Friday, September 12, 2014

Work in Progress

       Yet again another long pause in between posts. My sincerest apologies to my one reader. In my defense, if you haven't gotten used to my disappearing act by now...
       The last couple of months have brought new changes into my life. I am officially divorced. You wouldn't think paperwork would make an impact but it does. It solidified the direction in which my life is headed. It brought a closure and a sense of relief. I was worried that after months of no contact that I would have had an emotional rush at the sight of my ex-husband, especially in the company of my replacement. However, when he appeared, I felt nothing. In fact the mini anxiety attack I had at the thought of what might happen was the most difficult part of that day. When I looked at him I felt nothing, not even anger. It was like looking at my past incarnate. I realized that I am fully at peace with the choices I have made including the one to separate my life from his. The proceedings moved along at a glacial pace but compared to how long it took to actually get in front of a judge I suppose it was swift. There was nothing left to fight about. Nothing left. Who knew I'd be at peace with nothingness.
       After my divorce was finalized I took up residence in a new city that is 40 minutes away from the ocean and 4 hours away from my past. My Pisces soul has never felt more at home. I have met many challenges up to this point, and after many mini meltdowns I've met them all head on. Every time I've said to myself "I don't know what I'm going to do" somehow I've figured it out. Whether it's been from me pushing forward or someone helping me along the way, I have kept going. I cannot express enough gratitude for the people in my life that have been there for me despite my attempts to scare them off with my enigmatic peculiarity.
       The children are adjusting well to their new environment. The only complaint they have had was when they realized their schools require uniforms. My younger daughter cried out, "I am in individual! They are violating my individual rights!" I'm certain my smirk didn't help the situation. Even my little Autistic Avenger attempted mutiny by pulling off his polo shirt the moment it touched his skin and making a face as if to say "What the heck is this mess!?!!?" They are all now used to it and thriving beautifully. I couldn't be more proud of my not so little ones. With all they've been through they still manage to be their goofy little selves. Such resilience is rare in adults and here they are setting an example for me.
       Since the move I scored a great job as a cook. It's grueling and I'm limping by the end of my shift but I love it. Not having to stress and panic over finances for the first time in 3 years has been such a relief. I still struggle but no longer to the point where I'm panicking at the thought of not having enough food for my children. Now I can bag their lunches and get those yogurt covered pretzels my picky eater loves so much. And living 40 minutes from the beach means great stay-cations! We've been to the beach twice in the last 3 months and the only difficulty was a jellyfish sting which was also incidentally the funniest part of that day because Mini-Me said "Please don't pee on me".
       I am currently living with my brother and a roommate. They both have tried to push me out the door to socialize and enjoy being a single woman for the first time in years. That's the only personal difficulty I'm having at the moment. When one has been part of two how does that one become one again? The reality is that I have been a wife for so long that I forgot how not to be one. I had gotten so used to checking in and asking permission that it feels weird to not to have to do that. One night I ventured out to a friend's housewarming and I was checking in with my brother. He said, "I'm not your husband I'm your brother. Go be a grownup." At that moment I thought to myself, "Holy Shinobi! I don't have to answer to anyone!" Yet another epiphany. I'm having a lot of those lately. I'm realizing that being single does not equal being wild and meeting new people does not make me a loose woman nor does being an adult make me a bad mother. I am not on the hunt for ex-husband number two but it's quite alright to open myself up to the idea of meeting someone.
       I am still healing and growing and I am forever a work in progress. I admit that I am quite proud of myself these days. I feel strong. Over the last few years I have morphed from that scowl faced banshee that used to pitifully greet me in the mirror. Now I see a lively woman that I never thought I could be. I still get nervous and struggle with anxiety but I'm working on those flaws. I've also been allowing myself to feel like a woman. Not a wife, not a mother, but a woman. Being less than girly I have been embracing my femininity and it feels beautiful, even on my bad hair days. 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Be the Change

       Earlier today as I crossed a parking lot I noticed a man struggling with an arm full of groceries as he was trying to get a rebellious shopping cart to cooperate. I told him I'd take it back into the store for him. He asked, "You need it?" I said, "No, just picking up my license that I dropped inside the other day. But I'll park it for you." He replied, "Wow! Thanks darlin'. Not many nice people nowadays. Especially taking one look at me." I smiled at him and his matching girlfriend and told them it was no problem at all. He had no idea that his metalhead look was something I actually admired. I grabbed the shopping cart and said, "Be the change you wish to see in the world." They both gave a hearty "F*** yeah!" complete with metal hands. I threw up a metal sign and went on my way with a smile. I don't know if the couple I saw earlier today would have helped me had they seen me struggling. All I know is they were struggling and needed a hand.
       A couple of months ago I was visiting a dear friend. I was heating up my coffee in the microwave. When I had the mug in my hand I swung the microwave door closed and it smacked into the mug breaking it off of the handle and spilling coffee all over her counter and onto her very expensive cellphone and tablet. I began to apologize over and over as I cried in frustration because not only was I embarrassed at my klutzy self but also at the fact that I cannot replace these things. My beautiful friend said "Honey, calm down. It's just stuff. We can always fix or replace stuff, we cannot replace people. Don't ever think I'd be mad at you over stuff." This woman not only reassured me of my own value to her but also her honor.
       The way we treat people should not be based on anything other than how we would like to be treated. Even if we're not being treated in a kind way. If a person is polite only to polite people does that really make him polite and kind? If a person is only generous to generous people does that really make him generous? Is someone truly honest if they are only honest with honest people? Does that mean that they lie to only liars? And if so, does that really make it okay? No, no, and no.
       People are so damned justified in everything they do. Tit for tat all day long. This is one of the many things wrong with society. There is such a lack of humanity in humanity it sickens me. Please, do not think me some righteous person as I am just as guilty as anyone else. Because I am aware of my ethological flaws I hold myself at an impossible standard which I always fall short of. I often ask myself "If I wasn't such a terrible liar would I lie more often?" I am honest to a fault and it often bites me in the ass. But would I be so honest if I were more gifted at deception? I honestly don't know. My convictions are strong. There's no denying that. However there are times when I wish I could just not care. But I do care. And since becoming a mother I care now more than ever.
       As a mother I aim to teach my children the lesson of honor. And you see, that's what is lacking in this fast paced world. Honor. My lessons to my children are simple:

