Sunday, March 1, 2015

Fifth Wheel - Letting Go - Abyss

I went out with some friends last night to celebrate the matriarch of our group's birthday. I felt like a the fifth wheel. It was the original four plus one newer addition. We have all known each other for over 20 years but the group is fragmented now and our get togethers are few and far between.

When we met we were brought together by hardship and loss and in the program we became a family. Since that time we have all had different spiritual crisis that we had to face on our own. It was particularly hard because the crisis were happening simultaneously,

We have paired off in different ways and found other people outside the original group to get through it. We are still friends but not the family we use to be and it is hard to see it as clearly as I did last night. Our get togethers seem more forced than genuine.

I have spent my adult years really trying to fit in somewhere this group was really the closest I have ever gotten to feeling loved and included. I am still welcome but it isn't the same I am not the same and my need to fall in line and play my role in the group just doesn't exist inside me anymore. It is a door I closed it with my own behavior. I went away and came back a different person.

I am an outsider but it is OK this time. I have grown stronger and my lack of neediness and not wanting approval has made me less appealing to those who get there worth from taking care of people. It is understandable having a string of people that need you does fill every minute or your life so you don't have to acknowledge the emptiness that is just below the surface.

I was that person for a long time. I was running from what really scared me the thought that without the action in my life I would be nothing. If there were no one or thing to fix, including me, I would be floating in the abyss alone and I would go mad. Something happened to me that made me want to find out if this idea was true if the falling away of everything would drop me into a hole that I could never return from.

I did return. I am better for it even if I am not sure exactly where or if I will every fit in anywhere again. The question is do I really need to fit in anymore? Fitting in makes us do things we don't want to do for a long time even when it isn't spiritually good for us anymore. It makes us play parts that limit our creative spirit and provides us with a false sense of security. This is my experience.

I am not trying to depress anyone out there. I am just saying that there is a price for belonging just as there is a price for not belonging. Last night it felt awkward I ate too much in a loud restaurant where we were shouting. I was the fifth wheel last night at a gathering of my past and it was painful.

I feel my life is preparing me for a big change. The new person I have become is looking to move on and sever these ties that bind. It is a scary feeling sometimes. What if I am wrong about this what if I should be trying harder to mend these relationships. This though makes me feel like I did when I was trying to revive a marriage I knew was dead.

I love these people and we will always share the bond of survival and I am sure we will share another meal in the future but now it is time I accepted that it is time to move on to the next chapter. I have been in limbo a long time and now I am ready to take the next step whatever that is.

Everybody else has moved on long ago and here I am holding on by my fingernails to the remotely familiar. Nothing stays the same so why do I try so to imagine that they are the same? Why do I want them to be the same where is the fun in that? I guess this is another exercise in letting go.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Resting between creative ideas

Living alone and being single definitely has its advantages. I didn't expect to end up alone for this many years and now that my life returned to normal I have a lot of time on my hands. I have to admit that I get bored and that this thought "I'm bored" really stresses me out and makes me feel guilty.

I came from a family where you had to be productive. If you weren't accomplishing something then you were lazy. You should be at the very least be reading a book preferably the Bible. This isn't a bad way to raise kids and has given my sister and I a great advantage in the business world with a work ethic that is hard to beat.

This weekend I felt so guilty just wanting to lay around and do nothing. It is my right as an adult to do what I want when I want. Right? Sometimes I just don't want to do anything but my mind says this isn't normal and maybe I am depressed. That brings on another slew of thoughts that lead to no where you would want to go.

I thought about this fear of the word bored and decided to redefine boredom as "resting between creative ideas" This actually makes me feel better about my down times.

I really do need these times of doing nothing and being with no one and not accomplishing a thing. It makes the rest of my life more energized and actually more productive. It is stillness. It is rest.

When I got to the office yesterday morning it was like a slow awakening. I was able to look at my work with fresh eyes because I literally had fresh eyes from all that extra sleep.

So I will never be ______  again I will just be resting between creative ideas.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Taking a moment

I decided to take things a little easier this week sleeping a little later working closer to 40 hours. It felt a little bit like a vacation and I am planning to continue that theme since I am off this weekend. 

This week has been cold for the deep south.  My heat is running continuously. This is a luxury that I couldn't afford in years past and for that I am grateful. I didn't run it no matter how cold it got I would just huddle in my room under the covers with a space heater. 

