The weekend isn’t over, not yet, but if I don’t apply a little more imagination and grit, well…let’s just say that I’m  concerned about where this is going.

Weekends are hard.

First, I’m hella tired when Friday rolls around. There’s a square dance every other Friday night at the Marx Library in Berkeley. Ha, that’s right. Every time I go I laugh and sweat for two hours and swear I would square dance every night if  I could. There’s great live music, and I even waltzed with a huge man in a kilt once!

I’ve made myself go exactly twice. Because…..I’m beat.

I say yes to as much living as I possibly can during the week. This past Thursday when Monica asked if I wanted to grab a drink after our fiddle lesson, I said yes. When the time came I was soooo tired. When she said, “If you’re too beat we can do it another time,” my response was that there was never going to be a better time. I had a beer which I practically chugged it was so good, and ordered a second and two sips in had to admit that if I drank that beer I wouldn’t be driving. Apparently, I’m a lightweight now. And tired. But it was nice to hear a little about her life. We’ve known each other so long yet neither of us really knows how the other does it. Turns out, we just keep doin it, that’s how.

During the week I’m on, and almost every day I long for another hour of daylight to do something or another — just a little longer.  I pretty much go down with the sun, so winter eventually has it’s way with me and often I get that SAD thing. But this year I’m doing a pretty good job of keeping that at bay, and the main strategy I have used is to stay very busy and engaged. But, I’m so tired…

So, when the weekend comes, I think how awesome it will be to have two full days to do all the things I’ve been thinking of during the week: review lessons 1-10 in Spanish and make sure I’ve got them down cold, have myself some longer music sessions, clean the house up a bit, work on my front door collage (I collage anything that isn’t nailed down, and some things that ARE), gardening……see? TONS I want to do.

Sometimes I do some of those things…..

And sometimes I get into bed and I don’t get up. I’m serious. It’s a hard thing to admit, but a good fifty percent of the time I take to my bed for at least a hefty part of the weekend.

Now if I enjoyed it and felt good about it, no big woop – everyone needs some downtime. But I emerge feeling sort of mothy and sluggish. It’s not a choice I care to make, and yet I’m making it. I used to do it every night after work, too, so this is an improvement. But this is my weekend, damn it! How sad!

I can’t tell if it’s just too cold out. My hands and joints hurt which doesn’t exactly motivate  me to go digging in the dirt. Or is it the money worries? Buying a bunch of plants doesn’t seem too prudent at the moment. But who am I kidding? If I wanted to plant plants I would buy some and do it and live off beans the next week. I’m not that responsible with money. Nope, it’s more that I’m too dang lazy.

To be fair, last week I got the news that in a year or so I will have to move my office, and that really threw me for a loop. By the next day I had a plan to sell my house in Oakland and move to a small horse-type property in Martinez where I could have a tiny house and rooms to see my families – and goats! I had it all figured out.

Then I found out that you can only see patients at home in the incorporated parts of Martinez. The lady at County was firm about that and don’t get me started about why it is that Contra Costa County will let you have a farm but not a tiny house, goats and a few rooms to see children who’ve scraped their knees. I hate rules like this. On ten acres I should be able to do what I please, so long as I’m not hurting no one…hell, this would be helping…..a lot of folks….but, no.

I also got a good look at properties for sale and turns out everyone wants a tiny house on a little land for a good price. The last one that came up sold for 1.3 million and had ten offers. And it wasn’t in incorporated Martinez. So even that would not have worked.

Not saying that it can’t be done, but it would be difficult. It’s one of those love the Bay Area/hate the Bay Area things. You could totally do this in Texas.

My real estate agent came over and looked at my house and that bummed me out too. First he said that my house is in a good neighborhood, but not a great one. Which prompted me to purr that if he didn’t understand that I live in a bonafide great neighborhood, that maybe he wasn’t the right man to sell my house.

I live across from Piedmont, right off the freeway but without any real freeway noise, close to the lake, right off Grand Avenue with restaurants and shops right out my front door. The walkability score is through the roof. And you can commute to anywhere from here.

Next he suggested I sell the house completely as-is because I’m busy and broke with six dogs and a pig – and unless I could really fix all that is wrong with this house, the next person would probably gut it and do a complete remodel.

No wonder I took to my bed!

