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[personal profile] mur
I was talking to Dan last night about my day when an escaped sigh from him made me stop.

"What's the matter?" I asked.
"Nothing, dear."
"No, really it's okay. I just want to know what's wrong"
"Well, it's just that...oh, never mind."

His lack of wanting to tell me I know is because I could bite his head off about it, but being in the good mood I was in, I needed to reassure him I could take the criticism.

"Oh, c'mon, I won't get mad"
"Okay, well... it's just that you talk a lot." I could tell he felt bad for saying so, even ashamed. I could have used this to my advantage of making him feel bad about saying so, but that would make me an unfair person. I truly wasn't mad about it, but instead felt bad about it myself.

It dawned on me that the many daily things that happen to me during the day are processed through me verbally at the end of it, and poor Dan gets the brunt of my over-stimulation. There's nothing wrong with my needing to verbally recap the day, it's just that in his listening to me unload the day, he soaks up all of my daily stress.

It's difficult to exist peacefully during a typical work day where there are numerous responsibilities and people depending on you on top of personal needs. It makes it even worse when someone unloads their own tough day onto you. That's what this journal or other personal journals should be for.

It occurred to me that yes, I do have a lot of things going on: my summer course started, I had a presentation already due, freshman orientation for my Academic Counseling position is starting, I have extra hours from my Teaching Assistant position to fit into my schedule, I was offered another part-time position last Wednesday, and I have an interview for a summer teaching position on Monday. All of these things on top of having a dying dog, a new foster cat, while trying to eat healthy, get in shape, maintain friendships, a relationship with my family, and a relationship with Dan. Yikes. This is a lot. And poor Dan has a lot going on too. His work is picking up big time, on top of him having to maintain a house, his dog, eight chickens, an ailing grandmother, and maintain a relationship with my family and me. Yikes. We spend little time together as is. It was just last night that we were able to sit and play some music together, where he played the guitar and I hummed or sung along. The point is, though I need to unleash my stress verbally, I need to either spread it out or really determine whether it's worth mentioning. It does bring to mind as well the need to stay positive. I pat myself on the back because things haven't been going as planned, and this is both a good and a bad thing depending on when you ask me about them, but overall I figure that things will work out. I am lucky enough to be in a position where options are available to me, and lucky enough to be able to take the time to figure things out if need be.

The best advice I could give (if I should even be soliciting advice) is to remember to slow down and smell the roses. Do nothing for ten minutes at least twice a day. This means to sit with no stimulation- find a nice quiet place to sit. Observe quietly the things around you. The buzzing hum of the bees. The whiff of lilac in the breeze. The sultry touch of the sun on your bare skin. Just close your eyes and use your other sense to just be. After a ten minute session of this, you should feel rejuvenated, relaxed, and be thinking more clearly. One of Dan's favorite excuses is "I don't have the time" but my theory is that you have to make the time and it is well worth the effort.

Thanks for reading.

-MUR

Date: 2013-06-09 11:33 am (UTC)
tsukikokoro: Unknown source (White Noise)
From: [personal profile] tsukikokoro
I think it took a long time for my husband to adjust to having to help me verbally process my emotions (it was how my dad was most effectively able to support me and play an active role in my treatment). There is some give and take, and I know he really appreciates it when I ask him about his day before he asks me about mine. He knows that I genuinely want to hear about what he's done and accomplished or not accomplished instead of just using him (even if it was unintentional). And usually I start of with, "I know this won't matter by tomorrow morning" or "I recognize this doesn't make sense" or "I plan to" so that he knows I have things under control and doesn't have to worry or stress for me. Unfortunately, I still "talk a lot" too.

Oh! I remember when it was really an issue: when I went back to the US to visit my family for a couple of months a couple of years ago, Trent became really upset that I'd call and only talk about everything that was bothering me. I remember being really confused at the time. It's great that you already know that unloading can be hard on your partner. I didn't. I think it's probably a bigger issue when you're not living together, and the time you do get to spend together is limited.

Your schedule sounds very full!

I think everyone has advice to share, and I will definitely try to keep yours in mind. It used to be that I would relax quietly in the afternoons in bed after I got home from school and errands... but I can't easily replicate that while I'm dog-sitting. I know I have the time, so I'll try.

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