different car than the one I have. A house with storage and beauty. A house in the country with a new kitchen, a donkey and a new car. And a tin roof. I don’t like the wants. But as we move inside and the sky grays, I start wanting and seeing deficits.

And if I checked my bank account, which I am not because I am not excelling in adulting, it would probably say don’t buy anything because you need to pay the dryer repair man- assuming he shows up.

I am actually making plans to get an IKEA kitchen. No details but I am considering committing. I am committing. I think.

I committed to making my photographer website in the month of October. I am at least half way done. My heart is outside of my body when I choose photos and explain my process to possible future clients. I have high expectations for myself. I can’t show you.

I’m behind on so much. Like a true wedding blog for Addy and Ficken’s gobsmackingly beautiful wedding. I am not keeping up which technically doesn’t even matter. I made Mim a carnival birthday party. I am reading Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate Di Camillo to third grade and that is so incredibly important.

My chest is easing.

Writing is therapy.


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