These are my favorite Christmas presents for this year!!
The first is an adoption of a two toed sloth from The Cheyenne Mountain Zoo!! My boyfriend's son got this fabulous gift for me after drawing my name from our family secret Santa gift exchange! I love sloths!! I have them on my Christmas list!
The next awesome gift is a tape that allows me to connect my phone to my car speakers!! My sweet car Sophie is not IPod compatible. This gift was from my boyfriend!
The final next fabulous gift was from my boy friend's mom! I love me some chex mix. It does not love me! Gluten, garlic & worcestershire sauce give me heart burn!
I want more sloths, singing in my car to my favorite songs & more chex mix ( and tums ) in 2015!!
I know everyone is very busy today.
Busy with year end crap at work. Busy with trying to figure out what you are doing tonight. Busy with just trying to get home. Busy with the kids at home.
Stop, sit down, exhale and take just a few minutes to answer this question, "Who supported you in 2014?"
I saw this earlier on an email & my heart stopped.
Shit, here I am in the final hours of 2014 & I haven't taken the mere minutes to just shoot a quick text or email to my friends who have literally picked my ass up & wiped my tears & shoved me back into the game.
I am doing that now, because these people matter.
As they sit back tonight & try & decide if they made a difference in the past year, I want them to know that in my life they did. It doesn't have to be a 3 paragraph paper, just a quick note.
Take the time & send the love!
I am leaving work now to go buy my journal to start off the new year!
Be safe, have tons of fun & call a cab. You matter to me & I am going to need you big time in 2015!!
Morning Prayer by Marianne Williamson
Excerpt of My Morning Prayer Ritual ~
(taken from "Meditations for a Miraculous Life" CD by Marianne Williamson)
"...Dear God, Where would you have me go,
what would you have me do,
what would you have me say and to who?"
This is the prayer I have been saying for the past couple of weeks. Then I pull an Angel Card and see if it gives me more direction for the day.
So I started my morning going through my emails. I am getting a ton of end of the year idea emails from authors I enjoy and this is one that caught my eye, Finish Your Year With 3 Simple Questions by Erin Stutland. Here are her questions for journaling:
1. What did you embrace in 2014?
2. What did you finally let go of?
3. What surprised you in 2014?
4. What are you most proud of?
1. What did I embrace in 2014? I embraced me again after 3 years of struggling through my divorce. I embraced that my calling is to share my story of growing up and learning to break my cycles of abuse.
2. What did I finally let go of in 2014? I let go of my worry of how everyone would see me if I shared my pain. I let go of my fear of not being enough. I still struggle with this some days, but I am working on it each time I notice my feelings of shame.
I let go of my dad in 2014. His passing is still settling in with me. I feel at peace that he has passed, but I cannot get my head around the fact that I will never speak to him again. No more late night phone calls where I tell him what part of my world is falling apart or sky rocketing into success.
3. What surprised you in 2014? The loving response I have received from sharing my story. It felt so good to shine a light on my past and write the words and get them out of my head.
4. What am I most proud of? I am most proud of having started writing again. I am so happy I just did it and started putting my thoughts into form. I am so proud that I didn't let my fear of what could happen if I shared my story, stop me from sharing.
I hope you will take a few minutes and think about your answers to these simple questions. It feels good to pull some positive from a very hectic, stressful year.
My Angel card for this morning is Opportunity to Forgive.
I have received this card very often over the last six months.
The Angels sent you this card because they see that you've grown weary of a recurring negative pattern in your life. To break this cycle, it's important for you to release old toxic thoughts about the current situation and relationship.
Avoid blaming yourself or others. As you release anger, a creative solution will appear. There are hidden blessings in this relationship and situation.
I have grown very weary of this negative cycle I have been in. I have grown very weary of asking myself, how did this happen again. How did I end up back at square one, no better off than the last time I did this loop?
It is like the scene in Rugrats, where Tommy is using his compass and guiding the entire crew in circles. A.) Either I don't know how to read my compass or B.) it is broken or C.) more likely, I just haven't pulled it out in so long to check my course.
I am going to go with option "C" and I am almost to the scene where the horde of monkeys enter and take everything.
