anon 12 step program, choices, codependency, connection, divorce, emotional affair, Esther Perel, Friendship, higher power, law of attraction, let go and let God, letting go, living authentically, love, marriage, marriage therapy, memoirs, poem, poetry, Rethinking Infidelity, Ted Talks, Uncategorized

Valentine’s Day

Opening up my heart again,
Damn!
Will I ever let you in?
Can I trust you?
I guess we’ll see.
Is it worth it, meant to be?
Your love cast a spell on me
But I’m wiser now,
I know how to break free.
This is it
Your last chance.
I’ll do my part
The best I can.
I’ll trust my God
Over you
Over me
Universe pulling us each
to our individual destiny.
acceptance, Clarity, dealing with emotions, deflation of ego, divorce, marriage, marriage therapy, memoirs, therapy, transformation

Clarity

12/30/16

I’m learning to sit with my feelings, observe them, and then just let them be.  I don’t mean just sitting around and feeling.  I mean being aware of what I’m feeling inside as I go through my daily tasks, as I interact with others, and in times when I’m alone.  I’ve been told that this is the only way I will be able to see the truth about my marriage and my true feelings towards my husband.
I’m not used to doing this at all, and it’s really uncomfortable.  I’m usually operating on the surface level by reacting to my situations with anger, fear, or more anger.  Recently, I’ve been learning to be more responsive than reactive.  As I take the responsibility to respond to my own needs, and at the same time try to offer compassion to others, I’m less ruled by anger and fear.
What’s left behind are the lower level feelings.  I’m often finding that I’m feeling happy, sad, content, discontent, engaged, bored, etc.
As I observe my feelings, if they are good feelings, I try to focus in more on what I’m doing and who I’m doing it with.  I try to get more engaged and fully embrace that moment.
When I’m feeling discontent, bored, or lonely… if I’m in a healthy place, I try to observe the feeling and just let it be.  If I’m having a hard time doing that, I try to turn to self-care.  I do this because this is usually the point when I’m drawn to try to fix the feeling in some way.  Sometimes, I fix my feelings in healthy ways and sometimes unhealthy ways.  I don’t think it’s bad or wrong to turn to healthy options to make oneself feel better, this is just something new that I’m practicing to allow myself to actually sit with and feel my uncomfortable emotions.
The hardest part is when I’m feeling sadness.  It’s definitely the most uncomfortable to sit with, and seem to last the longest.
I’ve really only been doing this for about a week, but something amazing is happening. I’m starting to get more clarity.  I’m starting to understand how I feel around certain people and when I’m doing certain things.  I don’t have all my answers yet, but the fog, the confusion and the craziness seems to be melting away.  It’s humbling to see what I’m left with, but it’s also freeing.
divorce, isolation, marriage

One Day at a Time 11/28/16

11/28/16

Last night my husband took responsibility and apologized for the first time in two years for deep hurts that he’s caused in our marriage.  He did this with tears, honesty and love.  This came after many weeks, months, years of me pushing him away in every way I could.  This included giving my heart to another man, looking to men outside of my marriage for validation, telling my husband that I’m not attracted to him and that I don’t want to be with him anymore.  I pushed him away physically and emotionally…  But he knows me, and he sees me.  He refused to let me go, and maybe that’s exactly what I need.
Earlier that night, we fought, like we have been for the past few weeks over him trying to connect with me and me pushing him away.  But, this time was different.  I stood looking at him across our kitchen counter and for one of the few times in our marriage, I had nothing to say.   All I could do was stand there looking at him and nodding my head as his word washed over me, as he confronted me on my isolation and my attempts to push away his love.  I knew in my heart that he was right.  I was afraid of real intimacy with him because I had been hurt by him and I didn’t want to be hurt again.

We have a long way to go on our road to healing and health in our marriage, but we are taking the steps and I now have hope that we may be able to get there.

 

acceptance, blog, blogger, blogging, choices, Clarity, codependency, connection, dealing with emotions, divorce, emotional affair, Emotions, escaping reality, facing the truth, faith, First things first, God, healing, higher power, honesty, insecure attachment, know thyself, let go and let God, letting go, loneliness, loss, love, marriage, marriage therapy, memories, obsessive thoughts, one day at a time, reality, Self acceptance, self awareness, Sitting with the pain, spiritual journey, sponsor, sponsorship, surrender, therapy, Thy will be done, transformation, trapped, trusting God, Universe, writing

All In 100%

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10/25/16
My friend was right.  The outer rings are where transformation takes place.  It’s so uncomfortable there that you can’t stay long.  You’re either moving in, back to healthy living and healthy choices.  Or your moving out, come what may.

I’ve been in the outer rings for almost a week now.   It’s been so painful, nearly unbearable.  But today, through many conversations I finally got the message.  I can’t be 100% all in for my marriage and hold on to my plan B at the same time.
I’ve decided that I owe it to myself and to my children to give the next 6 months of marriage therapy my 100%, to be all in on a heart level, no matter what the outcome.  I also realized today, that I’m gripping so tightly to my plan B, so afraid to let it go.  Why is that?  I don’t even know who he is.  I don’t know if he is available.  I don’t know if he’s safe or honest.  Maybe the whole experience was just a big joke on me, or worse, maybe it was just all in my head.   Yet, this connection (that most of the people in my life call a fantasy) has such a grip on my heart.  I guess therapy will help me uncover why.  I mean, what do I really hope to gain by pursuing this?
I’m praying to let go of my plan B.  Only then will I be able to fully give my marriage a chance to survive.  It takes me trusting God to bring into, and out of, my life exactly whom I need. Right now, God has brought my husband into my life.  My husband says that he is 100% all in to make our marriage work.
Thy will be done.

