Sunday, August 7, 2016

While you drive

It is in the strangest moments at the strangest times that life gives me the greatest understanding.

Life is about the journey, and people can say it and you can hear it but it often doesn't mean anything until you feel it.  That's me.  I learn lessons the hard way.  Always have, always will.

People fascinate me.  I'm a big people watcher.  I think it's because I identify with a lot of different things in people.  There's good, there's evil, addiction, depression, and pain.  But there is also love and kindness, compassion, hope, and understanding.

I struggle a lot with myself.  I find great solace in being alone...listening to my music, doing my errands, driving the way I want, watching my TV shows, having things my way.  But I crave other people.  I love to learn from other people, understand other people, help other people.  I love to make other people happy, I love to be there for them.  I sometimes want to lock myself in a room and talk to no one and yet there are some days I would like nothing more than to be in the middle of a crowd.

I sometimes struggle to find balance.  I find something that works and I go all in, but often too much of a good thing has an adverse effect.  That philosophy applies to, alcohol, relationships, exercise, work.  I have good instincts but I am also impulsive.  I have hurt people's feelings this way, I have been hurt and I have probably missed out on opportunities.

Hindsight is always 2020 and probably not so ironically, my apartment number.  God works in mysterious ways right?

I did not want to move in here...but I knew I had to, so I trusted in the opportunity that presented itself when I needed a sign, and in the last 14 months I have realized just how much I needed this place.  Living alone has certainly been hard but it has given me a renewed faith in myself, and that was something I had no idea I needed.

I still always hope to find a companion on my journey through life.  Someone that wants to be by my side through it all.  I'm still searching for my 'Happy Ever After'...but for the time being I'll have to settle for moments of extreme clarity.  Moments that remind me that life is a journey and you can't forget to take in both the sunrises and sunsets while you drive.

"May every Sunrise hold more Promise and every Sunset hold more Peace"

<3 E

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Despite it all

Despite it all...
I still wish you could be next to me during my loneliest moments,
You will forever be the scar that I wear upon my heart.

My life is better without you,
I am better without you.
But there's still a piece of my heart that won't let you go.

Despite it all...
I wish you were my big spoon when all I want is to be held,
You will forever be the scar that I wear upon my heart.

I refuse to forget you and pretend you don't exist,
I just wish my heart could get over,
Both the pain and the pleasure it once felt.

Despite it all.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Learning to Dance in the Rain

The thing about grief, depression, and loss is that they are different for everyone. No two people deal with them the same and yet we will all experience them at some point in our lives.

In my opinion those 3 things are some of the hardest emotionally to deal with. And not only are they hard on the person going through them but they are hard on the people around that person. 

I don't claim to be an expert on the subject, in fact I've been dealing with a bout of all 3 for the last 6 months.

In the midst of some emotional relationship turmoil I lost my Grandma, the only one I've ever known. And it took me about a week to process and grieve her death, if not more. And I still don't claim to have totally accepted it, if I'm being honest. The last month since has been one of the hardest in a really long time. Not necessarily because of her death, she was after all 91, but I think with loss comes reflection and an evaluation of your life. And that is where I'm struggling. 

For 2 years I have been in a slightly on again, off again relationship. We haven't seen or talked to each other in a month now, but I'm not convinced this is the end. And if I'm being honest, I'm not sure I want it to be the end. I should, but I don't. 

We lived together for a year when I moved out. It was the right thing. Our relationship had become volatile. He struggles with what I call "growing up" but others would call commitment and letting go of his single life, among other things.

After I moved out it was even more of a roller coaster. And above everything else it was really emotionally draining for me. I still love him, despite having my heart crushed a few times. I still think that under all the superficial crap he hides behind that he is the one. But I can't make him change. I can't make him step up. I have had to stand my ground and let my head prevail when my heart doesn't want to let go. 2 days before my Grandma died I had to tell him not to call me anymore.

I live 2,000 miles away from most of my family and when I got the phone call from my Dad that my Grandma had passed, peacefully in her sleep, I couldn't call the one person I wanted to. There was no one there to hug, no one to be my rock.  Instead I went about my day and worked two jobs. I worked every day until the day I left for Illinois and two days later I was back and went to work straight off the plane. I was there for my family, my sister, my Dad and that was important to them and to me. But it was hard, hard to be there for others without someone being there for me.

My ex was never very good at being there for me though. I am really good at being there for others, but like most doctors, I make a horrible patient. 

I mentioned earlier that with loss comes reflection and I've had a lot of that over the last month. I have remembered the good and bad of my Grandma. And I've remembered the good and bad of my relationship.

I have had an onset of never ending emotion. I've gone from sad to mad to happy all in the matter of hours sometimes. I can't seem to stop the waves of emotion from coming.