The cycle I keep repeating is not stopping long enough to gauge where the fuck I am in comparison to where I want to be. I initially figure out my path and my destination and repeatedly find the courage to take that first damn step. It scares the hell out of me and I procrastinate big time, but I take the step. Then a few steps down my path, I get sidetracked by someone or something and I keep moving forward, blindly not paying attention to the fact that I am now on someone else's path. I have been on someone else's path for two years now. Crazy how time flies before I notice my unhappiness.
While I am a big believer of creating a written plan, I haven't actually taken the time to write down what I want from myself and my life.
I have read and posted several really great ideas that I have found on Facebook from people who I follow about picking a word, one word to be my focus for 2015 and for creating lists. Create a list of things & people I do not want to take into 2015 with me and then create a list of things & people I want to keep with me in 2015.
Guess it is time to sit the hell down, with pad and pen and actually think through & commit in writing to what I truly want.
Happy Rump Day !!
Due to my Dad's passing, a nasty virus slamming through our household, and working for a small business, I still have all of my holiday baking to do. I have not felt very motivated this past week, just wanting to sit and be quiet.
I still have pound cake & cookies to make.
I also have had to wake my kids up early so that they go to sleep tonight! I have two grumpy teens looking at me like the minute I walk away, they are going back to sleep.
Since the kids have been home the past two days and bored, we are taking them up to Denver Nature & Science Museum for the afternoon to burn some of that holiday energy off. This membership was given to us by my Mom for Christmas! A full year of family fun & learning!!
Then I will come home & squeeze cookies, cake & cleaning into the few remaining hours of Christmas Eve.
I hope that you & your family have a wonderful day. Make the time to hug everyone who is still here and light a candle for those who are no longer with us.
Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays!!
This mornings Angel card was There's Nothing to Worry About.
The hell there isn't. Everything is up in the air, topsy curvy, spinning out of control.
The Angels sent you this card because you've been needlessly worrying.
Release your worries to the Angels.
Everything's much better than you imagine. Ask your Angels to release you from worry.
The Angels are with you and everything is OK.
Dear Angels, Please take away my worry about the timing and the outcome of my worries. Help me to set my worries & fears aside and enjoy my time with my family and friends. Thank you for all of the many blessing that fill my life.
Words have such power.
I will read a line of something and find myself sidetracked wondering why the author chose the words they wrote. Were they really in that zone of perfection where phrases string themselves together or did it just pop into their head and they didn't understand the weight of what they had just written?
I have been struggling with some words this past week, almost marinating in them. Surrender, Stubborn, Forgiveness & Grace.
My sweet friend Mary sent me this quote, "Sometimes the battle we brace for is actually surrender. Sometimes the security we seek isn't at all what we need. Sometimes it's the embrace of the unknowing that delivers us to grace - however wild and untamed and raw and real that grace may be." - Jeanette LeBlanc
I feel like I have found the definition of my life in that quote. I don't even know how to describe what this quote means to me. Every struggle in my life has been because of my fighting the surrender or in the act of surrendering.
I have searched for security in the arms of everyone in my life, not understanding that the security I seek, the safety I seek will never come from others.
My fear of the unknowing, of fighting accepting me in my own power and being. My fear that I am not enough, that I am not worthy, that I don't deserve.
SURRENDER: sur·ren·der səˈrendər/ verb
I have been stewing over this quote for days. Surrender is such a difficult concept for me to wrap my head around. The mere thought of surrender straightens and strengthens my body.
"To capitulate, to give in, to give up, to give way, yield, concede, submit, climb down, back down, cave in, relent or crumble" are words that make my stomach roll in anger. Somewhere, from someone, maybe farther back in my DNA than I can trace, I was given pride and determination.
I would say I have always been a fighter. I do not often start the fight, but I am always aware of where the line in the sand is. I am always gauging those around me as friends or enemies. I am always ready to defend and always on guard.
I believe my mother would say I was born with a sense of defiance, a stubborn streak, and a lot of attitude. Stubborn is another word I struggle with as
STUBBORN: stub·born ˈstəbərn/ adjective
I don't like the synonyms for stubborn either.
The feelings these synonyms create in my body when I taste them is anger.
I can't remember when I learned what surviving meant, but I know I learned from an early age that all I had in this world was the ability to get back up.
Stubborn and not surrendering are words that define me and have protected me, however I have been hearing the call to lay down my sword. Like a weary battle worn soldier, I am being called to look around me and see that the battle is over. When all you have known is war, it is easy to only see war. I find that I am still sitting, watching and waiting for the next attack.
