Kill the Dream.

Once upon a time there was a girl who would grow up to be a woman, a wife, a mother. She would live in a beautiful house on a lake. Flowers everywhere. Sunshiney days. She would stay at home to raise her sweet kids with their good manners in their perfectly cute outfits, their hair always in place.  She would probably run the PTA.  Her husband would come home from his successful job every night to a delightful house smelling of home cooked meals. The refrigerator would always be stocked with healthy and delicious foods.  She would create a family buzzing with love, energy, fun, smiles. There would be art projects and cuddling. Her kids would be well-behaved and adore her.  Her husband would cherish her because she was loving and kind and sexy. every day.  She would treasure her family in return because they made her happy and fulfilled….ever after.

Record scatch. LOUD GIGANTIC record scratch. Stop. Halt. Grow. Up.

I swear it’s true. I know…it’s embarrassing.  However, I am that girl who had the dream in her head…that hazy glowy cloudy vision that sits somewhere in the back of your brain as a guide to how your future will be.

Once in a while in the middle of a regular day, which, by the way, almost never includes a stocked fridge, I will be struck by the thought.  I’m divorced. WHAT!?  There must be some mistake. To be in that category is completely outside of my vision.   I try to place myself there and it feels humorous.  My mental picture of what “divorced” looked like was a group of men and women who smoked and went to bars and let their kids do whatever they wanted.  They were the people who could never really get it together.  They were not me. Definitely not me.  Please don’t judge me on my judgment.  I promise that I never consciously opined about divorcees.  It was just a stereotype unconsciously floating around in my brain that I now happen to be able to conjure up as I find myself puzzled at my position in the world.

When I disengage from my tortured mind and preconceived ideas, and step back into reality, I reflect on my situation in a different way.  Here I am. Kinda brazen. I am excited about my possibilities, grateful for the lessons I’ve learned, happy about my evolution. Proud. Sometimes i can even feel a bit over-proud.  Something like a Divorced Superiority Complex.  Feeling sorry for the ones that are lacking passion and connection in their marriages. The ones who are settling.  What I noticed is that the only time divorce really really really really hurts is when the dream of my life as it was supposed to be flashes through my body and spears my heart.

I was discussing how life was “supposed to be” with my sister one day as sisters do.  She told me how she had recently faced this head on.  She had written in her journal about everything that she ever thought she wanted, wished, and fancied her grown up life to be.  She then analyzed which were unrealistic expectations and decided to kill them off.  She had a mental funeral for every single vision of sugar plums.   She immediately felt happier and lighter to be free from the fairy tale trance. Brilliance!

The truth about my life right now is that it is completely different than I imagined.  I rent a tiny house and my backyard always seems to look trashy.  I don’t like to cook no matter how hard I wish I did. I can barely make it to the grocery store.  After being a stay-at-home mom, it’s now difficult to find a job to support myself.  I’m not in the PTA. In fact, I barely check homework. My kids aren’t always polite and their outfits aren’t what I had in mind.  Also, as it turns out, I’m not sexy every day.

However, as I sit and breathe in my now, I can see that I’m lucky and that the life that I have is amazing exactly as it is.  My daughters are imperfect and I love their pluckiness.  From time to time, they say things that make me know they admire me.   Their spirits are in place.  My house is adorable and easier to maintain in its tininess.  There are messy art projects on the table.  I am in love with a man who lives too far away…but he adores me and is right for me and is happy to challenge me and grow with me. I laugh every single day. even on the days that I cry. I am surrounded by friends who get me out of my house. They send me love texts and believe in me on days that I don’t believe in myself.

When I decided to kill “the dream”, I found that my life is pretty dreamy.

Journal PromptWhat dreams are you holding on to that may be holding you back?  How is your reality dreamy?

Hold On

The other day I had dinner with some of my dearest friends.  It was the usual for us….wine, salad, whipped garlic and arabic bread, a healthy marinara dish.  We spoke of  jobs, relationships, diets.  Three of us got right into our usual analysis, the complexities of masculine versus feminine and the road to emasculation.  The other one of us who happens to embody  masculine made fun of us, playfully insulting our insight.

We bitched a little, ate a little,  laughed a little, drank a little, reflected a little.

Yes..it was an ordinary night of our usual loveliness.

and then…..

we shaved our friend’s head.

