Friday, June 15, 2012

So, there's this guy...

I think I have been pretty guarded on what I share on this site, because I really don't know a lot of the people I interact with through my posts.  I also had to wonder if anyone really cares about all the drama of my life.  In retrospect, there's probably a Lifetime miniseries in my past, but now's not really the time to rehash past mishaps...

So, there's this guy... I know some of you are reading this and going "hey! I knew she would find someone!"  There's probably at least one of you that is genuinely surprised that something great has happened so quickly (which really hasn't been quick at all).  Since I didn't publicly announce all of my issues over the past few years, I have even run into people that ask about my marriage, and I feel weird when I have to tell them I am divorced, have been for quite some time, and have someone new in my life.

But I will say this: I am HAPPY. I was talking about this today--I am at a GOOD point in my life, and I absolutely love being loved, supported, cherished.  And I love being able to show that in return.

What does this have to do with my goals?

Well, if you look back on the list of goals, you will see that there was nothing about relationships on the list.  I figured when I was happy with myself, and was making steps in the right direction, then love would find me.  I was right--it just took time for me to focus on the necessary self-development.  The rest would eventually fall into place.

So, this guy happens to be very supportive of my list of goals.  He did gulp when he realized he did indeed have to take me fishing so I could catch my fish. He is eager to work with me, and to give me TIME.  At this point in my life, I identified that I needed stability, mental exercise, support, and kindness.  I am happy to say that I have found all of these things in Tom. He's steady, fun, a great confidante, and pushes me to reach my goals (and dreams).

So, today he took me to secure a fishing license... Then to purchase fishing "supplies." I honestly knew nothing about fishing, and didn't even know what to call the parts.  I had a great time watching him scan through the aisles to find the parts for his mental plan.  I am very excited about the idea of trying something new, and I am glad I have him there to help me learn!

I am not a gushy person by nature.  By that, I mean that I don't really get warm and fuzzy at Valentine's Day, I don't remember anniversaries of trivial things, and I will only turn on Lifetime to catch a rerun of a sitcom.  I am emotional, and enjoy being able to feel things.  Without being too gushy, I am enjoying being able to feel love.  It's a good thing.

I was talking to him the other day, and we were discussing when it was that we first met. I couldn't remember when it even was (see, not too girly)...

He said he remembered when we met.  I came into his store to drop off discs for a repair.  He said that he was poorly dressed and I blushed when I saw him.

That reminded me of a famous quote:

"When I saw you I fell in love
and you smiled because you knew"

Some things just happen.  Life has a way of working out, and a lot of times for the better.  While I was busy focusing on these projects, my life was healing, and I was ready to find what makes me happy. 

And someone has a birthday coming up quickly... He wants a frog cake, and that just happens to be a project I need to complete. :-D

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


So I needed to write an essay about myself for a supplemental application for grad school.  The essay topic was about what events happened in my life, and how I dealt with them.  It asked if I was at all looking for self-improvement along the way.

I wondered if I could just post a link to this blog...

I will tell you, as I sat down to write the essay, that I stared at the screen for about ten minutes without typing a single thing.  And even when I typed out the first two sentences, I backed up and started again.

And again.

I was stuck.  How can I write this stuff for people all over the country and world, but I have a hard time writing for a counseling committee in Middle Tennessee?

I finally realized what it was--I had a limit. 600 words.  In 600 words, I had to tell these people everything they needed to know about me.  That's a hard thing to do, and I wanted to make sure I fit everything in there.

After writing the essay, I read back over it to edit.  Then I realized there was a slim chance the committee would believe everything I wrote.  Everything was 100% true, but once I put it down on paper I seemed to even doubt myself.  How can this many bad things happen to one person over 10 years?  How am I still around, and how I am THRIVING amidst all of this adversity?

Then I realized that might just be what they are looking for in a counselor.

I AM a goal-setter, a motivator, and one that looks at adversity as something that shapes where I am going.  It isn't a road-block; just a hurdle.  I am compassionate and empathetic, and what I have been through prepares me for what I will deal with in the future.

