Tag Archives: take responsibility

A clear perspective

I make no secret that I have been in counseling for several years. There is no doubt in my mind that it has saved me in more ways than one.  It did not save my marriage, it did not save my relationship with my mother…it has saved me from thinking that there is something wrong with me.  Sometimes it’s all about validation…I am not wrong for feeling the way I do.  Other times it’s giving me a new perspective on the reasons I am the way I am, and why I feel the way I feel.

Love:

“Wait…are you in love with him?”

I was completely taken aback by that question, and to be completely honest, the thought had come up just a few days earlier.  The answer to that question is as complicated for me as almost anything in my life right now.  The bottom line, I don’t know.  What I do know is that I want to be in love….I feel like after nearly 3 years together we should be in love.  However, love has always been a volatile emotion for me.  My relationships have been wrapped in my taking the blame for all that is wrong, and teaching people that it doesn’t matter how bad you treat me…I will always love you, I will always forgive you.

So what it boils down to is that I do not know what true love is.  I do not know how to be loved in an honest healthy way.  Of course, I do know what it should look like, how it should feel…yet I can’t seem to wrap my little brain around how any of that relates to me.  The task I have been given is to allow myself the opportunity to have the kind of love I truly want.  Dare I say, the kind of love I deserve.

Change:

A couple of weeks ago I had a night where I couldn’t sleep.  First off, I was completely and totally grateful that it wasn’t one of those nights that I was hyper-focused on a conversation, a comment, or feeling.  What did that mean?  Why didn’t I say this or that?  If only I had done this… Ugh, I have had way to many nights like that in the past and it sucks.  This time, it was just calm reflection, but still, the mind would not quiet.  After an hour or so I decided to get out my journal, and write it out.

Each area turned into no less than 3-4 pages.  Apparently I had some things to get off my mind.  The job, the home, the man, the friends, the ex, the smoking, the goals, the weight….There was a lot of shit packed in there that night.  The common thread seemed to commitment (or lack there of) and follow through.  Why oh why can’t I take that great idea, thought or intention, and follow through, focus and commit to any of them.  Well, it seems that I may tend to overthink (I know I was shocked too) (not really) (I’m not fooling anyone) and as was recently suggested “hyper-focus” on emotions that have no real value to the situation.  That isn’t exactly the phrase he used, but the bottom line is I  spend too much time thinking about things, applying inaccurate emotional value to things, situations and people, and not giving myself enough credit or acknowledgement that sometimes and some things are just out of my control.

I have not quit smoking because I am a failure and weak in my commitment.

I have not found a better job because I am not good enough or qualified enough for anything better than this.

I have not sought a better relationship because I don’t really deserve anything better than just the crumbs someone is willing to offer.

I can’t followed though on my yoga, house projects, meal planning, etc etc etc…because you just aren’t good at taking care of shit.

As it has been explained to me…I have a little more in common with my son than I may have been willing to admit to.  None of these things are character flaws…they are more traits of someone with ADD.  I am too focused on having a mediocre life, because it is something familiar and predictable. It is just easier to blame myself for the mediocrity than to actually accept that I could do better and pursue it.  So, it’s time to admit that I might need a little help.

It was suggested, that if I got a little help with what’s going on with my brain, I might be able to stay focused enough to follow through on all those areas of my life that are lacking.

I am not a bad person for having a hard time quitting smoking…I have an addiction that needs to be addressed.

I am not a bad person for wanting to leave my current job…it has served its purpose and I deserve an opportunity to be in a position where my strengths can be appreciated and I can be allowed to grow.

I am not a bed person for wanting a more fulfilling relationship filled with love and commitment…I deserve to be with someone who wants and appreciates what I have and is eager to return the feelings.

I am not a bad person for not staying focused on the tasks that need to be taken care of…I can give myself permission to accept that I need some help.

It’s going to be an interesting journey.  Somehow I’m going to have to admit I am not the flawed person I have been telling myself I am…I am human, sometimes we need a little help, and a clearer perspective.

 

 

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Lessons I clearly haven’t learned yet

It’s been clear to me and probably anyone who has read this blog that I have adhered to the “maybe this time will be different” rule in my relationships.
I’ve done it with my mother.
I’ve done it with my ex husband.
Clearly I’ve done it with the hunky stallion.