Breast cancer. Aggressive. Chemotherapy. Hair falling out.

My dear friend took off her hat, exposing her patchy head. We marveled at her beauty..still present, even without her usual thick shiny head of hair.   We pulled a stool into the bathroom.  Our “masculine” friend decided to be the shaver. (We let her as we didn’t want her to feel emasculated).  She lathered her head up and began, carefully, softly, lovingly shaving the remains of our friend’s hair.

As we watched….and talked…..sharing stories and wine.

I deliberately slowed time in my mind……I allowed myself to take it all in… this significant and important moment.  I let my soul capture the experience which was overflowing with life and love and the connection of all beings. Friendship…truth…..beauty.  I let my mind travel back in time, to when I first met my beautiful friend with her long hair, healthy lifestyle, and interesting viewpoints.  The past seems so innocent and vulnerable when seen from the future which is now the present that has brought with it life altering circumstances.

I took a mental snapshot of the scene that I was experiencing. I did not ever want to forget the image of my pretty friend….emitting more beauty and light in this tender occasion of complete exposure.  I did not ever want to forget the precious feeling of true friendship and love………I breathed it in and absorbed as much of it as I could, filling my soul with strength and the knowledge that

there is nothing in this world that can break down the pure power, the rapture, the positive vibrations and beams of love that sparkle from our souls.

We are the lucky ones…no matter our life circumstances.

If we can just hold on…to the moments….and to each other.

and then we had dessert.

Uncrushed

I haven’t written in so long.   The intensity and drama and movie of my life has been filled with so much of everything..there was just too much to feel…and nothing to say.

Today I am ready to say this.

I am starting over. from scratch.  as a single mother.

Sometimes I feel sorry for myself.

It’s scary and difficult for a girl with a chaotic mind.

yet it’s also liberating and exciting to be able to create a whole new life with different choices based on the experiences that have led me to this place in time.

If right now was five years ago…things would be easier.  Our place in the world back then, just like everyone else’s was more secure. Jobs were easier to come by…and our finances ……existed.

But it’s not five years ago. It’s now. 2011. There have been layoffs and downturns and moves and mistakes. We were once an upwardly mobile family committed to building our future, doing all the right things, dreaming bright dreams….

and NOW..

Never mind the broken hearted nonsense of tears, pain, and depression.  We who are no longer “we” are left with a whole lot of nothing to split right down the middle.

and that leaves me in a bit of a predicament.

that leaves me…..

forced to learn how to be a penny pincher

with less time to devote to my dreams

hopelessly aware of all that I took for granted

thinking of what I can sell for money….my wedding dress, my diamond ring…my kids, my body.

Shit.

BUT…

the Leap and Twirl Girl in me is aware that….

When I’m in my life…just living it..like I do..

I feel GOOD about my choices, my plans, my moments in this world, despite the loss of my marriage and the death of my idealism .

….I feel satisfied in my core because I’m following my inner voice…because I’m getting through a loss..heading into a new direction of my life which will be richer in truth and spirit.

I’m proud of me for who I am, and knowing what’s important to me, knowing what I ‘m not willing to live with, knowing that I can live… without.

I’m proud of me..facing loss and struggle to get to a more fulfilling place…when it would be so much easier to just settle for the sake of safety and security.

I’m in love with my life…my small, humble, and charming home that I fill with love, creativity and ambiance for my daughters. I have friends and loved ones who share wonderful moments, a ton of laughs, deep connections.

I’m proud of my place in the world in which I can contribute and make a difference in my community, promoting resiliency and strength, helping girls become proud of who they are and to understand that they alone, deep in their core, know exactly what’s right for them…

….a significant reminder reflectively helping heal the parts of me that are sometimes scared and unsure.

“You must meet the outer world with the inner world or existence will crush you.” ~Mark Nepo

 

Inspiration India Arie

Yesterday was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.  and that is an understatement.

Today is a new day.

and the universe wrapped its loving arms around me on this Monday morning.  It gave me some sunshine and then it gave my heart an itinerary for the day when I turned on the radio.  The first song.

I accepted this gift today with much gratitude. and continued on this path filling up my mind and soul and heart with more inspiration from India Arie.

So if you happen to be going through some blah-ness too…..

and lastly……..

Pay attention to the signs that are dropped into your day from the universe.  If you’re reading this… you probably needed it too.

xo