While I know my enemy has not given up, I do not wish to continue living in this state of readiness and fear.
It is time for me to release and surrender my fear. My fear of surrender feels so much greater than my fear of the battle.
What is before me is all mine. It does not have to be colored with the past. What I am being called to create is free of the pains of the past because I won the right to be free. It is time to explore this world that I have won the right to be free in and to start planting the seeds of my future.
I am standing at that place of unknowing stepping into my grace.
"When we lose our map, our real knowledge of the path begins...once we admit that we're not sure where life is taking us, then we are ripe for transformation." —Mark Nepo, Seven Thousand Ways to Listen
I am surrendering to Grace and only to Grace. In this place and being of grace, I am safe.
"Grace is the light or electricity or juice or breeze that takes you from that isolated place and puts you with others who are as startled and embarrassed and eventually grateful as you are to be there." —Anne Lamott in Traveling Mercies
My Grace is not going to look like everyone else's, but I am finding that there are other's out there like me. My Grace is not pretty and clean. My Grace cries easily and stains my cheeks. My Grace uses a great deal of bad language. My Grace is still working through the emotions from the war and trying to reconnect with love and peace.
My Grace is wild and untamed and raw and real like me.
My Angel Card this morning is Blessing In Disguise.
The Angels sent you this card to help you recognize the blessing in the midst of an apparent challenge. What you've appeared to have lost needed to fall away, and will be replaced with something better.
One door closes and another door opens.
The "how" is up to God with respect to the best way to answer prayers. Release the need to control and predict the outcome to this situation.
This trust thing is a lot of work. This card is very accurate to all that is going on in my life right now. Several doors have opened and seemed like the one, the perfect job only to close. I am really having to stretch my trust muscle right now.
Angel card Innocence.
This card comes a reassurance that this situation and the people involved are guiltless.
If you have been harboring guilt, release it to the Angels.
Forgive yourself & release regrets.
I got the call Wednesday night. My dad had died.
He had been sick for a very long time because he didn't control his diabetes. Seems easy enough to do unless you are an alcoholic.
The loud, gregarious, life of the party spent the last handful of years barely able to walk, unable to take care of himself, and alone.
Alone with nothing more than his thoughts, his fears, his regrets and the isolation of the lake. I cannot imagine such torture.
It hit me in waves of pain that I will never get to talk with him again. I will never get the random call in the middle of the day from him. He won't be on Facebook liking my silliness or seeing photos of my kids.
It hit me that I am not going to get the happy ending I have raised in silent prayer since I was a young girl, that my Dad would choose life over alcohol.
When my Mom got sober, she asked him to join her and he didn't.
Then he found another woman and she asked him to choose life over alcohol and he didn't.
When a decade ago he had an alcohol induced seizure, I asked him to get sober, but it didn't work.
When he found his best friend had died alone and unnoticed, I asked him to get sober, but it didn't work.
When I drove my kids across the United States to my small hometown for our family reunion, my first one ever, he drank so much the night before that he and I got to spent the reunion at the emergency room. I asked him to get sober, but it didn't work.
I got a call from my family after one of his hospital trips that he was going into a treatment program to get sober. I sneered at their naivety, but secretly hoped he would do the work. He didn't make it home before stopping for alcohol.
Loving an alcoholic is the most difficult thing I have done.
I am happy that he has shed his failing body. I am so glad that his spirit is free. I am selfishly so relieved that this drama is over.
I am grateful that I have my sister to process this loss with. She is the calm to my storm.
Not everyone can relate to the long drawn out & spiraling out of control mess that an addict creates. Not everyone understands the relief of being glad he is finally dead.
Not everyone understands the angry side of grief. The disappointment and anger at a life squandered. Not everyone mourns the same.
Not everyone understand that not all parents are good parents. Not everyone understand the distance you have to create in your life from the addict. You have to distance yourself and your children.
The reality is that it is hard to miss what you never really knew. I won't miss him around the holidays as we didn't spend the holidays together. I will miss him on my birthday, when he would call me every year.
He was a good man with a kind heart. He would give you the shirt off his back and all that he had when he could. He was a people person and loved to party and laugh. He touched the hearts of many people.