  • Always tell the truth. Even if you're afraid of getting in trouble or hurting someones feelings. 
  • Be kind to people even if they are not kind to you. Don't let the bitterness of another person sour you.
  • Follow your heart. Your brain is important however it is your heart that will never lie to you. You may not get the results you want but you'll have certainty in your decisions. 
  • Give with a happy heart or don't give at all. If you give out of obligation that does not make you generous. And when you give don't look for anything in return. We give to give, simple as that. 
  • Humility is honorable. Arrogance and vanity are damaging. 
  • Dignity and pride are two different things. We must learn the difference. 
  • It's okay to not agree with someone and to not like someone. Just because people are seemingly nice doesn't mean everyone is going to be friends. Tolerance and acceptance are key. 
  • Give love freely even if it's not returned the way we hope. To love someone is a beautiful thing. Just don't be a doormat. 
There's a lot more but I'm running out of steam and I keep mistyping. The point is that somewhere among the technology, the wage earning, the instant gratification, and the constant entertainment we have forgotten how to live and how to treat one another. For such an advanced species at the top of the food chain no less we have become more and more primitive as our attitudes have basically come down to every man for himself. The sad part though is that not many people are willing to start the change we so desperately need. We think we are guarding ourselves when what we're really doing is disconnecting from our better selves. We're so quick to point a finger at one another not realizing there's fingers pointed at us as well. We need to change within ourselves in order to see a real change. It's not easy and the results may not be seen for another two generations but if we really try there will be results that will have been worth the effort.
       My philosophy is simple, "Be the change you wish to see in the world". Okay, so it's Gandhi's philosophy, not mine, but I've adopted it. Even though I struggle with the people of today it's refreshing and heart healing to know that there are a precious few that strive to be the change.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Waiting Game

Patience: /ˈpāSHəns/: noun: the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.

       If my life was a movie I think this would be the transformation montage. The bits and pieces of scenes that would show the passing of time ultimately revealing the grand transformation. But life is not a movie and we can't speed up the time to hurry to the end where I'm bursting through the finish line in a form flattering fashionable outfit that represents my inner metamorphosis. No. Now we wait. And I'm losing my patience.
       Here's a candid moment for me: This divorce is kicking my ass. While I pride myself on my strength and patience I admit that I'm about ready to wring someone's neck. As a precaution I've been avoiding people at all costs. Nothing has even happened with the divorce as I have yet to have a court date. What's driving me absolutely bat poop crazy is the waiting. I'm a take action kind of chick and I have taken action. My moves have all been made and now I'm at a stale mate with the powers that be. C'mon Universe, your move. Every passing day has me more and more anxious for the next phase of my life yet with every sunset there's no change. I can control my actions but I cannot speed up the judicial process. For anyone that's ever been through a divorce, my sincerest condolences.
       Long after the heartache is gone, long after the ego has been bruised and healing has begun, there's still the gap between the beginning of the end and the actual end. And it's not like you go on an emotional hiatus relieving you of any suffering or anxiety. These feelings although still present are easier to deal with if there's a distraction. This is why so many people rebound or have a wild phase. That's not my style. I'm not promiscuous nor am I a party animal. Besides, I have children to take care of. My children have always been the best distraction for me however being stuck in a crossroads traffic jam with no sign of a detour has me wanting to shout "Don't make me come back there! I swear I will turn this car around!"
       I have goals and plans and I can't seem to get anywhere because I'm waiting...and waiting...and waiting. My mother told me "Maybe there's something you're supposed to learn from this time of waiting. Maybe patience?" Are you freaking kidding me??? Any more lessons and patience and I'll be so enlightened that the Dalai Lama will come to me for philosophical quotes. Come on, Cosmos, I don't want to be the next great guru I just want to get on to the next chapter of my life already. Enough with the lessons in patience already. I have a child with Autism, trust me, I've got patience.Then mom said something extraordinary and whether she meant to or not the woman blew me away. She said, "Baby Girl, you are not the only one going through this divorce. Your children, their father, and your families are all going through this divorce. Did it ever occur to you that the lesson in patience is not yours but any one of these members of your life? And if that's the case then that would make you a part of their lesson." I do believe Mom was saying that the universe does not revolve around me. Ouch.
       So, the universe does not revolve around me. Who knew? *Sigh* The humdinger is I actually said something similar to my own children not too long ago. They asked why their father was acting out the way he was. I said "Your father and I are going through the same thing. I just handle it differently." Holy Schnikes I'm turning into my mother. How's that for a blog entry? Anyway, back on track. Okay, so not only does the universe not revolve around me but I have to be understanding to the time it takes for those in my life as their lessons may pour over into my life making it seem like it's my life that's at a halt when in fact it's theirs. Did I just therapize myself? I think I did.
       I suppose the best thing I can do is find ways to occupy my time. Being a severe introvert I'm quite good at that. Boredom hasn't been the issue really, it's the anticipation of what's to come. So, I think I'll work some more on my crafts, my plans, and of course my personal growth. I'll do my best not to wring any necks.
***The two most powerful warriors are patience and time***