And the big thing is that I see ways I can work on "myself" daily.  There are ways I am always striving to be better at who I am--as a teacher, girlfriend, mother, human being.  I am a realist, and I know that life isn't always going to be perfect.  I'm not always going to be perfect, but I can do my best.

And when life hits a bumpy patch? I can draw on the strength of my past experience, and ride it out.

So, I finished my essay, completed other paperwork, and prepared to mail my work to the university.  I start classes sometime this year, depending on when I can register, what my schedule is with the children, and how I can budget out the money to pay.  Just a few more hurdles before I head out on my way.

By the way, I was fully intending to write more over this summer.  Between work and sleep and all the day-to-day duties, I found a wonderful thing to occupy my time: reading! I am finally working on my list of books.

And next week, I will hopefully catch my fish...

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Will I Go There Again?

I have finally had a chance to sit back and read over the past few days.  I took books with me on my road trip, but every time I sat down to read I fell asleep. :-)

I have been reading Committed, by Elizabeth Gilbert.  If any of you recognize that name, it was probably from her well-known work Eat, Pray, Love. I read the latter during my divorce, and instantly felt a connection in her approach of the whole thing.  She had a bad divorce, and she dealt with it by discovering who she was, seeking balance, and learning about life outside herself.  In divorce, it's easy to draw in, and to see that everything outside yourself is meaningless.  You can choose to embrace the reality, or you can hold tight inside yourself and wait for life to reconcile without you.  I liked that the book was real, and she didn't hold back in describing her struggles (and joys!).

Onto the new book...  I picked up the book mostly because once I like the writing of an author, I give the next book a fair read.  I didn't realize until I sat down to read it that it was a book that talked about marriage.  In fact, it talked about her disdain for the institution for marriage.  I won't ruin the actual book for those of you that might want to read it, but I will say that she spent a year researching marriage, all while facing the reality that she HAD to marry her boyfriend in order for them to be together.

Taken from Committed:
"Marriage becomes hard work once you have poured the entirety of your life's expectations for happiness into the hands of one mere person.  Keeping that going is hard work.  A recent survey of young American women found that what women are seeking these days in a husband--more than anything else--is a man who will "inspire" them... young women of the same age, back in the 1920s, were more likely to choose a partner based on qualities such as "decency" or "honesty," or his ability to provide for a family."

Am I just too much of a realist now? I can see how putting my entire hopes and dreams in the hands of another person can be a fatal mistake.  I have already been there and done that.  I look that this research now, and I can definitely see how it makes more sense to find someone with which I can build a foundation.  Love grows after time of mutual respect, support, and loyalty through fulfilling necessary roles.

I am starting to sound more and more like a man...

I think there is something to the fact that many people have been married for 50+ years, and they started their courtship based on the fact that they would make a good fit, and they were committed.  It had little to do with the fact that she was his muse, or that he made her feel sparks after each kiss.  They were invested in the life they had together, and they worked to make sure things got done.  Enough said.

Now, marriage seems to be on a whim. It's very much a heart decision, and not so much a head one.  No matter what "group" you belong to in this country, you marry for love.  I am not saying that someone should marry a person she detests.  I am simply saying that the intense romantic love that most feel in the beginning fades over time, and comfort and contentment can fill its place.  Or, you can wake up next to a person that refuses to get a job, drains the bank account, and disappears for days on end.  Then you are trapped...

I am not sure where I stand on Gilbert's view of marriage.  I can understand that being burned by a bad marriage and divorce can leave one scarred, and begin to question the purpose of forming such official union again.  I mean, if people are committed to each other, what does the title mean anyway?

I guess the main reason I would probably get married again is the fact that I refuse to let someone  in my life ruin any future relationships.  It just seems like that is letting the ex-husband continue to control future encounters, and I am not down with that.  I remember about eight years ago when I was excited at the idea of spending my life with someone and being "married."  I would like to face that same experience again in the future.

This may seem like a random rant, but it is really a lot of thoughts that have reconciled over the past year.  It does take time and distance to offer perspective.  It takes other people telling their stories, and it also takes seeing that people have moved on.  And I have moved on as well.

