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In General, Lifestyle, Love, Relationships on
March 23, 2017

You Got What You Thought You Deserved

I couldn’t believe it!  Sounding like the broken record, “Here I was again on my own!”  Heard it all before, done it all before, seen it all before, and I was sick of it.  There was not a thing one of my friends could tell me that would ease the blatant truth that slapped the cold hard taste out of my mouth.  I don’t apologize to myself unless it’s necessary, but I owed this apology.  I failed me.  I let me down and I couldn’t point the blame at anyone but myself.

It took some days to let the sting wear off but it did.  Oh boy, and when it did, I had a trail of facts that I had tucked away ever so nicely in my pocket of “but we talked about that”.  Communication is about clarification and when we fail to clarify, we fail to communicate.

I noticed a shift after a few months.  Conversations got more and more difficult and borderline non-existent.  I would either be given the silent treatment or I would be fussed at for not understanding. Which infuriated me, because I’m a lot of things, but I’m not stupid.  I just wanted to have an honest conversation.  What I learned is that this it is very difficult to achieve with a person who avoids conflict and is hypersensitive to words.  So I left it alone and watched as the ship of intimacy sailed far away from our grasp.  The other reality that I had to face was that he wanted it that way.

When the winds of change hit us and force us to reflect on the direction from which it came, it’s tough.  And it’s tough because the answer was always before us.  Love is blind and love is sight at the same time. It blinds us to what we should see, and reveals that which we try to cover.  There was so much that my magnifying glass of hindsight revealed that it arrested my thoughts.  It wasn’t until I had a discussion with my oldest daughter that I had to face the truth of what I allowed.

Kids are amazingly perceptive and wise.  We do not give them enough credit.  She says to me, “Mom, you can do better than you think you can.  I know everything with dad hurt your self esteem but it shouldn’t. You’re a heck of a catch and men should have to work to catch you.  You’re too nice.  If  he doesn’t want to work for you, then he doesn’t deserve you in the first place.  Don’t choose trifling men who should be happy to have you on their arm.  You can do better.”  I just sat there, dumbfounded by her profound insightful dialogue.  She was right.

I had to acknowledge that although I had forgiven my ex, my self esteem was still being healed.  So I dated at the level of my self esteem.  I’ve always dealt with people judging me based off my looks, so again, I dialed down who I was so people didn’t see me as stuck up or unapproachable.  I especially did this with men.  Many of us do this as a method of self preservation.  But it’s not healthy.  If at any point you have to sacrifice who you are to accommodate someone else’s insecurities, then they immediately make themselves unqualified to intimately be in your presence.

We can’t always say that someone changed.  People for the most part remain the same while certain parts of them evolve.  We have to be willing to look at people for who they are and not who we hope they can be.  So I sat with who I was and who I had become while trying to save an evaporated relationship.   I had to make a decision to resurrect the woman of strength that had been through far worse things than this.

I made a promise to myself that I will always honor because who likes to take a test twice.  It’s not that they just turned out to be no good, they weren’t good from the start.  We didn’t think we were good enough to deserve better, so we got what we thought we deserved and we deserve better than that!

In General, Love, Relationships on
March 23, 2017

Dating Doesn’t Suck, People Do!

I know, my title seems senile, but I promise you it’s not, LOL!  I’m just honest.  We hear so much about dating and relationships these days that it seems like the only cure to the madness is remaining single. Then again, who likes quiet walks in the park or dinner out, ALONE??  Yeah, we all like our solitude, but the hope is to find someone that can interrupt it from time to time.  So we date.

I don’t think I realized how jacked up dating really was until after I divorced.  It was crystal clear that the tides had turned and I had no life jacket and I sure as heck didn’t know how to surf or swim.  It was scary.  Every time I thought I had the courage to get back out there, I panicked and renigged.

Don’t even get me started on online dating.  Dear lord, the tangled web of deception that whole world weaves would leave anyone considering going into priesthood.  As I got my feet wet, I honestly met a ton of interesting people.  I enjoyed it.  I mean, I enjoyed dating.  What I didn’t enjoy was the people.

I think we all can consider an experience enjoyable if the conversation is interesting and engaging, even if there is no romantic outcome.  The problem comes in when grown men and women turn dating into a charade of sports that they’ve created to feed their ego of insecurity at the expense of innocent people who just wanted to have a good time.  Then it dawned on me.   People date for one of two reasons: To truly find love or because they truly love to find.  Let me explain.

Romantic love is such a captivating experience that for those who are void of it, finding it seems like chasing the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  Many of us can imagine the nights at home on the couch snuggled up with a significant other watching a movie or just feeling the rhythm of their heartbeat when you embrace.  The thought is so hypnotic that people become addicted to finding love with no intention of accepting the responsibility that love brings.  They just like the high.  But for those looking to truly find love, the high isn’t good enough.  You want the real thing badder than you want Dasani on a hot sunny day.   Dating has no restrictions or boundaries.  It has no vetting process, so you mix these two groups of people up and it leads me back to my title.

