“There’s a light in the darkness of everybody’s life.”

When I allow myself to see it, feel it, experience it…I can see that light. It’s just not always easy. Or apparent. Or easy.

On September 15th, just over a month ago, I started streamlining out overt processed sugar from my diet. Within the first two weeks, I had two mixed drinks after a burlesque show packed an unexpected from-left-field emotional whallop, a slice of pie, and a chocolate chip cookie sandwich glitter bomb. (Side note: what the FUCK is up with dousing baked goods in glitter? Why would that make you want to eat it? It makes it look like a prom dress, a burlesquers backside, or five year old’s craft party. Not appetizing. The cookie sandwich, however, tasted amazing. Of course, I was vibrating for about six hours after I ate it…but it’s all good.)

Anyway, I’ve been keeping at it. A few weeks ago, I went to my favorite bakery because they just so happen to have the best quiche I’ve ever had in my life. I got some delicious cajun quiche for lunch and walked out without a single craving for a cupcake, cookie, or baked anything. The one time I did get a morning glory muffin (when I went back the following week for my once a week treat-quiche) someone in my house ate it before I could. ūüė¶ Sad. It was sweetened with honey, and had no gluten. I think whomever ate probably didn’t get what they were expecting. The treat-quiches have stopped. Didn’t go this week or last week because I can’t afford it now that I have my own place. Which I am slowly getting more excited about and used to. My landlord/roommate keeps to himself mostly, goes out of town every other weekend, and has been fairly nice lending me a mini fridge, a/c (which, yes, I’m still using knee deep into Oct-fucking-tober…), and tiny TV. Sometime this week, he’s gonna put a loveseat up here so I have somewhere besides my bed to sit.

Part of me is now wishing I hadn’t left so much behind with my divorce from my husband and wife. Things like a toaster oven or microwave (that my family bought for us as wedding presents, I might add) would be nice right now. It’s stupid, but I really miss the balloon wine glasses we got as an engagement present. They were so round. The Kitchen Aid Mixer. That I REALLY miss. The food processor. The crock pot. It’s funny what a difference those things would make to me now. And how, last week, I found myself in Walmart, walking by the housewares section going, “I used to have that and man I wish I still did…and that, and that…” It was a sad time. Having my period a week early also threw me into an emotional tizzy. Now that that’s past and my hormones are more orderly, part of me still misses those things but recognizes the ability and opportunity to start over. It’ll take some time. Especially on my current salary. Working three part time jobs still only makes just enough to pay rent and have $40 a week for food and $40 a week for gas. Not a lot of wiggle room to get things like crockpots or microwaves. But! My sister has a microwave she got that she’s going to give me. And not having a lot of money means I can’t buy a lot of food which means I can’t -eat- a lot of food. The upside to that? I’m down 15 pounds since July 2013 and a grand total of 24 pounds since November 2012. (And I’ll admit it..technically, it’s close to 30 pounds since April 2013…between March and April of 2013, I put on a bit in a short time.) The part I’m happiest is that it’s been consistently going down. Sure I have spurts here and there where it bounces a few pounds up. But then it evens out and drops again. It helps that I work out at least 4 hours a week. And I’m drinking more water.

This is going all over the place but mostly I just want to record the fact that I’m gradually losing weight, feeling better, and am finding the light in my life. And that I’m lucky to have some incredible people on the journey with me to point me towards the light when I’ve lost my way in the darkness.

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Guardian Angel bitch-slap and Goodwill FTW.

Being bitch-slapped by your Guardian Angel is a humbling and humorous experience.

I was at Goodwill today, looking for a birthday present for a friend. ¬†Since I didn’t find the book I was looking for, I wound up wandering around and found myself in the lingerie section. ¬†There, on a hanger, was an amazingly soft, gray cotton bathrobe. ¬†In. My. Size. ¬†

Since I’m not what you’d call a lil gal, this was quite nifty. ¬†As I was pulling it off the rack, I thought, “it’s only $7. ¬†It could come home with me…” ¬†

And then I heard this little voice say, “you DO NOT have money for that. ¬†$7 can be much better spent on something more useful. Like groceries.”

