Over the hump…

Here I am again, over the hump! I am so excited to be back here in blogging world because I am here to stay. I had a tough professional exam to get through and getting settled post-move. But here I am, ready to write and share!

So when I bought my new townhouse, I suspected it would take me a few months to get settled. I was right. I have been in my home for about a month and a half and still need to hang my artwork and fix my closets and a bathroom toilet. I couldn’t be happier here though. It’s really peaceful : I  have green beautiful grass , a recreation center and park,  and various paths  to walk Max  It was a huge decision to buy and I am so relieved I made the right choice, for me & Max.

Now that the exam and the bulk of the move are out of the way, I can direct my focus and attention right here, where I belong. I have had so many inspirations and situations that I have wanted to write about and just couldn’t get this laptop open. My attention kept me with my studies and I really hope I passed that exam!!

A few inspirations that will find their way to my blog:

  1. My weight loss: I have lost 32 pounds so far and I am working on more! It hasn’t been easy and I have a few blog posts in mind to share the journey.
  2. Relationships and the matchmaking thing: what a disaster! I believe I just threw away a chunk of money on a dating /match making organization. I got one date out of a speed dating event, but I doubt that’s going anywhere. Posts are coming your way about this also!
  3. Loneliness vs being alone-there is a difference, yes? I say yes also. I say yes to the palpable loneliness that has us wishing we had plans on a Saturday night. I also say yes to the joy of being alone sometimes. The loneliness is there, whether I am by myself on Saturday night at 6:30pm in bed or in a setting with friends or other couple(s) being sans Significant Other.  More to come.

 

See you really soon. I mean it!

Off track…featuring gummy bears and lemon drop martinis

Why am I posting exercise and fitness rants when I am supposed to be writing about dating, relationships and communication between males and females as well as female friends?  That was the focus, right? Well, I have found that the relationship I have with myself is pretty damn important. If I can’t be happy with the way I look or feel, how can I exude confidence? I can’t. If I can’t, how can I expect others to be confident in me and experience an attract to someone they want to get to know (male or female)? I can’t do that either. I am going go to be successful in the adventures of relationships with guys and my female friends when I am successful in the relationship I have with myself. Carrie Bradshaw (Sex and the City character) said this pretty exactly in the last episode of Sex and the City Season six, part two.

Enter fitness and exercise.  And diet (seemingly my albatross). When I have the tools in my tool chest, I have no excuses. Especially when I have used the tools with success in the last year. I have no one to blame but myself when I am to happy with the way things are going. I love the fitness part. I hate the healthy eating part.  Except, I love the way I feel and look when I am successful with healthy eating patterns and habits. I hate the way I feel after eating at  McDonalds. Why is it so hard? It makes total sense that I should be fully on board with the “eating right” thing. But I am not. So far from it. This weekend I have consumed the following in no particular order:

  • gummy bears
  • hot wings and sweet potato fries
  • two IPAs
  • movie popcorn
  • lemon drop martini
  • red wine
  • omelet with bacon and cheese (don’t forget the potatoes and bread with that please)
  • and some other stuff I can’t get remember.

So why is this so hard this year? If I could break through that, I think I could get to the crux of the problem. Just Saturday, I was reminded of my fat content when my personal trainer said “today, we are doing measurements”. Uh? What? I thought the fat caliper measurement was all that we needed to determine how out of shape I was. Clearly, not so much.

I have done the diet, the eating right, the changing of the paradigm. What happened over this last holiday season that got me so far off track? I am going to work on answerig that one, right after I grab a rice cake.  Seriously, they are not so bad when you  put some white cheddar cheese on top. Just kidding….Not.

 

Symbiosis: Are the scales ever balanced?

via Daily Prompt: Symbiosis

Am I too cynical? When is symbiosis beneficial to both parties? I haven’t seen this often enough.  There is always some power play. Maybe we could be symbiotic in some equal-ish transfer of different contributions, money, emotional support, intellect, sex….the list goes on. The transfer can be fluid. I suppose if both people absolutely are equal in their need for the other’s contributions  to the relationship, then the symbiosis is copacetic. All good.

