Archive | June 2012

I wrote you a letter…..

The other night, I wrote you a letter.

I wrote all kinds of things in the letter.

I wrote about the weather…. how hot it has been.  The lack of rain.  The excess of rain.  I wrote about how it’s been perfect beach weather, and how I’d so longed to go to the beach with you.  I wrote about how it would be nice to walk along the water with our pant cuffs rolled up, and our flip-flops in hand.

I wrote about how tough it is when the kids are out of school–not for lack of things to do, but simply for the lack of funds to do them. I mentioned how sitters tend to weigh heavily on the wallet, but it’s nice when there’s a sitter the kids enjoy.

I wrote about work.  I probably shouldn’t repeat what I said about work.  Hmmmm…….

I wrote about my plans to further my education by applying for acceptance into a Master’s Degree program starting this fall.  I know we had talked about it before– but it was just a thought then.  It’s reality now.  So, I put it in the letter, because I wanted you to know.

I wrote about Minion #1’s softball career.  How she loves it so.  How she FINALLY got some pitching instruction from her coach.  Oh, and man–I wrote about how you should have seen that AWESOME double play she made!  She was so freaking proud of herself– but not more proud than I.  I wrote about how the coach showed favoritism, and how it was very difficult for me to keep my hot-tempered mouth in check.

I wrote about my friends.  I wrote about Baby A’s baptism.  Baby E’s birth.  I wrote about all the things I have planned for this summer– especially during my birthday weekend.  I wrote about my plans for the vacation home with the minions to see dad and mom, brother and family, and friends.  I wrote about the activities I am planning.

I wrote about all the doctor appointments I’ve had because of my desire to reclaim my health.

I wrote about the neighbor.  Ughh.  What drama there was to write about with that one.

I wrote that letter in about an hour and a half while I was attempting to fall asleep.  I know that I must have fallen asleep at some point while writing, because I awoke to a paper pillow, and my arm wrapped tightly around the book I had used as a desk. I still have not found my pen……

Tonight, though, I re-read that letter I had written to you the other night.

And I burned it.

No, really.  I burned it.  In the back yard.  I lit it up and watched it burn.

Hmm? Why?  Oh, well, because I wrote about all the things I would have told you if you were here.  All the things we would have done if you were here.  All the things you should have known already– because you were supposed to be here.  And, quite honestly?  It pissed me right off.

It pissed me off not because you’re not here.  I’m over that.  It pissed me off because I wasted a least an hour and a half of my time writing a letter to someone who isn’t a part of my life any more when I should have been thinking of the ones that are.

I should have been thinking about L.. and how I’d do anything to help her right now, but I know that she is tough, and strong, and can pretty much beat the living shiitake out of anyone that gives her grief, so, she’s all good.  🙂

I should have been thinking about K..and how she has so much on her plate right now that I don’t even know where to begin to help her.. and that bothers me.  But, she knows she is surrounded by people who love her– she just needs to focus on what is important– she will get through this rough patch by relying on her faith, her family, and her friends.  You got this, girlfriend. ❤

I should have been thinking about C .. and how he owes me a night of Irish Car Bombs and Jager Bombs and Goodness only knows what other kinds of Bombs.  Get on that.  570 and I won’t blow you in to the Mrs.  Promise.  🙂

I should have been thinking about D.. and how he has pleasantly surprised me.  How it is amazing what a difference a year or so makes.. and how he has been just wonderful knowing my frame of mind, and still sticking around.  Thank you.  Here’s to many more awesome magic shows and creepy leotard-clad Karaoke singers… *shudders*.. and things we haven’t done together… yet.  😉  Perhaps I shall challenge you to a game of horseshoes… A game of HORSESHOES!!

