Saturday, January 2, 2010
Yes, losing your heart’s desire is tragic. But gaining your heart’s desire...it’s all you can hope for. This past year, I wished for just that. To immerse myself in someone else and to wake a heart long afraid to feel. My wish was granted. And if having that is tragic…then give me tragedy. Because, I wouldn’t give it back for the world.
I have a dear friend (Yes you - Porchman) who left a comment on one of my blogs that said "Now I can better put my finger on why I luz you so much, Truds...Underneath that good-looking shell is a philosopher." And thanks to him I realized that I haven't been keeping track of myself the way I used to. A few know just how very important the upcoming year is to me with regard to goals - and just how important staying on track is. I find it cliche to make a New Years resolution - I'm more about making a promise to myself.
I've let my original plans slip - with regard to the whole reason I started this blog - my 40oz of Freedom blog. And in almost 6 months I've barely did a single thing on that list. You see like most human beings I have issues. I have issues leaving something unfinished. I have issues not doing what I said I was going to do. I have issues with feeling like a failure. But at the same time I have issues with waiting until the last minute to do things too. And all of these issues have been magnified in doing this list.
In the end though, I reviewed the list and everything I have on there I still want to do, so I am leaving it the same.
If I don't cross some of them off by my 40th birthday, oh well. It's not the end of the world. But I am still going to try my best to get them done! And I may even add a few.
Right now my focus is on #1- Get in the Best Shape of my Life. I don't necessarily want to lose any weight as I am currently 134lbs of ordinary. And yes ladies - I just said my actual weight. What I'm more concerned with is being a healthy 134lbs of ordinary. Weight doesn't dictate everything, but it is an indicator. It's an indicator of how I am living my life and the things I am able to do- like run, hike, lift, jump, and throw.
I recently received an email in reference to my blog that criticized the fact that I had once claimed to love to write, and had began this blog, only to let it fall by the wayside. The first reaction I had was to defend myself. Even though I knew what this person was saying is true, I wanted to explain why I had fallen short of their expectations and give a long list of excuses to justify myself.
The good thing is that we are all in this together. Everyone has something they struggle with. No one is perfect and if you think you are, then you are in denial. You may not have the same struggles I do, but everyone falls short in some way. Realizing that is what helps keep me humble and understanding of others. All I ask for is the same forgiveness and understanding from others.
But I have to remind myself understanding and forgiveness is not acceptance. I can’t just realize my faults and then keep on doing them and never change. Albert Einstein said insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. It would be like a murderer who confesses, asks for forgiveness, but then goes out and does it again. It’s an extreme example, but it’s basically the same thing. I can't just accept my shortcomings and expect others to as well.
So even though it’s not easy to hear, I am thankful for the criticism. It’s like medicine on a cut- it stings, but in the end, it helps. Thanks for the motivation.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Lets start with some crap we have been taught since we were little.
Being wrong is a bad thing. Have you ever stopped and thought about that? You realize this is completely driven by pride, right? Pride is the single most blinding emotion you have. It will blind you to all kinds of great things in your life and will blind you to growing in your life. You are so focused on winning and being right that you are blinded to all other information and possibilities. Being wrong means that you learned something - how is that bad??? It means you listened to someone else or were proven wrong by someone else. You took the information you learned and now have the ability to make a better decision. Being wrong is genius!
I am constantly looking for people to prove me wrong, I love new perspectives and new information that might enable me to make better decisions. I am always accused of arguing to prove that I am right or not admitting when I am wrong. Incorrect. I argue until you can give me information that makes more logical sense than the information Ialready have. I am not wrong often because I dont make decisions based on feelings. I make them out of logic. Logic is constant, feelings are not.
So the next time you are arguing with someone about something and you know you are wrong, just stop and say, "No, your right. I'm wrong." All that means is that their information is better than yours. It doesnt THEY are better. If I argued with Micheal Vick about how hard a pitbull can bite another dog, he would have better information than me and would be right. But by no means is he a BETTER person than me. See how easy that is? Just a slight shift in approach, thats all.
If you arent happy its YOUR fault. Not your spouse's, not your job's, not your money's, not your friends who talk about you behind your back, YOU YOU YOU. This is more crap we are conditioned to think. We are taught to not be selfish, to make others happy - to do do do do do for others or BLAME others for your unhappiness. You hear your parents, friends, relatives complaining all the reasons they are unhappy. You never hear them say "I am unhappy because I allow myself to be!"
