Tag Archives: Strength

Stripping Down

Being human is complicated.  It’s difficult and messy.  Along with our animalistic urges and instincts, we are programmed to feel and make decisions and take responsibility.  Things have always been hard for humans, mostly because we make things harder  for ourselves.  If we really followed our instincts on everything, how many mistakes would we make?

With all of the important stresses we have to take on, we also have a society that puts insane pressures on us…pressure to look a certain way, make a certain amount of money, live a certain lifestyle.  And what happens to the people who don’t fit into that box?  What happens to the musician who doesn’t want to work an ordinary job that he hates, and he doesn’t want to be like everyone else, screwing over others to get what he wants?  What happens to the girl who wants to live off the grid away from the busy lifestyle, away from the “prison” of technology and typical possessions?  What happens to me, the goofy, chubby girl who would rather write books than make friends or sit in a rainstorm rather than lying on a beach getting a tan?  What happens to the people who don’t want to be millionaires or reality TV stars, the people who don’t care who made their shoes or clothes or if their hair is real or fake?

How did everything become so plastic?  Nails are fake, tans are fake, boobs are fake, people are fake.

Sometimes it’s good to strip down to the nudity and vulnerability of who we really are.  Just human.  This may lead to really seeing who others are.  I lost a friend recently who I thought was my very best friend.  It was a very hard loss, but it was a necessary one.  Part of my journey is about separating from the negative and embracing the positive in life.  It’s about realizing I can’t fix everyone; I can’t solve all the problems in someone else’s world, and I most certainly cannot rescue them.  I tend to gravitate toward broken people.  I know how it feels to be broken and to need someone strong in my life.  But it’s not my job to fix everything for everyone.  And fake, drama-filled people tend to gravitate toward me.

My friend was so easy to love.  She was funny and charming.  She could bat her huge green eyes and make everything better, or so it seemed.  I felt I could talk to her about anything until I started to hear the stories back, only twisted.  It turned out that she didn’t really care about me but about what I could do for her.  Our relationship became about me helping her with money and transportation, about guilt where there should be no guilt.  She was a manipulator, and I could see it so clearly all of the sudden.  And it wasn’t just with me, it was with everyone.  I would hear her on the phone playing the system to get a hand out when she didn’t have a job.  And here I was working multiple jobs and helping her buy groceries.  The more books I sold, the more I owed her…until I couldn’t anymore, not financially, not emotionally.  When this happened, she blew up.  She tried to guilt me into changing my mind.  When that didn’t work, she cried and blamed it on other people.  When that didn’t work, she tried to take it all back, full of excuses for her behavior.  But I was done.  I couldn’t do it anymore.  After I deleted her from my life, she still continued to reach out.  Finally, she stopped.

I do miss the fun and the comfort and closeness I felt, even though it was an illusion.  I just needed to strip away the negativity and start focusing on the positive things in my life, the things I really need to get through the storms.  I don’t feel any guilt from my decision to break off that relationship.

I’m not entirely sure why this was on my mind tonight, but maybe someone out there reading this will take something from it.  It’s okay to let go of things if it means you get to be a better version of you.  It’s okay to try to better yourself without stepping on others.  And it’s okay to make decisions that are right for you, no matter what others think about you.

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It’s Just a Bathtub

It’s just a bathtub.  It’s just a bathtub.  It’s just a bathtub!  These are the words I keep repeating in my head as I soak in my enormous Jacuzzi tub.  This is my last night in my current house.

I’ve never been one to put much value on material things.  It’s only stuff, replaceable.  You can’t take it with you, right?  I’ve lived in this house for seven years, and in those seven years, I have cried, bled, laughed, danced.  There are so many memories all over the emotional spectrum attached to this house.  But it’s only a house.

This weekend I have started moving into my new house.  There are many positives to think about.  This new house has more bedrooms and a bigger yard that is fenced in.  This new house is a blank slate of empty walls eager to be filled with new memories, pictures and finger paintings of rainbows and ninja turtles.  This new house is all mine.

But, of course, there are many things I will miss.  My kitchen, for one.  We remodeled this house a couple of years ago, and I got to create my dream kitchen.  Now, I’m downgrading to a much smaller one.  My walk-in closet is another.  A wall of shelves holding a mixture of shoes, old typewriters and many many books.  And finally, my tub.  I have spent many nights soaking in this tub thinking about my novel or the crap that happened that day.  I’ve spent hours sobbing the pain away in this tub.  Tonight was my last bath in this tub.  And that’s okay. I’ll move on, and I’ll laugh at how attached I was to a bathtub.  But the idea of leaving my home to start making a home somewhere else is a little sad.

I’m sad about the circumstances surrounding my move.  I’m sad that one part of my life is truly and officially ending while the thought of starting a new life terrifies me.  I know I’ll be okay.  I know I’ll find the courage to walk through this new territory, and I’ll be proud of myself on the other side of it.  But tonight, I need to be a little sad.  It’s not always easy closing the door to something that is so familiar and comfortable.

Life After Divorce

I’ve been getting lots of emails from people asking what life after divorce is like.  From my point, I can’t answer this yet.  I can tell you what I’ve seen from other divorced friends, but I’m not living a life after divorce.

I have a friend who, after her divorce, met and married an incredible man.  He adopted her daughter, and let’s face it, has been more of a father to the little girl than the bio dad ever was.  My friend is happy and successful, and if her divorce had never happened, she would have never ended up with the man she’s with now.

I also have friends that have divorced, and everything fell apart.  They are so broken that even after years of being single, they are still trying to put the pieces together.

Divorce is hard, and it’s different for every one.

I went to dinner with some friends of mine, a couple and their two children.  I didn’t feel like the fifth wheel because they are awesome at making me feel included.  But then the check came, and the waiter asked if we were all together on one check.  Before I knew it, the words, “I’m by myself” flew out of my mouth.  All of the sudden, I realized that this is my life now…picking up my own checks and hanging out with other couples as “the single friend”.  People giving me that “poor-girl-she’s-going-through-a-rough-spell” look and set-ups with guys that have no other commonality with me except they are single.

Why is it that the moment you are single, your friends think pushing you into another relationship will mend things?  The truth is, I’m not looking for someone to glue me back together.  I’m doing that job quite nicely myself.  And I’m not having a rough spell, in my mind.  Yes, some hard things are happening, but most nights, I go to bed with a smile on face because I know that finally I can go for my dreams and finally I can be me.

So, I have thought about what life after divorce will look like, what it will make me look like.  And I think it will make me look stronger, not a victim.  Every day, I am finding myself again, and that is so exciting!  Will there be another man in my life?  Who knows?  But I’m not waiting around for one.  Will I ever get married again?  Maybe, but I’m not planning a wedding anytime soon.  Besides, I will probably go into the next relationship with eyes WIDE open!

But, like we all have to do, I am taking it one day at a time. 🙂