For those of you that have noticed I haven't been myself lately, I haven't. And now maybe you know why. I am pretty good at keeping myself together. I have years of practice keeping my emotions in check, not always to my benefit. But the last month, really the last 6, have been really challenging. They have stirred up more emotion than I know how to process. They have made me question where I am in my life, how I got here, and whether I'm where I'm supposed to be.

Somewhere inside me I know that God doesn't give you more than you can handle.

Somewhere inside me I know that I am strong and will always find my way. 

Somewhere inside me I know that there is always a greater plan afoot.

But sometimes fear and doubt take over and get the best of me. 

Since I like to end with a quote this one is about as appropriate as it gets...

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it's Learning to Dance in the Rain."

Friday, March 20, 2015

Chevron Wall Art

I decided in a late New Years resolution to do more creative projects, so I started with a painting for our guest room. And I decided I would blog it and share it. I don't have pictures of all of my steps, so I'll write them out instead. 

1. I painted the entire canvas with: Artist's Loft - Metallic White, 2 coats

2. I used Frog Tape Delicate and made Chevron stripes. I didn't measure...I just eyeballed it. 

3. I painted all but one stripe with: Artist's Loft - Grey, 2 coats. I painted one stripe with a mix of Artist's Loft - Phthalo Green and Metallic White, 2 coats. 

This is the result of the first 3 steps

4. I used Frog Tape and taped the top of the painting so that I could paint the edges with: Artist's Loft -  Metallic Black, 2 coats. 

5. I sealed the painting with: Liquitex Satin Varnish, 2 coats. 

The end result...

There are some tape runs, and it's not perfect, but I have to remind myself that nothing is perfect and I made it and enjoyed using my creativity again. Can't wait for the walls to be painted in our guest room and to hang the painting in the spot I envisioned it for. I'll post a final picture when it gets there. Until then...enjoy! And don't be afraid to use your own creativity. 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

This is my life now

I got a late night (for me these days) craving for grilled cheese tonight. So I decided to indulge myself. As I sat on the counter eating it, straight ahead was the Charicature that I had done of Nate and I for Valentine's Day last year. I couldn't help but think "those people were happy." It made me cry because as I sat there I thought about the fact that I have no idea where he is or when he'll be back. This is my life now. 

Almost 14 months into our relationship and I barely recognize the person I'm no longer sharing a bed with. The person who stared at me from day one at the club. The one who every time he caught my eye would wink and smile awkwardly. The guy who used to be obsessed with me, made me the happiest girl on Earth. That same guy breaks my heart more and more every day, with every drink, with every minute he avoids facing the truth, dealing with life, dealing with me. He's an addict and I have become his punching bag, the enemy. I want him to be a better person and in his eyes I'm the problem. This is my life now. 

I struggle to figure out when it all started falling apart, where did we go wrong? When did the disease get the best of him and is there anything I could've done to prevent it? I struggle with how I ended up here. What did I do to deserve this treatment, this drama, this pain? And, worst of all, how do I get out?

I've started worrying every minute, of every day when his bottom will come and if he'll survive it. It's inevitable and the only way he'll learn, but what happens next? How do I watch the man I love fall down a rabbit hole that he may not get out of? It's so painful to watch. It eats me alive every day. I know that I should leave our house, move on, let myself heal. But I don't know how to leave someone that clearly needs help, even if he can't see it. 

This is my life now and I'm unsure of exactly how I got here. And where I'm going next. 

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Where I come from

I think that going home for Christmas this year was more beneficial than I could have predicted. I haven't been to the house I grew up in for a year and a half. A lot has happened in my life since then. One relationship ended, and another began, that one potentially over too. I sometimes get so caught up in my current life that I forget to remember just how far I've come in the almost 12 years since I left home. I let people allow me to feel that my personal accomplishments aren't important. They are important, no matter how small in comparison they are important and big for me.

I grew up in a house where I shared a room my entire life. I grew up in a house that had one working bathroom as far back as I can remember. I grew up in a house with no shower. 5 of us, in one bathroom and no about a lack of privacy. I'm very humble because I am truly blessed to be where I am today. I've lived in nice places and I'm probably a little spoiled because of it. But I've earned it. I've paid rent and contributed to every house I've ever lived in. I don't currently pay rent, but my contributions are plentiful. I've earned being spoiled. 

The last 12 years haven't been easy. I've struggled a lot. I've borrowed money, lots of it, but I'm making amends. I am currently working on paying back all the people, including the government, for all the money I've borrowed. And that makes me feel good. It's an accomplishment. Albeit small in comparison its a big step for me. I'm taking responsibility for the help I needed during the irresponsible stage in my life.

I'm glad I went home for Christmas. I'm glad I got to spend time with my siblings and my Dads family. I was reminded by my Dads family that we are a family of strong women. And while I've never been overly close to that family it was a worthy reminder. I sometimes question my place in life. I am in a relationship with someone who doesn't always understand my strength. But hearing my uncles, who married into the family, acknowledge the Grady women's strength made me feel good. I can be in a relationship where my strength is not liability its an asset. I come from a long line of strong women, my mom especially, and there's nothing wrong with that. It's a strength and an asset in a relationship and needs to be treated as such. 