I persisted and was attempting to try it on and fall even more in love with it (did I mention it was SO SOFT?)…when the hanger slipped out from under the fabric and popped me in the lip. ¬†Hard. ¬†Fucking ow hard. ¬†And suddenly, there was another little voice inside my brainmeats going off…

If you think you’re gonna spend $7 on a piece of clothing designed to make sitting on your ass easier and more comfortable, you’ve got another thing coming.¬†

So I wandered some more, rubbing my lip that thankfully didn’t split but felt like it had. ¬†And I walked out with a summer exercise outfit (which I did not have. ¬†The last time I tried working out, I damn near passed out from wearing thick sweats and a heavy t-shirt): a pair brand new yoga capris and a tank top. ¬†For a grand total of $7.

My life is not a yard sale.

imageFor the second time within about a twelve month period, I’m reading “It’s Called a Breakup Because It’s Broken” by Greg Behrendt & Amiira Ruotola-Behrendt. Cozy that this husband and wife team wrote a breakup book. Makes me want to throw up a little. Which won’t kill the deep ache inside, and I hate throwing up anyway, so nevermind.

It’s a helpful book. Must be, since I’m re-reading it again, as another marriage has fallen apart. ¬†The things I underlined and the notes I made are interesting, in that tragic kind of way.

For instance, I admit to laughing out loud when I got to the page on the left again. ¬†If you don’t know who Virus the Clown is, go here right now. ¬†And brace yourself for awesome.

Anyway, it can seem like it’s trying too hard every once in a while. ¬†There’re only so many times I can be referred to as a Superfox, Saucy Girl, and Smart, Happening Lady before it gets a little too cheeky. ¬†But the balance is right on the line, so overall I’m good. ¬† And it still packs a nice little punch for being contemporary:

“The first rule of the smart girl’s breakup is NO CALLING…the same goes for text messaging, instant messaging, BlackBerrying, blueberrying, or any other form of communication. “

And also funny enough to make me smile a bit during a time where it feels like my heart is the new rehearsal space for STOMP! the musical:

“You want to burst through this experience with dignity, grace, strength, and whole new set of windows” (from the “Breakover”) section.

It’s also chock full of good advice and things to think about:

  • “Putting down that pint of ice cream may not FEEL like the right thing to do, but if you change your behavior first, your feelings will follow.
  • “When a marriage or any significant relationship collapse, the sadness and grief can be overwhelming. ¬†In the midst of all this heartache and pain, you have to comprehend and adjust to the idea that your whole universe has been upended, even when you know it’s the right thing. ¬†Going through a breakup is awful. ¬†It’s a full-body experience. ¬†Every nerve ending feels it constantly, and every second feels like an eternity in your head.”
  • “Actions speak louder than words and his actions have led him to have a naked party with someone else.”
  • “Try shooting for feeling ‘different’ instead of ‘amazing,’ or ‘less depressed’ instead of ‘all better’.”
  • “How can it be over? ¬†Because it is.”
  • “Take off your victim pants.”
  • “When you feel the urge to crawl into bed, you need to call a friend and make a plan that forces you to get out of the house. ¬†Instead of sitting around feeling sad and broken, you want to be doing something that makes you feel strong and resilient.”
  • “It doesn’t take that much self-control to set boundaries for your grieving process that are as simple as ‘I’m not going to lose my shit in public today and I’m going to wear something that makes me look good’.”

And while I don’t want to use this journal as a place to be all waaaaahhh about my life, I think it’s justified to explore a little of the pain so I can also record the growth. ¬†The tagline is, after all, “recording goals, happiness, encouragement, & growth.” ¬†Here’s some growing.

