Just under two years since I last wrote here. Wow. I’m wanting to commit to write more though. With that said, I’ve come to realize and accept that I do that alot. I start a diary, a blog, a website, a journal…..and I keep it up for a few days, maybe even a few months, and then I stop. It’s like ‘all or nothing’, then, I feel guilty about stopping, and worse yet, when I want to start again, I have the need to start something new instead of picking up where I left off.
I swear I had the compulsion to create yet another blog! Like that would somehow wash away all the past ones, and give me a fresh start. I’ve always been this way. I have so many diaries that have only 1/2 or 1/3 or 3/4 of their pages filled out. I stop, and instead of re-starting….I start all anew. The not so figurative ‘turning a new leaf’. No more. I’m doing things differently now. I’ll march forward with this blog and keep putting my thoughts and feelings out there; for all to see….or for no one to see. ;)
I don’t think I can do a whole catch-up of what’s happened in the past few years. A lot, and nothing. Same job, similar challenges…but…lots of good stuff. Among it; a relationship with my youngest child and having my oldest child get married to a spectacular young woman, and provide me the news that I’ll be a grandmother before the end of the year. Woot! I get to be a young grandmother. That’s pretty cool.
So, over the past few weeks, I’ve gone from listening to the news in when I drive, to listening to books on tape. Some have been a bust, but others have been such a pleasure to listen to. The first one that caused me to think, and make some small adjustments in my life was Cesar Millan’s Short Guide to a Happy Dog: 98 Essential Tips and Techniques. It was eye-opening, not just for dealings with my dog, but for myself too. I don’t agree with everything Cesar says, but I am smart enough to realize that the guy knows what he’s talking about. I also realize that much of what he teaches can be applied to humans, as well as dogs. The main lesson in this book, is that the key to happiness for a dog is following a three part instruction; Exercise, Disciple & Affection. That’s it. Exercise your dog (or yourself), maintain discipline with your dog (or yourself) and give your (and yourself) affection. Easy peasy. EDA. It make sense. How much better does one feel during or after exercising? All those endorphins floating around, making you high. How about when you’re disciplined about your life, or schedule? Not in a rigid, militaristic way (although that may work for some) but in a way that causes you to be good to yourself. Not eating junk all the time. Getting a good night’s sleep. Drinking water. Lastly, affection. Loving yourself, being kind to yourself. EDA. I keep that in mind now as I go through my days, and I certainly keep it in mind when it comes to Gabby.
The second book I listened to was Tiny Buddha, Simple Wisdom for Life’s Hard Questions by Lori Deschene. This book, blew me away. I’ve been known *cough* *cough* to read one or two ‘self-help’ books. I’ve searched long and hard for that epic book that would answer all my questions and cure me of all my angst. All the ones I read so far, had left me wanting. Without real answers. Lori answered my questions. In a nutshell – “Seriously, only *I* have the power to change my life”. That simple. She also made me realize a bunch of other things. The biggie – which brought on the waterworks the second the realization hit my brain was this:
I felt unable to let my kids fully see that I am happy, because I felt guilty about feeling happy when they are not (in my perception). I am always projecting unhappiness onto them that they may not be feeling; probably out of the guilt that I feel over the part that I played in having their teenage years and young adulthood not be the ideal/best one possible. I’m always thinking that they don’t always voluntarily call me, or stay in touch with me because they hate me, or at least, don’t care about me. I have to come to terms that THIS MAY BE TRUE. Yes, it may be true that my kids don’t love me the same way I love them. They may never love me the same way I love them. They may never know the truths of my life as it relates to theirs.
AND THAT’S OK
That was the realization that Lori showed me. It’s ok for my kids to not love me like I love them. It hurts, and that’s ok too, but their feelings for me should not dictate how I feel for them, or cast a shadow on my love for them. Their feelings for me, should not cause me to feel guilt. I was a far from perfect wife, but I always did what I thought best for my children.
Coming to that realization stunned me. Then, it liberated me. I will no longer hesitate to call either one of the boys out of fear that they won’t answer the phone. Or won’t return my call. I’ll call them when I want, and I’ll tell them I love them and they can do with that what they wish. They’re grown men now. I can’t dictate their feelings.
So, there we go.