Sunday, October 30, 2016

Hey! You're Awesome.

I've been concentrating on my health quite a bit lately and making some changes in my lifestyle.  For instance, I now exercise regularly.  For anyone that knows me well, that's most likely a surprise.
I also continue to learn more about nutrition and eating well.  This is a process for a fast food junkie like myself!
I'm learning alot about who I am and how I work as well.  As it turns out--I'm a planner.  I love planning on Sundays.  Laying out the week and looking at each day and fitting this or that in where I have the most time.
I love thinking about what's happening and scheduling my commitments in the way that most sets me up for success.  Love, love, love.

Additionally, this week I began a course in the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.  During the first 4 hour session I thought many times that my timing for taking this course is fantastic with all of the things I have been reviewing in trying to make my life and myself as good as I can possibly be.  I learned about changing my paradigm and have had opportunities to practice this at home and at work.  Guess what???  It's working!  I still have to stop and remind myself, but none the less.

I guess where I'm going with all of this is that I'm learning how I can like myself as I am and still be able to see the room for improvement without putting myself down and letting my self talk become negative.  This is a gigantic "non scale victory" for me!  There was a time when I didn't realize my self talk was my self talk.  I did not view things in the context of "I choose".  While introspection can be a dangerous and emotional process, I'm enjoying the outcomes.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

I love being home

This last week, Tom (my husband), Toby (our dog), and I took a road trip to Hernando, MS to visit my parents.
I usually take this trip alone, but since Tom is retired now, he came along.
It was a really good visit and I absolutely loved having my two favorite fellas with me!
We cleaned out two garages, washed windows, cleaned off the patio, and generally prepped the homestead for winter.
My relationship with my parents is strained to my mind, and these trips are usually emotionally exhausting and traumatic.  While this visit was no different; I handled it much better than usual because I had the hubs with me for moral support.
I told him I'm never going without him again.  And I meant it!
The funny thing is that each time I go there, I can see myself living there.  Until I get home.  I also have a renewed sense of belonging and ambition when I arrive home.
It's the first time to get back in my bed.  The first walk in the door to familiar sounds and smells that are so familiar.  The first drive down the neighborhood streets.
Just like Dorothy says:  There's no place like home!

Saturday, October 8, 2016

I've gotten old enough to remember

Last night I watched the movie "Argo".  It was interesting.  I was about 11 years old when the hostage crisis was going on. 
I remember seeing the footage from Tehran on the TV and asking my dad about it. 
I remember him trying to explain to me why terrorists would take hostages or burn the American Flag, or blindfold their prisoners, etc.
This was a turning point in my life as I recall.
It's when I stopped watching the news every night with my dad.
It's when I first realized there was an entire world other than America and that other countries were extremely different.
It's when I became fascinated with soldier"y", spy"y", secret mission"y" type books and movies.
Earlier today when I was having my weekly phone call with my mom, I mentioned that I had watched the movie.
For some reason, I was expecting it to be as momentous an occasion in her life as it was mine.  Not so.
I guess when you live through Vietnam, Korea, JFK, so on, so on, so on, the hostage crisis was just another drop in the bucket of uckiness that happens in the world.
Interesting the way memories work.  Interesting the triggers our brains make to take us back in time to feel as though we're right there in the midst of it again.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Knowing myself

I like to think I know myself pretty well.  I think I'm very self aware.  The only problem with that is that I've thought that for several years.  Many years even.  But I'm constantly becoming more self aware.  So what does that mean?

It basically means I overanalyze. 

It also means that I have a habit of self correction and modification.  I very much like that about myself.  I like seeing something I don't like about my personality or mannerisms and setting about to change it.  I like knowing that I am a completely different person now than I was even 1 short year ago.  That is how fast personal growth can occur if you are genuinely interested in it and objectively look at yourself. 

It's also imperative that you understand the people around you.  The reason this is imperative is that you need to know who's opinions to take to heart and who's opinions to throw in the garbage.  Lots of them belong in the garbage, but there are always those select few.

Is this process also self torture?  YES!  Do I sometimes hate this aspect of myself more than I love it?  YES! YES! YES!  That's the beauty of it.

Who can turn the random person from cool as a cucumber to homicidal maniac in 5 seconds flat?  Usually, it's either your mother or your spouse.  Conversely, when you are in pain or heartbroken, who's name do you call?  Usually, it's either your mother or your spouse. 