But he had some serious demons he battled with daily that he allowed to destroy him.
I got the call I had been dreading and waiting on for 15 years. It is done, he is gone.
Happy Rump Day Everyone!
Only 8 more days until Christmas!! I have finished the shopping for the kids which makes me happy. That is what I stress each year, the will it all get here. It did!
I got my packages off to my mom and my sister and they should arrive prior to Christmas!
Now to focus on my boy friend and then I can say I am done with the chaos of holiday shopping.
My kids have been home sick for the past two days and this morning was our child exchange day and they are still sick, so their dad took them to his house for today. I am sending up a quick prayer that they and my ex get over this cold/cough thing quickly and that they get the rest they need today.
I have just got into work and was greeted by a big ass spider on the wall. Sandi keeps taking the spiders outside to free them, but they always come back, bigger and well freakin bigger. I am keeping one eye on it now until she gets to work to either kill it or lovingly carry it outside. I like when I can see them, because it scares me when they hide. Last time it hid, it ended up on my desk under a pile of paperwork and caused me to scream very loudly and jump away from my desk and onto my chair. I scared my office mates near to death that day.
Anyhow, one eye on the spider, prayers said for my children, and shopping to do after work! It is going to be a busy day.
The Angel Card I chose today was Release & Surrender.
The Angels bring this card to you because you have been single-handedly trying to fix this situation. They'd love to help you and answer your prayers. But first you need to surrender and release the situation.
Surrender simply means you are tired of struggling. It means emotionally letting go.
Don't worry about how your prayers will be answered. Let God figure out the details.
This is one of my least favorite cards to get because I have zero flippin' idea how to surrender. I do not know how to let go. I feel like I say the words, but this surrender thing is an hourly process for me.
I feel a strong need to keep trying, to not give up too soon, to keep digging where I am standing in a deep, deep hole.
There is such a fine line between pushing through rejection to realize your dreams and burying yourself. I truly am not certain what that fine line looks like. When do you persevere and when do you crawl out?
I see the quote on Facebook at least once a month that says, "that the moment when everything is going wrong and you are about to give up is right before the moment when everything falls into place." What if my moment of success is in the next pile of dirt I dig up?
I read about authors who's books were rejected by several publishers, but they took it to one more publisher & that group bought it and it became a best seller.
If I surrender the outcome, do I just stop doing? Aren't I supposed to keep moving forward to allow opportunity & outcome to find me?
Several times this morning I have actually raised them above my head like I have seen in cop movies when the bad guy gives up or as in a church service when the spirit just moves you. I am saying the words and physically opening my hands in a show of Releasing & Surrender.
Prior to yesterday morning, I had never chosen this Angel Card.
I shuffled multiple times, then pulled the middle part of the deck and split it onto the outsides of the cards and shuffled again.
I don't just pull the top card, I spread the entire deck out in front of me and normally pull the first card where it breaks or falls. Weird to get the same card again this morning. Not really weird because I believe in coincidence, but weird in why again today? What didn't I get yesterday? What didn't I understand?
I know I am terribly stubborn, and a slow hands on learner, but I am really trying my best to surrender to not worrying about the money or when I am going to find a new job. Of course I would enjoy it if money was coming in and was enough to take care of my family. Obviously I would love to find a new job asap. How do you not worry about these things?
Each time I catch myself worrying or stressing the future, I try to stop myself and breathe and relax, but these are big stress issues. They pop up often throughout the day.
As best I know how, I have released my worry about money and a new job. I am capable and able to work, so I know I will find a new job. Maybe two part time jobs with really cool companies, where I get to do really fun and cool stuff?
I am heading up to hear my little girl sing in her Holiday school performance, so I have a little time on the drive up and down to think about this cards meaning.
My girlfriend has the same deck and we were comparing what we each normally get repeats of and damn if we don't get a lot of the same cards. She had never received many the cards I get weekly and I have never received most of the cards she showed me.
Like I said, weird. Needs some time to think about this card.
What a sweet card to pull this morning, LIFE PURPOSE.
You don't need to struggle to find your life purpose. Don't worry about how to make good money in a meaningful career.
Don't concern yourself with quitting or starting jobs. Instead follow the path of your natural desires, talents and passion with the intention of bringing joy to yourself and others.
Your life purpose is a process, not a category.
Focus on one step at a time with respect to your life purpose and release your fears about the future.