Since it has turned cold I have been extremely achy at night, I finally realized the heater in my water bed had died. I know how retro is that a water bed but I love it. It is a soft side so you can't tell and is very relaxing. It stayed cool during those hot flash years and it is usually keeps me warm and toasty in the winter. 

I ordered a new heater and it was delivered a few days ago. When I was retrieving the package from the porch a bird flew into the house. I couldn't get it out. It was late and cold and I left the door open with the porch light as long as I could hoping he would go back out. It was in the 30s that night and I gave up figuring he was thinking that indoors was the better choice.

The first day he was here he flew around and was hanging out in some gourds I have on a high shelf but yesterday I couldn't find him. I know what your thinking but I am staying in denial I have lots of experience with that. I am saying that he escaped somehow. I do have a hole at the ceiling where the fan is connected. I hope he got away he could still be in the gourd. So sad.

I thought maybe the bird was a visiting relative or maybe a sign from my mother. I know it is crazy but I like thinking that life is more than what we see. Taking the world a face value is so boring why can't there be more why do we have to explain everything put limits on the possibilities? This is the problem with a active creative mind life as it is is never enough. 

I always want there to be more. I look around and everyone seems pretty satisfied with the way things are and there I am thinking is this all there is? I think sometimes it is a lack a maturity on my part the child in me feels that I should be exempt from the mundane. 

I use to fill my time with task. You could give me a to list and keep me occupied for days even weeks even years. It seems that now, because I living less in my head, I don't enjoy the busy work. Before doing chores gave me time to think. My mind was always obsessed about something or someone the latest crisis and chores could mask this obsessing and I could feel productive and nobody knew about my obsessing.

Today it is not enough. My mind is quiet and wants enrichment not just to something to kill time. I am going to spend some time this weekend thinking about how to make my life fuller. More thinking involved how ironic.  

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Love - leaving - peace

My mind would like to take this opportunity to slide into the many reasons I am alone this Valentines. I could easily go there an look at the mistakes I have made the reason I have been left so many times but luckily I am too tired to give in to this inclination.

Why do people leave?  The better question is why do they stay? Why did I stay long after the happiness had faded and I felt lonelier than I have ever felt when I was actually alone. These are the questions that use to really put me to the test. I do know know some of the answers now.

First I married young and I thought it was forever. My religious back ground made me think that a commitment was a commitment my parents would have never divorced. I stayed because I didn't want to fail I stayed because I was empty and hurt and this person filled that for me sometimes but they also hurt me. I stayed because love conquers all and I couldn't imagine a life that was any better.

I only knew about hurt up to that point. I expected that life was only about survival because this was my own experience. I blamed myself for not being good enough for people to stay with me. I felt lucky when someone liked me and when fell for someone I worked hard to be who they thought I was. When I did this I lost myself and this ate me up inside. I couldn't show my true self because they would leave. This made me a joy to live with.

They left anyway maybe because they were living with the ghost of someone.  Maybe they left because they did believe that there was more happiness to be found else where.  They had more hope than I did at time.

I had to find myself and face the truth. I had to find a way to prove to myself that I was lovable. In my heart I knew I wasn't because there was no one I felt really did love me. I was alone and reaching out and felt no one was there.

I stayed in this place for what seemed life forever thinking that there was something in me that repelled people that once loved me into leaving me.

Something happened along the way that made realize that true love was unconditional and that you are just loved. Love isn't earned it just is and only you and your god have the ability to give you that kind of love.  I do believe in god and that we have a spirit that lives within us that represents that god and when we trust and love ourselves then we can truly find peace in this world.

Today I can be happy and feel loved even without a valentine. I can know that loving myself is enough.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Just a dream - Facing the anniversaries of my life

I have been off - line this week evidently my cable modem needed to be replaced to enable me to have a higher and faster life. I remedied the situation yesterday and went to the big box electronic store and bought a sensible modem.

I am against the invasion of electronics into every minute of our lives. I do love accessing a wealth of information when I want it but I don't like being assessable to anyone anytime. This does hurt my bottom line at work sometimes but I am willing to make the sacrifice.

While I was in the store yesterday I felt like I was on another planet. I thought I am old but I know even when I was younger I was resistant to whatever everyone else was doing. A rebel at heart I like life on my terms and have always gone against the norm it has been part of my identity.

The update for this missed week is that I had record sales last month and worked about 12 days in a row which I am going to try to avoid doing again anytime soon. I also had a few personal anniversaries from the past to deal with.