 

divorce, honesty, marriage

The Outer Rings

10/23/16

Date night,
Uhh!
Everything feels so real,
When you’re being honest.
Not feeding the fantasy,
Not joining in the dance.
The candlelight, the sunset,
the romantic view…
But I no longer take my cue
to be
What’s expected of me.
Honesty with love and compassion
Cuts like a knife.
We’re both left bleeding.
There’s no quick fix,
No Tylenol.
There’s no promise for tomorrow,
There’s only today.
He can’t control this, and neither can I.
Our only hope for peace comes from You.
divorce, emotional affair, grief, inner child, marriage, The Accountant

Just a Movie

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10/15/16
I saw an amazing and touching movie tonight, The Accountant.  It stirred up so many positive and negative emotions in me that I feel the need to write about it.

The movie centered around the life of a man who had found a way to cope with, and overcome his challenges.  He was even able to turn his differences or weaknesses into strengths.
I was moved by the grit and tenacity of the main character, by the love and loyalty of his father, and by the main character’s desire to make connections and give back to the people around him.
My heart was also stirred by an African American woman main character.  Throughout the movie, I couldn’t decide whether I liked her or disliked her.  I was also completely aware that this had absolutely nothing to do with her acting abilities or her character’s role in the movie.  Her character was written very positively, and she played the role beautifully.  No, my issue was with the feelings inside me stirred by seeing a young, beautiful, successful black woman with a bright career ahead of her.  It poked at my own feelings of regret and failure over choices and circumstances that have led to me not fulfilling my own dreams and potential.  Her character also was a reminder of the rejection I often feel from black women.  By the end of the movie, I had decided to like her, because not liking her was giving in to my lower self.  But now, hours later, I’m still triggered by those feelings of failure, regret and rejection.

Today, I suggested to my husband that we go to a movie for our date night.  This had little to do with wanting to see a movie and everything to do with not feeling ready to sit across the table and talk.  In fact, it’s been a couple of weeks since we’ve had anything close to a connecting talk.  I had expressed to him that I needed space, and despite his resistance to it, I’ve been asserting my need in this area.  We are supposed to be starting marriage counseling soon, so hopefully that will bring some change, clarity and direction for the future of our marriage.

There was one more part of the movie that touched me, hurt me, and really made me think about the importance of meaningful connections.  There was a point in the movie where the main character gave something to someone, and it showed that he cared, but also that he really understood this person on a deep level.  I realized as I watched that scene, that being understood and cherished is something that I deeply desire, something that feels missing in my marriage.  I was painfully reminded of the person whom I was drawn to online.  I think a couple of reasons I felt drawn to that person was because I felt cared about and I felt understood.  That meant something to me, and I realized today that those are some of the important qualities that I desire in a relationship.

 

acceptance, African American women, black women, Community, marriage, multiracial, racism, religion, The Jackson 5 ABC, the power of media, world peace

Haunting Words

5/27/16
The words “person of filth,” that I heard on the show, The Mindy Project, came back to me today as I was getting ready.  I thought about how I’m super conscientious of how I look and my hygiene all the time.  I feel like I’m constantly trying to prove to myself, and to others, “See, I’m clean, I’m put together, I’m sharp, I’m hip, I’m (fill in the blank).”  It was a lot easier to keep up that “perfect standard” before I had kids.  Now, with a preschooler and a soon-to-start kindergartener, I’m finding it impossible to keep up that vigilant perfectly manicured look and life.  In fact, it’s the opposite, my house is a disaster, half the time I’m lucky if I can squeeze in a shower before the sun goes down.  Make up, styled hair, wrinkle free clothes… all out the window.  And my life is like that cause I’m a great mom, I choose to put my kids need first… their breakfast, lunch, dinner, clean clothes, clean sheets, lessons, classes, play dates, play time with mommy, cuddles, teaching, discipline, you name it.  I feel like I’m like all of the other moms I see when we’re at karate class, or mommy and me ballet, or swimming lessons, soccer, the library, the beach, or the grocery store.  But, when I see them without makeup, or hair looking just thrown up, or clothes looking mom-ish, I just think, “Oh, that’s just because they’re a good mom.”   I wonder why I feel like I have to fight so hard against being considered dirty or filthy or base.  Don’t all people get dirty?  Why has this label been put on black people? Do some of us have skin that gets more oily?  Are our dead skin cells darker? Do we sometimes need to avoid getting our hair wet to preserve the oils in our hair and scalp or to preserve an expensive or time consuming hair style?  Do those things make us filthy or just different?

I want to live in a world where difference is observed, respected, and even appreciated. I see it like marriage.  My minister called it the ABC’s and 123’s.  That the ABC’s are what you love about your spouse and the 123’s are the things that bother you.  They are the two sides to the same coin.  So in my marriage, my husband loves that I’m ambitious, vulnerable and sexy.  But he gets bothered by the fact that I can be bossy (he calls it my “drill sergeant mode” or “going on a rampage,”) I can be very sensitive and need to “talk” A LOT, and I can take forever to get ready or do my beauty regimes on the weekends making us late all the time.  Of course, he has his ABC’s and 123’s too.  We try to celebrate the ABC’s and manage the 123’s.  But they don’t really go away cause it’s who we are, and it’s a part of what we love.

Can’t we take that a step further to people as a whole, to groups, cultures, races, etc?  I want to live in a world where we love and respect each other enough to try to look past the 123’s and observe, even enjoy the ABC’s.  A world of love, acceptance and community.