Isolation

10 11 2009

I have been hesitant to post anymore dark dreary posts, just because I don’t know if it’s the right thing to do. I’m supposed to be salt and light. All I am is sad and lonely tonight. Which is stupid. I spent all day with a friend, and we had five dogs in the house. Yesterday I went to the movies with a great friend and talked on the phone with three people. Saturday I had wonderful quality time with my husband. I had several “friend” encounters last week too.

But I feel different from everybody else. Even my friends. I attended two (!) meetings today, Alanon and ACOA and both of them, went late, left early, said nothing. I’m supposed to be in my “safe place” there and I just shut down. I don’t really even feel like writing now, I’m just doing it because I feel I must.

Right now is a season of sacrifice for my husband and I. He is working like crazy and going to school. I leave the house when he’s gone, I get home and he’s gone. I came home at 1:30 after my workout and meeting and I saw the three dirty pans that he left on the stove, the butter and sriracha he left on the counter and I wanted to cry because I had missed him. The man refuses to use a damn microwave. I make full meals when he’s gone, and put them in pyrex dishes so he can just heat it up when he has the time. He to reheat every component in a different pan, using different utensils. Keeping up with the dishes is a full time job but I don’t care, because it’s him. I love his particularity. He once put a single serving of frozen microwave lasagna in the oven for an hour and insisted it was worth it.

I don’t really feel like being with anybody but him, he’s the only one who really knows me. I force myself anyway because I know I need to. It’s all very codependent. When he is there I feel so full and complete and loved and perfected. When he is gone, the darkness closes me in. I know that God is really trying to get me to count on him and these are just terrible little growing pains. That’s why I force myself. Because I have to give God my effort. My trying and eventually, it will be true.

You see, my husband won’t always be there for me. I know he will be there as much as he possibly can but God is showing me that though he may not be there, God will provide me with friends, and life and fulfillment all ripe for the picking if I am willing to accept it.

I realized Saturday that the single most important thing after breathing in and out is giving my minutes, my hours, my days to the Lord and committed to doing so. I got busy today and I forgot. I pulled into the driveway at 8:15pm, and tried not to get my hopes up that my husband would be home yet because I know not to expect him till 11:30. But I did anyway, then I sat in the car not wanting to go into the big empty house, and trying to figure out why I feel so desperately lonesome when I finally remembered. And I gave my God the pitiful leftovers of my day hoping he could piece something together that made sense in the short time left.

Hey Jude is playing right now on my Pandora, and it was the part where he’s screaming over and over again, better, Better, BETTER, BETTER!!!!!! It made me smile. It was like his promise to me, God’s promise to me. Things will get better, I will get better, Better, BETTER BETTER!

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Understanding God

30 10 2009

I have been trying to read scripture every day. I am inclined to want to spend a great deal of time and energy and effort and do it perfectly, going over a book, and the Bible and highlighting and taking notes, that stuff really jazzes me. When I do it, which is rarely because it takes such and involved effort to do it perfectly. That is NOT Biblical. God doesn’t care if you do it perfectly, half of it is just showing up. So to avoid my perfectionism I decided to just read proverbs daily, correlating to the day of the month.

It’s been a little scary to be honest with you.

Certain scriptures have been jumping out at me and taking hold of my heart and speaking to me that make me really uncomfortable.

Oct 28th: He who works his land will have abundant food, but the one who chases fantasies will have his fill of poverty, Proverbs 28:19

Oct 29th: A man who remains stiff-necked ater many rebukes will suddenly be destroyed without remedy. Proverbs 29:1

I am not really sure if it is God or the guilt that lives inside of me for so many wasted gifts and hours that makes these scriptures slap me in the face. It is said in the Bible that ALL scripture is God-breathed. These proverbs make me feel as though God is going to smite the crap out of me tomorrow…SMITE, SMITE, SMITE- Like so much Dragon’s breath. I can just see him with his lightning rod, tossing bolts down from heaven upon me destroying me without remedy, bringing me from my American dream into the depths of poverty.

Now, it is good to have a healthy fear of God. Blessed are those who fear the Lord. But I don’t think that the way I am interpreting these scriptures is correct. He is a God of love and he says that love is patient and kind and is not easily angered, keeps no record of wrongs, always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. THIS is GOD.

It’s hard to get sometimes.