What I’ve come to realize is that it isn’t just with relationships that I hold steadfast to this rule. There are at least a few other areas where this has come to light. Let me explain.

Online dating: For the last 5 years I have gone on and off online dating. When I go on, I have good intentions and hopes for some type of real connection. I get frustrated after weeks or months of the same lame offers. Either I’m attracting creepy guys, overweight horny guys, young horny guys, good looking horny guys or older men who send me the strangest emails….I’ve connected with a very few decent guys, but there has not yet been any real connection. So I quit. Then I get lonely, tired of not ever meeting anyone anywhere and go back online again. Of course I change up my profile a bit, add different pictures, try to express that I’m really interested in a long term committed relationship. After getting the same type of responses I delete my account and the circle continues.

Summation: Online dating is not for me.

Diet: This year I decided to take a hold of my eating habits. After a year of working out and getting my body in better shape, I find myself frustrated with still having a jiggly belly. Trainers tell me that I need to work on my diet. I bought a book with some really healthy and easy recipes, all clean eating balanced meals. The result after just a few days I am bloated and unable to poop (keeping it real people). I talk it over with my trainers and they are perplexed and I’m recommended to either keep going with the hopes that eventually things will work themselves out or add in Probiotics. After 5 days of not getting any relief and the pain of it overwhelming, I toss in the towel and order a pizza. Everything is back on track. A few months later I decide to try again, maybe my body was just in shock. This time I’ll add the right dietary aids and some additional “tricks” I’ve researched. Same results. Bloat, constipation, pain, pizza…relief. Just this last week I thought I’d give it another try…Fuck, after 4 days its a bacon cheeseburger to the rescue.

Summation: Clean eating does not work for me.

Online shopping: I love a good deal. I hate shopping in general. So when I see a great deal online I want to jump on it like the 10 tank tops for $20. It’s taken me a long time to realize that I am no longer a size Large or X-Large…so I ordered adult medium. I couldn’t believe how small, really tiny they were, not a big investment so I gave them to my daughter. Next were a set of yoga pants, size medium…I couldn’t get over the camel toe they created, so I gave them to my daughter. Next was the oh so cute black and white sweater that was only $12. Turns out it was being shipped from China. Ugh…it’s a little snug in the armpits but I can work with that, so that’s a partial win. Recently I decided to order a couple of cold weather items. 6 tops, one to be a gift for the girl, the rest just for me. I ordered all my tops in large or X-large cause I think I’m finally getting that online and real life are very very different. I get 1/2 the order, one is too short in the arms and the other one looks more like and child large than an adult large. My daughter once again benefits. I desperately tried to go online and see if I could get the remaining order in the X-large only to be told they have already shipped. Keeping my fingers crossed but admit that my daughter may be the beneficiary of a couple of more tops. Dammit.

Summation: Don’t buy cheap shit online or at the very very least check the size chart and see what size you are online and not in your imagination.

There is much work to be done with me for sure. Forever a work in progress….

Be open to the lesson. Haven’t I said that before?

So, I’m going to sound a little like a broken record here…but please bare with me.  If there is anything I hope that you can take away from my crazy life lessons it is this…

If you want help then ask.  If you are seeking a sign or a message or something that helps move you in the right direction ask for it.  Then let go of any idea about where you think it should come from and just be open to receiving the answer that you need.

This time it came by way of trying to manage my financial affairs.

There isn’t one single area of my life that doesn’t need some work.  I need to get into better shape, I need to manage my money better, I need to find a better job, I need to work on my relationships, I need to be a better parent….and so on.  Most often I find myself trying to tackle everything at once thinking I can chip away at each area and make some progress.  Problem is…it’s exhausting and ultimately I find myself overwhelmed and not really any better off at all.

One of the things I wanted to do this year was read more.  So I set an intention to read at least one book a month.  Not overwhelming myself but just pick one.  The first book I chose was Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover.  I could use a little guidance in the area of finances and I thought I’d take a chance and see what I could learn.  What I got was a little more than I bargained for.

For starters…I did learn what I need to do to get the money thing under control.  So, I’m on a temporary spending freeze, with a budget in place, a small emergency fund open and I’m chipping away at my debt.  The lesson was to start with one thing, the emergency fund and do whatever it takes to get a foundation.  I’m lucky enough to have been given a nice check for Christmas and decided a part of it needs to be set aside inaccessible unless necessary.  Done.

