Sisterhood and Bravery

Posted in intuition, love, Relationships, self-esteem with tags , , , , , , , on April 10, 2016 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

This week has been so different from how I’d planned it. After all, a week with no children and no work is a rare occurrence, so I was imagining between my plans and the plans with my lover, it would be a week of relaxation and bliss.

Instead, it’s been a week of processing and grieving. The silver lining is it was a week free from my usual responsibilities, so I was able to attend to my own emotional and physical needs.

That punched-in-the-stomach shock and grief has softened to an ache, although the anger is still strong. I’ve had time to look back over 15 months and place conversations and interactions into context and it makes me want to smash things. I’ve also realized that beneath all of that there is a thread of shame…how did I not see the truth? Why did I believe excuses and misdirection? How could he not love me? Was I not worthy of love? Did I not inspire love? The trigger effect of finding out the truth shook me. All the insecurities and fears I’ve struggled with for over a decade reared their ugly heads and I immediately called a therapist and made an appointment, because I had brief thoughts of “I can’t do this again. I can’t deal with this pain. I’m not strong enough.”

Fuck. That.

I CAN do this. I have to get through the heartbreak and anger and to the other side, but I refuse to let this leave me emotionally devastated and feeling like I did something wrong by falling in love with someone.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s plenty I can take away from this. It’s the same basic message–trust my instincts. Don’t allow red flags to be explained away, rationalized or covered up. Speak my truth, even if it means giving up something I desire.

I’m brave and strong. It takes courage to love someone and not everyone is capable of it. I loved and I expressed that love, bravely and honestly. Instead of feeling shame that I loved someone and it didn’t work out (again), at least I took the risk of loving. I took the risk of being vulnerable. I opened myself up and I WILL NOT take on the guilt of his actions by thinking they somehow reflect on my worth. That’s on him.

I know he cared for me. I wish he hadn’t made the choices he did. But those are about him, not me. I will miss him like hell, no matter how angry I am, but one of the things that I believed about our relationship, that it was honest and open, wasn’t true. Trust is broken and trust was very much something that was required to make things work the way they did. This is the first time, ever, that a relationship has ended and I feel no compulsion to go back to him or try to make it work. Not because I don’t still love him. Not because I don’t think about him or miss him. But because the discovery crumbled the foundation and broke what was special.

And this week…thank god for the women in my life. My mother, who talked me through some of the pain and has continued to be there for me all week. My best friend, who listened to me stumble through the story, spilling out my sadness and rage without ever once saying “I told you so” and who made me laugh at the ludicrousness of the situation. My dear sister-in-law who said all the right things.  Other female friends who were angry along with me and muttered curses on aspects of his physical being that made me laugh through my tears. All of the women in my life who had my back and were a support to me this week as I struggled my way through the worst of it, who wrapped the mantle of sisterhood around me and helped to prop me up. They knew the things to say that none of the guys in my life–father, brother, friends–would know to say.

Thank you for being my sisters. Thank you for being part of my life.

Tonight my children come home and tomorrow I go back to work. This week of crying as I needed to and being able to take care of myself will allow me to put on a brave face and face life as I return to my normal schedule and responsibilities. I know in time this pain will continue to ease. I know eventually I’ll be able to forgive him and move on, hopefully finding someone new when I’m ready.

Because I’m brave enough and strong enough to be willing to love and risk and be vulnerable, even after heartbreak.

 

 

 

 

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The Muscle Memory of Grief

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on April 7, 2016 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

It’s been a year since I last posted. During that time, I’ve been involved with a smart, witty, sexy, intuitive guy. That relationship came to an end, by my choice, after a glaring omission came to light. I won’t go into the details, because frankly, I’m not sure I’m up to doing the tell-all stories of the rise and fall of my relationships anymore. It’s too painful. It feels too vulnerable, for him and for me.

Suffice it to say that it sucked and I’m once again getting to remember what grief over a lost lover feels like.

It’s been a long time since I felt it. Not really since the politician’s son have I had to cope with swimming in such an intense mixed sea of emotions. No matter how many years it’s been, the actual ache in my heart and the fatigue in my body remembers it well.

I had an overnight trip planned the next day to a favorite spot. After spending the entire night after he left weeping, sleepless and ill with the emotional pain, I decided to keep my plans. I cried the whole drive, then managed to calm down at various points throughout the day, even experience brief moments of joy, only to relapse into tears. I cried in my Jacuzzi tub. I cried while talking to my best friend on the phone, while sipping a bourbon cocktail at a local brewery. I cried on the phone updating my mother on my plans for the week and that I would NOT be out of town with my lover later on that week as planned. Sometimes I just found myself staring numbly out a window.