What you are doing is part of your life's purpose.
When I read "Your life purpose is a process, not a category." I had a huge moment of connection to that thought. I don't like creating a resume. While I really enjoy writing, I don't know how to best describe what I have done and what I have to offer, succinctly. (Yes I giggled when I wrote that.)
I have been putting my resume into the nice orderly little boxes that so many systems require now and searching for work by selecting drop down boxes that my skills might match with. It would be way easier if I could just select the hard worker, problem solver, absolutely awesome, creative, giggler, brilliant, experienced, customer service option, but I am not finding it on the list. I would also like to add photos of who I am and what I do. I am way awesome in my Facebook photos.
I wish places still had you drop off resumes at their place of business, because I am very shiny & bright when I walk into a room.
Anyway, it was a good reminder today that my gifts and purpose are in connecting with others. There is not a clear option in the drop down boxes provided for work that is done from the heart. That isn't really a job, it is more a way of life.
Sharing knowledge and creating connection will be my life's work, or purpose. I am already living that blessing.
I will keep clicking through the programs and try to find the right fit, while reminding myself that while I need a job and company to be a part of, my heart work is already mine to do, every day.
Happy Rump Day!
Crazy to post the butt of a snowman when we are seasonally warm & sunny here in Colorado. I know they have snow up in the mountains, but I am already looking forward to a long hike this weekend.
I hope you have a fabulous Rump Day!
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
BY ROBERT FROST
Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.
He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
I have been very emotionally & mentally bogged down for the past few weeks. I have only wanted to escape reality, hide and attempt to sleep.
I got on the dreadmill this weekend and just like last time, felt a small tear in my chest where light shone out. It always feel this way when I get time alone in my head. No agenda, just me and my thoughts. I got on the treadmill again tonight and within minutes, my mind was free, my soul was shining. I was listening to the music and feeling the connections to those songs. My connections. My mind day dreaming. My energy was bright and high.
For the past few weeks, writing has eluded me. Mostly because I have eluded myself. Stay busy and not allowing myself to get quiet. There is just too much going on in my life. Getting quiet has been very scary lately because change is coming and I am not certain how I feel about it. It feels like big change, bigger than I feel prepared for.
I am not sure I am ready to feel what I am feeling. I am not sure I am ready to share what I am feeling. It just doesn't feel entirely safe to say or feel what is churning inside me. It feels like a huge funnel cloud is trying to escape my body. I need more quiet time to see what is going to drop out of the damn cloud and to see the extent of the damage left behind.
The last time a tornado ripped through my life, I left the comfort of my 16 year marriage, my huge home on 5 acres and my occupation as a home schooling mom. Needless to say, I am scared. I am nervously excited to get a glimpse of what is coming. I am also terrified to see what will be required of me next. But I can't deny I hear something calling to me.
Each time I start feeling the need to hide or give up, I need to put on my shoes and walk. I need to keep walking until I figure it all out. I need more time in my head, alone and quiet.
I need more time in the dark, lovely woods.
"But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep."
My Angel Card this morning was Time to Go. This is one of those cards you can't ignore. My life is at the beginning of a huge change cycle. The additional meaning for this card was that the Angels sent me this card because I have struggled with this issue out of loyalty and fear. Well thank you very much smarty pants Angels!
Of course I am struggling against more change in my life. Who doesn't, right? I have known for several months now that change was coming. I saw it out of the corner of my eyes. I didn't really look at it head on until about 3 weeks ago. I know it is for the best for all concerned. I know it is for my best, as this job has eaten away at my insides with all the stress and amp'd up angry energy, but it is still the devil I know and the thought of making a decision to leave instead of waiting until something better presents itself is a big girl step that has turned my guts just a bit twisted up.
I am taking steps forward. I have put out my resume on the boards and am sending it with nice letters to ads I see online. I can't believe I did it, but I have. Small steps, but I am actively working on this instead of my normal reaction of waiting until life forces me to make the changes. I haven't received the response I had hoped, but these are hard times and my resume will be one of hundreds that will be sorted through. I have just started sharing with friends that I am interested in finding a new job, one that I can work my ass off the whole time and then at the end, shut it down and focus on my kids and my writing. I have bills to pay and mouths to feed, so I am hoping to find a good company to work for where I can stay for while and grow.