After step one, then you move to step two.  Establishing a budget, and start chipping away at your debt.  Start with the smallest and work your way up.  Makes sense.  Work on one piece of the problem until it has been eliminated and then you move on to the next.  Since this is going to take me some time…I’ve decided to stop there and work on this till it’s done.  Thanks to the public library, the book will be there when I’m ready to move on to the next step.

Um…didn’t you mention something about a lesson??

Well yes I did.  In that book Dave emphasized the importance of working on one step at a time.  Yes we all want to save for retirement, pay off our debt, take care of this need at that need…but ultimately you need to stay focused on one single goal before you can move on to the next.  If I’m putting money away AND trying to pay off my debt, it’s going to take longer to pay off the debt, and I’m not really going to be saving a lot of money in the process.  So, pay off the debt FIRST.

One step at a time.  One project at a time.  Stop spreading yourself so thin that you take longer getting to the finish line on any one of them.  If you’re like me…you end up giving up on all of them cause you feel like you’re never going to get to the end.  Right? So thanks Dave! Financial lesson = life lesson.  Work on one step till you reach the end.

I’m not going to give up on all my endeavours.  I’m still working on getting healthier, being a better parent, and cleaning up my finances.  I am going to give up on the dating thing though.  Not because I’m still holding out hope for any particular situation to suddenly change…but because I have a lot of work to do for me, and right now Me needs to be at the top of the list.

I cannot change any area of my life if I’m just putting minimal effort into all of them.  Nothing will really change for the better…and I’ll be tired and bitter.  So for now the main focus is my finances…which actually kind of spreads its self to other areas of my life.  Keeping on budget means being creative with dinner ideas and teaching my kids how to use what we have and be less wasteful.  Spending freeze means no eating out and no poor food choices making the progress on getting into better shape easier.

So I took out a book to help me with my finances and I learned how to manage my life as well.  This time I’m not going to get overwhelmed and give up on everything.  This time I’m going to stay focused on one small goal till it’s met before moving on.

 

 

 

Accepting my fear

You can’t always get what you want…but you might get what you need.

This is the running theme of my therapy sessions. It is an opportunity for me to rethink what I’m looking for…is it something I want, or something I need.

There is no doubt there is fear.  That’s evident in just about every choice I make.  The trouble is in the pinpointing the fear and figuring my way out of it.  This is where I seem to get stuck.  Am I afraid of never getting what I want, or afraid I might get everything I want and fuck it up? A coin flip either way would probably be spot on.

I can let go of a lot of stupid thinking…one I can’t seem to shake is the thought that I don’t deserve, not worthy.  Sure there have been plenty of reasons for me to have come to this shitty conclusion.  Abandonment by my father, mental and emotional abuse from my mother, being married to an emotionally unavailable man.  It’s not to hard to absorb all of that and come to the stupid realization that you must not really deserve to be loved.  Trouble is, I know it’s all bullshit.  So why can’t I work my way out of it?

Lately there have been reminders…that I am allowing things into my life to constantly re confirm this load of shit.  As much as I keep telling myself I know I do deserve better…I don’t really believe it and so I keep attracting to me that which reflects my true and inner belief. Aaaahhhhhhrrrrrr…..mother fucker.

Here is my smart intellectual self seeing and recognizing all this.  No longer do I need to be beat down to nothing to finally have my moment of enlightenment.  That’s a small victory. The bigger victory would be to actually do those things that would put myself at an advantage.  Instead…I wallow, helpless and broken.

My counselor told me to think like the smart confident woman that I am and do what she would do.  Ok…smart confident women don’t sit around and feel sorry for themselves.  They don’t take shit from people.  They don’t keep doing the same thing over and over and hope that this time will be different.  Nope.  That smart confident woman takes charge of her life…she expects the best of herself and those around her.  She sees when she is giving in to fear and stops in her tracks before she falls flat on her beautiful face.

This time I’m going to work harder to listen to her.  She has given me the courage to accept that I was suffering with my relationship with the hunky stallion because I was attached to what HE was doing..or not doing.  The next step is to stop settling.  He is a beautiful sweet caring man.  No doubt there.  He knows just the right thing to say to make me stop and not give up.  Smart confident me says that words don’t mean shit if there is not action to back them up.

