Twists and turns

•June 14, 2016 • Leave a Comment

The last year or so has been filled with many twists and turns.  A year ago March, I tried to make a gigantic leap, and in mid-air I came crashing to the ground.  Truth be told, I could have continued the momentum.  However, it was a choice.  What is most important in this life?  My answer was I am a mother first.  Sure I would have liked to continue the career, live at the beach, possibly even have a relationship I really wanted, but ultimately it was not the right thing.   I made a choice to stay in Oregon for my daughter. It was the right choice, but yet again heartbreaking.  But what would have been even more heartbreaking?  To have moved without her, to not have listened that she needed me and she needed to stay here.  I did listen.  I stayed.

After all, it won’t be too long before she graduates from high school, and off living her life without me.  It wasn’t quite that simple though.  Traumatic might be the word.  I decided after all this personal growth, I needed a therapist to help me bust through the final patterns and to learn how to be happy in Ashland.  It was 7 months of once a week visits, and lots of tears and dealing with stuff.  STUFF! Underlying hurt.  I had forgiven them, every last one of them, but the hurt was still there.  I had only myself left to forgive, and allowing those who had loved me to still care.  I mean really they shouldn’t be allowed to after they were unwilling to work through things, but I learned to let things be.  Oh yeah JUST BE.  Funny isn’t that?  The thing I had been searching for all these years.  I finally let someone help me learn how.   It wasn’t the others at this point, it was just me and the pain.  Facing the pain. Facing the fear and having the courage to bust through it for once and for all. It took 7 freaking months. wow.  In the end, my therapist said I was brave.  That most people don’t have the courage that I do.  That’s nice and all, but I guess the best thing is that I’m proud of myself.  I can now look deep within myself and I no longer feel pain.  It has freed me.  There was an aftermath though.  I was now able to do what was best for me.  My biggest support systems throughout all the tough times fell away.  Healthy reasons.  It turns out to be all good.

So in this last year, things keep happening to show me that I made the right choice.  The guy moved on, another unhealthy friendship ended, the door to the job in Southern California finally closed just today, and my daughter has had a lot of trouble and Ashland has turned out right where we need to be.  Even her father seems to have received a wake up call.  For his daughter, at least.  Perhaps the universe was protecting me after all.  I would like to think so anyway.  It took me a long time, but I am enjoying living here again.  I am learning what makes me tick.  Learning it’s always about learning! Writing, piano lessons, being mom, friends, music and fun.  Oh dating?  Yeah it happens, but it isn’t the most important thing anymore.   California? yeah I’m visiting my brother this summer again.  It’s in my blood, what can I say? Where will I end up? Who can say.  We walk the road, it twists and it turns, we learn the lessons and follow our untraveled path.  I look forward to see where it takes me.

 

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Kids, life and reality

•September 30, 2015 • Leave a Comment
There is just something about having struggles, obstacles, challenges, and downright hard times that makes you realize how strong you are when you are able to see the opportunities they were. Makes me smile as I see my children learn the lessons. Especially as we have been brought up and live in world that everyone shows off the image, and supposedly perfect lives. There are no right answers after all, and it is not a perfect world.
 
Paths, journeys, steps make the becoming aware, and ability to see the bad as well as the good much easier, and possible. If I have done one thing right in my life, it is that I have shown my children my process. It’s been messy at times, but real. The thing is, they learn it is okay to be real. I am super proud of my daughter. She has gone through too much in the last couple of years. I am grateful I paid attention. Too many parents don’t want to see. Sometimes kids just tell you what you want to hear. Listen to your kids. Really listen. Don’t just accept the protective layer of bullshit they try to give you. Love them. Do the hard things. Even when it sucks.

The Book

•March 8, 2015 • Leave a Comment

It’s been a long road. I started writing by accident.  Seriously, it just happened one day.  Encouragement from a friend, a discovery I could write something people were interested in,and the road began.  I took classes to learn how to do this creative writing thing.  I joined a writing critique group. I went to a writer’s conference, and I sought the help of a developmental editor.  At each stage, I received encouragement that kept me taking the steps.

