I was feeling a bit meh off and on the last few days, wondering if men and relationships are really worth all the fuss.
Of course they are. I spent 21 years with Ghon didn't I? For those that knew him, that was work.
I've been talking to a couple (remember folks, couple means two), guys and I have really enjoyed getting to know both and creating new friendships. Friendships people, not relationships. But one, well, one sort of derailed unexpectedly recently and not knowing why eats at me. While I have a little hope that our friendship isn't over, I'm more fearful that it is. I've felt a little lost without our normal conversation and on some days, any conversation. I had a few days of something short of anger and hurt, followed by denial, then, I was OK, then I was back to feeling this stabbing pain in my chest. Or maybe it was my heart being ripped from my chest. Cause you see, even though we weren't in a relationship, we were pretty damn close friends, or at least I thought. We talked (as in texted) daily. Then to suddenly go to nothing? I can't help but wonder what I did wrong - even though I may not have done a thing wrong! And as much as I will miss our bantering, the walking away was his choice, and that's OK. But not knowing why it happened kills me.
I'm a woman that needs truth and clarity in my life. I'm in my early forties and have two kids, I don't have time or patience for games.
As for the other gentleman, things are great. We have even better conversations and this time, I mean we actually use our voice. Let me tell ya, there's a whole lot less room for misinterpretation when you can hear sarcasm, as I have yet to find a sarcasm font. I catch myself smiling when the phone rings, and smiling again after our conversation ends. I appreciate his work ethic, his dedication to family and culture, and have mad respect for his profession. This guy is solid.
I was on my way to pick up the kids, further bumming that I was going to miss Jonathan's first baseball game of the season but excited to attend Genevieve's chorus program, when I looked down and saw rainbows dancing on my hand. I saw my reminder to believe...in everything I choose. And I saw my little reminder that I'm a freaking wonder woman.
|Do ya see the little rainbow??|
My mind shift started at that moment. I had a little relapse a couple days later, got a little upset and had to hit up my Boo (thank you, Boo!!) for a little whine session, and am getting back on track. And Lord does the sunshine (FINALLY) help that too.
In that moment, seeing rainbows dance on tattoo reminders of who the hell I am and what drives me, my mind improved. As I always preach to my kids... you are allowed to feel every emotion, it's how you choose to respond that matters. I reminded myself that I am in charge of my happy. I do what makes ME happy. I do not have to rely on others to make me happy. Likewise, others do not have the power to make me sad! Not only am I in charge of that happy, I have plenty of reasons to be happy.
I have so much to be grateful for and I know it. I start each day thanking God for my blessings. If I ever forget, like when I'm blah, once I come back to that simple task, being mindful and thankful, everything comes back into perspective. I'm thankful for a few other close friends who have let me have my "WTF? What just happened here? What did I do?" moment, then flip to the giddy "But things over here with this friend, yea, they are good!" (Insert that goofy smile.) I'm thankful that they, all being married women, are still willing to listen to my own mini version of the dating game. I'm a personal soap opera.
Earlier in that day, a friend shared with me that she'd been recently reading my blog and that it gave her new perspective on living her life. That is powerful! I am honored that my ramblings inspire others to live their best life and control their happy.
The next day, I was notified that the cost of the rest of my graduate certificate program would be paid for. (I don't think I mentioned that - yes, I'm insane and taking 6 grad courses this year!) In exchange for knowledge sharing and a promise not to run away and leave, my employer is paying for the entire program. I'm grateful, especially considering last month I finally paid off my college debt! HELL YES!
The other cool thing about my job? I like it. The work I do is appreciated and makes me want to do more, be more, do better. Yesterday, a team I worked with on a special project received an award from the FEMA Administrator. I'm amazed to be recognized for doing my job - and to be recognized with my co-workers and friends is even better. And then, well, I asked the Administrator if we could selfie. This guy is amazing.
|Part of our project team!|
|Administrator Long with some of my amazing coworkers|
Following the awards, I ate Georgetown cupcakes for the first time. That's a reason to be happy, right?
|I didn't eat all of these. I thought about it, but no, I didn't eat them all.|
After awards and after cupcakes, I was able to get a little Mom/Girl's night out with friends. Time to shake off some remaining blues and rejoice with friends and music. And nearly lose my voice from shouting over the music. I'm blessed.
Mind shift. Be grateful. Be thankful. Remember the good in life. You will receive in abundance.
Will every man be the right one for me? Nope. Does it matter if I'm not the right woman for every man I meet? Nope. (This is where I have to control myself and not list all of my perceived faults. I'm good, damn good, but I know I'm not perfect!)
Paths cross for a reason. Maybe each new friendship I make is for a particular reason, and we just have to ride it out to find that purpose. Some may last a short time, some may last a version of forever. Friendships in and of themselves are powerful and valuable.
While staying true to who I am, I allow myself room to grow and learn from these friendships or any experience for that matter. Each person I encounter, each friendship I engage in or relationship I consider, has taught me something. I've observed friends' new and old relationships and had moments where I thought, wow, that's what I want to feel. I've been able to identify traits or behaviors in men that I admire or appreciate and want to experience more of. I've seen chivalry along the spectrum, and now have an idea of how much I would like to see or experience someone I might want to be with. I've identified traits that might be tolerable in a friend but not in a partner. I've felt respect and mild levels of disrespect. I've felt appreciated. I've felt undervalued. One day perhaps, I'll feel loved again.
I wonder why each time I read those last three lines, I feel physical pain in my heart and a tear form in my eye. I'm such an emotional person sometimes.
My quote of the week at work: Forget the things that hurt you in the past, but don't forget what you learned. These lessons are priceless.
There will be a time when it all comes together. The right paths will cross, if they haven't already. The signs will light up, start pointing in an appropriate direction. Signs, like unanswered texts, might actually read "One Way" or "Dead End." Signs, like expressions of gratitude, may read "Proceed with Caution." Signs, like the days I can't wipe off the RBF, may read "Caution, Road Work Ahead" or possibly "Road May Flood." Signs, like explicit offers for casual sex from someone 18 years my junior, have me throw up my own sign that reads, "Road Closed."
|If I see this one though, I better think quick as to who is hiding and who is getting hidden!|
Until that time comes, I'll live my life. I'll be happy, grateful, thankful, and remember all that I've worked for, all that I've earned and all I still have to give. I will cherish the friendships I have, open myself to new ones, and remember those that are no more. I'll probably continue to overshare my life, forget what a filter is, and wear my emotions on my sleeve. I already wear one on my shoulder.
|Bluebird of happiness on my shoulder!|