What’s Good About Getting Lost?

Yesterday, another “daily life” snafu happened: Technically speaking it’s not daily as we don’t put friends to eternal rest everyday – or so I’d hope. So I was headed for this funeral service of a musician (drummer) friend of ours. Since I can only set so much money aside for transportation, I scheduled an appointment with a realtor for some time before and had prepared to go to the funeral service from the other appointment. Knowing myself and my needs in terms of not stressing out too quickly, I had scheduled things in a way that I thought would leave me enough time to go from one place to the other, which weren’t exactly nearby. What’s more, a part of the way went through one of the major connecting roads in Munich, the next big city from where I live.

Anyway, I get to the real estate appointment and it all looks good. Fingers crossed, I’ll be moving in 2 months or so as living here in a shared-housing-like situation was a bad, a BAD idea. So I head away from there, taking a good look at a Google Maps printout and going the route through in my mind, almost like memorizing it so I wouldn’t have to distract myself by looking at it while riding the car. As I don’t have a navigation system installed in my car, that’s my closest bet. It all went almost fine until the very last stretch of way. In analyzing just what the heck had happened and going over this snafu, I am still not all sure, where I went wrong or took a wrong exit or whatever else the hell it was. Bottomline: I got lost on the last 2 miles of way. But not just lost – disappeared-lost is more like it. I frantically tried to get to a larger street or other landmark in that area in order to match it up to something significant on my printout. Didn’t work. I asked for directions twice – and got lost again. So I criss-crossed the area, burning whatever fuel I had meant to last me to go all the way back and thus burning all the transportation money I had set aside for this month, while trying my hardest not to freak out with anger, despair or any of those well-known feelings that usually consume me in situations like this one. So what’s good about all that? Technically speaking nothing. However – I notice today that I seem to beat myself just a little less up for it than usual. In fact, I gave one of my friends there a call – something I had thought of sooner, but seeing as I was running late already, I didn’t want to expose them to this awkward moment of a phone “going off”, while there is a group of mourners paying their respects and gathered in silence. I called one of them, luckily they had the machine on and left a message. I learnt that they were all headed for the downtown music venue where he had performed with all our other friends many times.

Still – what was good about all that? In particular, since it should be about my friend in the first place instead of on me. Well – like I said: I seem to have learnt to not beat myself up so hard for it, that’s one. In fact, I swallowed or rather “rode out” (a term I learnt from Kimberly) whatever personal feelings I had about this and headed downtown to gather with them at this music venue. Especially today, when thinking about it, I can’t help but notice how this would have been impossible for me until only a few years ago. I would have been consumed by self-hatred and -loathing to the point, where I’d always feel the urge to either hurt myself or physically destroy something or release these feelings in other, possibly unhealthy ways. (I’m not sure, whether pushing them away is all healthier. In fact, I may have learnt to just not allow the negative feelings to rule all rest of the day).

So that’s the good part. The not-so-good part is that the entire “operation” felt like being on the battlefield. The stress associated with riding in traffic – I don’t think I can do this any more, at least not on a regular basis. In all candor and when looking back – it has never been any different. In fact – it’s been worse. I seem to have made some progress in modulating my feelings there as well. But note to self and for the future: No riding in heavy traffic any more – at all! It looks like I have simply exhausted and worn out whatever level of tolerance I may have mustered in previous years. And now it’s gone. Even having avoided the bulk of triggers in recent years didn’t seem to restore or rebuild a “reservoir” of tolerance to feed off from for situations like this. Or maybe that’s exactly what helped me not to run my car into a street light with frustration yesterday? I don’t know. All I know is that I must be content with whatever progress there is. It feels reassuring to read a friend’s Facebook message today, who said that they would have been equally and completely lost, if they had gone there without a navigational system. So there’s that. The message and lesson to take away from that might read that I should be o.k. to cut myself some slack more often, I guess.

Now off to the next thing: Hopefully making this relocation happen.

P.S. Today I feel the mental, emotional and physical exhaustion of this, though. There is a true need to recover from this. It is going to take a few days, possibly more as I don’t feel good in this place at all any more.


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