I have vacillated between intense anger, sadness and compassion, then back again. There were brief moments between when I felt calm and clear-headed, even felt joy at something I saw. Then I would get that hard, sucker-punch of grief again and feel like doubling over. I don’t know how other people process grief, but for me, it’s so intense that I would do almost anything to escape the onslaught of pure feeling that invades me.

I’ve never loved gently. It would seem this is no exception.

Knowing that he won’t be a part of my life hurts like hell. Knowing without a doubt that I was never going to be the part of his life that I’d hoped we’d have a chance to grow into and that I didn’t have the full information I thought I was acting on, makes this the only decision possible.

I’m going to try so fucking hard to not let this color the 15 months we had together, which were amazing. I’m not sure I’ve ever felt so accepted for who I am. I know that I’ve never felt so turned on mentally and physically. I felt like I could tell him everything and he actually remembered and cared about events in my life, tiny details others might miss. Every time we were together felt alive and amazing. I allowed that to let me rationalize staying, despite the things I very much wanted and wasn’t getting. I didn’t want to walk away, told myself that a beautiful and intense 25% was better than a tepid 100%. And without the revelation I didn’t have all the information, there had been omissions, I might have gone on that way for a very, very long time. Perhaps this is what I needed to walk away, stop rationalizing, finally admit I’ve spent many of the last 15 months feeling lonely, wondering why we weren’t getting closer. Still, the revelation doesn’t mean it wasn’t amazing , intense and made me so happy every single time it felt like a drug I couldn’t get enough of.

It just means I’m angry. I feel deceived. I feel loss.

I want to remember the beauty and not let it be tainted. I’m going to remember that after things fell apart that night, he stayed and held me as I wept and didn’t leave. I’m going to hold onto the kisses he gave me and the way he wrapped his arms around me, sitting with me, even thought it would have been easier to leave once I’d told him I was over. Surely that means something? I’m trying to let it act as a balm to my very broken heart and bruised ego, which is calling me a fool and telling me I should have known all along. I’m trying to not let anger assign the villain role to anyone.

I’m riding the wave of emotions and reminding myself this too shall pass. I took the risk of loving someone; sometimes risk means failure. It doesn’t make me stupid, just human. It feels almost unbearable right now, but even though it’s been a long time since I was here, this isn’t the first time I’ve gone through this. I survived then and I’ll survive now. Self-care, self-care, self-care…my in-remission depression is twitching and now I have to work to regain equilibrium.

Compassion. Love. For him and for myself. As a piece of metal art I ended up buying says, “If nothing ever changed, there would be no butterflies.”

May I emerge from this with hope for the future, more wisdom and new wings.

 

 

 

 

Crazy Little Thing Called Love

Posted in Uncategorized on April 21, 2015 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

I’ve been MIA for quite a long time now, while I’ve deal with an incredibly stressful legal situation (which is still pending). As my blog has come under scrutiny and been used as a form of attack, I’ve had very mixed feelings about posting. My ability to post freely and honestly is very hindered right now, which saddens me. Yet I’ve had to face the reality that my children are the most important thing in my life and if my blog is being used against me in connection with my children, to any degree, it doesn’t matter how ridiculous, banal or off-base the reasons are. They exist and I must acknowledge them.

That being said, I’ve been thinking a lot about love and all the nuances can exist. I used to believe that loving someone meant that you ended up with that person if they loved you back. If you didn’t end up with them, it was because something was wrong or they just didn’t love you enough. I took it personally. Since then, my view of love has expanded considerably.

I’ve learned that it’s possible to love someone and have them love you, yet realize they’re willing to walk away for things they want more. And it’s probably for the best if they do, because they love the you that dresses pretty and goes with them to great restaurant, is totally flexible with their crazy schedule because you only see each other once a week. Children, conflicting schedules and priorities would grind that love down until there was nothing left.

I should know, because I’ve also loved someone deeply, for years, only to have that love chipped away until there was nothing there but dust and an ever-growing antipathy.

I’ve loved someone who loved me back just enough to keep me hoping, only to have them shatter me and leave me to put myself back together.

I’ve loved someone, then hated them, then loved them, then hated them, then let enough time pass to break the cycle so that the love could be transfigured into something that was healthy, even if it meant friendship instead of romance.

I’ve recently felt the flicker of…something…for someone and had to work my way through the fact that despite feeling physically, emotionally and psychologically drawn into their orbit in a delicious, dizzying pull of desire, to attempt anything beyond what currently exists between us could kill the high and breed resentment at our ill-matched long-term goals. Sometimes you can feel things for someone and realize they are just that: feelings. You don’t have to do anything with them, just enjoy them and be willing to recognize they aren’t static and very likely may change.