Here is the key to being happy and I didnt get this out of an Oprah book or a fortune cookie - its how I taught myself to be happy. Its how I learned how to make decisions to be happy. You must free yourself from influence and truly understand what makes you happy. Without factoring in what your parents expect you to be, what your friends expect you to be, what your spouse expects you to be. This is truly what you want/need in order to be fulfilled. Once you realize what that is then you build boundaries that ensure that happiness does not get affected. Once those boundaries are established, you let NO ONE over step them.
Lets be real clear about what NO ONE means. That means not a single person. Spouse, mom, brother, best friend...It doesnt matter. No one should be given the right to take away your happiness. If you give them that ability, that is YOUR fault for allowing it, not their fault for
We are TAUGHT this is selfish. Well guess what? The Germans were taught to hate Jews. White kids in the south are taught to hate black people. Just because you are taught something doesnt make it right! Tradition and authority are the two most dangerous reasons to EVER believe anything, but yet its what we put the most faith into. Why? Because we dont have faith in ourselves and our ability to learn for ourselves so we listen to someone else! Its not selfish at all. Its called doing what it takes to be happy, truly happy, without insecurities.
Opposite to what you believe, I am a very selfless and compromising person. Need help? I'll come help. Its raining? Oh well I'm ok with that. I want Wilmington, you want Raleigh. I'm ok with Raleigh. Need me to sitand listen to you during a tough time even though baseball is on? Ok, lets sit down and talk.
But here is where the key is.
You want me to listen to you even though you take it for granted? Sorry, not going to fly. You want me to spend 3 hours a day with you every day, which means I wont be able to do the hobbies in my life that make me happy? Sorry, no can do. You want me dress this way, instead of dressing the way I enjoy? Sorry, cant make that happen. You want to borrow money even though you have made no attempt to earn it yourself and probably wont pay me back? Sorry, cant help you. You want to come hang out with my group even though you have anger issues and might ruin it for everyone? Sorry you ARE NOT invited.
You can have stiff boundaries and still compromise. You just cant compromise the boundaries of your own happiness. Learn to tell people NO. We are taught that saying no is rude. More crap! Saying no is a part of living a happy life. There is no way you can live a happy life without saying no. Its impossible! There is no way you can live a happy life without disappointing people. Its impossible! I dont care what your grandmother told you when you were 9! Tell her I said go do what she is good at - cooking fried chicken and let me do the talking about happiness! Dont forget the mashed potatoes biotch!
We are taught to avoid confrontation. More crap! Confrontation is a necessary part of life and shouldnt be uncomfortable. How can you maintain your boundaries if you never confront anyone? Do you live ina perfect world where everyone constantly lives within your boundaries without you having to communicate them? No!
But Truds, I do have boundaries. Oh really? Sure you do, until you get a boyfriend that you are crazy about and are so excited about things working out with. Then you start to bend on those boundaries a little. We are all taught to compromise right? You start to bend just a little on the things that make you happy because its worth it - you are building something great! But guess what? Those boundaries are there for a reason. To keep you from bending even when emotion/feeling tells you to. So you bend here, bend there, start molding your boundaries around what makes someone else happy. Then what do you have? You have influence and you have lost what makes YOU happy as a person. This is not a sustainable model. If someone cannot respect your boundaries or cannot be happy with your boundaries staying in tact then find someone else!
Remember finding someone is NOT more important than being happy! More crap we are taught. In order to be happy you have to find someone that completes you, get married, have kids and live happily everafter! First off, no one can complete you, not even the kid from Jerry Mcguire or Megan Fox or Derek Jeter! You have to be a complete person in order to be happy. Then once you are happy someone can just make you happier by being your gravy.
Forget what you have been taught, erase it and learn it on your own. Sometimes the things you learn on your own will match perfectly on what you have been taught. Great. Sometimes they will be completely opposite. Even better!
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
I've been reading a lot online about books that have inspired famous people, from movie starts to scientist, be the people they are today. Now while I am by no means famous, I think a true reader is molded by the books they read. And since I've been suffering from writers' block lately, I thought over the next few days I would share a few books that have made me who I am today...and those that push me toward tomorrow.
#1 The Gospel of Matthew
I chose this Gospel because saying "the Bible" is one's favorite book is too trite and too broad. I leave aside questions of my own faith, which I consider a private matter, for clearly the book stands on its own as a piece of literature, philosophy, and a means of understanding our culture.