I should have been thinking about M.. and how I owe him so very much for helping me get my head on straight.  How his dumb 39 day challenge has done more for me than 3 years of counseling. How, even though he doesn’t understand it– he has become a part of my family, and I would do anything for him—-even though he refuses to teach me Excel. Bastard.    >_<

I should have been thinking about my brother R.. and how the years have brought us together as a family again– and that I am so grateful for that.  I will deny ever saying this.. but my brother is a good man and doesn’t deserve to have the weight of the world on his shoulders, alone.  R– I will take whatever I can of that weight off of you.  Just ask…

I should have been thinking about my walking sisters.. C and T and J–and how without them.. I probably would have given up a long time ago.  I send up my prayers for them everyday– even though I’m not certain who is listening.  Love you ladies.  And, C– He is totally mine– hook me up!  🙂

You see, I have so many other people I should have been thinking about.  People that are here.  People that, no matter how tough it gets, stick around. People that know I’m a whack job and still want to get to know me.  People that have shown me what real friendships and relationships are…… people who had every reason to run, but chose to stand still.

I guess this just proves to me that I HAVE grown.  That I HAVE come so very far in the past 3 months.  I’m not upset that I wrote to you– I’m upset that I stopped focusing on what is important to me– to my well-being– for even a second.  That is why I burned that letter– it brings be back.  It brings me back to lonely.  It brings me back to sad.. and hurt.. and scared.. and rejected.. and distrusting… and weak.  I hated that person.  I have worked so freaking hard to get to where I am right now,  I don’t plan on going back.  Ever.   Instead, I am strapping on my running shoes and moving forward with renewed energy.

Hmm.  Maybe I should thank you? Hmm, indeed.

One step forward… *hopefully* none back.

So, I decided today that I can no longer hold on to the past.  I can no longer hang on to relationships that do not exist.  I can no longer continue to torture myself– hoping things will change.  I can no longer keep the text messages… the voicemails.  I keep listening to them to hear his voice– to remember how excited he once was about us.  I keep re-reading the text conversations and seeing him tell me he loves me.  I keep seeing how it appears he can’t let go any easier than I, but is too stubborn to make the effort.  I keep seeing how easily I am drawn back in by him, and how desperate it makes me look.  

I am not desperate.

 I have to let him go.  So, I did what I should have done a long time ago.  I deleted every single one of the voicemails (after listening to them and getting all choked up from hearing his voice and declarations of love, of course). All 14 of them.  I deleted every single text message (after reading them all again, of course).  All 350 that I had saved.   Everything is gone. 

I am not certain how I feel about this..

…part of me is proud of myself, because, previously, I would have kept them indefinitely and continued to torture myself–trying to figure out how I could have changed his mind– what I could have done to keep him.  So, yeah, I’m proud.  It’s a big step for me to not give myself reasons to self-doubt or self-sabotage.  It feels kind of freeing, too, to know that I’m learning–and practicing–how to let go of the negatives… the things that hold me back from living….

…but another part of me is sad.  Sad because deleting the voicemails means I will likely never hear his voice again– and I adored his voice.  Sad because deleting the texts means I no longer have it in ‘writing’ that he does love me still… and for whatever reason, I liked knowing he still loved me.  Sad because– self-sabotage is really the only thing I know I do well.  So now what???  Holding on to my past is pretty much the only way I know how to define myself.  Terrible body image and bulimia in high school.  The rape in college.  The disconnect with my family.  The failed marriage.  The subsequent failed relationship attempts.  The continuous battle with body image now partnered with stubborn weight due to Diabetes.  The list goes on and on and on….

I suppose there is nowhere else for me to go now but forward since I’ve deleted the past.  I’m no where near ready for a relationship like I had with him…. as much as I would like it.  I’ve still got a boatload of work to do on myself before I can consider taking that step.  Will it happen?  I’m sure it will at some point, yes, but for right now, I’m happy with how things are.  I just hope that when the time is perfect–the right man will woo me something awesome!  Every girl deserves to be wooed.

Have you ever thrown out, deleted, given away something because of the memories attached?  How long did it take you to be alright with that something?  Did something better take its place?  I’d love to hear your experiences!

