Thursday, March 10, 2011
Not much about my life is normal, nor has it ever been. My career is in a constant state of flux, there is no romantic relationship in my life at the moment, my family lives in another city, and the geographic range of my friendships starts in L.A. and goes as far as Nice, France. I live the odd life of a hermit much of the time, and the challenging life of a writer on the cusp of either success or ruin.
But when a friend’s husband died suddenly several weeks ago, my life changed drastically. I did what needed to be done for a friend and to support our group of friends - my second family, really - but I soon realized that I was doing so at the risk of my own demise. I was ignoring my own emotional needs, putting my already-shaky career on the back burner, and spending money that wasn’t available. And though these dangers lurked in the back of my mind, it took messages from several friends, those outside of this situation, to remind me that I had to set limits or find myself the one in need of help.
While I am still available to my friend and participating in helpful tasks when I am able, I have to accept some realities. I need to focus on my career, whether that involves Skype meetings, completing the work that I do have in a timely manner, networking for more opportunities, sending queries, or simply keeping up to date on happenings in the poker industry. I need to write. I need to spend time cooking, reading, and watching the occasional movie or news program. I need to support other friends who are going through rough times or doing spectacular things, both of which deserve some of my attention as a friend. I need to stay out of situations in which my help is not wanted. Basically, I need to take care of me.
This week, I’m doing just that. It’s not easy, but I’m finding some peace in it. Thanks to the friends who have nudged me and been supportive. The only reason I’m not spiraling out of control is because they sense when I’m starting to spin and help me become grounded again.
I hope to resume some op-ed pieces soon, as well as some other content here. Meanwhile, keep checking my food blog for my latest kitchen adventures.