I am asking for prayers and good energy as I move forward into a new job. I am very excited for this change, but again it is scary to start over, again.
Until someone nibbles and I can actually get in front of a hiring manager, I will be living through another rent week. December and January are usually the hardest rent weeks due to the holidays. People don't plan and then they overspend and then I have to add fees for lateness. Then reality sets in and they realize they won't just be late, but they can't actually pay the full amount this month. Then their account gets sent to legal, and there are legal fees. Then they promise me their first born child, a chicken, to work off a portion of what they owe cleaning for me and their tax refund which they will be applying for just as soon as they get their W-2's. They promise to not only pay me what is owed, but they are gonna pay me a couple of months in advance too! As this is my 3rd holiday season in property management, I no longer believe this promise. As of this morning rent is late. Tomorrow we post the 3 Day Demand for payment and the eviction process begins again.
It never feels good to evict someone, but during the holiday season you just feel lower than low while you stand there watching their stuff be hauled to the curb. Many of the people who barely squeaked by last month, will be repeats on this months list and they will find that they have already exhausted all of the resources who can help.
My goal is to stay on top of this week, so I get the demands posted tomorrow, which puts payments due by Friday. Non-payers will get sent to Lawyer on the 15th and I don't believe that they will get into the court system until the week of Christmas, which means everyone should have a home through the holidays this year. Evictions should land on the week of New Year's for this month.
What a way to ring in the new year, but I shouldn't be kicking any families out before St. Nick visits them this year. No crying children asking how Santa is going to find them. No watching my crew haul out to the curb the Christmas tree, lights and ornaments attached. Too many tears shed last year on the 23rd of December.
For this year's timing I am truly grateful!
I am sending out a quick prayer to all of my tenants that they each find the money to pay their rent this month prior to legal fees being added and may God bless them, every one!
Happy Rump Day!!
Honestly I completely spaced today was a Wednesday, until just a moment ago. I love Wednesday's so much that I am currently stockpiling photos for future rump days, and yet I spaced it today. I spent 20 minutes the other night looking for cute Christmas rump photos.
I haven't written much the past two weeks as my life has been a little, well really a lot charged & chaotic. I have a great deal of change happening and far too much uncertainty arriving in my life. Nothing of which I can really write about, so I feel very blocked.
Until this storm passes, I will just keep writing about what tools are keeping me semi sane right now. I am focusing a great deal on being aware of my breathing and trying to eat small healthy food so I don't send my already sensitive system into ulcers again.
I am currently battling the ever irritating eczema itchy skin rash from head to toe. For most of my life, the itchiness has been on my lower legs, my scalp and my neck. Honestly, I am just one more minute away from turning into a bear and finding a prickly tree and busting out some moves. For you lovely people who will send me ideas on how to deal with this, I have not introduced any new food or products into my house. Jason has made me a salve with bee's wax, olive oil, coconut oil, lavender oil and some other essential oils that are supposed to be good for irritated skin. I also have steroid creme which helps, but with repeated use makes my skin feel weird. I also have Sarna anti-itch lotion and Benadryl pills that I resort to when I start unconsciously scratching.
What I am having to accept and this is difficult to really accept, is that I am so stressed and so repressively stressed, that my body has started it's fight against itself. It appears my superhero ability is disillusion & denial.
I have excelled at pushing through, making do, putting up with, settling for, muddling through, pretending to fix, and accepting a level of unhappiness or anger or frustration that my body has literally turned against itself in the past two years with a vengeance greater than in all of the previous 41 years.
I started this post two days ago and just noticed that I never actually posted it the other day. I got to work with the intention of finishing it and sat down and noticed we had like 5 emails every 10 seconds hitting our work email. Then Jason received a call from our bank regarding a wire transfer we were trying to send. Turns out we were being attacked online. I let Jason know we had not sent out any wire transfers and without the verification the hacker was unable to process the wire transfer. Our IT guy called us and told us we had been compromised. Both Jason and I had been on-line at work doing Christmas shopping with our personal debit cards the day prior.
So instead of finishing my post, we were in our cars, heading to the closest bank to cancel our existing debit cards, verify any purchases that were being made and closing out the business account and opening a new one. It turns out the hacker had created a wire transfer for $9000.00. He could have done this several days in a row before we sat down on Monday to start writing check to vendors and owners and realized we were wiped out. We are so blessed that our bank, ENT a local credit union, knew that this looked suspicious and called for the phone verification code. The rest of the day was a blur of having our computers cleaned, searching for the how it happened and rebuilding our system so business can be normal next week.