39 days down.. another 39 on deck!

“In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.”
― Eleanor Roosevelt

What a difference an extra few weeks makes in getting beyond the hurt of losing a relationship with someone you love.  In breakups past, I would, typically, retreat into my own little world of self-pity and/or look for validation from another man.  I would hide out in my house for months on end– avoiding friends and social situations.  I would eat myself ‘happy’ while watching endless hours of Degrassi: The Next Generation — crying my eyes out because I so got what those poor kids were feeling.  Oh, stop smirking– you know you watched the show, too……

This time, however, I did nothing of the sort.

Of course I was sad. Of course I felt betrayed, used, and unimportant.  Of course I attempted to salvage what I could of the relationship– but, truth be told, was not exactly certain what it was I was attempting to call a relationship.  Instead of succumbing to the pain of losing him, I decided (after about a month) to stop wasting my time attempting to define my self-worth by the man I had on my arm, but, rather, just define myself.  Finding a relationship no longer interested me.  Men, in general, no longer interested me. (Women did not interest me either.  Just clarifying.)  The only thing that interested me (besides my children.. duh) was me.  My emotional health was pretty much at the top of the list.  I needed to make myself feel whole again.  I needed to figure out what drove me to make some of the decisions I made.  I needed to understand why I always felt to blame when a relationship failed.  I needed to know why I allowed so many people to so easily use me as a whipping post, a doormat, a short-lived fling.  Why did I think so little of myself that I continued to accept it as normal?  My physical health was also thrown in there– mostly on a dare.  I knew I needed to take better care of myself, but honestly, I didn’t care.  I knew I was fat and out of shape.  Again, I really didn’t care.  I knew I was setting a terrible example for my children– and this, I did care about, but was too fat, out of shape, sick, and tired to do anything about it.

I had no idea where to begin with my emotional baggage, so, as I have previously posted, I began writing down all the negative things that entered my mind.  I wrote down my fears.  I wrote down my worries.  I wrote down my frustrations.   And then I threw them out.   Everyday.   After about two weeks, I began to see a pattern of when the negativity would strike, or when I’d begin feeling overwhelmed.  Once I knew when the shit fan was going to start spewing, I challenged myself to step aside.  I did not always get out of the way in time, and sometimes, I didn’t even attempt to move,  but in the end, I did come out smelling a lot closer to a rose than in previous encounters with the fan. 

I started to see that it isn’t a bad thing to be as giving and caring as I am– but it is a bad thing for people to take advantage of me.  I started saying ‘No’ to things that would simply be unreasonable for me to accomplish.  I stopped inviting the chaos, and, although it was still chaotic, it had become a lot more manageable.  I asked for help.  That was a HUGE accomplishment.  Even greater, however, was when I actually accepted said help.   I accepted invites to go out with friends–male friends included.  I stopped worrying what other people thought when they saw me, and told myself if they didn’t like what they saw….. they could stop looking.  Their decision.  It’s amazing how freeing that concept was!!  Suddenly, it felt like the dark shit-cloud that had been following me for the last decade began to dissipate.  I even bought myself a new dress.  Anyone that knows me knows I absolutely despise trying on clothes. 

So, with my burgeoning self-respect in tow, I set out to tackle the physical health portion of my relationship with myself.  This was probably more difficult than the emotional baggage, because, well, let’s face it–I hate exercising.  I started out with short walks on the treadmill my dear friend gave me.  The walks (and sometimes jogs) were great.  They were also easily skipped because I had no one to hold me accountable. 

So I accepted a challenge.

