Looking Inward

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

For the past month or so, I've kinda been keeping it low-key. You know Mercury was in retrograde and all - so that can mess up with life's major decisions and being sensitive around communications. Not that I'm at a crossroads or anything myself. But - it was a good time to sit back and evaluate what I truly want in my life, where I truly see my life moving to. A chance to clear out all that is not good for that plan, and make space for those people and things that can put me on the right path.

As of today, I feel happy and content. I have a better grasp on things in my life and have processed much of my emotions from my last romantic "thing". I'm okay. So it's a good time to look inward and make a list of what I want to work on; what I have time for, what I enjoy, etc. And I think I came up with a good list to get me started to being an even better version of myself. Ashley 3.0 (because maybe at 33 I'm reinventing some of myself?).

Exercise is huge for me. It helps relieve stress and also not be 500 lbs - because I can sometimes stress eat (and non-eat) and drink. I've found a path that's about 4 miles round-trip near my home that I run/walk whenever I can and just took the girls out with me the other day. One of the twins slept the entire walk!! But I also realize that midwest winters can be brutal - so I'm going to need an outlet to get my exercise in even on days when I have the girls. The biggest excuse I use lately is that I have them and I'm tired and I can't get outside or can work out in my living room after they go to bed. So I removed that excuse and signed up for a gym that has childcare available. I'm excited to now be able to go whenever I want!! And the girls will get a chance to play with other kids - they love kids!!

Emotional stability is a key area that I've struggled in. I know I have a lot of issues from my past and my childhood that come out every now and then. At times, I've deeply struggled with these things and have felt like I've lacked control of them. Mostly around my worth and value in relationships, etc. So I've signed up for some life coaching sessions and I'm SO excited to start. I had an intro chat with the woman I'll be working with and can't wait to unleash my issues and gain some helpful tools to help me deal with them (and accept/let go) even better!

I love to read. I have a degree in English-Writing, so it's no wonder that I like to read and write. (hello blog!) I've been making sure to get in some "me-reading" time as much as possible. With the weekly trips the girls and I take to the library, we take out books and movies for them - and usually 1-2 books for me. I've even reserved some books I've been dying to read and am able to quickly pick up and check out once they're ready from being on hold for me! It rejuvenates me and I've really missed it!

Now, there are still some areas that I need to work on and I'm calculating some plans to get those areas jump-started. Like healthy eating (I'm not great at healthy eating habits all of the time), and being even more strict financially (I follow the Dave Ramsey Total Money Makeover plan).  But I'm aware those areas need some work and will be focused on those very very soon!

Sometimes we have to force ourselves to be the change we so desperately need. If we're unhappy or stuck, we need to remember that we have the power to change our situation or make it better. We can work on our mind and being more positive, we can work towards our goals and make them more reachable. Investing in ourselves and looking inward to the potential that each and everyone of us possess, can pull us out of that crummy space that some of us can fall into.

Rejection is Protection

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Hi all - it's been awhile, I know. I haven't really been feeling like writing, and honestly haven't had anything "happy' to share. So I don't share at all because it's the internet and that's what we share online - the happy stuff. But I decided to type out some feelings that may or may not be so happy and leave it here.

If you've been reading for a little bit you know that I met someone this spring and it was my first romantic "something" in 8 years - let alone my first something since my divorce in December. I met someone who I totally hit it off with and who I had a fantastic connection with. So much so we talked about future stuff (all what-ifs), etc. Well just as quickly as it started, it ended. And it ended with her pulling away from dating but wanting to remain friends; and myself (and her too) know we couldn't just be friends because we had feelings for each other. I thought at first I could do a "limbo" friends with benefits gray area but soon realized I just can't. I'm not wired like that and I'm exhausted from hanging onto "potential" for an unspecified amount of time. I want to be wanted "now" - not put on a back burner until the time is better.

So I walked away.

And I've struggled so much with that decision. I've missed her and what we had. I've debated if I could do the limbo relationship just to have a piece of her. And even after stepping back and really taking stock of the "red flags" that popped up with her and what we had - in terms of what I want and need from a relationship - I was still so drawn to the person. It was still almost impossible to walk away and leave it be. And if you know me - I never let relationships just "be". I will fight for someone I love, I will go to great lengths to make something work. This is not a relationship that I did that with, though, and I forced myself to put social media on mute and to delete numbers and keep myself busy. I forced myself to stay quiet and not reach out. I forced myself to stay away.

Time ticked on by and of course it dulled my feelings. But I still have those little pangs of missing what was or maybe it was the potential of what was. When you're divorced and dating - emotions are so complex. Your heart has felt super deep love before - your being has physically began to create and mold a life with another person before. So those feelings of moving into something deeper is familiar. And then there are thoughts of transferring your thoughts, feelings, love, etc. just onto another/person relationship.

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As I stepped back from this most recent relationship, I realized that although my heart hurts, it really is a protection on my life, my future. Was this relationship REALLY for me? Was this relationship really what I needed or could build from in my life? Was I holding someone down who just really wants to be free? Was I settling for love? Was this the best option for a step-parent for my children? This relationship may be great for someone else, someone on a different path than I, someone with a different vision for their future. I truly think we all deserve love - and that love is out there for us. But this likely wasn't the love for me, no matter how great it felt, no matter how much I wanted it.

Dating post divorce is gathering the courage to step up and realize what you want and don't want in your life. It's being strong on your own and not settling for a relationship that might not be right for you. It's learning to not compromise on the things you can't compromise in your life (living situation, loyalty/honesty, children considerations, etc.). I think any time a relationship ends, it hurts. No matter what the situation was or if you broke up with them or vice versa. It always hurts and there's a void that's left behind. But rejection is a protection from a love, a situation that's not meant for you. It's telling you "No! This ain't it. Keep moving!" And you have to trust the universe has a bigger, better plan for you.