Do I dream of finding a love like the one I wished for when I was younger? Of course. But at 41 I’m less quick to turn away from love that doesn’t check all the boxes, because I’m all too aware that life passes quickly, so you should drink up every single drop of joy, desire, friendship and love you can find.

Living Keeps Ruining My Epiphany

Posted in awakening, single parenting, transformation, wild with tags , , , on December 30, 2014 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

Tonight I went to see the movie “Wild” with Reese Witherspoon. It’s based on the true story of a woman who hiked the Pacific Crest Trail to deal with grief over the death of her mother and the end of her marriage. I felt a weird sense of privacy about this movie, making certain I was alone when I saw it..

Although moving and inspiring, I’m left with the same feeling of frustration and loss I experienced after reading “Eat, Pray, Love”. Both stories were about women who endured pain and took giant steps to come to terms with their lives and move forward and  I identified on some level with both stories. So why the resentment?

I guess it’s because I’ve had pain and loss in my life and I currently have serious challenges I have to work my way through. Yet I also know that taking a month to go and meditate in India or eat my way through Italy is out of the question. Putting my life on hold to become purified through the experience of hiking for nearly 100 days is out of the question.

How, exactly, does one experience a spiritual epiphany between work, laundry, dishes and raising children? Much less continuing to have to deal with the same set of challenges continuously? The day to day monotony of life makes any triumphs of spirit seem fleeting. I can forgive a huge, horrendous hurt that someone inflicts, but how do I continue to forgive numerous cuts, bruises and betrayals emotionally that I know some will continue to wound me with? I can say that I am better, in many ways, than I’ve ever been with my depression. How do I continue to keep my head above water when I feel like life keeps pouring more on my head?

And what I’d love, what I would absolutely give so much for, is to be able to pause my life and go out and have my spiritual journey, uninterrupted by all of these endless daily challenges. I’d love to go off on some epic adventure where I have to face the loneliness and fear and sadness from the last decade of my life and work through it, without always having to play another role in-between. I’d love to take my laptop and pour my heart and soul and every ounce of emotion into the next great novel, without distraction and exhaustion playing a role.

Isn’t it easier to be our best selves when we are faced with the dramatic and grandiose? It’s easier to think about taking a bullet for someone than it is to think about having to put someone else ahead of us over and over. It’s easier to forgive an epic betrayal than turn the other cheek endlessly. Facing our mortality suddenly puts values into perspective, but trying to live by that same creed without the looming shadow of an hourglass is a hell of a lot harder.

I know people rise above great challenges than the ones I face. I feel like I’m poised on the edge of…something. How do I get that final push into clarity? How do I take the moments between responsibility and plan a life filled with more joy, beauty and awakening?

Because there are so many things I want and I’m just not certain how to get them. How do I take my life and transform it without the grand gesture?

The Night Before The Night

Posted in antidepressants, christmas, depression, peace with tags , , on December 24, 2014 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

The children are gone until Christmas Day, so my house is quiet and I’ve spent the last few days thinking about 2014. It’s been a hell of a year in many ways. Financially, physically and emotionally there’ve been a lot of hurdles to jump and I see more on my path in the future.

Yet it occurred to me last night that I’m actually okay. Better than okay, I’m good. Over the last decade, no, even longer than that, I’ve gotten used to not being okay. Consistently in some level of coping with depression, every crisis and stressor (and there have been many) sent me spiraling downward. My awareness that things are changing started when I met an ex for a drink and he commented “You look good”. I laughed and asked him if he’d expected something different.

“No, you just so often looked sad before. You don’t look sad now, you look good.”

Someone else recently told me they could feel my self-love and that I seemed stronger. A friend I met for drinks last night echoed similar sentiments that I “looked good”. Knowing I haven’t been visited by the youth and beauty fairy lately, I can only imagine they’re picking up on the fact I actually feel good. Centered. Peaceful.. I mostly like who I am these days, even flawed and imperfect as I may be. Gone are the scary lows I’ve experienced before, even though life isn’t all roses and sunshine and I still feel sad, lonely, angry and uncertain sometimes. That’s just part of the human experience.

I know in large part it’s finding a medication that actually works and I’m so, so grateful to have the chemicals in my brain work the way they’re supposed to. I wish I’d found it 20 years ago, but I’m really glad I have it now. I’d like to think all the soul-searching and inner work I’ve done play a part as well. I feel like the medication allows me to climb to higher ground with the work I do and reach summits, rather than always struggling just to climb out of a hole.

There are situations I’ll probably always find challenging and people who are part of my life by necessity who will never be the person I would like them to be. I’m finding a measure of acceptance though, which is crucial for keeping my sense of peace intact. I still have trigger events and people and I still have lots of work I need to do on myself, because I’m alive and anyone living should be continuing to evolve! But I don’t feel broken anymore and I can see my flaws without feeling like I’ve failed.