I wrote a post that couldn't be posted since I was off line at home and too busy or not that motivated to post from work. I would have been married 31 years. Why do we do that? Why do we long for what might have been and waste our nows on these dreams. A side note my ex put the wrong marriage date on our divorce papers so I am sure this date doesn't come up for him.

The reality is that relationships don't end because they are healthy and happy. Mine was emotionally abusive and living with someone drinking and cheating and blaming me for everything and was never going be a dream a nightmare for sure. My self esteem was so low living isolated with this person.

I found new love that worked for a long time. It did end but it was never abusive it ended because we both had changed. There was cheating involved but that was a symptom of something else a catalyst to give one of us the courage to change our minds about being together. I hold no resentments now and I am really grateful at this point. THIS TOOK A LONG TIME.

To embellish the sadness this I watched the last episode of Parenthood. Big family messed up but they held it together and had each other. That is a life I will never have. This does get to me sometimes I am human sometimes.

When my marriage ended and I was thirty there was still a chance of children and the family. I made a conscious decision to not take that route. I knew it would be a push to meet the right person and get things started. I wanted to choose someone for the right reasons.

I was tired and I didn't want to make another plan. I just wanted to let go and see what happened next with out expectations. I met someone three years later who loved me and love me well that was enough for me and I was content with my life. It was 10,000 times better than what I had experienced before.

So here I am alone again and six years have passed since that relationship ended. I am happier than I have ever been before. I am a whole person for the first time and not looking for something outside myself to solve my pain.

I want another relationship but I know that it won't complete me I don't need to be completed. It would enhance my life and make me a little less selfish but it isn't a solution. I have spent 23 years in committed relationships or at least I was committed and I know that alone or with someone else life is the same with one you just have a little more time for yourself.

I expect that I will find love again and I do expect that stories about big happy families will always make me feel a little sad around my would be anniversary. The dream of what could have been, lets face it, is just that a dream.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Food - Life and Extremes

I have been doing nothing but working twelve days straight now. I have plugged back into the matrix and feeling a little guilty but also grateful that I am still able to manage this kind of work load.

What to do next I am not sure I don't want work to be my whole life. Today my only free day I am relaxing and doing things around the house. I have decided to take better care of myself with these the long hours by planning my meals ahead and taking breakfast lunch and dinner with snacks to the office.

This is a new development for me because I have had an off and on love affair with food all my life. and lately it has been off.

The love of food started as a kid I was raised by health nuts we ate organics and my parents juiced their food way back in the 70's.  I do have to say that the recent wave organics is amusing to me like this is a new idea. It is a good one if you can afford it.

I never really left those organic roots and have prepared all my food from scratch since I left home. It only seemed natural that I would married a chef the first time and played the sou chef to him. We cooked for crowds and at one point did some catering. His food made me fat which he regularly pointed out to me.

When he left I stopped eating and mostly watched chefs cook on tv. When I got my life back together and had new love in my life I started cooking again. I really loved cooking and worked on perfecting every possible technique but eventually I got tired of cooking all the time but I didn't know how to break out of the routine I didn't want to disappoint everyone.

When the relationship ended I divorced food again. For the past six years I have survived on protein bars and eating out. I even cooked for my dog but not for myself.

So here I am embracing food again and cooking for myself. I guess I am an all or nothing kind of person. I can admit I do like extremes or at least I like them until they exhaust me and then I have to find some center point.

Today I made a lamb stew with sweet potatoes and dried apricots. It will make for a few good lunches next week. So I guess I am back in love with food.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Finding what has been lost - Grace

With life you get hurt. Sometimes it is just little things said to you by people that say they love you other times it hard hurts where you feel like you have been gutted and left for dead. You think you will never be the same and that is true but what can you do but keep moving.

You know you have lost small chunks and big chunks of yourself but you learn to function as this new person you have become.  You get use to feeling less than the person you were and eventually you accept that this is the person you are and then the memory of who you were fades all together. 

This is the point of acceptance and it feels pretty god to give up or give in. You can stop trying so hard and spend your time doing something besides thinking about trying to get back to the person you were. I feels like freedom.

You get on with it you do what is required of you everyday. People look at you the same they don't know that there has been a shift within you. You don't know this yourself except you have more energy you feel a little lighter and a lot less emotional.

Finally one day out of the blue something happens that makes you laugh. It feels peculiar but it starts to happen more often and then there is the singing in the shower.

Many months later you realize that without explanation you have returned to yourself. You are not the same but actually better. You know that something extraordinary has happened and you accept the grace that has been given to you. Once again.