Is it done?  Oh no, it is a process.  6 years in the making from dreams, to writing about someone’s journey, and taking my own journey or perhaps 2 or 3 journeys at once.  By profession, I am an accountant.  That’s right, an accountant!!  A full-time job, 2 teenage kids, a social life, and lot of personal growth along the way.  Somewhere, I fit time in for the things that feed my soul.   Two days ago, I had a meeting with my editor.  It’s been about a year we’ve been working together.  I asked her if I was correct that we had a big chunk called “final” in her eyes.  To my amazement, she said yes.  It turns out, it is 1/3 done!  It feels like a huge accomplishment, but of course that means 2/3rds is left to do.  The good news is my life is taking a big left turn, and I will have some time to work on that last 2/3rds.  It’s a special time that may never be repeated. One could term it a sabbatical.   It could happen this year.

I am incredibly proud of myself. I took this story out of my brain, and created a raw, rough draft.  Instead of giving up when others told me how I didn’t understand how to write – tenses, that I kept switching the person I was writing through, and basically I needed help, what did I do?  I took on the challenge. I learned a skill, an art, and how this writing thing works.  My biggest dream in life  is to become an author.  To change careers would be amazing, but for now accounting pays the bills.  I must say I feel part way there.  When that first person who encouraged me read my 1/3rd, all she could say was “wow”, this is amazing.  The difference, you know?  I am turning into a writer, before I knew how to tell a story.  For that alone, I feel I have accomplished a ton.

See you never know what might happen if you only try.  Some might say, don’t try, DO.  I believe that somewhat, but there are times one must try and see what happens.   Sometimes, what happens is beyond your wildest dreams.

The Big Leap

•February 28, 2015 • Leave a Comment

butterfly beach

I have not written in my blog for 8 months.  It has been a place for me to write about my process, my progress on my path in times of inner turmoil. Well, there was a divorce, and then my father’s death, and then finally a realization that I need to go back home.  Although, I haven’t written about the last event yet.  In three years, that is a LOT of big changes.

So, here it goes.  Eight and a half years ago I moved from Southern California, the place I was born, raised, and lived the majority of my adult life.  My husband was not happy there, a better place to raise kids sounded like a great idea.  I have a son and a daughter.  At the time, they were 5 and 11.  I threw away my career, and moved to this small town in Oregon.  At first it was beautiful, no really it is gorgeous here.  It is beautiful.  We decompressed and thought life couldn’t be better.  Well…  except that, our life was not our own.  It is hard here. Jobs are scarce. Career for me, non-existent.  Not the life I had envisioned.  And well, my husband changed into a person I did not know.  I still love him. I always will.  But, we have been divorced for 2 1/2 years now. I finally chose me, to be healthy, and the health of my children instead of the dysfunction we were living in.   It has not been easy.  It has been incredibly hard for all of us, but yet we are all happier.  I saw him smile, like he used to smile at me the other day.  That made me smile.  He was actually talking to me at the time, and I am happy we can be fair to each other, and smile while talking again.  It had been a lot of years since that had happened.  The little things in life, you know?  The things that matter.  Sometimes, divorce is the right thing to do. Even after spending 20 years together.

My father had Diabetes Type 1.  He fought a most valiant fight.  The doctors had not seen someone fight like he did.  He believed he would conquer it.  He believed he would find a cure.  Maybe someday there will be one, but it was too late for him.  After 7 hard years of deterioration, lessening blood flow to all parts of his body resulting in amputations and dementia, he finally succumbed.  That was two years ago.  It feels like yesterday, but yet so long ago too.  Life will never be the same.  He was my rock.  The one who came to my side when I needed him.  He was always there.  So, without him I have struggled.  Ironically, the struggle waited until his death but he wasn’t really there for the last couple of years.   We go on.  There is no choice.

All of this led me to the realization that I had been depressed here, since the divorce.  Well, it is natural after all after a divorce.  But, to make matters worse I had no future here.  I was committed to staying until my daughter graduated from high school, but that is still 4 years away.   Things changed.  The relationship with her father, and her desire to remain here.  All things started fitting one by one, just like a puzzle.  It all led to an opportunity.  One that would help bring back my career, and give me a future.  Seems a little strange at 51 years old to go back home, to actually feel like you are finally living your authentic life or getting close anyway.   So there is no firm offer, but there are opportunities.  The opportunity is now, some major help from old bosses.  The help just keeps coming, and as I reach out to old friends, I realize I was always much loved.  Lots of people are excited for my return.  Go figure.  It is where I belong.  I have been on a journey these last 8 1/2 years in a progressive, liberal, tourist town (which some call hippie town), and it was necessary to find my way.  Every difficult step, I faced my demons and came out on the other side.  I am far healthier, and I am ready to continue my journey back home.  Yes, it’s chaotic, busy, and not so perfect in a lot of ways.  But, I know now what is truly important to me.  It is not about material things.  It is not about an oh so beautiful location with lots of room to bring peace, it is about peace within and the ability to be alright in the chaos of it all.  It is about love.  It is about being an authentic you.  It is about the things that make you soar, and your soul come alive.   I go back to Southern California with big opportunities in my career, and big possibilities in finishing my book, and lots of friends and extended family who have always loved me.  What could be better?  That is all I really need in life (and my wonderful caring, loving children).  No more shoulds. No more feeling bad because I have been divorced twice, and didn’t really live until mid-life.  There is a lot of life left, and I can’t wait to live it!!