For instance, I haven’t taken part in any of the overindulging I did when my first marriage split up. ¬†Though I try to hide it, straight up Nutella gives me the dry heaves now. ¬†I’ve tried to get over it, because Nutella is just so damned awesome. ¬†But much like the Reese’s debacle of my youth, I got too cozy with Nutella during my first divorce. ¬†The fact that I haven’t been downing pints of ice cream, jars of Nutella, or bottles of wine shows me that I’ve grown. ¬†(Go me!) And I’m glad for that. ¬†I’m actively trying to make better choices; plus, I can’t afford bottles of wine.

So I take trips to the library and the local bookstore, just to soak it all up. ¬†I’ve accepted subbing gigs at work even though the last thing I feel like doing is being peppy and working out. ¬†While I was there, I also took a class this week, thanks to the benefits of my free membership. ¬†I eat at least one meal a day, go to choir rehearsal, read, try to eat with my family, drink plenty of water, write, talk to my friends (who’re AMAZING), and do freelance work as my brain allows. ¬†None of it’s easy. ¬†Most of the time it sucks. But somehow, I will get through this.

Don’t you sometimes wish your heart was a heart of stone?

Beneath the white fire of the moon
Love’s wings are broken all too soon.
We never learn.
Hurt together, hurt alone.
Don’t you sometimes wish your heart was a heart of stone?

“Heart of Stone” -Cher

Sometimes, yes. Most times, no. It’s been really fucking hard, lately. I know the problem isn’t love itself. The problem comes with what people do do with it, in the name of it, despite it.

Right now, all I can do is focus on setting my life back on a better path. I don’t know yet what all’s going to be on that path, but learning to surrender to that unknown is part of the endeavor. On Thursday, I told my husband I needed some time to myself and I came up with a week and a half. He said it seemed awfully specific and asked what was going on.

Nothing’s “going on”.

Everything’s going on.

I need to figure out my place in it all. A few people have told me to take some time to myself. Days, weeks, months. The time lines vary from person to person. My therapist was the one who simply suggested that perhaps some time (unspecific) without interacting with my husband might help my head and heart from spinning. So I can figure out what I need, want, feel. I chose a week and a half because I needed more time than a weekend, more than a week. Sometimes it’s hard not to talk to him, sometimes it’s easier. I have much to think through, and life keeps going on.

My sister and I went for a belated birthday present spa morning yesterday. There was this scalp massage with coconut oil and a facial. It was nice to be pampered. My neck is still in knots, as I tend to hold a lot of tension there, but my head, hair, and face looked and felt splendid. We finished it up with a trip to the bakery for a small treat and then out to lunch. After a nap, my brother-in-law proved once again how awesome he is and breathed new life into an old computer of his for me, so I have a computer in my room now! Joy and rapture! After getting that set up, the family and I went out for Mexican dinner wherein me and margarita got very well acquainted. Four times. My head protested when I walked from the truck to my room afterward, but I was still able to continue and carry on a conversation with a dear friend. Bringing him through some finer details of the last few months and years of my life that he wasn’t aware of. Sharing perspective. It was good and helpful to articulate some of it. Some of it hurt like hell. Made me feel like a goddamned fool.

I fight that feeling a lot lately. My aunt telling me not to waste time doesn’t help. Feeling pressured to make a decision doesn’t help. What helps is being gentle with myself, which is what my friend advised me from the beginning of this whole painful chapter of life. So I’m working on that. Reading. Writing. Reaching out to people as I’m able to. It’s yielded fairly good results, so far. I had an amazing conversation with a choir friend about life and relationships and stupid pink hazes that women get into relationships in. A student in one of my water fitness classes gave me info for a writing contest and some neat sites for odd jobs and freelancing stuff. My choir director has proven himself fan-friggin-tastic over and over, but the best thing yet was how he handled the way I completely fucked up my part in the trio at the Spring MusicFest.