It’s a dual lesson.  One for him…back up with some action.  Most importantly is the one for me….back up with some fucking action.  I’m not going to lie…I’m scared as shit.  Perhaps that’s the bigger lesson here.  I’m scared of staying where I am…and scared of moving.  Which one is the bigger fear??? Staying right where I am.  So, once again, I’m about to take one giant leap of faith and rip myself out of this miserable dis-comfort zone.

I see a pity party for myself.  I see a stumble here and there.  I also see eventually there will be something amazing…For this moment I’m going to just settle for better than this, and tip toe myself forward.  Stop allowing my emotions to take the lead.  Stop thinking sex is the same as honest affection.  Start valuing myself more.  Start taking action.

How much truth to share…and does it matter?

I was reading a blog recently about losing a friend over something they shared. The truth is this guy is a good guy, and he isn’t the kind of person who would just tear someone apart…but he shares his own perspective and his own thoughts. Most people know, writing is a healing experience, especially if you are trying to work through something painful.

It got me thinking about what I share and how much of it I share with those who take the time to read this crap. Truth is, I don’t share everything. I lady has to keep a little bit of mystery. Besides…I know for sure that someone, probably a lot of you, would judge me harshly if I revealed certain things. So I keep a lot of things from the masses…and some things I keep completely to myself. For me, it’s a good balance.

The other day someone visited and read a ton of my shit. I have no idea who it was, or where they came from…but it got me thinking. Who the hell would be that interested in all my garbage to read so much of it…and not make one comment? Is it someone I know? I wondered if it was the Hunky Stallion. He knows of my blog, but I’m not sure it would ever search it out to see what I write about. However it did make me go back and look at the things I’ve written just to see if I would be completely embarrassed if he knew how I felt. If it was him, I wonder if he thinks I’m a complete mental case. I wonder if he think to himself “glad I dodged that crazy bullet” Then I think…why would I give a shit.

I haven’t written anything on here I wouldn’t tell someone face to face. That is, anyone who gave a shit or bothered to ask. The things I write here aren’t any more open and honest than I would be to anyone who wanted to know. I’m an open book. So the bottom line is…if it was him, and it scared him, then so be it. Truth is truth…and I’m not apologizing for being honest. If it wasn’t him…if it was just some random stranger, well, I hope you find something better to do with your downtime than run through the crazy ramblings of a 40 something chick just trying to figure out life.

This isn’t about putting my stuff on display to get sympathy or to be judged. It’s about sharing and connecting and feeling like I’m not alone. I’ve been fortunate enough to find out that there are more people out there like me and it’s nice knowing that sometimes working through whatever garbage I have going on in my head helps someone else work through theirs. Truth be told, if I knew that no one in my personal life read this, I might share more, but for now the stories I tell here, I would tell you over coffee or drinks, if you were genuinely interested.

I have another blog. It started out as a way to keep in touch with family and friends. It turned into more when my marriage started to fall apart. I shared a lot of details of my pain with complete strangers. I shared it with my husband and with my mother. Neither of them were too pleased by what they read. In my ever optimistic mind, I was hoping that reading how I felt would help them understand me better and would ultimately bring us closer. It did not. Neither of them were interested in understanding anything and took what I said and made it ugly and even more painful. So when it was time to start this new chapter of my life I chose to start a new blog, and be a little more selective with whom I shared it. I don’t ever want to hurt anyone by sharing my feelings…but I also don’t want them used against me.

Anyway…Maybe I share too much. Maybe I should share more. Right now I feel completely comfortable sharing what I do, and if you were to bring it up to me in person, I would be more than happy to share more.

Time to walk the walk…

Let’s just say, I’m not exactly 100% proud of some of my behavior lately. I like to sell myself as a mature self confident woman…but sometimes I don’t act like one. I’ve done things that are not quite lined with my purpose or my values, and I haven’t gotten the responses I would like. Now, I’m not stupid, so I know since I have no control over the way people react to me, it’s time I take back control over how I act. Time to walk the walk, and not just talk the talk.