Dating is about finding love.  Discovering what you don’t want so you recognize what you do.  The tough thing is that no one comes with a sign over their head that helps you determine which dating group they subscribe to.  So what can you do about it?  NOTHING!  Just be brave enough to keep trying.  Don’t let people with the wrong motives discourage you.  Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is love!

In Lifestyle, Relationships on
May 24, 2015

My Heart Finally Grew Up

If I had a dollar for every time I heard how different I looked in the last six months, I’d be on my way to being a solid millionairefollow. I usually reply with thanks or I’m just happy. While it’s much deeper than that, I go with it for the sake of time. I had a friend text me, who’s not even on social media, after she was shown a recent picture of me. She said I looked radiant. I honestly can’t take any credit, I refuse to. If I had enough time to tell you in words how much junk has been cleared from depths of my soul, then maybe you would understand my reluctance. We go through life as human trash cans, absolutely accepting every bit of the filth and garbage that life’s circumstances or negativity can throw our way. We then spend our lives trying to maneuver our way out the bottom of the barrel or remove the stench from its damage. Our hearts are absolutely clouded with residue and incapable of embracing the joys of life because in a lot of ways we’ve gotten comfortable living in garbage. I share my experience because my life has been an example of all that grace isn’t and is. I’m not perfect by any means these days, but I live free, open to life’s ups and downs, and with confidence in who I’m called to be. I’m fresh out of apologizing for it. As long as our hearts remain a landfill, we remain void of any potential for good to come our way. I spent many years struggling to shake the immaturity that came with a garbage heart. The simplest way I can put what has happened to me in the last year, is that my heart finally grew up!

In Lifestyle, Relationships on
May 14, 2015

Choosing God’s Way

I have encountered a number of people over the last few days that have put me in an awkward position.  Not intentionally.  I knew it would get to this point but I wanted to be sensitive to God’s timing.  I felt prompted to write about it tonight after something extraordinary happened this morning.  I’ve met a lot of people recently, who have struggled with unforgiveness, bitterness, resentment, and just stinking attitudes about life.  I don’t believe one man’s struggle is greater than another.  A struggle is a struggle.  In my own journey to overcome these little heart leeches, I have learned that no matter how much we beg God to change someone or a situation, he will always start with changing us.

I’ve shared a little about my marriage difficulty, and with that being said, as a result have been walking down the path to dissolve my marriage for the last 8 months.  I know this is a shock to many of you, and I would like to thank all that have kept this walk in confidence and allowed my family to heal in peace and without gossip.  The fact that many of you are just finding out is a testament to the caliber of people we have surrounded ourselves with.  Anyhow, I had to make a decision 8 months ago on how I was going to proceed.  Not legally, but in my heart.  Would I allow the bitterness that God had healed me from to creep back in and put on my boxing gloves?  Or was I going to make the hard decision to pick up my cross and truly follow Christ.  So I decided to take a gamble against human nature, and pick up my cross.

This meant giving up certain friends, refusing to speak negatively, eliminating the need to force our family or friends to choose sides, refusing to use my kids as pawns to get even, and even swallowing my pride to ride to church with him every single Sunday for the last 8 months because my kids wanted him there and realizing that he didn’t need my anger, finger pointing, or disappointment, he needed Christ.  Taking solace in the fact that while he may not have gotten things right in time to save our marriage, there was still enough time for him to get it right with Christ.  Not because I want him to, but because our kids need him to.

I wrote his family a letter 8 months ago, absolving them of the need to get in the middle or feeling like it was my side or his side.  I assured them that I would do everything in my power to make sure the kids were still a part of their lives and encouraged them to pick their son’s side, not because they agreed with his actions, but because he needed their love and support if he was ever going to be healed.  I say all that to say, my letter wasn’t received very well.  It wasn’t personal, they were hurt like I was.  We parted ways and there has been little communication, until today.

I won’t get into all the details but when we do things God’s way, no matter how difficult, he always gives us his best.  We spend a lot of time fighting for what we think is right instead of fighting to get our hearts right.  We can’t ever expect God to move on our behalf when we haven’t checked our motives.  The old saying that God doesn’t bless no mess isn’t necessarily true, he can bless a mess, he just won’t bless a messy heart.  Anyhow, after walking this road drama free, not because I couldn’t, but because I chose to follow Christ, my mother in law reached out to me this morning and it was a really good conversation.  She asked if we could keep in touch, and my reply was, sure.  God’s grace is amazing!  This really could have been ugly, but when you choose the path of the cross, even in the ugly, beauty always, significantly abounds.