Steps add up

•June 16, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Sometimes we walk through life not knowing what we’re doing.  We just take one step and then another, and another.  Feeling as though we are walking through a foggy mist, it may seem a bit crazy.  Shouldn’t we know what we are walking towards?  I mean we know, but we don’t really know if it is the right way, or how in the world we will get there.

My fog is beginning to clear, and I am quite amazed looking back.  All those little detours, you know the ones I thought were me making mistakes?  They were all part of the process. Teaching me lessons, obstacles as they might have been. In actuality, they were opportunities.   I have learned so much, and I am grateful.

My daughter is getting better after a long drawn out health crisis.  Relationships that were struggling seem to be getting better.  I had some much needed space, and I learned some huge lessons.  In addition, writing ahhh writing.   I hired an editor, and the process has been amazing so far.  I signed up for a writing conference.  I’m beginning to understand my spiritual faith finally.  All big steps this year.     It’s all good.

I’m feeling a little less chaotic.  Go figure.

Evolved & shit

•May 28, 2014 • Leave a Comment

I’ve worked hard.  Somebody last night called me evolved, like it was finished or something.  Kind of funny I must say.  Are we ever evolved, or are we continually evolving to a better place, a better you, a better me?  I had to explain that one to him.

All I know is I am happier, even when my heart breaks.  Another guy, another one telling me how great I am, and then goes off to lick their wounds.  Maybe being evolved isn’t so great for relationships, or maybe there is still one who’ll be evolved enough to match my semi-evolved state.  Oh who the hell knows.

For today, I will continue to walk and be happy I didn’t go in that direction.  There were a few directions after all, I do believe the correct direction is being lit up.  The one where I continue to evolve by myself, edit & finish my book, write more, work on home improvement stuff, and oh wait… yeah just be.  Just be me.  Perhaps, I am finished playing around, and am ready to commit myself to that road.  The editor keeps me on my toes anyway. She wants me to attend a writer conference this summer.  I have never done that before.  Ah looks like another new experience 🙂  Walk the road baby, walk the road.

Puzzle pieces

•May 25, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Image

The way I manage through life is walking down my path.  I take steps, one by one.  I look for signs, the light to guide my way. Another way of thinking about it is puzzle pieces.  Your life is one big puzzle, and the way to figure out how to be your best self is to find the puzzle pieces.  Like this dude looking down at puzzle pieces fitting, it is how it happens.  You walk along the path, you address each issue or “opportunity” along the way, having no idea how it fits into the bigger picture of your life.   Then one day, it happens.  The puzzle piece arrives, and it slips into that hole in your life.  It just fits.  And all the hard lessons from before, days, months or even years before make sense.  See you needed to learn those lessons in order to get through a certain pattern, and have the puzzle piece fit, to incorporate a new healthy pattern in your life and take another step down your path.

When it happens, it’s like an aha moment.  The light goes on, and tada it is there.   Some might think I’m a bit crazy for thinking this way, some might be too bitter to understand, but once you take the responsibility for your own life, stop being a victim of circumstance, decide to ignore the overwhelming obstacle to be overcome, and find the narrow path through, it all makes sense.

I found a puzzle piece the other day.  A big one.  A new guy in my life, who just well is so cool.  He didn’t even know it, but just being who he is, talking about how he operates, how he thinks about life.  I just went ohhhhhhh in the midst of the conversation.  Oh my!  I realized the hurt was all worth it, the pain, the struggle, the way I had been walking, and the experiences along the way to find my way to peace.  We sit there, and there is no struggle, none whatsoever, peace, and just being.  It’s been a long road to give up the struggle, but I am oh so close now.  No regrets to all those experiences, each one gave me valuable lessons and some really beautiful things too.  I have learned to face the fear, I have learned to let go, and I have learned to let people fail, including myself.

All in my pursuit of “Just Be”