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.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Expectations

Armed with my  incredible friends, experts in different areas of life and death, I am learning to ask for help in the arena of managing expectations.

I have always felt that the low hanging fruit were now  behind me. I have started to feel that  by setting the bar high is good, I was exuding higher self-esteem, standards, expectations (job, hair, clothes, income, car, housing, really ridiculous….).  I began elevating the standards so high, that it almost became impossible for me not  to be disappointed. And putting a list on paper really became my downfall. I started judging everyone from the get go.

Until this guy  I am dating now. I was immediately attracted to him and we got along great. My stupid mental checklist didn’t exclude the big things: honesty, integrity, character, but it  also required the  absurd  and superficial components. They disappeared when I met this guy. Period. End of story.

So, advance 2-3 weeks: We were perhaps moving too fast (planning a getaway);  I started out so well, minimizing and managing expectations that were really unreasonable to begin with (the mental list). Then my ego snuck back in. The ego started developing a different version of a  mental list. This list described  what I wanted to hear or thought I needed to hear at certain times.This is NEVER GOOD. NEVER. EVER. GOOD. Yes, we can expect a modicum of respect and honor, but if the honesty and integrity are there, I have to ask myself, what else do I absolutely need to hear, on my time, no less? This insight comes directly courtesy of one of those great friends with experiences I have not yet gained. When saying I am patient, I need to mean it.Then when the things I want to hear are said, I am hearing them from a truly honest place, not a place based enabling my insecurities.

Have I sabotaged myself? When he told me this morning I was being  insecure (though the circumstance was a bit unusual and the source of my insecurity  very specific), I had not had time to process the origin of my insecurity, but I owned it because it was the truth. I felt insecure, but  it was not until  later did I realize how situation specific it was. My insecurity started earlier in the week. I told him that I didn’t deny the insecure feelings lately and  thought  we needed some  more time alone together (which he agreed) to get back to the really good  real conversations we had in the first 1-2 weeks. He agreed.   emotional intimacy is what I want and I think he agrees, even though we did not quite title it that way exactly.  When it was time to go home this morning, I told him it would be great to see him in a few days and I couldn’t wait (sentiment he usually returned). He said nothing other than “see you then” with a kiss and I left for home.  I texted him a brief bit later to mention something trivial and “have a great day!”.  No word. So no more texting, no more insecurity.  I know my self-worth. I know I am intelligent, caring, intense,  big-hearted, intuitive, sensitive and trusting. Right this minute, I am trying to recover from this transient insecurity.

How do you manage expectations? Do you remain hopeful, but some how have some incredible skill for removing the expectation from the hope of an outcome? Or  is hope or wishful thinking just a euphemism for “setting up expectations”?  How is that you achieve that balance?

Leave a comment and thank you in advance for your input!

Have a great week everyone!

 

Hold on…

I guess I am going to sit tight, fasten my seatbelt and have some faith. I am going to stop questioning every thing. I am going to make myself sick. Exhausted. Done.

I am going to hold on for a nice calm ride on a roller coaster that stays level.

Hold on to security, stability, sanity, but not so tight that you will lose it all.

Know what I am saying?

 

 

 

Conquering the mole hills

So I need to stop conquering the mole hills like they were the mighty Colorado mountains. Why do I seek out discord where there is none? Am I so conditioned to be attuned to the ever so loud thump  of the other shoe falling that I can’t listen to the incredible music all around me? I need to stop it. Right now. I have come across one of the best things to happen to me and I feel so scared. It’s the littlest things I am making into a big ordeal. I wish I could reason this out. Is there was some obvious reason for  turning  nothing into something? I know I am abnormally sensitive. I know I am really intense. I feel these things to my core. Sometimes I hate it. Sometimes I am blessed for these attributes.

I don’t want to mess this up.  I have been through the frogs, the toads, the venomous scorpions. I have survived the unpredictability of a raging alcoholic.   I deserve goodness.  I have to keep repeating this. Everyday. Until I actually believe it. Every single day.

Have you ever had to remind yourself of the goodness that you so deserve? Did it work? Can you actualize goodness just by finally believing it?

Please share your experience.
Thanks and have an amazing evening!

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!

 

 

Nobody will love you like me

 

I had a very interesting short-term texting relationship lately. I met this guy on POF. Many of the guys on this site very interested in being pen-pals or texting friends. Every time I mention an actual meeting with someone I meet, it’s as if I run into absolute aversion. “Not that! Don’t make me actually  have contact,” they seem to be saying. When I question their ability to meet and why they are so uninterested in an actual date, they are unable to come up with really good reasons. I am not looking for a pen-pal or text friend, but I ran into one anyway.

