Saturday, August 21, 2010

Perspective, Belief

Pardon me for being so introspective and philosophical lately. With Mr. W gone for 12 days I have had plenty of nights to just think, and some of it has been pretty good stuff.

I'm reading a great book that I bought to help me get further in my business, called Simpleology. The basis of this book is that there is no reality, no one truth, that the world in front of us is only what our brain interprets it as, based on our beliefs and perceptions that we have developed since childhood.

This is a concept that I think I've always had a grasp of, but the author takes it further than I've ever conceptualized.

So if this is true, then we may grow up with certain beliefs about ourselves. We can't do this or we can't do that, or we have to be a certain way. For example, if you constantly think "I'm never going to have any money", then your world will morph to support this belief. Every tiny little decision you make will reflect that "reality".

It made me think hard about my own beliefs. What do I hold to be true? I know that I can run a successful business, but sometimes I think I put limits on myself as to how far I can take it or how much money could be made. Since my parents' divorce and my own divorce, I have struggled with the belief that no marriage is good, that there is something genetically wrong with me that attracts liars and cheaters, that relationships are doomed. And over and over I have found that if I am not working on changing that belief, I can cause that very situation to occur, all of my own doing.

I see the people all around me and the problems they create in their lives. My ex husband for example. He makes the same amount of money as me, yet recently had his car repossessed. He lives in a small apartment and his car payment was half what mine is. So why am I doing fine and he is in a huge financial hole? He watched his mother be financially irresponsible his entire life. Cars repossessed, credit cards maxed and never paid. He learned all of his life's beliefs from her and is now making all the same decisions she made. And cannot for the life of him understand why (the author of Simpleology calls this phenomenon insanity)

We all have that something in our lives that frustrates us that we can't figure out how to change. The secret is to look at the world as an open book with endless possibilities. It's so true that life is exactly what you make of it. There is no "can't". You are not genetically pre-disposed to being obese. You choose to make the same decisions about food that you probably watched your parents make and you believe this to be your truth. I am not genetically pre-disposed to being in bad relationships. If I'm constantly afraid that my relationship is doomed, I will see every fight, every bump in the road as THE END, all left up to my interpretation. And then I will run away before I ever give it a chance to work out.

What else do I believe about myself? I believe I should be living in a house, not an apartment, because I grew up in one. Oddly enough, the house I live in resembles my childhood home almost exactly. I believe I should be doing certain things for my children, because my mom did them. The problem there? She was a stay at home mother (amazing also at how close I am to being a stay at home mom considering I'm a single mom. But this belief causes me so much guilt.) I believe I should work out every single day so that I feel good. This belief I developed just after my divorce, and is something I was able to change myself.

So it's possible, you see, to change reality. All of us are not just assigned a place in life and doomed to follow. There are certain steps that can always be made to create a new reality, and with enough dedication, research and yes, work, we can achieve exactly what we want. We do not have to get up and go to a job we hate every single day because we think it's all we can do. We don't have to be stuck in an abusive relationship because we believe we're not worth more, or that children shouldn't have divorced parents. We don't have to be miserable or even just content. Life is just too short for that.

I work constantly to make my life better. What do I want? I want to do my job but only part of it, I'd love to have employees to do the parts I don't like. I want more money, a bigger house. I want to see the world. I want to spend the rest of my life with Mr. Wonderful, and have the happiest of relationships. I want friends around me who are honest, good, and real. I want to be an honest, good, and real friend and lover. I want to be surrounded by music and laughter and happiness. I want to live somewhere other than here, like in New York or even somewhere abroad (but don't want to uproot my children, so I'm still thinking about that). I want to be close with my children and have them never be disappointed in me.

Think about what is holding you back from what you want and what beliefs you may hold about "reality" that might be keeping you from it. It's a pretty eye opening experience.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Peace, and what it feels like.

I was driving this evening towards the sunset, the light was hitting everything in that gorgeous golden way that it does in the summer evenings, and I took a deep sigh and felt it....peace.

It seems to be coming to me much more often these days.

But this was the first time I could really put a finger on it, really see exactly the source of my peace, as clear as the sun was setting in front of me.

Mr. Wonderful is still away on his trip, 10 days away from each other. He emails when he has access to wifi, but we've had pretty limited communication on his trip. The pictures I see from him are of him having a great time, taking in the view, eating melt-in-your-mouth food, bonding with his brother. And yes, missing me too. While I miss him as well, terribly, I am truly SO excited for him to have this experience.

While he has been gone, I dove into my work. I made a list of what had to be done, and while it's taken 45 hours of work in just 3 days, I'm getting there. And it feels really good.