Which brings me to my Proverb today Oct 30th:

I am the most ignorant of men. I do not have a man’s understanding. I have not learned wisdom, nor have I knowledge of the Holy One. Who has gone up to heaven and come down? Who has gathered up the wind in the hollow of his hands? Who has wrapped up the waters in his cloak? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name and the name of his son? Tell me if you know!- Proverbs 30: 2-4

You can hear the author’s desperation in his voice, the fact that he cannot understand God, that the knows that SOMEONE must be up in heaven, SOMEONE must have control over the winds and the waters and the ends of the earth. But he doesn’t know who. How frustrating. I have never really felt this way. I always knew that God was there and that he loved me, from when I was a tiny kid I believed. This is not the case for everybody. Especially analytical people who like numbers and facts and full explanations. For whom a feeling just isn’t enough.

The reason I bring this up, is this is a particularly meaningful scripture to me. It brings me to tears to remember it. In my Bible, in the corner above it in tiny lettering is the writing “K is here- 6/30/03”.  In ’03 I was talking to an old boyfriend again after being broken up for over a year and living in different cities. I was a new believer in Christ and he wasn’t. I told him I was only looking for a husband and only wanted a Christian husband, but we continued talking on the phone anyway.

When I talked to him I could feel his desperate confusion, his knowing that there was SOMETHING greater than himself out there, but not knowing what it was, or how to reach it. He could see the coincidences that were not coincidences, the miracles that were to big to ignore, yet too intangible to be sure. He would go from admitting that there was a God, to being angered at the very thought that he was considering it. He wanted names and places and proof and without a reasonable doubt. And I just couldn’t give it. And it wasn’t my job. So I wished him luck and told him not to call me anymore.

We didn’t talk that whole entire summer which was incredibly hard, because I had been so sure that I would marry him. I prayed fervently and so many other people that I don’t even talk to now did too. I quit smoking in June because he had once told me that he would never marry a smoker and I told him I would never marry an atheist. I decided to prepare for him to return to me. In August he called me up again. Triumphant, he understood he said. He got it. He had started going to a Bible study, and seeking other men and it happened. In January we were engaged, and by the following August, we were married. And he has been the most amazing blessing, and most Godly man I can imagine.

I am reminded that it is not my job to know, that I am human and He is God and he is in charge and I am not.

I don’t get alot of what I read, but if I continue to seek, God will make sure I know what I need to know, when the time is right. I don’t have to worry about being in poverty or being destroyed by God. Because he is with me, he comforts me, he loves me. But I need to heed his warnings, because at the end of it all, I don’t want to have nothing to show him for what he gave me, not because I am scared he’ll hurt me, but because I love him.





Under the Microscope

29 10 2009

I think that this is a good time to tell you why I began this blog. This is not my first blog, but it is the only one I know is going to stick. I own maybe a dozen URLs ranging from being a wife to being a realtor and in college I even made my own vanity site with pictures, etc, but none of those stuck. I’ll tell you why. None of them were true.

Sure they may have had pictures and cute quotes and told true stories, but they weren’t what I thought about on a regular basis, they weren’t who I really was, so they fell off like old skin that I just couldn’t fill up anymore. If you want to read great funny stories and fabulous household tips and see really pretty pictures- This isn’t the site for it. If you feel inadequate, uninspired,  awkward and alone, this is for you, because I am you. And if you see me get better, you will know that you can get better. This is the whole reason for it.  The reason I posted my before and after pictures is because one  lady wrote me this:  “Thanks for posting this, I was too embarrassed to post pics, but my room looks just like yours did, so if you can do it, so can I!!!!”

The reason I share all of my muck and embarrassment is for the same reason. Do I think that airing out garbage is going to make me famous? NO. I won’t be able to run for office and I won’t be able to pretend that I have everything together anymore. Truth is, I haven’t really shared it with many people I know, only people I don’t because they are kinder. Why are we kinder to strangers than we are to people we know? I think it’s a helluva lot easier to pat someone on the back and say, hey I’ve been where you are, or I AM where you are, when we don’t know them, because we don’t have to look at them everyday, and most importantly, they don’t look at us everyday. Scrutinize us and follow our every move waiting for us to fall, waiting for us to fail.

I also share because your testimony is your greatest weapon against the forces of evil. The story of how God has delivered you from the lion’s den lets others know that God is great and can deliver them too. It is hope-giving. And it holds me accountable to the changes I am making. You may not comment all the time, but when I look on my statistics and see 74 people reading, I may not know 74 people that have this address, but I feel the responsibility of keeping my promises to those 74 people. I don’t feel like keeping my promises when it’s just me because I have a bad track record with myself.

The truth: You can hide and be in denial about your life if you want to.

I don’t. I just want to get better.

I’ll leave you with one of my all-time favorite movie scenes. If you want to follow me just to pick my life apart or feel superior, than I feel sorry for YOU because the brick wall surrounding your heart is tall and that means that no one can get in.





