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Friday, October 2, 2015

Gumption! Or If I May Make a Suggestion…

I’ve stopped doing too many of the things that had previously defined me.

Where once I attended yoga, I’ve taken up staring.  Where once I wrote daily, I now take notes.  And where I used to think about taking up kayaking, I now only think about thinking about taking up kayaking.

Everything has changed.

It’s exhausting, being newly single.  Peoples, I’m tired.  Between not knowing how to turn on my furnace, needing a chair to reach the cord that turns off the overhead fan, and wondering if I will ever bake a whole cherry pie again, I find myself in a constant state of flux.

Where am I?  Who am I?  Where’d that one thing go, the thing that used to be in the drawer with the other things?

I don’t know.  And there’s nothing to do but find out.

“What you need,” my mother says, “is some gumption.”

This took me aback, frankly. One, that she said something so direct –  not recommended in that Hmm-I-don’t-know-about-that Minnesota Book of Suggestions – and two, that she used the word “gumption”.

Gumption:  Like something stuck to the bottom of your shoe.    Or a gas-producing vegetable…

She’s right.  Dagnabit, the ol’ lady is right again.  I’ve sat still for too long. 

It’s time I start doing things again.

It's time I started thinking about thinking about acquiring some gumption.


33 comments:

Delores said...

I'll cook you up a pot of gumption and mail it to you. Seriously Pearl, when your life is turned upside down and you are standing on your head in the closet not doing yoga you need a little time to sit and stare and think about thinking .... after a while you will be ready for gumption. In the meantime, bake a whole cherry pie and freeze half of it for heavens sake. Now where did I put that bag of freeze dried gumption?

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
I'm with Delores - bake the pie and freeze some... maybe... or take it to share with the cabin-mate at Acme Whotsits. My mother was hot on gumption too. Certainly an underused commodity but one does have to be ready for the use thereof. Thinking about thinking can bring its own rewards. The important factor is that thinking is being thunk. Let the stages take care of themselves. Huggies, YAM xx

Pearl said...

Ah, how I've missed you! Smart words from smart women.

Yes. So many tasks, so many things to learn. A frightening combination of excitement and trepidation. I'm up to it -- it's just taken a while to figure out.

Hugs and Kisses,

Pearl

jenny_o said...

Oh, Pearl. My heart feels for you. Like any grief, you need time to process this one. In the meantime, if you can overcome inertia a little at a time it will build. And expect to backtrack now and then - progress is not a straight line.

And tie a piece of string on the fan cord that will bring it within your reach. We don't want you falling off a chair. We don't even want you to have to spend time moving that chair, when you could spend it looking for gumption instead.

But deep inside, you know all this, dontcha. Big hug, girl.

Marty Damon said...

Pearl - I'm sorry your life had been stirred by the big spoon of fate, but I look forward to following how you find your way back to an even keel.

Pat said...

You have gumption in spades. Maybe it is having a much needed rest while you take stock. Meanwhile treat yourself gently with lots of care and consideration and do things at your own speed when it feels right for you.
Believe me Pearl if an old biddy like me can do it so can you - with your great hair:)

Far Side of Fifty said...

You may have misplaced your gumption momentarily...life is in a constant state of flux...you will find your way:)

fishducky said...

I'm SURE you brought your gumption with you, Pearlie--it's in that box you haven't unpacked yet!!

Launna said...

I've been where you are Pearl, I understand that feeling of being exhausted and not getting anything done. I'm glad you're taking that first step forward... it's a start... good will come from it... we are all sending you good thoughts xox

Buttons Thoughts said...

Mom's are always right:) HUGS take your time you will get it. HUGS B

Buttons Thoughts said...

Oh yes and Fishyduck is right:) Hug B

Jocelyn said...

Good on your mom for reminding you that you are truly a badass at heart. To make the changes you have already undertaken, well, that took a lot of gumption, too. It kind of used up your ready supply.

But now: you've had some time. Your gumption batteries have been recharging. Time to plug that shit in again.

Go to yoga, honeybear. And we all look forward to your next post on Monday.

Heh-heh.

Ms Sparrow said...

Ah yes. My divorce happened shortly after my last kid moved out so I experienced the empty nest syndrome and empty house syndrome at the same time. I describe it as having been in a jello mold holding me together as a wife and mother--then the mold was yanked away and I started to lose my form. All I can say is that you just have to wait until the jiggling stops!

vanilla said...