I don’t even know how to describe this guy. The first night we actually texted  (mind  you, never a phone call), I asked him if his profile was true, that he was actually looking for a wife. He said yes and that he talked about me fulfilling the wife role. When I asked him about that, he said he was just joking. What started as a weird beginning got way more bizarre.

I explained to him in a subsequent texting conversation  the next day about my drug/no marijuana stance. He then went on a judgmental tirade against all marijuana users and their lifestyle. Which is not exactly what I was getting at. But anyway, I trudge on to determine why he is so judgmental.  This would have been the first time I should have actually ceased the relationship. Period. He acts as if I should be insulting the marijuana  users simply because I do not date those who use. He called me a hypocrite. Not totally accurate there. I discern who is in my social circle, but I don’t need to judge every marijuana user on the planet. When he starts adding in that he does not hang out with any “sickly” people in general, it begs the question of “physical, mental, all ages…really?”. When he texted back “all of the above”, I told him this  really won’t work. I have friends and relatives with different medical and mental health disorders, and I have had my share of medical melodrama as well.  I  stop texting him. Which is all good and fine until that evening.

He texts me later that evening and starts in on some mighty bizarre topics about his ability to find women with no effort, sending me an example of some such woman. We all know he didn’t send me a real photo of someone he knows, but of some horrid stock  photo from the internet. Not surprising as there are pics for the taking. But if you are going to brag about the women you are able to “get”, why wouldn’t you choose an attractive woman? Beautiful even? Not some skanky photo of some woman’s hip in lingerie being caressed by her own overgrown nasty manicured fingers. When I asked why this is what he is attracted to, he states in some disjointed non sequitur way: “I get more p***y than the law allows” (I am serious. I think he is in cahoots with Trump). I have no clue what that has to do with anything. He also stated “I’m usually only single for 10 minutes in my life” and  “I hate being alone….”. I kid you not. I explain to him that I am looking for someone who is independent, who knows how to be alone and comfortable with that.

This is right about the time my friends are telling me to stop even dealing with such a lunatic. Just leave the dude alone! I can not do that…this is too much fun, engaging in this creepy nonsense. What a waste of time, they said. True.

So I continue to text him and state and I quote myself:

“I would never meet you. Your lack of self-knowledge and brutal honesty about yourself is something I could never deal with. Your lack of even understanding about divorced women/”damaged” in your coworker’s eyes (and possibly your own) and your inability to be alone for longer than a month or “ten minutes” is not attractive to me at all.”.

Yes, I know, why am I even texting him? Why am i giving this guy any time or attention at all? Quite simply: I couldn’t let it go. He was such an ass, I couldn’t let him get away with this!  His immediate response to the above text?

“Yea it is ….nobody with lobe you like me”? Ear lobes? what? Of course he texted back “love”.

Okay, so nobody will love me like he will? Is this not one of the emotional abuse anthems? Does he even know what a red flag he just waved high up in the sky?  I informed him of this red flag and he just told me he looked forward to seeing me this weekend, as if I had said nothing (which in itself is saying a mouthful).  I told him that I would not be contacting him and said “no more”. He texted more. I had to finally text back “blocking now”. And I did.

The lesson: I don’t need to engage with every creep just to prove a point. I could have left that alone and blocked him way earlier. Was it wrong to have fun and push buttons at his expense, even if he didn’t notice.

What do you think? I should leave well enough (or in this case “bad enough”) alone and not spend time with someone just to prove a point or push their button?

Note: When editing this post this morning,  I realized it created a new post, at the top. Let’s be clear- this guy is definitely NOT the guy  I am speaking of in this new current relationship! Thank God!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can’t change the process

Okay, so I think the healthiest thing I can attempt to do is to NOT change the process. I realize that’s probably where my problems all started in the past. I always rushed it along, plowed through the slow beginnings and BAM! Sabotage. And oops, I did it again! So, that’s not going to happen this time. I have learned time and time again that change and new paths can be uncomfortable. I know they are. I hate that!  But if the process dictates that I need to take one step at a time, respecting my own space and the guy’s, then that IS exactly what I will do.

So you say the new part of any relationship is the exciting part?  The butterflies in my stomach part? The never knowing what you’ll learn part?  Well, exciting is not my strong suit in matters of the heart. I am not an adrenaline junkie  and with a tad of anxiety (be quiet those friends who know me!),  this has been by far the most difficult part. I want to get to the part where we are comfortable and routine. Where we know what the other wants, needs.  What? What did you say? I need to be patient? Funny, I keep hearing that in my head, too!

So if you have to be patient and slow to create something more lasting and less fleeting, then that’s exactly what I will do.

Be patient people! It seems to be the way to go with these adult, grown up relationship deals!