Cause, man. I fucked it up. But part of the problem was that we weren’t given our starting pitches, which my choir director apologized for later. But from that bad beginning, I just couldn’t get it on track and wound up singing the tenor part, an octave higher. Not the worst thing ever, but it wasn’t the melody, which is what I was supposed to have. I felt like such an incompetent idiot afterward, and emailed my choir director that afternoon to apologize. It was my sister’s birthday, and she was kind enough to come to the concert, but afterward, I didn’t want to sulk through her day. Mentally, I was kicking the hell out of myself while also trying to keep perspective. Even professional singers fuck up, right? I finally let it go after much feeling, yet again, like a fool. A day or so later, my choir director sends a note to the choir praising us for the job we did. But he didn’t ignore mistakes. Here’s part of what he said:

Our performance Sunday was extraordinary. No, it wasn’t perfect. That’s not the goal. Music done right touches people. We created that connection on a very high level. The buzz we created was electric. Karen told me she went out to lunch after our performance and ran into a woman who regularly attends COR. Her enthusiasm and pride were effervescent. That church pride is important. We know we worked hard to reach this level and we earned that personal pride, but to be recognized as an asset worthy of our community pride is something that has meaning for me. Great job.

I’m so glad to be be part of this choir. ūüôā

There’s a lot I’m grateful for, being here. The lake, the choir, the church, my family and friends (both the ones who’re here and the ones back in Jersey who love and support me), the Y, my therapist, books, this computer I’m typing on, opportunities to grow.

Now I just need to steer myself forward, continually. I’ve begun writing lists of things I need and want to do. Like sun salutations in the morning. Sleeping more regularly, which will come when I feel less stressed. Exercising more, which I’m doing pretty well at so far. Eating better, which I’m also doing better at. I have my occasional unwise choices, but who doesn’t? The thing to focus on is making better choices more consistently and not beating myself up when I make a poor choice. Developing a deeper connection to my spirituality. Streamlining and simplifying my life. Putting out positive energy through thought, action, and speech. Writing on a daily basis. There are some writing competitions that I feel I should enter, so I’m working on that. Getting a job or many regular freelance jobs so I can get out my sister’s by October.

Heal. That’s a big one.

Because my heart, no matter how much I wish it were sometimes, is not made of stone. And it’s wings have been mangled. It’s bruised and sad and sometimes hopeless that it will ever heal and be happy again. I try to reassure it, but then Amanda Palmer’s song “Astronaut” comes whirling into my head:

Is it enough to have some love?
Small enough to slip inside the cracks.
The pieces don’t fit together so good
with all the breaking and all the gluing back.

Even so, someone said or I read recently that the cracks in a broken heart are what allows the light to shine through. I wish I could remember where or who that came from, but at least the sentiment has stuck with me. Which means right now, I’m taking some time to be gentle with myself. I’m going to play some music, light a few candles in my soul, and create a beautiful new mosaic from the pieces of my heart.

A post of many things

Over the past few weeks, life has gone from fairly regular and mostly slow-paced to full of changes made at what feels like lightning speed.

There have been many times I’ve caught myself assessing and reviewing all these recent changes, my feelings about them, the concerns and excitement involved, the future implications, my ever-evolving opinions and thinking, “man, I need to write this shit down.”¬† However, because things have been going so damned fast, I haven’t had much time to sit and write.¬† Any down time I’ve had has been put to sleeping (which I’m not doing nearly enough of these days) or visiting with family or talking on the phone with loved ones.

But now, here I am, with some time…and every time so far today that I’ve tried to start writing…there’s just been this wall.¬† Of nothing.¬† I think I’m overwhelmed.¬† Probably still tired, even though I had a lovely nap.

After five minutes of sitting here for the third time today, trying to write and coming up with nothing, I decided to start writing about that.¬† Best advice, after all, that I’d ever gotten about getting through writer’s block was write something.¬† Anything.¬† Even if it’s goddammit i hate this this writer’s block sucks i had all these great ideas and now they’re gone.

By following this, there’s now four paragraphs more than I had before, which is nifty.¬† Ideas are starting to flow, which is even niftier.