If you haven't already set up a daily maximum that can be transferred from your accounts and a phone password to verify on-line transfers, please do. Take the time to protect yourself and your money as best you can.
Happy Belated Rump Day!
I hope that you have a really lovely Friday night!
I was texting with a girl friend last night trying to catch up on how her week has been. She is a good friend, a close friend. She was my divorce/running buddy.
My friend has seen me with snot and tears running down my face and has sat quietly with me when I didn't have any words to say, all I had was a flood of heavy, deep emotions hitting me in waves. She has sat with me during the awful storms and helped me create a space to just feel what there was to feel and to ride it through to the other side. She has been my anchor to the present to help me remember those feelings are from the past and that I do not live in that past anymore.
Last night we were coordinating a get together when feelings I haven't felt in years hit me life a storm. I want SANCTUARY.
I feel like I have stepped back in time to the beginning of my divorce. The feelings are the same even though the circumstances are different. The things happening right now in my life have me standing on the shore with the storm swirling around me. In the craziness of my evening I felt like I had boarded the enemy ship and I couldn't for the life of me remember what word I needed to remember to ask for temporary safety. I had to text a friend well versed in movie quotes what word Elizabeth Swan used when captured by the pirates to ask for temporary protection from the Pirate Captain. My fabulously nerdy friend texted me back, "Parley"
I said it out loud when I read the text. I wanted to scream it to the heavens, but it was late and I have a neighbor upstairs who already hears too much of my drama. I need temporary protection emotionally and spiritually. Sanctuary and Parley are the words I will keep tasting today.
Last night I was tasting them with tears. The mix of emotions were anger, frustration, fear, feeling lost, feeling alone, feeling like I have to be strong. Too much is happening to show or feel the emotions. Too much is at stake for such weakness.
I texted my girlfriend that I needed sanctuary, that I was having a rough day and I really just wanted to come over and crawl into her bed and remember what safe felt like. This is how I felt in 2010 after telling my husband I wanted a divorce, I had to live with him for another 9 months because I had been out of the work force for 10 years. I had no income and no means to rent an apartment. To make matter worse, I had been home schooling our children for 5 of those years and had hoped to figure out how to continue that and work part time until we could transition them into school or until their dad and I could figure things out. I was waiting for the courts to come up with a financial plan that would help me get into a place of my own and help me get back into the workforce. It was delayed, and delayed again for 9 months.
Two days a week, the kids and I traveled 26 miles (both ways) from our remote little town up in the mountains back down into the town we had lived in two years previous where all of our friends lived and we would meet up with our home school group on one of the days to do the whole socialization thing and the second day was just me and my best friend and we spent half of the day doing art history, history and or science with the kids and then they would play for a bit. During the time that my ex and I were legally separated but physically still sharing a home, I spent many of those afternoons curled up in a ball in my best friends bed sleeping. I didn't feel at ease in my own home. My ex did not give me any space to be private, to relax, to breathe.
He hovered too close all of the time. Conversations were started, fights were started, heart break was started and there just wasn't any time when I didn't feel like I was being watched and observed. Sleep was damn near impossible. You can't sleep when you feel you are being watched. In the mornings when he left to go to work, he would lean in close to where my head was in my bed and whisper mean things mixed with garbled non-sense. I would just lay there eyes closed trying to not react to what he said, trying to pretend I was asleep. There was no relaxing, just torture.
When I would arrive at my friends house I would try to pretend all was well and normal. We would walk/run, teach the kids, eat lunch and I would walk up to her bedroom and lay down under her covers and I remember I would start crying from just the sheer knowledge that I was by myself and no one was watching or judging and I was safe. Towards the end I usually arrived at her house, walked in and couldn't stop the tears from flowing down my face.
I never felt comfortable crying around my ex-husband. Even when our marriage was in one of the really bad extended unemployment episodes, it just wasn't acceptable. If I was crying because I was stressed about how we were going to pay our bill, it made him feel really bad that he wasn't able to provide for us. Any negative emotions I felt, and felt in his presence added to the stress he was already under. Slowly, over a hand full of lay-offs and un-employments, I learned not to cry around him. I learned not to share my fears about what was happening or what was looming. It wasn't safe to feel.