I was in the midst of doing something stupid the other day. First, and gratefully, I ran it past a friend. She pretty much called me out on doing the same crap I said I wasn’t going to do anymore. I tried to rationalize…I was only being honest and communicating the way that I was feeling…and it’s what I would want in return. Her short reply let me know…that was not at all what I was doing. After thinking about it, I decided to not go ahead with my plan. This time I was actually going to DO what I have said at least a dozen times….I was going to be that woman I keep telling myself I am.

So I woke today with a renewed sense of self. I’m stronger that this crap. Thankfully, I still have a little bit of self respect left after throwing myself into the dumpster one to many times. Finally I gave myself the opportunity to prove, that despite the fact that I may have temporarily lost myself, I can once again gather myself up and act like the lady I am. It was a close call I’ll admit, and maybe my behavior has done more damage than I hope, but I’m back regardless.

Through this I realized I need to talk to myself like I talk to my friends. What advice would I give them if I were hearing them tell me what they are feeling? How would I explain to them what is going on, here in the real world, that is in stark contrast to the drama filled crazy shit going on inside their pretty little head? What loving words would I share with them when they feel like they are about to fall off a cliff? Why don’t I just give myself that same loving advice….instead of just giving it? Time to treat myself the way I do those people I love most.

So starting today I’m bringing back the rational loving woman that I seem to have let go of for awhile. I’ve missed her…she’s pretty hot. This chick knows what’s right and what’s just emotions run wild. She knows what she’s capable of and what she deserves…and it’s time to let her be the one in charge.

Look out world…the bitch is back.(and I mean that in the most loving and empowering way!)

The subtle differences between men and women…

Here is something I’ve learned about men. When the do something that doesn’t work they don’t do it again. Take for instance the guy who is uber romantic….he buys his lady flowers, cards, takes her to romantic dinners and showers her with love and attention. Now take this guy’s woman, and say she was never satisfied with any of his gifts or the adoration he showed her. Then lets say she cheated on him or dumped him or just plain berated him until finally the relationship ended. That guy would probably say to himself “Well look at that. I did all this for her and she treated my like shit. I’m never going to do that again!” So, he doesn’t. Next woman comes along and she doesn’t get the cards and flowers. She doesn’t get the romantic dinners or the loving attention from this man. Why? Well, simply put…been there, done that…didn’t work.

What he fails to realize is that the woman he showed all the love and attention to was probably just an asshole. She more than likely had her own issues and was just not able to receive the adoration from this man. Unfortunately, instead of thinking it was HER problem, he figures it’s just not something that works, so the next woman get’s screwed. Why would he bother putting in all that effort if he’s just going to end up getting dumped?

I’ve seen this happen several times. My ex was like that. I though he just wasn’t the romantic type until I saw pictures and heard stories about his past romantic gestures. Why couldn’t he do those things for me? Well, because the woman (or girl as it was his HS sweetheart) had treated him like a doormat and eventually dumped him. So apparently all that romantic shit didn’t work.

I got screwed.

Now…we women have a slightly different approach when it comes to relationships. Too often we do the same damn thing over and over and wonder why the hell we can’t seem to keep a man. What WE fail to realize is that sometimes we are a little bat shit crazy and smother our man or demand every ouch of his attention at all times until he can’t stand it anymore and the relationship ends. Then we say “well he was just an asshole. I’ll find someone who appreciates who I really am”…. Admit it…you’ve done that 😉

What we woman fail to realize is that sometimes WE are the asshole and men don’t really like to be attached at the hip to a woman…no matter how awesome and beautiful we are. So when the next (chump) comes along….we do the same damn shit, ending up with the same sad ending.

They get screwed.

I know a lot of smart beautiful women. I think I am one of those. Sometimes we become completely different creatures when it comes to relationships. We play the same games over and over getting the same damn results and cry “FOUL”!! I’m not a game player myself…but I know for sure I can get a little obsessive. For those of us who truly want to end the madness…we have to be honest with ourselves.

STOP MAKING THE SAME FUCKING MISTAKES! And for the LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY IN THIS WORLD…stop blaming every guy.

I don’t know if any guys read this…but if you do, do me a favor. Don’t hold the next woman responsible for the mistakes of the last one. Ladies, stop treating every guy like they are the same, and that they “get” you…they don’t get us, and that’s ok. If we really want to have a loving healthy relationship, we have to get out of old patterns. Be honest with yourself…follow your heart. If it doesn’t work, well….don’t give up. There will be other chances….

That is all.