A few things that’ve happened over the past few weeks:

  • I got certified in CPR for the Professional Rescuer.¬† Picked up some other certifications, too.
  • Many, many family members from my brother-in-law’s family came from many states to celebrate his 60th birthday.¬† LOTS of work for the resulting parties, but SO worth it.
  • Contacts and opportunities have presented themselves for various speaking/teaching gigs.
  • Watched someone I know play high stakes craps…and win.¬† Lots and lots of money.¬† It was very far outside my realm of experience and more than surreal.¬† As was the dinner he treated us to that cost more than what I used to make in a month.
  • I bought a plane ticket to go to NJ for two weeks.
  • Reached an agreement with my soon-to-be ex-husband and then signed and sent back the divorce papers.¬† Cried.¬† A lot.
  • Met new friends.
  • Received my first flu shot.
  • Cancelled plans (which I hate to do) because I caught myself in the process of overextending and wearing my ass out.
  • Have been thinking a lot about my boundaries, the kind of relationship I want and how poly or openness plays in to that
  • I’ve gained and lost the same damn three pounds.¬† I’m exercising a lot more now, but I have yet to get my eating habits fully under control.¬† Still working on it.
  • Thyroid still out of whack.
  • Realized I really want a fucking iPhone.¬† I’m a little shocked myself.
  • Got tested for STDs.¬† Passed.

Basically, I’m pushing past fears every chance I can get, reaching out to people more and more to meet new friends and also strengthen existing relationships, and generally operating out of my comfort zone.

One thing I’m so glad for, moving down here like I did, was how much closer my sister and I have gotten.¬† It’s so nice to be able to support each other in person, on a day to day basis.¬† We’re here for each other’s ups and downs, to act as sounding boards and proofreaders, back scratchers and pinch hitter massage therapists.¬† We’ve shared clothes, sat talking and crying, made food for each other, went shopping, cleaned, and relaxed.¬† I’m so grateful that she’s my sister and my friend, and having her in my court means the world to me.

I think that’s probably an overarching theme lately.¬† Gratitude.¬† With a bunch of wonder, anxiety, exhaustion, and enjoyment thrown in.¬† This isn’t the life I envisioned having at 35, but it’s still a damn good one.

“There’s stardust in my head.”

Now that autumn is finally here, I can feel myself relaxing.¬† The season does that for me now.¬† It used to excite the hell out of me; fall meant “back to school.”¬† There was a time when it depressed me…dropping out of high school damn near killed me, but I found college.¬† Once college was over and I graduated, I had a period of time where, in the immortal words of Avenue Q, I just wished I could go back to college.¬† But that’s over and now autumn means cooler weather, upcoming holidays, a time to reflect and change.¬† To embrace endings.¬† With endings can come the opportunity for new beginnings.

The divorce papers are here; I’ve spoken to a lawyer and my sister.¬† I don’t feel comfortable filing a counterclaim, but I need to protect myself and make sure my health insurance stays intact somehow.¬† My sister came up with the brilliant suggestion of talking to Michael and just…asking.¬† Asking if we could handle this without the courts and just get the divorce finalized but also if he could help me with my health insurance.¬† He said that he wanted to help me any way he could and would get back to me by Monday or Tuesday to let me know what he can do.¬† We had a very amicable phone conversation…the first time I’ve spoken to him in more than four months.¬† It was weird, bittersweet, but good.¬† There’s still an underlying friendship there, I think.¬† I hope.¬† We’ll see what happens.

It’s not much, but I started editing my second book.¬† Now I need to plan to write more on it.

I’ve also fallen in love. (Yay!¬† One more crossed off the bucket list!)

The cat is mostly out of the bag; I had been planning on telling people (especially my soon-to-be exes and my best friend/co-director) in person when I visit in November.¬† However, when planning the shows I’m coming up for, it was becoming increasingly obvious that there was something new budding in my life.¬† My bf/c-d asked me outright as did my soon-to-be ex husband.¬† I told them that I was dating.¬† Both George and Michael were supportive, which was wonderful.¬† Michael was initially concerned, but admitted it wasn’t his business so he scaled back to “if you’re happy, that’s great.”

