Tonight, I will go to bed and my heart will do the crying for me, hoping that some day a switch will appear and magically give me a life again. I desperately seek to eliminate my title of chronic pain patient and restore it to just "mom."
Men, please, before you demand that a woman be grateful for your unprovoked commentary on her presence or validate you by responding, consider that this is about your needs, your wishes, your demands. It's your problem, not hers.
Couples interacted, families interacted, but they did not want to interact with me. I felt a little unnerved by the silence and the quick glances, and a little lonely as well. It surprised me that a midlife woman traveling alone should be almost shunned. At least, that's the way it felt.
No matter what the etiology, the goal is to recognize the problem, learn from it, and extricate oneself as soon as possible to avoid loss of time and energy. If allowed to persist, the condition can result in inertia and hopelessness.
My challenge to you is: Shine, do your best, stand above the crowd, and yes, be willing to receive negativity for your good works. By doing your best you'll also receive positive attention. Just keep going, take that next step. Joy is present.