Moms do come right out and say the most direct things, apparently even in Minnesota. They are often right.

Elephant's Child said...

Somedays gumption doesn't taste so good. Have a bit more chocolate, some more not thinking time and the day will come when gumption is all you feel like .
Heartfelt hugs.

Silliyak said...

If I may suggest. If your new abode does not yet have a name, may I suggest "Gumption Junction". Sort of an affirmation also

Joanne Noragon said...

You need to clean a house with Mary. I know from experience that a lot of elbow grease can loosen up the gumption gland. Go for it, the peanut gallery is on their feet and applauding.

Jacquelineand.... said...

The gumption is there, it's just waiting for you. You need time to process, and to be fallow, then spring into full bloom.

Can't keep a good Pearl down for long.

Sending hugs.

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

"Small steps will get you there. You will be whole once again." Everyone will tell you that and they are right. Gumption is a good thing. Be good to yourself, Pearl.

Jono said...

You've got some smart readers here Pearlie girl. All I can add is this: duct tape to make things stick when they don't and WD40 to make things unstick when they won't. In the (nearly) immortal words of Red Green, "Remember, I'm pulling for you. We're all in this together." And as Garrison Keillor said long ago, "Powdermilk biscuits will give you the gumption to get up and do what needs to be done", or something like that.

Gigi said...

Oh Pearl, sending you lots of hugs. The gumption is there - it's just waiting until you are ready to take up the reins again. As others have said, be good to yourself and it will come.

joeh said...

Instead of gumption, I tried scotch. A lot of scotch. So much scotch I started saying "Aye laddie." Probably was not a good decision. I think gumption is a better idea.

Geo. said...

Pearl, you're doing better than I would under the circumstances. My gumption was accidentally removed during a tonsillectomy in 1967.

Catalyst said...

I'm sorry to hear about your new singleness, unless it is a good thing for you. I'd say it might give me hope except SWMBO (She Who Must Be Obeyed) would box my ears. Now, there's an expression for you!

Rose L said...

I do not know much about gumption, but sometimes you need space, dear friends, and cats. When my husband became disabled, life for us changed dramatically, and when it was discovered he had frontal lobe dementia, another drastic change. He was disabled 10 years, 6 with dementia. Then he died after being in a coma for 6 days. That was 2 years ago and another extremely dramatic change after 37 1/2 years of marriage. During the time he was disabled and especially with the dementia, the cats were the recipients of my whining, whimpering, scolding and tears. I expressed everything as they listened and purred. My dear friends provided support and ears to listen. I do not think I would have got through his death if not for them. In a way, I had grieved twice for him as he was lost to me twice. But I have survived, tho I do have my moments in private. You will float and go with the flow. All you can do really.

Sioux said...

Cherry pie? Open a can of cherry pie filling. It's like an individual serving of pie. In a can. ;)

Linda O'Connell said...

Pearl you have gumption. It's been buried under all the crap, but soon you will emerge victorious. Onward and upward, young lady. We believe in you. Life is too short, eat pie, the whole thing.

Rose Blackthorn said...

Yeah, being newly single is exhausting.

It's the shock of the big change, more than anything else.

Gumption needs time to replenish.

You'll be fine. In a few weeks you'll be downward dogging without any thought required.

Massive hugs to you.

River said...

Here in Australia, Gumption is a thick white cleaning/scouring paste which comes in round tubs similar to margarine tubs.
You may never bake a whole cherry pie again? Now that's a shame, you could always bake one and freeze half. Or invite Mary to share. You do still have Mary in your life?

Watson said...

I have two pies and ice cream, Pearl, C'mon over! We'll do 'em all, get stuffed, cry a little, laugh a lot. Til then, hang in and know you are loved.
Barbara and Watson

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Gumption, or a season of rest to recover. Maybe you're in the cocoon stage right now, just hibernating until next season when you burst forth.

savannah said...

*hugs* just because, sweetpea!

xoxoxoxoxo

Nancy/BLissed-Out Grandma said...

So: gumption, Powder Milk biscuits, half a cherry pie, chocolate, lots of rest, and being kind to yourself. Find some new (or old) kind of music that you really enjoy. Make sure you have warm mittens and hot chocolate. And then some day Liza Bean will tell you to go out for the evening (how could I know that?) and you'll feel a little better.