And I am very happy.¬† Very, very happy.¬† However, I now know why people say long distance relationships suck.¬† Cause they do.¬† Resolving conflict over 1,000 miles also sucks.¬† But what’s awesome is when you resolve it quicker than you ever have with anyone else.¬† Like poly with the rules I had years ago, it also opens up new ways to get to know each other.¬† It makes you work to stay connected.¬† Plus, it gives me time to fully heal and move on from the past, and also establish myself in this new place and life.

As such, I’m in the process of rethinking my bucket list.¬† There are some things that I think are more topically thrilling or glamorously enticing that I need to take a good, hard look at.¬† Pointe went by the wayside.¬† I simply don’t have enough time and honestly, interest, to dedicate what I would need to do to learn ballet en pointe.¬† Plus, at my age, I don’t even think it’s physically a good idea.¬† Maybe someday, I’ll wear pointe shoes and that will satisfy the hunger.¬† That and actually going to the ballet.¬† But knowing my limitations isn’t a bad thing.¬† It frees me up to focus on other things that will be more rewarding.

Quotable guidance.

This started as a short post on my Spark People account, because a quote inspired me.¬† But it apparently opened Pandora’s box in my brain, which flowed out through my fingers.¬† I’m profoundly grateful for that.¬† Since it touched on so much of what I’m struggling with and finally beginning to see my way through, I thought it was good to repost with some minor changes here.

“What screws us up most is the picture in our head of how it was supposed to be.”

Well…if that don’t just sum up much of the pain I’m in right now, I don’t know what does.

My niece just shared that quote with me from a friend of hers and it just…settled somewhere in a still-broken, hard-healing place.

Most of the time, I put forth a great front of acceptance – with my body, with my relationships (ebbing as they mostly are right now), with where my life in general is, with my eating habits. “Don’t look back; you’re not going that way” is one of my favorite quotes that I recently came across. I try to live it. I try to keep on truckin’. But there’s still this part of my brain, my heart that’s all “but it wasn’t supposed to be this way…”

And then the quote from “Despereaux” comes back to me: “Nevertheless. It is.”

It is. This is what I have. This is what has happened. In some shape and form, this is what I’ve helped create my life to be. And by constantly, sometimes subconsciously, falling back on the “but…” I’m hampering my own damn efforts to move forward and live a fulfilling, happy life. This limiting line of thinking pushes the locus of control outside of me and onto some external flaw in fate. Really, it’s my own damn hamartia and I need to fix it.

On a related note, a friend recently posted another quote on FB that hit home:

“The difference between dreams and reality is discipline.”

Pinterest agrees, but with different, though still poignant words:

“Discipline is just choosing between what you want now and what you want most.”

Personal discipline has long been a struggle for me. Ever since I was a child, I had trouble limiting myself and my parents didn’t set a good example, nor did they use any method of consistent discipline. Eventually, my babysitter realized I wasn’t washing my face or brushing my teeth at all so she taught me to do that. I was probably seven or so. I didn’t learn manners until I was in my teens and by then it was a battle. Food was such a weird thing. I had the quintessential grandparents who forced food in our mouths from the second we walked in the door to visit, no matter if we were hungry or not, but I also had family who was constantly worried about my “baby fat” becoming real fat. I was never shown what good eating and exercising habits were; I only knew I was doing something wrong when I was told I was doing it “too much/little.” However, I was never told where the line was between “too much/little” and “just right.”

And my role models were less than stellar: my father still exists on a diet of (per day, 10-20 cups of) tea, 3-4 Entenmenn’s donuts, a burger or friend chicken, and peppermint hard candies. After work, he used to add LOTS of liquid bread.

My mother was gone by the time I have most of my formative memories, and by the time I moved back in with her in my mid-teens, the damage was already done. And the term “comfort food” became a staple in our house to heal the pain we were both trying to heal from, thus adding to the damage.

