Sometimes You Just Have to Go 'Full Metal Trainwreck'

Hey, so I'm back. 

No long explanations needed, just felt like the right time to come back and start writing again. I wanted to make sure I was doing something different I was jazzed about this time. I think I've found the right mix of things and I'm excited to explore the new awesome ways you can create content and blog now. 

With that out of the way, on with the shitshow...I'm still ME after all...material for days over here...

So let's talk about those times in our lives where we just spin the hell out. Don't look around you and say, "Nuh-uh, not me!" while clutching your pearls. We all do it to varying degrees, and yes, that means you too. 

I've always admired the people in my life who can just unapologetically shift into that, "Aces to the sky!" gear and let it all hang out when they're going through something. We all have that friend who wakes up in someone's flower bed or spends weeks on end with their blood alcohol level just slightly above the legal limit. We judge them silently because it isn't a good look and makes us cringe a bit, but we also envy them on the inside for owning their crazy and getting it over with. 

If you're like me, you're more of a reserved crazy person. Insanity on the low, if you will. We're more known for buying too much at Target (my crazy manifests itself in overbuying white T-shirts), maybe polishing off a bottle of wine and letting Twitter know a little too much about ourselves, creeping Facebook into the wee hours...you know, inwardly nutty things because we think we are better than an actual Trainwreck if it's happening in the privacy of our own mind and home, and the internet is a great way to seek and gain validation even if you are a card carrying psychotic person in the moment. 

This is all very quaint and great until the straw breaks the camel's back, so to speak. Those of us who are politely out of our minds, tend to carry one bout of muted hysteria into another until it snowballs and our Abominable Snowman is unleashed on the world, and we then become a village crushing maniac while everyone scatters for safety. 

It happens to all of us. It happened to me very recently, like, maybe yesterday?...

I guess the snowball effect had been going on for, oh I don't know 35 years, a year? It seemed to be triggered by my one year anniversary of moving to Atlanta. The Cliff's Notes version is some shit happened, and me being me, sucked it up and carried on, distracting myself with happiness and victories here and there. Yay! Great job and friends! Yay! Wonderful man in my life! Yay! My hair and skin are FABULOUS! 

Only I had pretty-much lost everything I had identified as my true self for most of my adult life along the way. Here I was navigating life in a completely different space, and I didn't want to acknowledge it. Instead, I buried my head in the sand a little deeper doing everything in my power to avoid the truth. Truth was I was sad, lonely, a bit lost, and the worst...NOT IN CONTROL OF EVERYTHING. 

Many feels were eaten on this journey

I know, you control freaks out there nearly fainted at the thought. I would do what I normally do to strong arm the outcomes I wanted in my life, and no one was budging. Reality chugged on against my will, and it drove me to the station where the Crazy Train was waiting for me right on time. 

Sorry, you don't get any gory details of pretty much the entire month of April and half of May, but there were magnificent highlights like missed flights because I was a mess, drinking enough wine to put down a rhino, crying in the back of an uber ("What is that on your shirt? TEARS?" - my assistant), drunk texting the one person I should never text (if you're reading this, I AM SO SORRY I AM A CERTIFIABLE NUT, bless you for being friendly and kind), not getting out of bed for an entire day, waking up most mornings only to look at my phone and cringe almost into oblivion over what I had texted the night before to just about everyone I know; yes, including my boss (Kill Me!), and a whole host of things I'd rather not have memorialized on the internet. 

But then, this morning it was done. I woke up, let out a large exhale, and felt okay again. Like riding out a bad storm, the sun came out, and I got to go out and assess the damage, which I thought would be massive. Turns out, no one even cared I had a bad month. It was mostly, "The hell took you so long?" I took a long look at the landscape of my life and figured out where I wanted to go from here, put a plan into place, and decided to soldier on, with the number one priority being taking care of myself. There's a reason they tell you to put your oxygen mask on first when there's trouble on an airplane. If you keep stepping on the same landmine over and over, it's not the landmine, it's your inability to find a new way to go around it. 

I'll share with you the best advice I got during this time and that's, "What can I do right now? How do I feel right now? How can I feel better right now?" It was great because it helped me order things and not be so overwhelmed. As I was coming out of this late last week, I remember getting home from work and wondering if it would be ok to eat a can of frosting and wash it down with wine. I got on the treadmill instead, not because frosting and wine while crying in bed is beyond shameful, even for me, but getting on that treadmill got be back in touch with myself. I busted out all of the shitty music I adored, did one of the things I love most which is running, and got a piece of myself back. 

Ain't no shame in a spin-out whether ugly or done politely behind closed doors. Sometimes the train has to go off the tracks in order to build new ones, or fix the broken wheel. Don't ever fight it, let it happen, get it all out, and keep chugging along. 

Jennifer Gulbrandsen