But when is it EVER a perfect balance of power? When we are so invested in the others success? Is it because our success depends too heavily on the others?  I wish I could think about all the lovely ecosystems and symbiosis in nature. That would be so cool here in the world of human behavior in relationships. It’s just now where my head goes.  My head goes to dysfunction in the so-called symbiosis of relationships I have seen (not just my own, mind you).

In human relationships (take your pick), when are the scaled perfectly balanced to create a genuine symbiosis?

 

Conquer!

via Daily Prompt: Conquer

While I feel that this past Tuesday I did conquer my biggest financial hill, a chapter 13 bankruptcy, it felt so much truer when I saw the check clear in my checking account. I knew I had really done it. With a few people making sure someone paid (me), I now showed the its done. That battle is complete and I came out of it so much stronger than I ever could have hoped in a million years.  Honestly, I thought it would conquer me. I felt so broken, so desperate for taking that route. Now I have one more battle; someone owes me some money. To make me quasi whole (financially). I realize today, I am whole and amazingly a better version of myself 5 years ago. I am going to fight the financial battle on principle. I didn’t give up before. I sure as hell won’t be giving up now.

I will CONQUER again!

 

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Throwback Thursday 4: The Jesus Complex

So when I tell you this little story, understand I couldn’t be this creative. Truth is sometimes stranger than fiction, and not to be as cliché as that sounds, but it is absolutely the case here.  This ex-boyfriend is a special case. There are so many special little tales I could tell, from his delusions, his stealing my medicine to get whatever high he was looking for, from dreaming about having sex with his cousin  (yes, at least that’s what he told me he dreamt about) to THIS.  This story is  more true than I could possibly want to admit.

I had heard stories about his ex, the mother of his children. I had heard his trash talking, his regrets, a lot of it. Drama seemed to follow this dude. All over  the damn place in this Mile High City. But to his credit, I followed him, so it was NOT one of my proudest dating choices. I’ll be 100% honest there. After all the complaints and bitching about the ex, his newest request came as quite  a shock, despite being aware of some of his delusions (there would be no sex with the cousin or art show starring him, etc.).

 

Sooo, the ex is coming to town (from out-of-state). Okay.  I spend a lot of time over there with him and his son, so I figured I may meet her. No one is supposed to stay over there as I found out he had some special funding and a case manager (Section 8, I have no clue). Anyway, I owned my condo at the time; I could care less about his special housing situation. Except when I can’t go over at all.  A few days prior to her arrival he said he had to talk to me about her coming. He told me, “you won’t be able to come over for a few days”. I asked why as this was very new.  He explained that his ex was coming, to which I relied that I was well aware of the fact. I was LESS aware that she would be staying with him.  I told him that there is no where for her to stay really as his daughter will stay on the couch. He explained the situation according to him. And that the ex will be sleeping with him (but “nothing will happen”).

“Imagine I am like Jesus Christ. Jesus had disciples”. Yes, I am familiar. And yes, he actually said this.  So he goes on, seriously. He explains that like Jesus, he has disciples and his ex and daughter are two examples. Hmmm. Okay. He has to bring them in to his place, and not turn them away in order to live a life like Jesus lived.  Who the hell said he had to sleep with them? Did Jesus sleep with his disciples? That part of the Bible is not familiar to me. Please explain. Perhaps if he did, this ex of mine was more like Jesus than he imagined. So what ended up happening?

My insecure self just accepted what he had to say. I stayed aware while  the ex stayed with their daughter. Soon after that, they decided to get back together. Surprise, surprise. I am so sure nothing happened in bed that week.  Between Jesus and his disciple.

I think I may have dodged a bullet there. I always have said Jesus is one of the top ten dead people I’d love to meet. I just pictured him a little differently.

 

Please share with me any bizarre dating stories. That’s what Throwback Thursdays are all about!!

 

Music pairing: Sympathy for the Devil by the Rolling Stones

 

 

Me, Myself & I: my relationship with alone time

So, I have to confess that quite some time ago, the notion of having a weekend of no plans was terrifying. A 48 hour plus period of time where I need to spend time just with myself would have forced me into a tizzy of “What do I do, where can I go? Who should I call?” and a most uncomfortable, unsettling feeling of not being comfortable in my own skin would set in a self-imposed sense of doom. Maybe it brought back memories of being unpopular, alone, and scared.  Back in the day, I went out all the time, even by myself  to clubs etc….just to be with others and NOT all by myself. Because what could I possibly do on my own that could have value?

