Learned behaviors….

Who taught you to fear?

I have busied myself with little oddities tonight around the house and the echos of the eggshell dance have been present throughout the evening. I count the last few things that need to be done in the days and ahead and then the things beyond that. I am tired.

Moving, I moved so much in my childhood. So many memories discarded over the last few years and even more over the last few months. Things I never dreamed I would let go of have finally met their fate in the local landfill. I think I kept the most important things and I try not to consider the things I let go of too long or I will, like many other times, overthink. This brought up some old wounds and the dive into how and why I still practice old behaviors that also led to survival.

The eggshell dance….a learned behavior and a childhood coping mechanism. My conscious thoughts were “be quiet, be good, stay out of the way, tiptoe around the bubbling anger that could overflow at any moment”. A learned behavior to make sure I was safe. To make sure life was a little bit easier. Always watch-full, always, always aware, and always, always fearful.

Forward….I carried that learned behavior into my adult life and still practice it even today. Although I try not too, I realized tonight I still carry that programming with me. It sent me into scattered thoughts this evening, sifting, looking, digging in and trying to recall at what point I learned this or who taught me. Self taught I think, its been here so long I cant remember where it came from. It’s a thread in the fabric of my life that runs deep. I practice it more than I like to admit.

Everything will be okay, if everything is okay.

Never too much or too little, always trying to find the perfect balance and sometimes life just isnt like that. A lot, life isnt like that.

People will judge you and it will hurt. It can be a harsh judgement or a small one, sometimes the sting is the same.

So tonight I will consciously try not to spend too much more time on why I repeat this behavior and do my best to be more aware that I have no reason to be fear-full any more and just be……

Peace for your Monday evening ❤

The fabric of life

I am standing in front of your side of the closet, delicately touching each shirt as I go. I know the feel of what I am looking for. And there it is, my favorite shirt of yours. You smile when I find you in the kitchen and there we were……

Sometimes it’s hard for me to share some of the layers of my life with you, not that they are a secret, but because they are reminder of the tenderness that still remains. I had been trying to tell you for some time and finally found the words, or my voice in Saturday’s morning hours.

For many, instead of dealing with pain, it is easier to bury than acknowledge. So it is buried. Some people never touch it again and some people have no choice in order to heal. I uncovered it and worked on it, through it and beyond it. I learned some valuable lessons in the process. Allowing the poor behavior of others to back step my healing process once again. Another lesson in the book of life. I was finally getting it.

I know now that the lessons I received were to remind me of who I am and my strength. But most importantly to know exactly what I deserve in this life.

I have always carefully thought through my actions and words towards others. “How would I react?” “Are my actions considerate?” “Are my words kind?” “How would I feel?”. I believe where I come from, the things I have experienced throughout life, made me more mindful of others and their feelings. I have experienced situations where someone has subjected me to harsh words and actions and then wondered why I lashed out in anger or eventually just walked away from them.

My favorite shirt, because it feels of you, the way you calm me and the way you stir me. You make me sure of myself and of you. You are the quiet comfort in the middle of the night and the sweet sunlight that floods the morning. You get it where others don’t, the same as I do you.

So I have come to realize that we all heal in our own time. We all heal differently. Even though some have done the self-work and have been on the path of healing, it doesn’t mean that the tender layers, in the core, don’t exist. It may just means we can touch them some days more than others. Some bury the past better than others, and some dont. I always think about the saying “you never know what someone is going through”, and we really dont.

So this is the fabric of life….

My favorite shirt of yours… because of our lessons and continuous growth. The patient people we are with each other and the impatient people we are with ourselves. The worn and tattered layers we came together with and the threads we are weaving together now to create the fabric of this life. Our new life.

Peace for your Sunday ❤

Will and Determination

Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough

~ Og Mandino~

I have been wanting to write about people who inspire me for some time. Often times I do without using names, although they know who they are.

Many times when we are alone with our thoughts, it is detrimental to our well-being and lately this has been the case for me. So I have chosen to share an article about someone who inspires me when I feel I have no will.

I have always admired various people in life for their artistic abilities and I believe that we are all artists in our own way.  I can also appreciate the various forms of creative outlets that people seek. Many of us have suffered some sort of trauma in our lives,  physical, emotional, sexual, grief, loss or some sort of tragedy in general. Some of the most creative people I know have also been some of the most traumatized.

In 2015 I opened my account on Instagram….I began following, liking, observing and connecting with various people. Two of my friends have these eyes that present me with the ability to see life through their (camera) lenses and find beauty where many don’t…and so my love for the different layers of life intensified.

Graffiti. Street Art. Writers. Writers….words. Beautiful and colorful. Dark and deep. Bold, hard edges, soft, rounded corners…Words. People, faces, places and names of present and past. Writers…street art…or as I like think of them poets of paint..”poets of paint”.

The first time I can really remember words saving me I was 12. I started writing poetry or expressive essays ( as I learned from my friend Alyse to call them) and have written to heal parts of my life since. I think I was attracted to street art because of the lettering and the expression behind it. I knew it came from someone who had been through something…we all have a common thread somewhere in life.