I never read the Bible as a child, and before I did I expected that it would be full of hell fire, and brimstone. This notion had only been reinforced by hearing one angry person after another claim to represent all Christians, as they wagged and pounded the Bible. Reading the Bible opened my eyes to the fact that any hateful person could not represent this faith. This book is beautiful and exquisitely written - but it characterized by one quality that covers every page - love.
Beyond giving me a way to question the beliefs molding those affirming "tax cut for the rich" by invoking "the eye of a needle" and "a rich man," reading the Bible made it harder for me to accept its being used to spread damaging propaganda and small-minded beliefs in the name of "Christian values."
In the Book of Matthew, those values sound like this: "Blessed are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven...Blessed are the merciful; for they shall obtain mercy....Blessed are the peacemakers; for they shall be called the children of God."
Monday, August 31, 2009
Friday, August 7, 2009
Sometimes I wonder if anything is absolute anymore. Is there still right and wrong, good and bad, truth and lies? Or is everything negotiable? Left to interpretation. Gray?
Have you ever wondered how long it takes to change your life? What measure of time is enough to be life altering? Is it four years, like high school, one year, a single minute? Can your life change in a month, a week, or a single day? We arealways in a hurry to grow, to go places, to get ahead. But when you're young, one hour can change everything.
Have you ever wondered what marks our time here? If one life can really make an impact on the world? Or if the choices we make matter? I believe they do. And I believe that one person can change many lives... for better or worse.
As happens sometimes, a moment settles and hoveres and remains for much more than a moment. And sound stops and movement stops for much, much more than a moment. And then the moment is gone.
Truth is still absolute. Believe that. Even when that truth is hard and cold, and more painful than you've ever imagined. And even when truth is more cruel than any lie. But happiness can come in many forms. In the company of good friends; in the feeling you get when you make someone else’s dreams come true; or in a promise of hope renewed. It’s ok to let yourself be happy, because you never know how great that happiness might be. Sometimes pain becomes such a huge part of your life, that you expect it to always be there, because you can’t remember a time in your life when it wasn’t. But then one day you feel something else. Something that feels wrong only because it’s so unfamiliar, and in that moment you realize you’re happy.
Sometimes it's easy to feel like you're the only one in the world who's struggling, who's frustrated, or unsatisfied at barely getting by. But, that feeling is a lie and if you just hold on; just find the courage to face it all for another day, someone or something will find the way and make it all okay. Because we all need a little help sometimes, someone to help us hear the music in the world. To remind us that it won’t always be this way. That someone is out there, and that someone will find you.
There are billions of people in the world. Some are running scared. Some are coming home. Some tell lies to make it through the day, others are just now facing the truth. Some are evil men at war with good, and some are good struggling with evil. Billions of people in the world; billions of souls, and sometimes, all you need is one.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Recently, I read a blog about a person's "representative" -- that side of ourselves we show in the early days of dating. It started me thinking about those relationship bombs we drop later on in a relationship. Things it's not necessary to say on the first date...but things that really do need to come out at some point.
Then there are things you never, ever tell anyone. Little secrets you keep tucked away inside. You fear they'll no longer love you if you reveal these things so you never do. But the secrets drive a wedge between you.
Say, for example, you were molested as a child. That's DEFINITELY not something you let someone know on a first date. But do you ever reveal it? Is it need-to-know information? Probably because, like it or not, it has an impact on who you are today and why you behave the way you do.
Then there's the STD question. I had a guy once complain to me about a woman telling him, in the middle of dinner on the FIRST date, that she has herpes. His complaint? It ruined his appetite. Of course, he never went out with her again but I had to ask him, "Wouldn't you rather her tell you up-front than six or seven dates in, when you were really starting to like her?" In fact, maybe they should just insert that into people's online dating profiles. STDs? "Will tell you later."
Sometimes we drag too much out onto the table on the first date. "Do you want kids?" "Why are you divorced?" "Have you ever been arrested?" None of those conversations feel comfortable in the first hour of meeting but if you don't discuss it then, when DO you discuss it?
I once knew a man, very religious, who met a very religious woman. They fell in love. She was a virgin and she ASSUMED he was. After all, in her little world that was what good Christian boys did -- wait for marriage. He didn't realize for a while she was assuming that about him and once he did, he didn't have the heart to correct her. So it went on... And on... And on... Next thing I knew, they were engaged. He still hadn't told her.
By that time, I reasoned, it was just "too late." If he told her then it could completely destroy his relationship because the problem was, he'd been hiding it all along.
Which was the same as lying.