I ended up thinking that fine, I can let the real estate dude work on this, and he did promise to, but I’m not going to put any energy into any of it. It’s a long shot and to be honest, I don’t even know how happy I’d be secluding myself even further.

If I could live anywhere, it would be in the San Geronimo Valley. That’s where my peeps are.

Plus, Lagunitas. Lagunitas comes from Lagunitas!

So I had this brilliant idea that maybe I could start by seeing patients in Fairfax on weekends and building a little thing over there. Maybe five years from now I could do two days in Fairfax and three days in Lafayette and live in Lagunitas! And I’d find a great partner (work partner) in Lafayette and have one in Fairfax and I’d be able to go on a vacation! Maybe I could keep my house in Oakland and rent most of it out except reserve the right to stay in a tiny house in the back…two little homes with other people around to help take care of things…thinking…thinking…this is when my mom usually suggests that I marry someone financially secure and get on with the good life. Love my mom, but that search is over. Plus I always go for guys with less than no money. So, no second income unless I do it myself.

Have you any idea how exhausting it is to have huge thoughts like this – to dream up ideas that take years and money and effort – but that would be so worth it in the end? Like becoming a doctor or starting a family or a business or a nonprofit….I’ve already done all that but I need to rally again. Soon!

I’m old and creaky and I must do it again. If I want to really kick ass for the next twenty or thirty years, I’ll need to make a few changes. Sure, I could find some office space and potentially have to move around Lafayette every five years, each time taking out a loan to remodel some space to my “I refuse to work in an office that looks like an office” specs.

But I now understand why at some point people decide to stay put.

Have you seen those old(er) people living in comically run down houses – I mean really run down – and they refuse to move or fix anything up? I suspect they’ve done the cost- benefit ratio and have decided that it’s easier to get used to peeling linoleum than to do anything about it. They’ll die and let the next person deal with it. I feel that way about my roof. It’s not leaking and I might die before it does, so no roof.

But I think I’m too young not to try for another round of the life I really want to be leading.

Which brings me back to weekends. I am no good at weekends.

Sometimes I find the right balance and it usually involves one busy day and one down day. If I have a plan and go out, it ends up being a good thing, but I often forget to make plans, or overestimate how much I want to be home puttering. Or taking to my bed…

My roommates tend to stay out all night and sleep most of the day, and that isn’t helping. They have said I can go ahead and make noise and I really need to just start that. They claim they’d like a push to get up anyway.

I promised the one week weigh-in on the South Beach Diet delivery plan last Thursday. Back in late December, when I decided to de-fluff, I had hit a whopping 166. By the time I got my meals in the mail I was down to 163. Eight days later, the scale said 160 and a half. Unless I leaned and jiggled – which I did. The lowest read I could get was 160. Being under 160 is imperative. And if I hadn’t have weighed myself, I do feel under 160 now.

When my stomach is as big as my boobs, we have an issue, and it’s not anymore. So from that perspective, it’s been a success. But I’m hungry a lot of the time and the food is yucky. For that, I would have liked an initial five pound melt. The one you usually get when you walk around this hungry for a week. So, I’m not amazed or anything.

It will take at least six weeks to get below 150. That’s when the magic starts. So for six more weeks I’ll need to be somewhat hungry. Don’t tell me you don’t have to be hungry to lose weight because that simply is a pile of rubbish. I have to be hungry, at least a little, just to not gain any weight.

I can do it. I’m not giving myself a way out, but I did give myself a few beers. Not proud of that, but not ashamed either. I needed a break. But now it’s a day to regroup and shoot for what I want (gawd this is exhausting!)

Note to self: review Spanish, hit the banjo and fiddle, put away the rest of the Xmas decorations that I took down three weeks ago and arranged in a pile, ballet at four then I think I’m going to hit the Starry Plough for traditional Irish music at 8pm, because I can’t go back to work on Monday and not have done some little something fun.

Gardening, deep cleaning the house, figuring out my office situation, deciding where to live – all that is going to have to wait.

But, it’s time to get up. I’ll give myself twenty more minutes, or one episode of Grace and Frankie – then it’s time to move. By the way, when Grace took Adderall I cracked up. It was so perf. And it made me think, I need my Frankie, or if I’m Frankie, I need my Grace. I’ll put that on my list too.

Find a new best friend.

Someday.

Until then, you are all my best friends, and I love you for that, and for reading this. Because the struggle is real!

Dr.Maria

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