Truly, I’m not trying to blame all this on my parents. But as I watch my great nieces on a regular basis and am actively involved in teaching them manners, healthy eating habits, exercising, hydration, pronunciation, the pitfalls of consumerism…I realize how involved and important parenting is, and right from the start. I’ve also read a few articles lately talking about how addictions are learned very early on, as is self-esteem, self-respect, and so many important traits that we NEED to grow up well adjusted and above all healthy.

So, instead of saying that it was my parent’s fault that I’m fat or that I lack discipline, I acknowledge that I wasn’t given good foundation to build a healthy, stable home in myself. That doesn’t mean all is lost. But it does mean I’ve got to stop whining that the foundation is cracked beyond repair and how unfair that is.¬† It’s time to tear the fucker down and start over.

In my brain, in pretty much all of our brains and hearts, I think, there’s a voice that says: I was supposed to have the perfect, loving, helpful parents. My marriage was supposed to be amazing, stable, sexy, loving, and last forever. I’m not supposed to be this fat. I should’ve “made something” out of myself. Add your own; I’m almost certain we all fight this voice at one time or another.

The work begins now where I have to erase that tape that keeps playing in my head and deal with the reality of Here and Now.

Reality tells me many negative things:
I’m overweight. Yes, I have medical issues at work, but in reality, it’s also the fact that I think somehow eating a slice of cake AND a cupcake bigger than my head is a good life choice. Because I’m depressed. This is not disciplined.

I’m out of shape. Prior to joining the Y and starting to work my ass off, I hadn’t seriously danced or been active on a regular basis in 15 years. Yes, I danced with my burlesque troupe fairly a few times a month, but that so does not make a disciplined and healthy exercise routine. The past two weeks or so, I fell off the wagon HARD.

I’m getting divorced. The divorce papers came and all the momentum and positive self worth I’d been building up crashed to hell around me. My marriage wasn’t “supposed to” end like this. It wasn’t supposed to end at all. And it was made clear to me that my personality was no longer liked, nor was my body. So what did it matter? Clearly I’m not to be cared about so why not just go for quick, easy fixes to the pain. Because the pain? It hurts a whole lot more than I was ready for.

I’m unemployed. Social worth is very often derived from your value and accomplishments as a worker. Why else would my sister be literally working herself to possible death at a job that is making her very sick? Why else would we choose to spend so much time away from our families at jobs that keep demanding more and more and giving us less and less? Why is what we make and what we do the mark of who we are? Why is being a workaholic touted as not only acceptable, but a goal worth reaching for?

I don’t have children yet. Even though I really, really want them and thought I was going to start having them this year.

What’s happening now is my brain and my heart are mourning what was “supposed to” have been. The “dream I dreamed in time gone by” that life killed. That is a pretty depressing thought to get stuck on. Which means I have to work my ass off to not stop there. As John Lennon and other people said (attribution is muddy) “life is what happens when you’re making other plans.”

It’s time to work for some new dreams. Which is scary…both to let go of the old and also to try and figure out what to do next. But I’m supremely fortunate and I really MUST continue to remember that.

I live in a beautiful house on a freakin’ lake. I’m surrounded by family that loves and supports me. Though I’m further from them now, I still have a bevvy of friends who also love and support me. I may not have children, but I get to exercise my maternal muscles taking care of my nieces on a fairly regular basis. I’m making new friends and connections and will find a new job and purpose in life. Getting divorced has opened me up to bring healthier, happier love into my life.¬† I’m a member of a wonderful church and YMCA to exercise both my spirit and body. My sister helped make it possible for both of us to partake in the new Loser Takes It All challenge at the Y. 8 weeks of exercising, personal training, and seminars on how to make your life healthier. With prizes!

Now I need to go forth and tackle some things that I’ve been avoiding because they didn’t turn out the way I wanted them to. It’s gonna suck a bit, but it’s going to be worth it. Feel free to quote me.