It has been over a year since I wrote this piece. I found I have 50 drafts saved in various states of disarray, that I started, never finished or was not ready to deal with the consequences that would follow.
It is time to begin again.
Originally written August 2, 2015
"When you can't let go of control, chances are it's the time you need to let go the most." Cheryl Richardson
Mass Email Post from Danielle LaPorte on Tuesday July 28, 2015
"Do you know the story of the man who was hitting himself over the head with a hammer? “Why do you keep hitting yourself with that hammer?” a shocked passerby asked him. “Because,” the man replied, “it’s going to feel so good when I stop.”
Examine the evidence. You keep fighting the same fight. You’re losing sleep. You’re sick of hearing yourself complain about the same damn things over and over again (yammer, hammer, hammer). Clearly, wrestling isn’t getting you closer to free. It’s quite possible that…you have no fight left in you."
"When you stop struggling to make something go the way you’ve wanted it to, you shift the energy grid of our life. Facing the facts is liberating (even though it can be wrenching) — and with that truth comes a major power surge.
When you’re done fighting, you’re.done.fighting. It’s a bittersweet relief. Focus on the sweet."
"When you have no fight left in you, you get to stop fighting. This defeat can be a major victory."
To read the entire article by Danielle LaPorte, click here.
I am the man with the hammer hitting my head over and over again.
The past three weeks have been really difficult for me. My kids have been gone with their dad on his vacation time and this throws me for a curve ever summer and every Christmas. I miss them and the energy they create in my home.
When I am overwhelmed, I go inward, get quiet, and think.
My turning inward sent my partner into a tailspin. I played small at home to keep arguments to a minimum and tried to keep the energy around me calm, but honestly my irritation was instant. I didn't want to spend the time sharing my thoughts and feelings with my partner. I just wanted to be alone and sleep. I didn't want to talk about my feelings or be smothered with his. I didn't want to share my hurt and fear.
I didn't want to have conversations. I just wanted to be quiet and let the storm pass and not open any more cans of worms. I didn't want to have conversations with my friends either. When you are starting over or following your dreams, there can be some tender not firmly rooted times when you need to just keep your mouth shut and your thoughts to yourself. Sometimes while you are sowing your dreams, you have to keep it all in and protected.
I didn't want to have relationship conversations with my partner because they always feel like I have to explain who I am and what I want and what I am going through. It makes me feel very selfish. Telling your partner that they are third on this list is hard. I chose me and I chose my kids and I can squeeze you in when time permits. Sounds mean and bitchy, and if I really was mean and bitchy I would just come out and say it. Instead I try to soften the words.
Or it somehow appears like I am asking for help and I am not. I don't want to have these conversations because I don't have time for the fall out, the possible drama, and hurt & tender feelings. It sucks to keep having to tell someone you don't want their help. I have said it many times but I continue to work on speaking my truth. I have decades of swallowing the words and feelings I don't think I can share because I don't want to hurt the people I love.
Instead, I hurt myself.
My partner is a good man who is kind and wants to help, to fix my problems, to rescue me.
The problem is I don't want to be helped, don't need anyone to fix my problems and sure as shit don't want to be rescued. I don't want to be treated as fragile and incapable.
I am recognizing that when I have big lapses between writing, it is because I don't feel I should write what is going on in my life or in my heart or in my head, because it will hurt someone else. So I turn these conversations around inside my head and swallow them down. Then I lay in bed all night replaying the conversations. My kids have been gone for two weeks and I have not written more than twice.
My two kid free weeks were filled with words I didn't want to speak and didn't want to commit to paper. Words with consequences.
My biggest fear is becoming the mom, Bobby, from the movie "Wild" and being told I have a life ending disease and that I only have a few months left to live and realizing I never put myself first, even though I planned to as soon as I could without fucking up anyone else's life. And then fade to black, my time here is up and it is all over. If I found out I was dying next week, I would be a be ole mess of regret for the things I didn't make a priority to do and to say. And yet, here I sit at almost 44 years old, patiently putting my self last.
I have been lying to myself like so many mother's, that I will do all of things I wanted to do and be who I really wanted to be when it is convenient for everybody, aka, when my kids grow up and leave the nest. But the truth is there is never going to be a good or easy time for me to turn everyone's world upside down.
My truth is I want to be alone, to discover who I am when I no longer have to worry about how I might possibly impact those I love. When I am in a relationship I swallow down my fears too often and lose myself. I want to write without fear of my words hurting those I love. I want to spend my days writing and walking away from the computer for a bit and then coming back and writing the rest of the day away. Without hurting anyone's feelings. Without getting irritated that my partner is driving me crazy and being very distracting. Without having to be the bitch again and asking him to sit down and be quiet or go downstairs and watch tv. I am just so tired of being angry.
I have had a boy friend or husband for most of the past 31 years. That is 11,315 of my 16,060 days of my days on this earth spent not being focused on me. I started dating at 12 and while there has been months here or there when I was on my own, I was still out there as part of the swarm, searching and waiting for my soul mate. What lead me to leave my comfy marriage of 16 years was realizing the best part of my marriage was that for 10 of the 16 years my husband was gone Monday through Friday. I just wanted the kids. I just didn't believe I could do it on my own.
I left my marriage, but like most newly divorced people, I tried to recreate the only relationship model I know. I tried to recreate a marriage when I know down deep in my soul this is not where I want to be. I am allowing instead of creating. A creature of habit, I have done the only thing I know, which is to be in a relationship. I know how to be part of team, but the team has never been Team Melissa. So, 5 years out of my marriage and I am all but married again and miserable.
No, not miserable. That is isn't correct. Focusing on everyone and everything but myself. Miserable in my internal struggle. Fighting myself for again choosing the easy comfortable path instead of pushing through my fears and intentionally creating the life I imagine when I lay in bed curled up behind my lover, snuggled up and safe. I want the comfort and the scary lonely space.
I chose a way better partner for myself this time, but the fact is I chose a life partner again. I fell into a relationship and instead of keeping separate households and just enjoying each other when we didn't have our kids, I didn't stand firm against the blending of our families. My anger started when I allowed them to move in because that would be easier on everyone even though it is not what I wanted.
My partner keeps asking me why I am so angry? It breaks my heart to seem him hurting so much. I am angry because I want to be alone. I am angry because I don't want to hurt anyone or make life messy or confusing. I am angry because I am not living my truth.
I am angry because I don't want to upset the man I love. How do you explain to someone that you love them, but you are either leaving now or next year at best. Worse, how do you keep enjoying the comfort of the man you love when you know you will never fully commit to him. I am tired of my aversion to discussing marriage being funny. I love him deeply and completely, but I don't want to be his wife.
I am angry because I am disappointed that I can't stay focused on what matters to me and what I want to do with my life.
I am angry because I have to correct or right what I have wronged, again. Round two of sending everyone's lives into chaos.
I am angry because I fought so hard to break free and I willingly walked right back in to a damn cage again.
I am letting go. I know it is not going to be an instant fix of happiness, but it is the first step towards living the life I am dreaming of.