I'm in a good place right now.  I know Gilbert had commented on the fact she had a good life, and didn't feel the need to change things.  Change happens multiple times in one day, but I do know this: I will never give another person the responsibility for "making me happy" or "inspiring" me.  I have to be at a good place in my life before I can let good things happen to me.  My friend Robin put it best in an e-mail to me: 

"You deserve joy like no other. I'm glad also that you aren't seeking out someone else to GIVE you joy.  No, you've looked around and found that inwardly.  You were just looking for someone to SHARE this joy with."

Yes, she is indeed an awesome friend. :-)  I am a lucky, lucky woman... in every aspect of my life.

Friday, June 1, 2012


These past few days, I have been on the road.  I always enjoy a good road trip, but it also exhausts me beyond belief.  And because I was on the trip for work, my mental capacity had already worn thin.  It wasn't hard to believe that I was exhausted each night that I retired to the cabin in the woods.  It was dark, quiet, and peaceful, and I managed to catch up on sleep I had missed over the past year (22 hours of sleep over two nights... YES!!!).

Yesterday was the last day of the month, and I forgot to write about how the month had gone.  I didn't have internet service up on top of the mountain, so I guess it would have been hard to even try to post on the site.  I went to bed last night relaxed and calm, and drifted off to sleep around 9pm.

Last night was quite an epic dream.  I don't get these dreams very often, but when I do they are powerful.  The last great dream I had was the one that told me I was pregnant with my daughter.  I can still remember that series of dreams, where I greeted a tiny girl in pigtails named Carly.  She had beautiful blue eyes and wore a little jean jacket.  I am not a terribly superstitious person, but this was the reason I broke down and took a pregnancy test (since I was told that I would not be having children).  And when it came back with a glaring positive, I knew it would be a girl, and she would be named Carly.

Last night's dream was just as powerful.  I can still remember all of the sights and smells and sounds of the dream.  It seemed very calm and relaxed, and I remember feeling at peace.  "All Will Be Well" by The Gabe Dixon Band was playing in the background, and I remember walking out onto a porch of a country house (it was a beautiful shade of blue with white trim).  I remembered noting the porch, because it was a wraparound porch, and I have always wanted a house with a porch that wrapped around.  The memory is so vivid I could sit and sketch the house right now.

I remember I was carrying a bunch of flowers--they were absolutely simple and beautiful. I remember there was a breeze and warm sunlight, so it must have been early evening.  I was wearing a sundress that was light and airy, and had tiny eyelets in the fabric.  I don't wear dresses, so that was an interesting image.  It was so relaxed and calm, and I remember feeling extremely happy. I was right where I needed to be, and everything was falling into place.

I remember hearing voices of random people talking out in the yard, and it seemed like a decent-sized group of people.  During the dream, I never went around the corner.  It was like all of the dream was spent focusing on the details, and not a lot of action ever happened.  I felt like I was dropped into a dream world, and I was busy figuring out any clues that would lead me to the story.

I do remember a smell that was very familiar.  I have tried my best to place that smell all day, but couldn't.  I guess, as in the dream of Carly, it might all eventually be revealed to me.  I remember it was a relaxing and comforting scent, and it was something very familiar.

I woke up this morning with a smile on my face.  With all that has happened over the past year, it was nice to have a dream that involved peace and calm.  I know that my life has been full of change, and it seems that life has really taken a turn for the better.  I have two children I absolutely adore, I have a boyfriend that is incredibly supportive and kind, I have friends that root me on in my journeys and welcome me into their lives, and I have a job that allows me to contribute to the lives of my students.  I know there is no coincidence that I would have a dream of peace and calm when my life is actually finding peace.

I still have to wonder... For a person that is not terribly superstitious, it seems strange that I get these important dreams at pivotal moments in my life.  I wonder if I will ever have that house with the wraparound porch, if I will pick flowers in a sundress, or if it was all meant to be something more?  I guess I could sit and worry about it, or enjoy the fact that I had a nice evening of peaceful slumber on the last day of the month.  It was quite a night to have such a dream. Is it asking too much for that peaceful moment to someday become a reality? :-)