For years I thought if I managed to overcome my depression, my life would be pretty perfect. I hoped everything would just fall into place. I’m facing the realization that isn’t going to happen. Life is often messy and complicated and hard work. It’s also beautiful and spectacular and amazing. I feel at peace tonight, but tomorrow I might hit a trigger and want to punch something. Overcoming my depression doesn’t mean overcoming my humanity. I still hurt and bleed and sometimes cry because life is HARD sometimes. There’ve been moments over the past 6 months when I would feel extremely sad and get panicked, wondering if the depression was returning. But I’m finally settling into the idea that baseline, rather than a negative, is my new normal. I’m still going to have negative emotions sometimes and that’s okay.

But I like to think that now I’m “good” more often than not and that it’s clearly showing. I’m excited about what life will bring, even while I’m struggling through some of my current challenges. My life isn’t perfect and the fact that I can feel okay about that speaks volumes about how far I’ve come in a year.

So…the night before the night, may I wish you all a beautiful holiday season, filled with love and magic and beauty.

My Super Power: Introspection To The Point of Insanity

Posted in anxiety, Dating, dealing with ex's, intuition, Relationships on December 7, 2014 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

So, due to a triggering event, I have now replayed my last relationship in glorious Technicolor several times. I’ve gone through rage and pain and a semi-acceptance and back again. I met up with an old flame turned friend and he commented, “That relationship really fucked you up, didn’t it? ”

Yes. Yes, it did.

My brother and his wife recently purchased a new mattress to help their back pain. They decided to go with “extra-firm”. After a night of sleeping on what amounted to concrete with  thin padding over it, my brother exclaimed: “Buying that mattress made me question all of my decision making skills.”

My last relationship amounts to a really bad mattress purchase.I now question all of my decisions and wonder if I’m capable of making a good choice romantically. My faith in my intuition feels pretty fragile and risky.

I’m dating someone. He’s smart and funny and perceptive. He likes me a lot and I enjoy spending time with him. I’m also completely terrified. I’m petrified of hurting him or being hurt, so I know at times I come off as reserved and distant. I’m trying to honor my need to go slowly with realization that part of this is just fear from my past, but it’s challenging.

When I realize I’m overthinking whether or not I’m overthinking, then I start to go just a bit crazy. We’ve been dating a grand total of 6 weeks. That’s no time at all, so surely I don’t need to make some big decision. Right?

Meanwhile, the specter of my last relationship haunts me and I’m terrified of becoming D. I have no plan of stringing someone along for months just because it’s comfy and I don’t want to be alone, but there is still a tiny voice in my head chanting “Figure this out quickly so you don’t hurt him!”

Sometimes my introspection drives me a little bit bonkers.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Posted in anxiety, dealing with ex's, eternal sunshine of the spotless mind, stress with tags , on November 12, 2014 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

In the past, I’ve blogged numerous times about D, the ex who broke my heart multiple times and over whom I spiraled into a terrible depression. It’s been two years since our last encounter and it’s really only within the last year that I’ve started to feel at peace. By peace I mean that I no longer go into panic attacks when I come within a 5 mile radius of his house. I don’t weep over what happened or wonder what’s wrong with me that allowed him to treat me the way he did.

He is still the only relationship where I’d love to pull an Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and eradicate any trace of him from my memories. It’s the only relationship where even time and distance hasn’t create a sense of bittersweet acceptance. The deep pain and anger I experienced over the course of knowing him negated any happy memories. No other relationship has such a lasting negativity for me. With time, the lens through which I see how things happened and choices he made has become even more clear; the clarity doesn’t soften the experience in a positive way or make me feel more kindly toward him.

Is that perhaps why the Universe is taunting me by throwing him into my path? Despite blocking him and his girlfriend on social media so that I would hopefully NEVER have to hear anything about either of them, I’ve had several pictures of them drop into my newsfeed because of mutual acquaintances. Now, it appears they’re going to invade my professional life as well. Should specific decisions be made, I’d have to deal with one of them on a near daily basis. I’m in a unique position professionally of having most of the people I deal with be part of my personal community as well, so they would be invading my world.

All I want is for them to stay as far away from me as is humanly possible so that I can continue on my path of healing and peace. Why the FUCK does that not seem to be an option?

I’m struggling a lot with this possibility and trying to breathe through the stress. I have enough on my plate without allowing this man, who took up space in my mind and heart far longer than he deserved, to bring me more grief and worry. I will face whatever comes and try to find the lesson and growth opportunity in it. That’s my goal for tomorrow. Today, I’m just really, really angry and stressed out and wanting to stomp my feet that I have to deal with this at all.