Thoughts for Thursday

I can not believe that it has been three months since I moved back home to Albion!  I know it has been three months and one week because the calendar says so and calendars don’t lie.  But, it sure doesn’t feel like it!  In some ways, it feels like just yesterday – I find myself wondering where the time went!  In other ways, it feels like a lifetime ago – my life before June 1985 and after November 2011 seem to connect and melt together, making the life I had in between seem like an island of memories.  I’m not sure how to react when those feelings come over me because that “in between” life was very important to me and I don’t really want to be distanced from it.  At any rate – it absolutely doesn’t feel like three months and one week ago – depending on my frame of mind when I think of it, it either feels like yesterday or a lifetime ago – there is no happy medium and no concept of three months and one week.

A lot has been going on since I’ve been back.  I think that has a lot to do with my concept of time.  The first two months were a whirlwind of getting settled, decorating, stocking up, and the holidays.  So, they flew by in a blink of an eye!  This last month has been calmer, more focused, slower paced.  Still lots to finish organizing, some decorating still in process, but getting a lot done and having fun exploring and reacquainting myself with what Western NY has to offer.  And, of course, enjoying spending time with Mom and my brother.

This last month also brought snow – lots of snow – in a few concentrated pockets of winter weather.  Overall, the winter has been extremely mild for this area.  We didn’t get any measurable snow until January and when it did come, it came in short spurts where it would dump a lot in a day or two and then we’d have a period of warmer weather and rain.  No huge piles of snow lingering for weeks, months.  It has been really nice of Mother Nature to make my first full winter in 26 years an easy one so that I could get used to it without being snowed in!

When your life changes so drastically in a blink of an eye, it causes you to think about the details – big and small – and come to some realizations about yourself, your life, and your surroundings.  Here are just a few of the things I’ve come to realize:

  • I don’t dislike winter as much as I thought I did.  I’ve never really enjoyed winter and I hate snow – or so I thought!  Don’t get me wrong – I’m still not a fan!  But, I don’t mind it that much.  I bundle up and go out and shovel and play with the girls in the back yard and really enjoy looking out and seeing how pretty it is as it is coming down and blankets the yard.  I bought two super warm parkas (a dressy one and an every day one) and boots so I could go out for prolonged periods.  I already had hats, scarves, and gloves – some that were gifts from Sanford friends when I left.  I bought a neat snow shovel that is long and scooped so you can “push” the snow, instead of shoveling and throwing it, so it is not that big of a chore to clear the driveway, steps, and patio (so long as I get it while it is light and fluffy and don’t let it pile up too high between clearings).  I was worried that I would get socked in and feel trapped inside, but I haven’t and that is a pleasant surprise!
  • It is true what they say about “thin blood”.  I’m not sure if there is an actual difference between southern and northern blood, but it definitely feels like there is!  I am cold…….all the time!  I keep my home at a reasonable temperature that would have felt comfortable to me in Sanford, but feels COLD to me here!  I wrap up in a blanket every time I go sit on the couch to watch TV and shiver when I sit at the computer.  The only time I feel warm is when I’m moving around or in bed with fleece sheets and a very warm quilt covering me up!  And I have not had a night sweat or hot flash since I’ve been here!  I wonder how long it will take my blood to thicken up so I’m not so cold all the time (although, if it means the night sweats and hot flashes come back, maybe I’ll just stay the way I am).
  • I really enjoy not having a job to go to!  This one really surprises me whenever I think about it.  I assumed I would be bored out of my mind by now and that it would take a long time to adjust to not getting up for work in the mornings.  I figured I’d feel like I was supposed to be somewhere or wake up and think I slept through the alarm and I was late for something!  But, no — not even once!  It took about a week, maybe two, to stop waking up at 5:00-ish and for the girls to realize they weren’t getting up to go out between 5:00-6:00 am.  Now, our regular time to wake up is about 7:00-7:30 and it is a nice, gentle, natural way to wake up – no alarm clocks and no leaping out of bed to start the day off rushed.  I know I’ve kept myself busy with stuff, but I’m still surprised that I have not once felt like I should have a job to go to.  That is so odd to me – I have had a job of some kind since I was 16 years old and before that I baby sat and did odd jobs for extra spending money.  To suddenly be retired after about 40 years of working steady “should” result in a sense of loss on some level…………….but it hasn’t!  I keep waiting for the need to find something to fill in the gap, but there isn’t a gap to fill………….yet!
  • I like breakfast!  I have never been much of a breakfast person.  I don’t want to even think about food when I first wake up and looking in the refrigerator tends to turn my stomach.  I’d much rather wait a couple of hours and have something a little later in the morning – and then, usually not much – tea and a bagel was my usual!  But, I’m thinking it was more to do with the early wake up time and having to rush to get myself ready for work.  Now, I get up about 7:00-7:30, take care of the girls, and then want some breakfast to take in to the den and eat while I check the morning news, blogs, Facebook, etc.  Sometimes it is a bagel and cereal, sometimes I fix oatmeal or eggs and I find I like a warm drink – like tea or hot chocolate to start the day, too.  Whatever I choose, I eat a full, satisfying breakfast every morning and I like it!
  • Stress obviously had a lot to do with my health.  Yeah, I know it is common knowledge that stress does bad things to you and I knew it at the time.  But, I keep finding new evidence of it in myself.  Most recently, I realized that I have not had one headache since I’ve been stress free – not one!  I used to have constant headaches – I rarely went 2 or 3 days without at least a little one and routinely had migraines.  I don’t know what made me think of it, but I was thinking it had been a while since I had a headache and the more I thought about it, I realized it had been since a week or two before I moved – once I knew everything was set and going according to plan.
  • I love being “home”.  Right from the day I arrived, I felt like I was back where I’m supposed to be.  I loved Sanford and will always remember and be grateful for the good friends, great times, and proud accomplishments I made there.  I am fortunate to have lived in two states and feel like I belong in both.  But, this is home and I am reminded of that each and every day by something I see or do.

So, that’s what I’m thinking about this fine Thursday morning……..the snow from this past weekend is melting away and the sun is shining.  I’ve finished my cereal and bagel, read all the morning’s news and blogs, and am ready to take on whatever needs to be done today.  I think I may just relax and read some of the book I started this week.

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