Off the Wagon

24 10 2009

Life was going really really really well. I mean, I’ve been really happy in a great mood, grateful toward everything, even the tiniest blessings were getting acknowledged and praised. I have been having some incredibly productive days that begin with scripture and end tired and satisfied. The kind of days that I dream of having. The kind of days that make life worth living. I was a little sick last week, while it stopped me from going to a few meetings and I slept more than my schedule allowed, I was still doing well. I didn’t post on my recovery blog because it didn’t feel like I had anything to recover from. I felt wholeness.

Then Thursday morning, I slept late. Then I got a phone call from a client asking me to withdraw her offer on a house I know is perfect and one-of-a-kind for her. Then I didn’t put the trash out before the garbage truck came. Then I didn’t go to the gym, didn’t go to Alanon, and didn’t shower. Then I ate chips in bed and watched youtube videos. Then my husband came home at 1pm from school after not having slept at all the night before from working on homework and I had the nerve to complain to him about how “dissatisfied” I was. Then I pestered him about whether or not he “loved me” or was “mad at me”. Mostly because I felt like an unloveable lump of crap that I was really really mad at myself.

Then he got this really really sad, frustrated look on his face and said, “You fell off the wagon, huh?”

Nothing mean, or condescending. He walked in the bedroom and began picking clothes up off the bedroom floor to put in the washer. I turned away from him in bed, ashamed. He went downstairs to make himself lunch. I layed in bed. Ashamed and angry, desperately willing myself to change, but not having the strength to even move. I tried to sleep some more but only succeeded in wanting to die.

Then I thought about my husband. How he didn’t get any sleep the night before and had still gone to school.

How he was going to work right after lunch, because he had to pay the bills to keep my depressed and lazy ass in chips to eat in bed, electricity and internet so I can while away the precious days that God has given me in comfort. I was disgusted with myself. What nerve did I have to tell him what a shitty day I was having, when the only thing that was shitty that I had no control over was the client. The rest was all on me, baby.

I would love to tell you that I immediately got up and didn’t waste the rest of the day. That I showered and got dressed and ate well and went to the gym, the office, read my scriptures, cleaned my house. Anything that was productive. That I was so inspired by the thought of my husband working so hard for us, that I just had to get up and get going. That I vowed that minute to do everything in my power to change and never look back.

It’s not true though. I did take a shower, and got dressed in some comfy sweats and went downstairs and kissed my husband and told him that I would get right back on the wagon. That he didn’t have to worry anymore, that things were getting better. That things were GOING to get better. He looked at me with compassion, and said, “I hope so.” Then went back to his sandwich.

Then he went upstairs to take a nap, and I went with him. I slept the rest of the afternoon and into the night. He went to work. He asked me if I would wash some socks. I didn’t even get up to do that. He came home at one AM, exhausted and crawled into bed with me again. He cradled me in his big arms and I wailed, “you shouldn’t hug me. I didn’t wash the socks. ” He said he had been getting them off of the floor and he’d just do that again. I sniffled, “you can have mine tomorrow, they didn’t even touch the ground today.”

“Ok,” he said, holding me tightly.

Sometimes I want him to hit me and scream. It would feel more appropriate. Sometimes I want him to threaten me with leaving and falling out of love, anything to shake me up. But he doesn’t. He holds me and I’m secure and I have no reason for acting the way I do. I was doing so well. What happened?





Highschool Reunion

25 09 2009

On Tuesday, I went to a weight watchers meeting. You remember, I’m a meeting junkie now (almost typed meeting chunkie, hahahaha) anyway. The leader asked, “Anybody in here who is here because they are getting ready for an event?” There was one lady who was going on a cruise, another who was going to a wedding, then I piped up with, “I joined because I wanted to go to my reunion, but decided not to go because I got fat.” Immediately like four people voiced their opinions, “GO!” “Just do it!” “NO one cares” “They all got fat too!” “It’s not high school anymore!” My favorite, “If you go they’ll think you’re filthy rich.” Excuse me?? “Yeah, because those are the only people who go to those things, the ones who are filthy rich and want to brag, or the ones who are still skinny!” Hahaha.

Seriously, it got a big reaction. It made me start thinking too. I am so damn tired of having to be perfect. Because I am the worst perfect person I have ever met. I mean there is nothing that I have not failed miserably at, yet I always want to be perfect. Notice I didn’t say “strive” for perfection, it’s not a trying thing, just an idle want, and then hide myself when I’m not perfect. Anybody wonder why I’m in hiding so much? Why I barely leave the house some weeks. Why I am constantly lying when it’s not really a big deal. Exactly. I was taught that if you are not perfect, you are NOBODY. So I couldn’t let everybody think I was NOBODY. I have to be SOMEBODY. So, I am going to be perfect or be alone. That’s it.