My ex just didn't like to see me cry, and he sure as shit didn't ever cry. It reinforced the whole be tough, don't show weakness, don't make anyone around you uncomfortable. I am not sure I have mentioned this or not in any of my previous writing, but I am a crier. My emotions are and have been so surface level for my whole life. I cry easy and I cry often. I cry watching movies. I cry a lot when I write. To have lived 16 years with a partner who I could not cry in front of meant I was not being me in my relationship. I was told to not be myself, so that he could be comfortable when he came home. I had to save my crying for private time, when I sitting in my bath tub at night. Or when I curled up and slept with my children. Or blessedly daily when I talked to my sister on the phone Monday through Friday when my ex was out of town for travel for 10 of those years.
But during the "separation" I couldn't cry in my own home as that seemed to be a trigger to my ex that I was having a change or heart and then the all night conversations would start. During the entire 3 year divorce process, I couldn't cry in front of the kids as I was trying to be a grown up and not involve them. My ex would cry in front of them and they would comfort him because it was so awful to them that I was leaving him when he loved me so very much. I didn't feel I deserved to cry in front of my kids, because I chose to leave their dad. I chose to fuck their life up. I chose. You don't get to cry when you choose. It is only acceptable for you to cry if you are being left. No one likes to see you cry when you have made a choice & now you have to deal with the consequences. Acquaintances can be down right mean reminding you that you had it all, and you chose to throw it all away. I am very happy to note that I don't have the acquaintances in my life any more.
Fuck that, I hurt. I wanted to cry. I didn't choose to have an awful marriage. I didn't choose to realize that I made a mistake in who I chose as my life partner. Even though I realized I didn't want to be in an emotionally destructive and abusive relationship, I mourned the loss of my life. I mourned the loss of my children, because I knew my "choice" meant I would not get to kiss my kids and tuck them into bed every night. I mourned the loss of my home and security. I mourned the loss of me. I mourned a decade of unhappiness, ugliness, emptiness, emotional abuse, neglect and powerlessness. I felt like 90 percent of the weight inside me was pain, pure hurt and sorrow.
I feel a very similar swirl of emotions right now.
I am not in an abusive relationship, but none the less, I find my life swirling out of control. What I am feeling is my learned response to extreme stress. A small non-combat taste of PTSD. Although my head is quite certain we have served in combat for several tours in the past 4 years. My fight or flight has been damaged over the last decade. My head floods my body with the real deal of chemicals each time my ex attacks me through the courts. After 4 years, my body floods me when I get the nasty email from him too.
Don't show anyone what you are feeling because that adds to the stress they are feeling and makes them feel bad. Don't cry until you are alone, because they will see how weak you are. Basically, don't be. Don't be me. Be someone smarter, stronger, more composed, more in control.
I am back in a bad marriage and the marriage is with myself. I can hear my ex in my head. I can feel him in the tightness in my chest. I can feel his hands around my throat telling me to stop talking because I am not saying anything new, just endlessly rehashing the same shit. I can feel his glare as I will the tears to stay in my eyeballs and not fall onto my cheeks. And I can feel myself steel my shoulders back in response to the momentary feeling of emotion. I feel him watching me, judging me. Finding me unworthy and incapable.
I am just now beginning to recognize that this feeling is me being off course. This is what being unauthentic feels like. This swirling, sick to my stomach feeling is me having stepped back into a storm and having allowed myself to get off course again. This feeling is powerlessness.
Powerlessness over my finances, over my day to day choices, over what drama I get sucked in to, over what roof will be over my head. Financial and emotional duress. My not being able to comfortably take care of my family financially causes me extreme emotional stress.
I am begging my-self for Parley until I can create Sanctuary in my own life again.
I am looking for a new job to regain my financial power.
I am looking for Melissa again, to pull her back to shore. I am hoping she will seek sanctuary this time to heal.
My piece, I Do Not Like Roller Coasters was selected by www.herfuture.com as one of the Blogs We Dig for this week!
To have my work selected when so many really great bloggers are a part of this group is really fabulous.
It is so cool to get this recognition!
It was much needed today to lift my spirits and remind me that I am living my dream to be a writer!