This challenge was supposed to be—- 180 days to transform my body into that of a Victoria Secret model.  Yeah, I have no idea.  Didn’t I just type a paragraph or so ago that I started saying no to things impossible for me to accomplish?  Whoops?  But, don’t worry!  I knew the 180 days was unreasonable, so the challenge was changed.  Apparently, since I had agreed to participate in my very first 5k in 19 years and totally wasn’t keeping track of how much time I had to train (procrastination ROCKS!), I had absolutely no idea  it was only 39 days away.  I’m sensing some invited chaos.. haha!  I weighed my options– I could quit before I even get started, or, I could put on my big girl undies and do the best I could to get as ready as 39 days allowed.  Good thing I bought new undies!!  🙂

Since I have been blogging, a few of my friends have mentioned to me that they are inspired by me– that I have motivated them to begin taking control of things in their own personal lives, that I’ve given them the courage to start working out or eating better.  One of these friends, Colleen, asked me if I’d be free to walk with her in the mornings.  I agreed.  We have a track the high school uses for football/track/etc right by our houses, so we decided to meet there.  Four times around is a mile.  Easy enough.  It was only the two of us for a day, though.  Day two brought Tracey.  Day three or four brought Jennifer.  Week two or three brought Kelly.   And, every day we go, we either meet someone new, or get talking with the ‘regulars’.  Most of us walk 5 days a week–  Some more, some less.   Some days I’m way ahead of the pack– other days, they’ve been there for half an hour before me, and have already done a mile or so.  It all equals out in the end.  Some days I jog a lap or two.  Most days I don’t.  I want to do more  jogging.  The point is, we’re out there moving.

Turns out, though, that the physical part is totally intertwined with the mental part, and we’re not as alone in healing and moving on as we might think.  Our morning walking crew turned into the best support group ever!  We’d talk about our problems, relationships, kids, jobs, job searches, family dynamics, and anything else that came to mind.  Being able to bounce ideas off of another person–someone not directly involved in your everyday life– is amazingly therapeutic!  It may have started out being a little bit overwhelming  knowing I was part of a larger reason these other women were out there–  I could barely be my own motivation, how could I be someone else’s– but, it has morphed into gratitude that they’re out there with me listening to me, offering suggestions and feedback…. or a hug.  A sweaty hug.. but a hug nonetheless!  They have been so helpful to me in getting past the hurt and rejection and loss of my relationship.  I hope that they know that they inspire me just as much as they say I inspire them. 

So, that 39 day challenge?  Yes.. I completed it– mostly!  My friend Michael and I signed up for the Junetienth Race– knowing I’d be walking most, if not all, of it.  I convinced another friend, Darryl, to walk it with me– and thank goodness he agreed!!  I set my alarms— but NOT for Sunday!!  Thankfully, Darryl didn’t give up attempting to wake me, or I never would have made it there!  He and I walked together– well, ok.. he walked normal.. I attempted to keep up with his 5. something ridiculous mph pace!!  Sheesh!  Plus, I guess since walkers are slower, they made us take a shorter route– 2.1 miles instead of 3.1 miles.  We completed our walk in 31 minutes and a few seconds– and we felt as if we cheated!!  We crossed back into the main path as the runners were approaching the same area.  haha!  The looks we got were priceless!  There was one wonderful woman who cheered for us… “YAY, WALKERS!  Good job!!”  That was nice of her!  🙂  And, I beat Darryl because the finish line official said it had to be “ladies before gentlemen.”  Snicker– I beat him with chivalry.  Awesome.   All in all, it was a great time– I received a shirt with registration and a trophy for finishing third in my age group.  I felt bad accepting the trophy– but hey, it’s all good.   The whole point of this race was simply to create and achieve a goal.  I did that.  For the first time in I have no idea how long– I didn’t quit because things didn’t turn out the way I had originally planned.  I’m proud of myself for that.

So.. what’s next?  Well? I don’t know for certain, yet, which one it will be– but there WILL be another race in 39 days or so.  I think 39 days has become my official time frame for things.  I have Michael to thank for that, too, as he is the jackass that challenged me in the first place… 🙂 

What kind of goals have you set for yourself?  How long have you given yourself to complete them?  Do you have any tried and true methods of sticking to a plan or working towards a specific goal?  I’d love to hear them!