Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Plan B

Yesterday I opened a document on my desktop, unsure what it contained. It was written a year and a half ago to the man I had recently started dating. Here is an excerpt,

“…Anyway, I expect a relationship to take work. And though (like my friend) I was hesitant to ask you to do the exercises in the Hendrix book with me (if I think they are worth doing – haven’t got that far yet), I don’t see a long term future with someone who wasn’t willing to do that (or something like it – doesn’t have to be a specific methodology) with me. So maybe that’s part of what I mean when I can see 6 months with you. Relationships have different stages. Harville Hendrix has three which he calls something like:

#1 – Attraction – (I forget what he called it but you know the happy/easy stage)

#2 – Power Struggles – which can end in
A. periodic/continuous fighting,
B. disconnected coexistence,
C. divorce
D. or progress on to

#3 – Conscious Connection

So what happens when we get to the power struggles? I don’t know. I know my parents (who were great teachers in many things), did not offer me a healthy model in this respect) and that is an unstable foundation…”

I’m reminded of this today because yesterday I went to the library and looked to see if they had any Harville Hendrix books on the shelf. I wanted something to read this weekend. They had one, it’s called Making Marriage Simple: 10 Truths for Changing the Relationship you Have into the One You Want. I’m not married, but the people on the back cover say it can benefit every relationship in your life.

I’ve only barely looked at the book, but everything I’ve seen so far is already immensely reassuring. Two of the chapters that most interest me right now are - Truth #6 Negativity is Invisible Abuse, and #7 Negativity is a Wish in Disguise. Facing the truth of #6 but adding that beneath that lays something deeper, possibly a gift if searched for.

I’m also happy to see #9 - Your Marriage is a Laughing Matter. Amen to that. So so important to find lightheartedness.

My heart was lightened early last week when an immensely appealing Plan B appeared for my Christmas. I needed a Plan B and my uncle invited me to go downhill skiing with him and my cousins. YES!

It ended up raining much of Christmas day so that plan never happened, but it wasn't cancelled, just postponed. Today is now the plan and I need it just as much.

When author Cheryl Strayed asked her mother how she could be so happy when so much was wrong in her life, her mother said, “There’s a sunrise and sunset every day and you can choose to be there for it, you can put yourself in the way of beauty.”

Or like I can find the beauty in my menstrual cramps today because it means that after my surgery I kept my uterus.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Monday, December 12, 2016


Today I was told that I seemed to be a determined person and was asked if I saw myself that way. I think most of us are determined - just in different areas. I don't have my brother's determination to bike a 1000 miles or figure things out on the computer.  But I do always want to know, "What can I learn from this?" 

The difference between stagnation and growth is reaching.

I walked into a cafe recently and saw this on the chalkboard -

"Things are not getting worse, they are getting uncovered, we must hold each other tight and continue to lift the veil.

- Adrienne Marie Brown 

I'm pretty sure they put it there in the aftermath of the presidential election but it spoke directly to my personal life.

The determination observed in me today was my affirmed intention to keep my heart open, my conviction that I will grow, treating all emotions as guests at this table (per Rumi's advice) - some are more welcome than others, but they are all welcome.  If you exclude pain, pretty soon joy isn't welcome either.

"Make a commitment today
and say these words loud after me - 

I am ready to be a true 
friend of my heart..."

-Guthema Roba

I am on a mission right now to be that true friend.  Luckily I have support for this endeavor.  Last week it began with a few assignments from my couple's counselor

 Assignment #1 - This workbook.  I'm already 2/3 of the way thru.  Some of it I clearly need to go back and spend some more time with to better integrate, but I can't read anything else right now.  If I try I just want to get back to work.

Assignment #2 - Read The Intimacy Factor by Pia Mellody (I have requested it from the library.)

Assignment #3 - Go check out a Co-Dependents Anonymous meeting.  Apparently (in line with boundary workbook), I've been trying to "rescue" and take on things that are not my responsibility.  Trying to change or regulate someone's emotion by changing my own or getting small.

So I'm headed off to my first such meeting tonight.  It is scary in an exciting way, something completely new.  My couple's counselor wasn't sure if there were any in my area and I was happy to find that one is.  The website says, "The only requirement for membership is a desire for healthy and loving relationships.It's pretty easy to get behind that.

It's interesting because when I tried to understand why someone would be resistent to working on this - the counselor said, "Everyone likes the results, that doesn't mean they want to work to change.Kind of like everyone likes the results of an exercise program, doesn't mean they want to work on one.

So I'm typing this up right before I head off to the meeting.  Maybe I'll feel like posting more gratitudes about it when I get back, but if not, I can at least say I'm grateful to be trying, trying enough to see the brilliant blue behind glistening white on a roofline and treetops, trying enough to laugh when I kept typing "maraconi" instead of "macaroni" today, trying enough to know you and I and everyone are so deserving of light.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Long Gone

#1 – Being able to stay awake until now, after not sleeping at all last night, in the hopes, the desperate hope, that I will sleep later. And getting some chamomile tea, which I looked up, to hopefully help.

#2 – My brother’s voice on the phone bringing the tears out that had been locked inside.

#3 – The food put in front of me by others that I forced myself to eat.

#4 – Going thus far today without taking any ibuprofen for the first time since my surgery last month.

#5 – The one thread of hope that I reached for last night, that I'd be able to get in and see the counselor who so helped the sweet man and I, has an opening for me. I’ve felt in the last 24 hours the doubt of what there is to live for, if you’ve lost what is the most precious gift in your life. I’m not sure right now, but I'm grateful there were moments today when I wasn't mired in that question. I'm still deeply in denial, so I know there is a freight train of pain, headed in my direction.