I have followed many different artists over the last couple of years and this is how I came to admire one man, Benny Diar. When I think about will and determination…he, hands down, comes to mind. I cannot tell his story, you will have to read it for yourself, but I am sure you will find his thirst for life and art contagious. He has overcome obstacles and odds to do things many of us take for granted on a daily basis and he continues to be an inspiration to many.

So…will and determination…will make you survive and thrive. It “will” make you live when you think you can’t and it will drive to you to be the best you can under different circumstances that life presents you.

I hope that you find something inspirational or useful from here this evening….I have read and heard it many, many time…..”There is always, always something to be grateful for”.

 

Peace for your Friday and in your life

*used with permission of Benny Diar

 

The #metoo Movement

I sat back last night and started to see the #metoo movement unfold. At first I was a just a bystander and then I thought “what are you afraid of?”. So I shared the post as well. This morning I am amazed at the amount of women, my sisters, friends, strangers who are sharing. I am also amazed at the amount who stay silent. I honor them as well. Some of them are not able to confront that part of their history and maybe they never will. We love you none the less and we will be your voice when you cannot. I know that many don’t feel they can share because of how family or friends will react. That is exactly why many of us chose to stay silent for so long. We hear your silent voices.

I learned a few years ago that you will always share threads with people in life (Thanks T). You can sit in a crowded room and you will find people who will say, “me too” to your life experiences. We are all connected. This morning I sit in honor of all of you, even the silent.

This will be my first post I share on Facebook and there are many of you that I would like to tag but I wont. Please feel free to drop a heart, a comment or maybe just some love for someone you know has experienced this.

Peace for your Monday

 

Pour the whiskey…Part II

If you read my previous post you may somewhat understand my frame of mind and why it has taken me a few days to revisit that part of my life. I hear the bullshit phrase “get over it”. I may never get over it, move on, learn lessons, empathize with those that are related to me because of the common bond of alcohol, but get over it???

So the next step father was Leo. He was a nice alcoholic. A business man. I always thought he was the nicest one of all of them until several years ago in therapy when we were going through my step fathers and I mentioned him. I told her that he was the nicest, that the only thing he did was get drunk and take us out flying in his plane. I remember looking up at him from the small seats in the back and him telling my Mom he was going to fly us into the mountains and kill us all. That was nicest step father I had. My therapist was mortified. It wasn’t until then that I realized how damaging he was too. Many years later at lunch with one of my step sisters she confided he did that to all of them. Some how I don’t think he did. I think maybe she was comforting me…she also made it very clear that everyone felt bad for me because of the life I was raised in. They weren’t married long, he was the sickest of them all because of the alcohol. We had to visit him in a hospital in Washington where he was sent to dry out. He finally reformed and lived until a couple of years ago. He had to have been in his 90’s. I went to his funeral to sit with my sissy’s. I love them, he gave me three good sissy’s.

There were two more step fathers after these, fortunately I was old enough to take off at this point. One divorced my Mom shortly after he found out she didn’t have the money he thought she did. We spent Christmas Eve in a local casino. I was under age but drank and gambled. The other wanted a nursemaid  and they divorced after a family member ruined that. She hasnt been married since, had a few boyfriends…but has been alone for many years now. She was damaged at some point. We finally have a semi decent, functioning relationship. It was part of my healing process to confront her about the things in my childhood. It took her 3 weeks to read the longest and hardest letter I have ever written a person. She cried and apologized. It’s never been mentioned again. These men are no longer mentioned. And I told my brothers…I told them all about my childhood. It was only then that the one that is 19 years older than me confided she did the same shit with them and always put them after her boyfriends. My brother who is 20 years older will not speak of his childhood. She fucked us all up and we turned out pretty fucking amazing. I was the only child between my parents. A product of an affair, which I am pretty sure she was paid to leave town and remain quiet. Whew….the secrets families keep….you never know how deep the pain runs. We were children. Just children.

So…be 12 and realize you are not wanted any where….even your own fucking biological father never showed up and maybe then you might consider that it’s not weak to want to die. Be 12 when the drunk comes home and your mom is out, and you know he keeps a gun under his pillow. Be FUCKING 12 while you and your best friend lie on your bedroom floor and he tries your door. Be 7 and an alcoholic is sexually abusing you or you are being abused at a local daycare. If you saw the horrors (many graphic details I have left out or toned down)  I saw growing up and even empathized in the smallest way you MAY reconsider your rigid thoughts. I think what angers me most is that people think things just go away. I am amazed that I love the way I do, that I give people chances and that I take risks to love and have friendships. These people taught me how you aren’t supposed to be treated. In what some may consider a fucked up thought process I feel they taught me how not to treat people…I give what I have never had. Sometimes to my own detriment. I have also learned that not everyone who drinks will hurt you and that it is okay to drink in moderation and with people you feel comfortable with. So I have learned a lot.

Smile at that person next to you in line, or observe the child who plays alone at the park, or be kind to the troublesome child. Always, always be kind, you never know where people like us come from.

Peace..every, every day

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