Tuesday, July 30, 2013

I always had the power...

Once a week or so, someone will say to me, "Well, you're stronger than I am, " or "You are more confident than me."
Sure, NOW I am, but MAN did it take a long time to get here!
I never felt strong or confident or powerful when I was married. Never. Oh, I was very determined and courageous at work and at school and with my kids...but, for some reason, I was never strong or confident with my former husband.
Eight years later, I am realizing how very little he respected me--most probably for that very reason. I didn't have an opinion. I didn't have the self confidence to stand up to him when I disagreed. I had so much fear (of what?!) that I allowed him to control me in just about every way.
In November of 2009 I spent a few afternoons helping my former husband clean out the home where we had lived for a dozen years. During that time, I apologized to him for not being a stronger woman and for not speaking up and for not defending myself. I told him how fearful I was of his reactions and I told him that my submissiveness was definitely a contributor to our divorce.
Amazingly and gratefully, he said he was sorry too--sorry that he 'scared' me into being someone that I really wasn't. Sorry that we were so young and so ill prepared to take on marriage and family and work and school and mortgages and...how differently we would do things if we knew then what we know now. We had learned a lot all those many years.
In the last eight and a half years I have not become a different person--I have just been able to become who I really was all along: a strong, independent, confident, powerful woman. I not only have an opinion--I voice it! I have ideas that I now share! I have feelings that I no longer bottle up and tears that I let flow freely...and often. And, in ALL my relationships now, I am this person. This same person.
Nothing is better than being genuinely me all the time. Being GENUINE all the time. It's so much easier and so much more enjoyable! Not only do others respect me more...
I respect me more.
I like me. The honest, powerful and very happy me.
And I get to be that all the time now.
Who knew I could have always been that way?

Saturday, July 27, 2013

It's a Different World

The black and white photo on the top is my Great Grandmother, "Mamma (pronounced: Mamaw)" with my mother (left) and my Aunt Kathy. By their looks, I'm guessing this photo was taken in about 1943. My mom was born in 1940 and my Aunt Kathy in 1942.
My Great Grandmother was born in 1899--making her 44 years old in this photo.
That brings us to the photo on the bottom--taken yesterday...Friday, July 26, 2013. Me with my niece, Sunny--who is 13--and my nephew, Elijah--who is six. I am 50.
I'm not saying ANYTHING against my LOVELY and VERY KIND Great Grandmother. I am just making an observation...HOW MUCH OLDER DOES SHE LOOK THAN ME?
TODAY, she would be taken for a MUCH OLDER woman--maybe someone even in her 70s. Just the look, the clothes, the 'matronly' characteristics!! And she is 44.
All I'm saying is...
It's a different world.
And I'm so grateful.

My Fair Lady (and Gentleman!)

 Our annual trip to the Orange County Fair...me, Sunny and Elijah!
 I couldn't wait to have my picture taken with Arturo the Churo!

 Dave joined us after lunch and TOTALLY added to the fun!

 Every year we have to take a photo with the PORK BUTTS sign!
 Oh how he loved the Rhinoceros Iguana!
 And...our yearly photo with Bernie...the Python!

 Elijah said, "This is the best day of my life!"

...I would have to agree...

Monday, July 22, 2013

Messy bed, messy head...

 BEFORE: There was just too much 'stuff' on this desk. 
Pictures, stacks of bills, mementos, etc...
 AFTER: I hung a couple of the frames on the wall--but the REST of them were placed on the file cabinet and covered with CLEAR CONTACT PAPER. (I love contact paper!) The result is an amazingly clean workspace--with all the mementos and memories still close by. 
 Amazing what a different feeling it gives the room. 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Writing in cars with boys

Writing eight years ago was easy. I had just become single, I was living solo, I had started a new career, moved 10 miles away, had new friends, new thoughts, travels, experiences and lots of brand new free time.
I wrote incessantly. I was blogging two and three times a day sometimes. I had so much to say!
I quickly learned to love the solitude, savor the sanctuary and looked forward to sitting down every night to write about what NEW adventure had happened that day! I was learning so much about life, about myself, about this new world I was in...
and I couldn't stop writing about it.
Funny thing is...I still have so much to say...but, for some reason, have a harder time sitting down to write about it. I make lists of things I'm thinking about and start new blog posts nearly daily...but it's just not that easy anymore.
I'm not sure what changed.
Here's the list of things that I've been wanting to blog about:
  • Coupons--I used to be the queen.
  • Why do we ask questions that we don't want the answers to?
  • Why is working 10 days straight so much harder than working five or six?
  • I love paper shopping bags...I'm a self proclaimed bag lady.
  • How a new pair of shoes can make your whole world feel better
  • How a clean car makes your whole world brighter
  • How I always wanted to be that crazy woman who traveled the world
  • How in the world can I need wrinkle cream and zit cream at the same time?
  • My son once told me that I could be happy even if I worked in a Concentration Camp. 
  • There's a lady at work who has been married 50 years. And she's never loved her husband. 
  • Our horse Juju has had at least a half dozen owners. I wonder if she misses me. 
  • Dave and I write in code to each other. Sweet secret messages. 
  • I love getting my tires balanced and rotated and getting my oil changed. 
  • I never run out of anything at my house. NEVER!
  • I was trained for the second half of my life through my first half. 
Other than that?
Well...my mind never stops.
However, I am going to go do a few things around the house and hope to come back and write a little later.
No promises.
Just know that my intentions are good.