And if he'd lie about that, what else would he lie about?
Could she ever trust him?
(Yes, women DO think that way!)
My point is, most of us hold a little of ourselves back in the beginning. We show our best face, hoping the person won't see through to the messes we are inside. But then, the day comes when we have to reveal the monster that lurks within.
The problem is, at that point the person has just one question: "Why didn't you tell me this before?"
Before WHAT? You were still getting to know each other. You didn't feel comfortable revealing your deepest, darkest secrets to them until you realized you were in love. You now trust him/her enough to show this side of yourself but she's feeling... Deceived. Especially if your secret is one that would make most women run. Like your addiction to midget porn. Or your penchant for wearing her underwear after she leaves for work.
Once she loves you, she'll have a harder time walking away because of it, even if it's something she has major issues with. If you'll agree to counseling, there might be hope, but otherwise... Well...
She may just leave you anyway.
At what point in a new relationship should major things be brought out into the open? Think of it from the perspective of the person receiving the bombs and the person dropping them. Six weeks? Six months? A year?
And then wait for the explosion.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
In a state of desperateness the other night at work, I read one sitting around on the back shelf. While I will skip most of the stupidness, at one point, a girl makes the statement to a guy who is in love: There are three kinds of love. Love, Big Love, and Great Love.
Love, you get over in two months or so. It stings, but not too much. Big Love might take you two years to really get past if it ends. But Great Love, you don’t get over. And really, it only happens once. If Great Love is rejected, you really can only move on, and find the one you love second most.
She also says that if you have to move on from that one Great Love, then it becomes too late. Once the book is closed, it can't be reread.
Love is certainly far too grand and mysterious of a thing to wrap it all up in one simple line from a book. But I think there may actually be something to this.
We have all been in love before in some form. Most of us have probably experienced different intensities when loving someone in a romantic sense. Some, you might love like a dusting of snow, that melts easily enough once a little heat comes along as the day starts. It was real enough, but didn’t and maybe couldn't go anywhere.
Sometimes we have a love that we really did invest in, and really did have something with, maybe had a real shot with. The kind that can really rattle you when you suffer its loss. The kind that can leave you needing a year or two alone just to settle your heart and find healing.
Then there’s that one.
That one who achieved a level, a depth with you that no one else will ever achieve. That one who is elevated above any other, in our hearts. Whether you had 10 lovers, or 20, or 50, or however many times you were “in love”... whether you ended up getting married, or no matter what, that ONE who affected you in a way that no one else ever will, or ever could.
How sad it is, when we are somehow unable to retain that one? When somehow they got away, or you screwed it up, or however it went, that they are simply gone from you.
It is sad, to be with that person you love second-best, although it’s not a total disaster. That doesn’t mean you would love that person in some lame or crippled way. It could still be really great. And if it lasted, maybe that ONE that holds that highest place in your heart, would eventually fade into a place of less importance, even though they might never lose that status in your heart.
To discover someone who makes your heart soar like no other, and not just for the attraction or great sex, or how they make you feel. The purest appreciation for who they really are, and the way they appreciate you or understand you as well - both of you with the ability to express it beautifully. To find someone you admire and adore beyond anyone you ever have or ever could...
The one you would offer your very best to, or break any rule for, or make any sacrifice.
It can become even more intense just because you know this. You know this isn’t some attraction, some light dusting of snow. You know this isn’t someone you just love or care about, yet knowing that the relationship is flawed underneath and will most likely or quite possibly have to end one day.
But to finally say THIS ONE I can finally invest everything in. This one, I don’t have to hold back some part of me... can be such a relief, such a joy, that the loss can almost become something you don’t want to survive.
It’s hard, too, when you discover that you married or had children with someone who doesn’t hold that high place in your heart, either because no one ever has, or because you gave up and quit on great love, and just went to do whatever, even trying to tell yourself it was a stupid pursuit anyway, or that it doesn’t exist.
I have been in love before. I have said I love you when I knew it was just the feeling of the moment. I have said I love you to someone who I knew I didn’t love fully. I have said I love you, and meant it, down to the very core of my being, and with my deepest heart.
Have you lost that one, and now can only hope for something that gets close? Or, does the future hold one that would surpass everything else, and be that really great love, and surprise you, after you had resigned to having lost the one you once loved the most? Is it possible to re-open the book on the one you lost, if they reappear? Possible for your heart to soar as it once did?
Is your great love in your past? Are they in your midst right now? Are they in your future?