October, again.

October 16, 2015 |  Category:   life nyc

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The trees haven’t turned where we are yet, but this incredible light every evening is an indication that it’s Fall. It’s different from summer light – a bit more dusky, a bit more pink than the golden glow of summer. We’ve been pushing ourselves to spend time outside even though we’ve been under the weather and tired. Sometimes you have to motivate extra hard when it’s easy to stay glued on the couch, but we’ll be hibernating in winter soon enough. We’re always glad when we do, even if we have to bribe the kids with food like we did for our walk across the Brooklyn Bridge (you can watch the sun go down from this Periscope replay). There is nothing quite like walking the bridge, suspended above water with the swirl of NYC energy all around, and watching the day disappear into night as the lights from the buildings start to twinkle like stars.

Now that it’s mid-October, new school year routines are established and we’re finding a rhythm again. It’s a little different from last year – now we’re only walking one kid to and from school instead of two. As we start to pull on jackets consistently every day, we’re all wondering how it can be October again. Is the year really over in 2 1/2 months? It’s close enough to the end of the year that looking back at 2015 is starting to happen.

I won’t reflect back, not quite yet, but I regained a bit of my focus this year. It could be because I have taken up too much and it’s a tactic to avoid feeling overwhelmed. But I am. Overwhelmed. A lot. And sometimes barely hanging by a thread. As I ride the train to and from the office a few times a week, I wonder if I just bring on all this nonsense myself. But I know the answer is yes. I think the fear of one day waking up and having all the means of making money disappear is driving me to overwork. The fear is not totally unfounded – it’s not always easy for people my age to find new jobs or start new careers. I see it all around me. So I have my eggs in a couple of baskets just in case one of those baskets bottom out. But it’s sort of killing me, I will admit.

On the business side, the outdoor market season ended early this year so Mark is suddenly home on both weekend days for the rest of the month and November. We’ll miss the extra income, but I’ve been filling the weekends with outings and day trips. We all need something to look forward to; sometimes it’s the little things that get you through the week.

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  • Joo October 16, 2015 at 4:04 pm

    When you said “is the year really over in 2 1/2 months?” I almost fainted. But at the same time, I’ve been thinking about Christmas, so I’m not sure why I found myself so surprised. The fear of maintaining financial stability can get overwhelming – I hope your day trips and extra time with Mark on the upcoming weekends will distract you from worrying too much. Enjoy the weekend – it’s looking really fall-ish out there in NY!

  • Jen October 17, 2015 at 2:28 am

    My life pretty much collapsed around me this year. As 2015 comes to a close, I find myself in the midst of a divorce, and, at around your same age, moving in with family until I can get back on my feet, looking for a job, trying to start over. I read this and my stomach dropped. I am trying to take a new tact in facing all of this, as fear – my default state of operation – has lead me to the place I am now. While I am scared, I am determined not to let fear drive my decisions, and my life anymore. Regardless of how bleak things look, I somehow have faith that things are going to be ok precisely because I am finally working to live a life that is not premised on “what ifs” and “shoulds” (three years of therapy finally paying off!) For me, the new year starts now.

    (Jenna, in re-reading this, it occurs to me that it could be construed as hostile to what you wrote, and that’s not my intent. I just get so scared so easily and that pervasive fear has ruined my life in so many ways, so I have to start talking myself out of it, which is sort of what I’m trying to do here…on your blog, in public, because why not, I guess.)

    • LJ October 19, 2015 at 1:01 pm

      Good luck, Jen. I am sure you will emerge a richer and stronger person as you go through these days.

      Lakshmi

    • Jenna October 19, 2015 at 1:12 pm

      Thanks for sharing, Jen. I know sometimes it’s hard to share something so personal, but sometimes it’s the thing that we need, you know? To get it off our chest, to write out the words, and to read them again, even if we don’t know who will be reading them. I am here and read your words and now you are in my thoughts. I know how it feels to have your world collapse around you. It sometimes can be tough to even think that there is another side. There is though, but it takes work and sometimes it’s not easy to get there. I’m still on that journey from last year. Your determination sounds like it has you on the right track. Fear and guilt are powerful demons to overcome. I wish you the best of luck in beating them. I believe in you.

  • Jane October 20, 2015 at 4:39 am

    I love reading about autumn, the changes of seasons, through your eyes. I feel such a sense of melancholy when I read your words. (In the best possible way!)

    Thank you.

    • Jen October 22, 2015 at 5:49 pm

      Thank you Lakshmi and Jenna for your replies. They really mean a lot to me. As painful as this year has been, pain has a way of highlighting the beauty in life, and that has been true as well. It’s made me more determined to appreciate and not take for granted those beautiful things and people when things are going well. Jenna, I know you’ve been going through a lot, too, and I will continue to appreciate your presence here for as long as writing feels right for you.

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