So interesting how our emotions work.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Figuring myself out -- or trying to anyway

So yesterday, I had counseling.  My counselor, who I've been working with off an on for a few years, told me I'm using my past as a crutch. 

I begged to differ and never would have thought that.

I've been mulling it over in the last 24 hours mixed with the "why don't I deserve nice things" question.

A certain family member took everything that was of any worth to me.  Money, records, gifts I'd been given, you name it.  If by chance I did keep something from him (due to my exceptional hiding skills) I would use it wrong or incorrectly or not give it the appropriate respect, so others said.  Then my ex husband was very clear that he was the only one working so all that was in our home belonged to him since he paid for it.

Seems a dumb question now that I think about it.

So why the continued self sabotage?  My husband now is so fantastic I can barely stand it. Although he does still annoy me like any good husband would.  He would never deny me anything I wanted.

Interesting the human brain.  I'm sure it takes more than 12 years of a good marriage to undo a lifetime of whatever it is that happened to me.

Don't get me wrong--there's good stuff in my past as well.  Good memories.  Just like everyone I think.  There's good and bad.

So--for now--concentrated effort on letting go and not using a crutch.  So disgusted that I am "one of those".  Boo.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Thoughts on Prayer

Due to a comment from a friend on last week's post, I've been thinking and "pondering" on prayer this week.  She shared with me that she has seen great power in prayer.  There was a time when I would have said, thought, and felt the same way. 

I'll be honest here, and share that my once next door to a zealot level faith is now essentially non existent for reasons not only too numerous to mention, but too boring and personal to go into here.

With that being said, my personal experience has been the more I pray, the more I try, the more pressure I put on myself, and do my hardest to be the best that I can be---the worse things get.  I know--refiner's fire and all that.  But my views on religion and spirituality have drastically changed in the last few (2-3) years. 

Last week I shared some struggles I've been having with my daughter.  Has that situation gotten any better?  Somewhat--we have mended things for the time being.  However,  it did not happen without more damage being done.  At least to my heart and emotional well being. 

Young adulthood is hard in the best of times.  You're not grown up, but you're not a kid anymore either.  You want to do things on your own, but you don't really know how to handle everything yet.  Not to mention that you're supposed to be knowing what you want to do for the rest of your life and deep down you most likely have absolutely no clue.  Add into that a few PTSD, ADD, Anxiety issues and those difficulties are multiplied by about a gozillion. 

So here's the question -- did the prayers of my good friend have any affect?  What is prayer for?  To help things turn out for the best or to help us be comforted and deal with how things turn out?  Does prayer actually have power? 

I believe so, but not in the traditional sense.  I believe that positive thoughts and feelings have power.  The same power if they are demonstrated on your knees or in any other sense.  Thinking and caring for others is powerful.  Not because a Heavenly Father gives it power, but because we are all connected to one another and when someone we care about is hurting, we are hurting.  When we even do so much as want to help, we are helping.  Just sharing thoughts and feelings of difficulty and confusion is comforting.  Having someone who cares about us individually commiserate and validate those feelings is even more comforting. 

So does prayer have power?  Yes.  It is the power of expressing love.  It is the power of the individual.  The power each of us carries within us by being compassionate for others. The power is not in the praying, but in the caring.

That is my opinion.  Every person has their own experiences and opinions and I do not expect that I am any different than many others.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Just Life

I had seriously been loving having my daughter Jessica home from University for the summer.  Parts were hard as we are both obstinate and stubborn, but for the most part, I was really enjoying having her around.
Then one evening after having an argument with her step mother on the phone over some things I won't share here because they aren't my things to share, she threw an entire plate of food into the sink, breaking the plate, and started really yelling at me. 
To make a long story short, I have not seen her since that day.  I was right, she was wrong.  That's great.  I can't let her treat me like that.  Also great.  I should not always be fixing everything or letting her off the hook because she grew up with her dad and he is a fantastically royal asshole.  The greatest.  All of these points are agreed upon by a close friend Linda, my husband, and my counselor Helen, and myself.  I should not contact her.  I should wait for her to come home and apologize.
Totally stinks and I miss my kid. 
In other news, Jacob is doing pretty good with his first "living on his own at university" experience.  Pretty proud of the Jaybird.
Tom is an at home dad and I'm loving that as well, although I worry he will get depressed and bored.  But he says he's not so...
Things are overall going pretty good.  Have had a lovely Saturday putzing around the house.