So I’m alone a lot.

But I did decide after everyone’s prodding and encouraging that I will go to my high school reunion. I will go and drink punch and dance to stupid 90s songs and try and make up some excuse for never finishing college when I was all Gifted and Talented and Advanced Placement in high school. I will try to be gracious and listen to people talk, instead of wondering if I look skinny. And I will not worry about what those people are saying about me behind my back, because chances are I am saying worse things about myself to my face. Those are my promises.
Just so you know, I have only been to two Al-Anon and one ACOA meeting this week, I have been doing kind of crappy on the program, AKA not doing the program. I need to get with it, this is basically life or death here folks. Maybe I’ll look back on this 10yr reunion as  a turning point in my life, and my 20th I’ll be happy, recovered, have well-adjusted kids and a good career and no apologies. That’s what I’m holding out for. Oh yeah, and if WW works, I’ll be skinny too! Basically PERFECT. ACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Old habits die hard, what can I say.

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Newsflash: My husband is IMPERFECT

23 09 2009

So far this week I have gone to an ACOA meeting Monday 7:30, and Alanon Meetings Monday and Tuesday 11:00 am and Weight Watchers Tuesday 9:30 am. I know it’s alot of meetings, I feel like a damn meeting junkie. But I really think this is what I’m supposed to do, so I will perservere. I can tell you though, the more meetings I attend the more I am beginning to think that my husband is a workaholic.

Don’t think I’m just saying this because I’m going to all these meetings and want my own -aholic to love. It all kind of came to a head last night when I was reading the Hurting Person’s Handbook that I talked to you earlier about, and read this passage to him, “In assessing the presence of addictions and codependencies, we frequently ask the following simple diagnositc question: Is the dog wagging the tail or is the tail wagging the dog? For example, the conscientious workaholic may have strong values concerning the primacy of home and family life. However as the workaholism progresses, the workaholic does violence to those values by diverting increasing amounts of time and energy into work pursuits.” (Pg 217)

Whoa. That is totally terrifying and yet at the same time comforting. I have thought our whole married life, what on earth does this man see in me, he’s so PERFECT. He’s a hard worker, he’s sweet, he’s not lazy, he’s a good provider, he’s kind and moral, loves family and home… etc. I on the other hand am a total mess. I always wondered how someone so PERFECT could fall for me when it feels like I have so little to offer him. I know that he’s always had a low sense of self worth, but I just blew that off as being hurt in past relationships, not childhood, because his mother is so warm and loving towards him. As I go through these meetings, and this literature it is becoming clear that my husband is just the other half of my sick coin.

Where I get my self-worth from him loving me, he gets his self-worth from how hard he is working at his job and school. He always feels guilty when he’s not at work or school, and even when we’re spending time together “relaxing” he’ll be thinking of some complicated engineering problem in his head for some class. His down time is froth with frustration and anxiety that he’s not being productive and his heart is always in turmoil that he should be doing more. I always thought I just didn’t understand his drive because I was lazy, not recognizing it for the sick behavior it actually is. Our only fights come from me complaining that he’s not spending enough time with me, and he always telling me, “it’s only till _______ is over, only till__________ happens, then I’ll stop.”  This has been going on for five years. It is very easy for me to see now, but so many people admire his drive and achievements it’s not difficult to see why I would have mistaken this for a good thing.
Don’t get me wrong, I am so thankful that my husband is a good provider and a good honest hardworking man. It’s great on paper, but the fact is it is so hard for us to have a life that is worth living. We have a home that he has no time to take care of, dogs that he doesn’t get to see, and a wife that is unhappy because he is gone so much. He always says that this is for us, for our future, so I can stay home with the babies, so he can make more money. I do believe that to a certain degree it will benefit us in the future and that his working and going to school is necessary. Having said that, it has done damage to our family life to the point where sometimes I wonder what is the point of our life together if we can’t really have one.

Anyway, back to the passage I quoted earlier, when I read that to my husband he got really uncomfortable and quiet. Then he asked me not to read anymore. He says it really does sound a lot like him, what he’s going through, but he doesn’t really see any way of changing it right now and he had to go do homework. I don’t know what recovery would look like for him, since he really does have a lot on his plate. It’s not like alcohol, where he can just go cold turkey. What is he going to do? Quit his job? Quit school? I don’t know. But It feels good to know that I wasn’t crazy and selfish, but really hurting and that this addiction of his is NOT ok. It feels like me feelings were validated, and that is very powerful to me, because my whole childhood was being told that this______ behavior is normal and this is just how families behave. When you truly believe that, how are you ever going to get better? That my friends is called D-E-N-I-A-L.