I do wish my boyfriend had made the trip with me. I think there is a part of someone that you cannot truly understand until you know where they come from. I think there is a part of me that he will never understand until he makes a trip to the Midwest, sees Poplar Grove, stays at my Moms house, sleeps in the room I grew up in. The life I grew up in is not the life I have now, and no matter how much I explain...seeing is believing.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

You're Beautiful

"You're beautiful."  That's what everyone keeps telling me in an attempt to make me feel better.  "Don't worry, you're beautiful." As if that somehow makes me feel better.  As if my beauty is what is in question in my failing/failed (not sure if it's past or present at this point) relationship.

Beauty is a wonderful thing.  You can have inner beauty, you can have outer beauty.  But if that's all that matters in a, my friend, are screwed.  My other favorite "cheer up" line is: "you can have any guy you want."  Which is pretty untrue at this point considering the one that I want, doesn't want me.  Well, to be fair to him, I'm not sure it's that he doesn't want me.  But he's not willing to risk it all to keep me.

Everyone always says "you can't change a man" and "guys don't change" and while on the surface that may be true.  A guy that is uninterested in girly movies is unlikely to ever one day secretly enjoy them.  A guy who is competitive at everything he does is unlikely to some day just not care.  But to me, it doesn't matter who you are, guy or girl.  Change is part of life.  You change.  You change.  You see the world and experience change.  If we didn't change and grow as human beings we wouldn't make it in life.

You cannot force anyone to change, I am aware of that.  But by saying "guys don't change" we have built a society that allows guys to think that they don't have to change and grow.  They don't have to mature.  They think they will be catered to their entire lives and eventually find someone to fill in where their mother left off.

I read part of an article recently, yes just part...I got bored.  But it was talking about how we have raised females to be stronger in recent years, and in the process have left men in the dust, forgotten.  While I do understand what they were getting at.  I think that we've just allowed men to go on being lazy, and as women we got tired of waiting on them to grow up.  So we stepped up and started accomplishing things ourselves.  And as it turns out, we are pretty good at all the same things men are good at.  And instead of trying harder, men gave up.  I was raised to try harder, if I wanted better grades...I had to work for it.  If I wanted spending money...I had to earn it.  If I wanted anything, I had to earn it or work for it or both.

The way I was raised seems to contradict what I want out of life, but not the way I see it.  I was raised to stand on my own two feet, to be independent.  I wasn't always as strong as I am, but I've gotten knocked down a few times and I've always figured it out.  I strive to be independent and my own person.  But there is no denying that I want to be a wife and a mother.  I work, I pay my bills.  But at the end of every day if I can be home in time to make dinner for my boyfriend/husband/kids.  Then that's what I want.  I love to cook.  I love to prepare healthy meals for my loved ones.  I want to be able to be with my kids and watch them grow up.  Will I always want to earn my own money, absolutely.  But do I want to be a housewife who sits around wasting my husbands money because I have nothing better to do, absolutely not.  I'm not sure when the term "housewife" got so negative, but that's not the point of view I have on it.  I know plenty of women who stay at home with the kids and still find ways to financially contribute to their family.  And honestly, it's up to each couple to figure out what they're comfortable with.

But I see no reason why I can't "have my cake, and eat it too."  Why can't I be treated like an equal in a relationship and be able to cook, clean and stay home with the kids?  And why am I being punished for knowing what I want out of life.  I have wanted kids since I was 2 years old.  I've said that a million times, to a million different people.  And yet, wanting kids, and being honest about it is where I lose people.

I give my all in relationships.  I'm honest and trustworthy and I literally give everything I have to them.  And it never seems like enough.  I'm not sure what happens, but somewhere along the line my faith in the relationship seems to scare them away.  Like they can't live up to the expectations that we discussed.  Nate and I talked about marriage and kids from the very beginning.  I was upfront and honest like I always am.  And we talked to it.  Clearly it was too soon then, but we talked about it.  It was always in the plans.  And then a week ago he told me that he's not sure he's meant to have kids, and if he wants them it might be 5 years from now.  And I'm just suppose to wait?  Wait to see if he ever figures it out.  Wait until he's done being selfish.  I've given everything I have to him and our relationship...and now I have to wait to see if he will one day give me what I want out of life.  It's just seems so unfair right now.  I'm left to find a place to live, to pack up all my stuff from his house.  The house I made a home for us.  The one we've shared for 6+ months now because he can't be unselfish right now.  He can't give everything for me and our relationship.  But I'm I'll be ok.

I will be ok, but not because I'm beautiful.  I'll be ok because I'm strong, and determined.  And loved.  I have amazing friends and family who will be there for me.  And I will once again, pick myself up, start over, and move on.  Because it's what I do...