Turns out I LOVE alone time. I love the freedom of no accountability for 48 hours. Well, that’s not completely true. I don’t totally disconnect these days. I just merely love the idea of not making plans or feeling like I have to do any specific thing. Today, I am blessed with a few friends.  I don’t feel the need to make a ton of superficial contacts just so I have someone to do something with.  Being comfortable being alone does not mean I like to isolate. It does not. It means I walk confidently into a restaurant and say “Table for one please” or go to the movies: “One for Manchester By The Sea please” (that was my most recent solo venture)…..I’ve done this for a long time and it feels  uttlery grafiying and supremely fantastic.

Being comfortable in my own skin to stay home or go out and do when I want when I want is  freedom that I did not previously allow myself until I entered my  early 30’s. My first solo vacation (not family oriented) was when I was about 30 and traveled to Mexico on my own. That liberated me. It was the turning point. “If I can travel to Mexico alone, I can do anything in Denver alone,” was my thinking. And damn. That was just the beginning. After countless restaurants and movies and trips alone to Mexico since, I can safely say I can’t imagine being restricted by having a mate to travel with or see movies with. I can be alone at home and watch what I want or go out to the movies solo and not wait for someone to want to see the exact same thing. I don’t have to go to bar just to be near people. I am fine. On my own. Any time of the day.  Whether my friend travels with me to Paris this year (which would be the best girl’s trip ever) or not, I know I am good on my own, which liberates me and my friend at the same time. Paris is possible all on my own.

Now, I’m not going to pretend I don’t need people, period. OF COURSE I DO. I think it’s more of a question of wanting people in my life. To an extent, I need people for normal socialization. I generally just feel I want certain people in my life. I don’t per se, need them to have my own value as a person. I value myself as myself, solo. People I choose to have in my life are there because I want them. Whether they are family, different female friends, work friends or relationships of a romantic nature.  I choose them and I hope they choose me. Last year, I unfriended and blocked a lot of people on Facebook because I realized they really chose to not be friends with me or I didn’t have a genuine relationship with them. It was so liberating to know that Facebook is now  full of people I want in my life. There are more to add and more to subtract, but its liberating to know I choose what I want in my life and don’t need to have someone in my life for whatever reason.

So what to do this weekend? Besides blogging, I think I would like to catch up on a movie or two. Hanging out with my puggle on the couch with popcorn rewatching “Amy” sounds  cool also. I have so many options!

 

Have a fantastic weekend, whether you are flying solo or with great friends and family!

What my marriage taught me: about myself and relationships

I know I made some people wait quite a bit for this last installment of my three-part series of “What my marriage taught me”. I apologize for the delay. This took a bit of time for obvious reasons. It was the hardest to compose. It is the hardest because being teachable alludes a bit of humility, does it not? Yes, money and fear are big topics and there is a lot to learn. Always. But when we are talking about ourselves in our 40’s, aren’t we supposed to be experts on ourselves? On our relationships?

In my  mid 20’s and I became single after a long six-year first-love kind of thing, I thought it would be “so exciting” and how I am going to find someone better than who I had left out of impatience and drifting apart. For the record, I never did find someone better right after leaving. That’s far and away a different story. Anyway, back then it was 1995 and I was hopelessly devoted to Alanis Morissette. Jagged Little Pill was my anthem back then. Damn! I had a lot to learn.This was when I thought I knew something about something. I had a 20-something sized ego and my bumper sticker on my Honda CRX said “Whatever”. That should say someting.

Since then I had traipsed through flings, AOL chat room encounters, short relationships, being cheated on, and mostly just being single. So much, yet really not  SO much. I learned to trust less, have  too much fun and I  believed sincerely that I would sleep when I die. I was a bit of a party girl. With out the drugs. A little alcohol, but really just guys….and more of the same nightclub/bar type existence.

Advance to 2006: I had just broken up with my boyfriend (as you know, the one that would be my husband in 2009). I thought I had learned that his bit of expressed anger and rage was too much for me. I guess not. I guess his charm and his ….everything….got to me AGAIN. I just didn’t learn. Not then. Not yet.

