Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Bigger than this

I was made for bigger things than this tragic turn of events.  I am made for bigger things than this inner drama.

I have witnessed and held space for birth.  
I have pulled people together to create beautiful works of art and charity.
I have written inspirational pieces, that have helped women through hard times.
I have talked people down from suicide.
I have come back from debilitating illness and trauma and told the tale.

I was made for bigger things than these day to day emotional shifts, highs and lows.
And so were you.


It's the morning after a sobering night.  One of those nights where you wake up and wonder did that really happen? Yes, yes it did.  Lastnight I got talking about a subject that was so stressful to me I began to stutter and slur, again.

It was as simple as physical affection with a member of the opposite sex.  There's only one male, aside from family members, that I am comfortable being affectionate with. Over the years we have built trust between eachother, I even allow him to take nude artistic photos of me.  He has seen me vulnerable many times, always respected my boundaries and created a safe space for me to express myself fully.

I feel like, until lastnight, I didn't realize how thick the liquid surrounded me was until I tried to swim through it.

Having repeated positive experiences can rewire the brain's anxiety response, so why not be physically affectionate with my male friends (not talking sex) until I learn positive associations?  I know how devastating one negative experience can be on the healing process, that's why.

I know how people can use your physical affection as an excuse to violate boundaries, make it your fault when you tell them "No."  "But you let me do ___________,  so I thought this would be cool with you."  Or "why did you lead me on..."  Part of me believes they are right, social programming has taught me be chaste or be promiscuous there is no safe space in between.  I can communicate boundaries all I like, but if the other person is only hearing what they want to hear...

This is when my little voice, the one that used to be loud, bold and joyful whispers to me:  "Your
strength is in seeing the risk but living joyfully anyways.  Fearing pain doesn't always stop you from
experiencing it, you'll just experience it as a feeling of constant confinement.  Go out, take baby steps if you need to but don't lock your heart away."

Monday, February 8, 2016

Head On

After years of both procrastination and inability, I finally wrote and passed my G1.  The world is opening up and if I work hard, I will be driving my kids around in a year.

This was the first time I felt like I'd use it after I wrote it.  I'm actually looking forward to my driving lessons.  There's no fear there anymore, which is a huge deal as the fear of driving hasn't left me since Konrad's mother's death in a car accident 19 years ago. This may have something to do with my self confidence rising after surviving the craziness that was my life last year.  Getting through something tough is the best confidence builder ever.

I'm not sure if I'm going to buy a car right away...as I am trying to pay down my credit card and don't want to use my line of credit.  But when I look into college courses, writing workshops etc...a vehicle may be exactly what I need to help increase my income...eventually.

I thought I would feel like partying, but really I just want to take a bath and shave my legs.  Ohh yeah, and buy lipstick, that will be my gift to myself. I will be going out for a couple of drinks with a friend later tonight, because I won't be driving home (cuz that's an option now! EEEE!).

Sunday, February 7, 2016


So I put it out there...this need to unwind, let off steam.  Suddenly there's all these people who want to hang out and do cool things with me.  This week's looking pretty good.  I'm a hermit when I'm writing, but I need to draw from something other than my recycled thoughts. I love people, I love sharing experiences with them.

I remember when I first moved out, everything I needed came to me when I put it out there.  Then for some reason I stopped asking.  I stopped saying "hey, I need this."  I don't know why, because it clearly works.  Maybe I thought, "okay I'm good now, I can do this on my own, thanks."
I forget I never do anything completely on my own.  Ever.  Everything I do has some sort of interaction involved either before or after in order to complete it. Life is a series of interactions and relationships.  I have to stop thinking of myself as independent when I'm interdependent, we all are.  I just keep mentally separating myself from others with this idea of "making it on my own." 
I'm scared of becoming dependent on someone again.  So I try to be completely independent which is not helping my emotional state at all.  I need to recognize I need not be either.  I am a working part of a whole system, this system needs me like I need it.  I'm not talking economically, I am talking about relationships, action/reaction, give and take.  I felt very isolated for a long time, but it's time to let go of that viewpoint and open up to my community.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Clip, Shift, Solder

Some people are simply not going to understand.  They think they have an idea, but they don't.  It's going to take a long time for my mind to rewire.  Five years of wiring to clip, shift, and solder.  Then there's the good parts, the memories that I can't simply shut off, because they have made me who I am today.  Many of these memories involved my children growing and learning.  To shut them down and pretend they never happened is just as damaging as compulsively reliving them.  I cannot and will not block out the half decade in which my children grew up, simply to avoid thinking of my ex. So as such this is going to be messy and sad. There is going to be mascara running rivers and eyes bloodshot swollen. There's going to be anger and blame before the acceptance. But I can do this.  I'm not scared of the dirty work, but I understand if it's painful for you all to witness.  I understand if sometimes you need to take a step (or two) back.  I won't take it personally, I've got this.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Can't Be A Hermit

I really need to blow off some steam this weekend.  I need to dance, laugh and have a beer.  I need to create with another person.  I am snapping at my kids, actually I yelled at them yesterday and today, I hate yelling. I need to refill my cup.

Writing and meditating can only do so much.  Today while walking to the grocery store I remembered my daily walks before I met my ex, when my kids were in strollers and I lived where there were sidewalks.  I try to do that now, but it becomes a struggle just to get my son to not stop every ten steps.  Yes, I understand that he is stretching his imagination by hiding behind every single lamp post, but I have needs too, and if I don't meet them every once in a while, I turn into the very troll he's imagining he is hiding from.  

I think I may also need to get laid.

Unfortunately, I don't believe that is an itch that I should scratch anytime soon...

So I will settle for a beer, a live band and some good company.  

Little Talks

What was life like before all this fear?  What was it like to not fear love?  What was it like to be able to imagine making love to someone else without anxiety gripping my chest?  What was it like to trust that the next relationship would be better?  To not assume everyone will be filled with lies and anger? 

What happened to that beautiful hopeful woman?  Where is she? I told myself I would never be broken, that I would always start each day new.  My strength was my ability to love, to be open, to not judge anyone before I got to know them. I thought my meditation, my communication, my compassion for others could see me through anything.  

I judge everyone now.  I have a few good days of freedom then a nightmare and I'm back to living in fear again.  When will this be over?  When will I feel safe again?  I thought if I buried myself in work I would be occupied and the fear would go away.  I know that I am not depressed because I am able to find genuine joy in many things.  It's not generalized anxiety because I can try new things without fear. I answer my phone without hesitation now, I can go to the pub and be social with no nervousness.  It is always around relationships with men and sex.  I don't trust my heart.  That's why I don't date, that's why I don't feel like I can be physically intimate with anyone.  My heart just loves, it loves people in pain and people in pain love my heart.  I keep making up these rules for myself, like I can't date someone while I want to date someone...???  That I can't be in pain and date.  That I have to be completely healed before dating.  But what if I can't completely heal because I'm scared of dating and refuse to face that fear?

I took a 20 minute break and prayed for guidance, my chest relaxed, my tears stopped and this is what my inner voice said to me:

Dear Amber,

Stop worrying.  It will come.  This won't last forever.  I love you.  You have learned, you have grown.  Trust yourself.  I love you.  I love you.  Go out, love being around people, do not expect anything else of yourself right now.