Tonight, after 3 days of work and the kids and more crap from the ex, I decided I deserved some "me" time. I went to my favorite sushi restaurant, sat at the sushi bar, indulged in a martini and a spicy tuna roll. Read a book, texted friends, and just let my mind and my mouth just be quiet for awhile. Ahhhhh.

It was on the drive from sushi to the movie theater that I felt the overwhelming peace. And I realized that my life is now truly in balance. That I am me, I know how to take care of myself, who I am, what I like...AND I'm in love.


There is something so powerful about knowing that you can take care of yourself, not only that but actually be happy alone with oneself. That no one else's love for you could ever compare to the love you can give yourself. And then to realize that you can have all this....and a partner to share it with...mindblowing.

Before this experience of "desperately seeking me", alone I was a mess, I felt incomplete, I felt anxious. Even if alone meant my husband going out without me. Now my lover can leave me for 10 days across the world and not only can I be ok, I have a full life of things that make me very happy.

It just so happens that the movie I was going to see was Eat, Pray, Love. (spoiler alert) I never read the book so I wasn't expecting much, just a typical chick flick. It was like watching myself on the screen, the scared, lost, jaded woman who emerges and finds herself and thinks that she is finished, that there couldn't possibly be more. And when love comes along, she feels she has to choose between this new version of herself or love, because they can't possibly coexist. The fear in her eyes when she comes to that crossroads is so completely recognizable that I began to cry and couldn't stop until everyone had emptied the theater and the lights came back on. Is it possible that I have figured out how to find me, AND find love?

I think it is. Mr. W is a piece of my life, a big one. He brings me happiness and joy and affection and support everyday of my life. As humans, this is something we naturally desire. We CAN have it all. It IS possible to live a full life and have complete balance, peace, and love.

Best quote from the movie-The key to balance is to never let anyone love you less than you love yourself.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

That's Me at the Bottom of that Pile of Laundry

I'm checking in because I'm not sure when the next time is that I'll be able to write. This happens to be the last week before school starts, and not only do I face shopping for school supplies, school clothes, getting haircuts and pediatrician checkups and eye exams and orchestra supplies COMPLETELY without help (my ex is officially broke, won't help with a penny, and had his car repossessed and can't drive them anywhere anymore), but business suddenly went from zero to 100 which I was SO not expecting and SO not ready for. Mr. W is out of the country again on another amazing trip, this time with his brother, and I'm so overwhelmed that I can't see straight.

I sat down tonight in front of my tv, turned on HBO, found every single piece of laundry in the house I could find, dumped it in the middle of the living room, and sorted through it all. I threw away an entire trashbag full of holey clothes, and another trashbag of clothes is going to GoodWill. It took almost 3 hours. But now the laundry room is organized and even though I didn't actually wash anything, I don't feel as overwhelmed to start it as I did before.
I'm trying to take the "organizer's" approach to this to do list that seems to lengthen by 3 things everytime I cross of one. Focus on getting one thing done at a time (but my GOD this list is like staring up at Everest from the bottom.)

Today I took my younger two with me grocery shopping. Almost 2 hours of trying to keep my 3 year old a)in the basket, b)to keep her shoes on, c)to not scream and touch my face with cereal boxes while I'm trying to shop, while also trying to keep my 7 year old from a)lifting up the back of my dress to expose my ass (WHY she thought this was so hilarious today I have no idea!!), b)begging me for every free sample, every item in the store, c)stop whining everytime her sister looked at her funny. At the end I was checking out, one hand keeping my youngest from knocking me in the head with the box and one hand holding my other daughter away from the back of my dress. The checker looked at me and asked if I had any big plans today. Umm ya. THEIR BEDTIME. We started talking a bit while she checked me out and I told her I was a single mom. She had "mad respect" for that and told me all about how she was raised by a single father, and how much she appreciated him now. It was the first spark of hope I've had in a long time. Everyone says "someday they'll appreciate what you went through", but it never feels like that could actually happen.

In the meantime I'm just putting one foot in front of the other. I'm definetly proud of what I'm accomplishing, even if it feels like it's just one tiny thing a day, and I am SO proud of my kids.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, August 12, 2010


I'm incredibly sensitive.
I'm terrified of confrontation.
I'm "focus challenged".
I live for laughter.
I can be insecure.
I keep it real. What you see is what you get.
I don't harbor any deep dark secrets.
I don't lie to my kids. Ever.
If you mess with my kids, the mama bear will come out and it isn't pretty.
I'm not always sure I'm good at my job and that it's what I should be doing, even though it's my "dream".
I'm harder on myself than anyone else ever could be.
I am chronically running late.
I give everyone the benefit of the doubt until they prove me wrong, usually more than once.
I'm stubborn and if I feel I'm right I won't sway.
I would never betray you.
I am a good person and my heart is always in the right place.