Stripped…

I am just going to go and say it, straight up: I was inspired by the last lines of the last  episode of season six, part two of Sex and the City. Carrie talks about all of the relationships we have. But, then she says  the most important relationship we have is the one we have with ourselves.

I think the  relationship we have with ourselves  is one of the hardest we could ever hope to grow and mature, because we can’t hide from ourselves. Sure, we can try. We can hide behind our Paige jeans, that grad school degree, very decent wages, hot pizza, alcohol and/or drugs,  (good, bad and Prince-style) sex, and hell, I guess we can even hide behind our successes and failures. But, really, all that is really background noise.

I feel that the more I have, the more I can try to hide behind. I am successful, I finally fit into real skinny jeans for the first time in a really long time, and I have a decent share of intellect. I feel that all that is stripped when emotions take over. Intellectually,  I know NO material things are very useful armor when that insane insecurity possesses every fiber of strength I thought I had.  And, I also know the distance between my head and heart is unbearably long.  It is really fucking frustrating. Seriously. So much progress, so much building up of what I had lost right after my divorce. 5.5 years of reattaining the things I lost. I was strong. I had things. I got back on my feet with an apartment in a decent place, a nice bed again, weight loss when I was ready to eat well,   new hobbies and passions and a bit of self-confidence, I thought.   It only takes a new  and real relationship to check the quality of my relationship with myself.

So there’s still work to be done. I hate, no….I loathe, knowing  everything  I attained to create security means nothing when I realize those are just THINGS.

What a reality check when you realize how stripped you can be when self-love is tested. Because really we have to love ourselves always. Not just when someone else does or when we love “things” or people  we surround ourselves with.

Just a question: How  long did it take  you to lose the insecurity that caught you off guard?

and P.S.: Yes, I was  listening to Stripped  by Depeche Mode while I was writing this post. How did you know? One of my favorite albums, Black Celebration came out in 1986; I was in the UK that summer.I think that summer and the music I took back across the pond changed me forever. Tonight, I listen to it, transported back to 1986 in London. The summer I met Andrew McCarthy (and have a picture to show for it). When I find it, I’ll post it!

PPS: Tangentially speaking, Andrew McCarthy had just made one of my favorite movies of that time, St. Elmo’s Fire a year before, in 1985.

 

 

 

 

 

 

No drama, no problem

As I got ready for bed, I was playing around Facebook. I posted an old picture of me as a blonde. Check out my About Me Page: I am clearly not blonde. I was feeling nostalgic for circa 2009.  I guess as I got ready to actually sleep, I found that I couldn’t. More nostalgic than ever, I guess.  And now just realizing that I may just be plagued with a writer’s mind. Why is it that my most intense thoughts come late at night? Why do I not trust my self to remember them in the morning at a more post-appropriate hour? I am SO NOT a night person. However, I am compelled to write now. I keep hearing “don’t write it later,  censored by a good night’s sleep and a will to kindly protect those who crushed me”…So I trudge on.

Instead of counting sheep tonight, I found myself counting all the past relationships (female friends, male friends, boyfriends, husband, girl I mentored) that were so toxic for me that I had to leave them in the past. Leaving those relationships behind , as venomous to my spirit as they were, were some of my most difficult and turbulent moments in the last 5-6 years. The most interesting thing is that the memories are coming back into my thoughts at a time where I am developing a very nice healthy relationship. It’s as if I am setting out to sabotage myself with still-too-vivid memories of disappointment, betrayal, distrust, sadness, perpetual anxiety, and loss. Basically  a Pandora’s box of misery. Why, oh why? Why are they coming to the surface now?  I have a  really awesome  thing going here.

What.Am.I.Doing.To.Myself?  I would almost think if I was some psychologist, that  I just suffer from low self-esteem, that perhaps I don’t know how to deal with a great thing when it comes, perpetually destined to  think: “do I deserve this?”. Maybe the damage is done. The horrid years of being bullied/harrassed/perpetually teased  and no way back.  How would I know smooth sailing if the sailboat’s boom hit me in the face?  I wouldn’t.  Or at least I haven’t. That needs to change. Now.  What I can tell you, after quite  a few years of self discovery, is that I know that I, do in fact, deserve good and amazing things.  I know  my diet and exercise achievements, my acquisition of French as a foreign language, and blogging are a great start. A healthy relationship is here. It is my job not to royally  fuck it up.

So I am learning. Learning from a very good guy that there can be life with out drama, anxiety, sabotage, frequently broken hearts or abundant tears. Why in Hell did it take me so damn long?  I seriously hope you are not planning on telling me that perhaps I wasn’t ready for it.  Yet, I would probably end up agreeing with you in the end.  My life could potentially and finally be so much better than it was 5-7 years ago. I am starting to feel great and if I don’t watch out, I am going to turn into my worst enemy and really mess up a fantastic thing.

Be your own advocate. Be your own support system and accept the wisdom of your friends around you. Sometimes, if you are really lucky, they know you pretty damn well. I guess I have been blessed this whole time,  after all!

And, yes, you ARE worth it. You ALWAYS were.  Don’t fuck it up!

 

 

Blue Jeans

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These jeans  are only six years old, but they look older than they are. I bought them in 2010 as I was leaving a particularly difficult chapter in my life. I was living in Florida and had a shopping bag full of clothes, but only tank tops and shorts. My mother came down to help me with some personal things (like finding a divorce attorney, obtaining temporary housing, etc). My mom and  I knew I was headed toward a very difficult transition in my life. I had spent a few days at a friend’s place after being forced to leave my home where I lived for 9 months. She gave us a few nights in a gorgeous hotel in Sarasota. She took me to the mall to get a few things. Most of my things would be in a locked storage center till I saved money to get my own place in Denver (where I belonged). This pair of jeans was one of the few items of clothes I picked out. I brought them back to Denver with me. I did have a chance to grab more clothes, but these jeans made the move with me.

Six years later:  I am not a sentimental person as far as material goods go. So why with all these rips and tattered seams am I holding on to these jeans? If I thought it was because I never worked through the events that went down in Florida before I left, that would be easy. But I did that, thoroughly. I wish it was as easy as that. I went through Hell toward the end in Florida..and even for the first several years after I left that house in September 2010. I am pretty much on the other side now. I am very good at purging “stuff” that doesn’t fit, torn, stained, even 25-year-old college t-shirts.

So what’s with the jeans???  Should I hold  on to them since they are pretty cool and they fit me perfectly and just release the emotional baggage attached? Or do I pitch them in the trash?