Advance to 2010: I returned to Denver with my tail between my legs. This relationship was done. I failed. Again. This time with lessons. Oh, there were lessons. I realized what dignity was. I realized what it meant to feel I had none. I knew what rock bottom really meant. I had no idea; I was completely naive to how rock bottom would feel exactly. For me: my life reduced to boxes packed in three hours, a rented car filled with some clothes, my dog and me. I was a grown adult who only had a ring on my finger that I would need to pawn at some point, my precious puggle Max and my mom’s  American Express. I had what little cash I took out (originally $200 a week before leaving Florida) before our accounts were frozen by him.

I got home. I cried it out. Every fucking day. There were tears. Yes, tears for him. Tears when he swore me out with horrible names the night I told him I got my old job back back in Denver. Tears of loss. Tears of failure. You get the idea. I went into therapy and saw a wonderful lady who really got me through the pawning of the wedding ring (I had to eat and pay a little rent), the paperwork after being served  divorce papers at my door step by a process-server, the trauma of being such a failure. But she helped me realize that what I went through was unique, but not unique.  Not everyone gets divorced after rage, post throwing  dangerous objects, post verbal abuse and “silent treatment” episodes (to teach me lessons about talking too much). Not everyone suffers unpredictable rage that has absolutely nothing to do with what the non abuser may have actually done or not done.  But those who have been through that know what that looks like. And feels like.  Even if they didn’t know back then. The first time I had a clue that there is something beside physical abuse that counts as some type of abuse was when I called the police the second time at the encouragement of my  father. My ex hadn’t actually hurt me, but for the first and last time, he did put his hands on me in a forceful way (to extract car keys). My father said I need to report that in light of what had happened the previous nights (ex trying to kick me out of my own place). This is the first time I learned first hand of something other than physical/sexual abuse. The police officer who took my report that day gave me a list of numbers on a card that described all types of abuse. This card was given to me by a male police officer. I dont know why that’s relevant, but it was to me at that time. It was a comfort that another male would recongnize the treatment was not right. I was extremely grateful, but more grateful long after I had left Florida. I was still shell-shocked having to even make a report at the time.

So, the aftermath: 2010-2016: I survived an awful divorce and monetary losses, loss of dignity, trust, and developed a necessity for  hyper-analysis of every infraction against me that I had perceived . I think I resented what he had done  to me in the divorce and aftermath more than the crimes of the actual marital discord.  I had a few relationships in 2016 and some online adventures up to then which I posted about previously.

What I learned about everything, including 2016, the birth of my blog!

  1. Humility is being teachable and allows me to progress to better and more healthy relationships.
  2. Admitting regrets: I can regret something and recognize I made a mistake, I had a lapse of judgement. I would love to say I live with out regrets. I don’t think I can say that right now. I think that sounds a bit righteous and a little ignorant. Can’t we all admit we didn’t do something perfectly, something we would like to do a little differently?
  3. Honesty:  What do I want? What can I handle and what can’t I handle in my future relationships? What are my red flags? Can I hold up to my own side of the bargain-for the sake of my dignity, can I walk away from those red flags?
  4. Don’t write about people in current relationships with out their consent. I learned this in my last relationship after trying to get him to read my blog after every entry that mentioned him. After getting into a heated discussion, he read one and felt blindsided.  I recognize that I will preserve people’s privacy until they are comfortable with being mentioned in a most anonymous sense.
  5. I learned  that what I really have after all this is anxiety: Still. After all these years from the series of unpredictability and rage in my uber-brief marriage. I may have had it before I was even married; however, it spiraled  out of control in the years since, includng the first few  years of my recovery from the divorce. Now I can admit it is something I have to, and want to work on, something that I seek help for to make these relationships work.  So I don’t sabotage the really awesome opportunities and people who come into my life.

 

SO… some of you may be asking about #3: What are my red flags in the aftermath? What can I handle? What did I learn that I really need and got honest about it? Why don’t I write that as a part two of this third installment.

Please leave me a comment if you would like to hear more of this detail in #3 and I’d be happy to include a part two!

 

Music pairing: If I need to say it: Okay! I was inspired by Alanis, because when I am not in the old space, I need to be reminded of how it felt. Jagged Little Pill does that wonderfully.