Life’s lessons

Reason, Season, or Lifetime

People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.

When you figure out which one it is,

you will know what to do for each person. – Unknown

Knowing, understanding, and accepting the aforementioned is one of the most complex and agonizing of life’s lessons and experiences we will face and with age, I’ve found it to be one of the most liberating experiences I go through. 

In the past, I tended to rationalize the behaviour and actions of others and allow them to stay well past their expiration dates; in turn, providing them with a revolving door into my life and emotional capital of which was squandered.  There were too many Reasons and Seasons that I almost allowed to become Lifetimes. 

At this stage of life, I find myself closing doors more easily and more often.  I no longer allow myself to be held by nostalgia, chronology, and some misplaced sense of loyalty even when the other party finds a way; or at least attempts to reign me back in using those very same things to assuage their guilt for lack of contribution or participation. 

I favour and embrace the truth of where we are now, instead, of the role we each once played in the other’s lives and what we gained in those times or moments.  I recognize the varying degrees of relationships and the impression they had; however, to remain bound by that adds no gain.  My life is tantamount to an investment portfolio, where I have to regard the deposits made and the interest earned to determine whether I’m getting the most for my life’s relationship investments.  I choose not to live my life in the red or leaning toward emotional bankruptcy.  I reserve the right to close accounts and send statements of insufficient funds when people have overdrawn from my life and emotional well-being.  I refuse to continuously allow people to deplete me, be it financially, emotionally, physically, or mentally. 

I have to recognize the signs of the Reason, the Season, or the Lifetime in order to grow in every aspect of my life.  I cannot rationalize what doesn’t warrant the thought process because if I have to rationalize where we stand, I already have my answer.  What I must do is honour the Reason that became as Season for what it provided and reserve myself for those who are the Lifetime, and at the forefront of that is Myself. 

I’m currently liberating myself of someone who was a Reason, a Season, and what I thought would be a Lifetime.  I openly, fully, and wholly accept the Reason and the very many Seasons they played, and realize that Lifetimes are wholly reciprocal relationships.  Lifetimes are proactive, inspiring, uplifting, bullshit calling, and wholesome.  Lifetimes make others a priority and honour those who have bought the ticket with the true intent to ride until the end. 

This closure has been in the making for some time now; not entirely of their own making; however, and in spite of their words, their action has proven itself to be terminal.  There is nothing to wrestle anymore.  There is no taking into account the two plus decades of friendship (Reasons and Seasons) where we once saw each other through the others eyes, or saw each other through the myriad of life’s ups and downs.  All there is, is to let go. 

What was once perceived to be the embodiment of a Lifetime will become a fading memory shrinking further and further into the distance and will eventually set on the horizon of this part of my life’s chapter.  I am very much okay with that.  I honestly didn’t think I would be, but I truly am and in an odd way, I feel a bit relieved; exhilarated even as it feels like I reached past an emotional plateau.

So, here I am, older, wiser, and much lighter on my life’s journey.  I hear Ms. Badu clapping in my head and praising me for not being a Bag Lady.  (I told you before, music is always in my head!) 

If you’re struggling with Reasons, Seasons, and Lifetimes, take a moment to set your life up like a bank account or investment portfolio so you can see if you’re truly getting the best out of your life.

 

Honour thyeslf always! J

 

Firm or shaky ground…

When we sit in solitude sometimes we reflect on things, people, and situations that took place in our lives.  In and during those times, we often wonder how or why things go wrong and sadly sometimes we may; and hopefully realize, we are own our own worst enemy.  It is important to recognize that there are things that are out of our control; things imposed upon us.  However, there are many things and events that we do have a say in and instead of being proactive, we are instead reactive; thus, causing us to be the architect of your own destruction.  We sometimes absorb situations instead of filtering through them to see what’s worth our heightened emotional state and by doing this, we create a shade of grey in our lives that cause us to continually be on shaky ground.  When in this state, everything becomes an issue, we find ourselves in combat not just with others, but ourselves, which only perpetuates, the weakness.  When we are more rational, we are more able to discern the cause and effect of a situation and be less likely to be reactive and maintain our emotional alignment.  That is why it’s so important to build foundations that are on firm ground in order to endure the many tests life will through at you.  And on this ground, it’s easier to withstand the chaos than succumb to it.

Life is an ebb and flow and how we receive and deliver can be the major difference to how we go with the current.  Yes, it’s sometimes very necessary to be the salmon swimming upstream and there are times where it’s not and we’re simply just being dramatic.  Mastering our environment may sound like a laborious task, but it’s not.  It’s essential for ones well-being and something that can be handled simply by weighing what’s important against who and what isn’t.  The Biblical proverb of building ones house on solid ground is equal to the fable of the Three Pigs simply said somewhat differently.

No trade-true architect would recommend any structure build on unstable ground, so why would you build your life, which is considered a Temple on such?

Blu

Randoms and sh*t!

My Love and I had a Family and Friends cookout on Saturday and I was unfortunately behind the 8-ball in getting ready.  A friend showed up and saw me in my frazzled state and offered her help, but instead of just stepping in; especially since I’m not typically in such a state, she sat on the couch and went to sleep. Who.The.F*ck.Does.That?  Sadly, this is the second time she’s done this and guess what?  There won’t be a third. I was quite annoyed, but chose not to further upset myself by saying anything and let it go.  I simply limited my interaction with her in favour of our other guests.  In spite of that, the cookout was a huge success and everyone had a great time.

I had a conversation with My Love’s mother that I hadn’t ever expected to have and said some rather severe, but not disrespectful things that I felt needed to be said. She initiated the conversation by speaking out the familial dysfunction and I felt compelled to respond. He wasn’t happy that I was being dragged into the conversation, but I felt I needed to respond openly and honestly.  I want things to be in an improved state between them and hope that things will be.

I had the best time with my cousin who’d come into town after taking her son to college in Boston.  She and I are more than just cousins; we’re best friends, confidantes, ride or die, skeletons in the closet, take it to the grave.  We talked, laughed, shared, and did all the things we do when we’re together.   Even though her visit was only for four days, it was a wonderful few days.  It’s not always the quantity of time, but the quality of the time.

I’m tired of woman playing the victim.  I’m sick the hell of it.  I want women to stop blaming others for the issues in their lives and do something about it.  We live in a time where seeking counseling is no longer the taboo thing it was in decades ago.  There are so many options for women to work through their hurt, pain, abuse, etc and not let it take over and impede their lifes development.  I’m sick of said women pointing the finger at others or trying to fix others, when they’re got their own issues and are broken themselves.

I can’t help but get annoyed when I see parents dressed well and their kids look raggedy.  I saw this, this weekend and found myself so tempted to call bullsh*t on a woman  looked a mess while she well dressed and put together. I have to invoke Kermit and say, “it ain’t none of my business though”. Haha!

My birthday is next Saturday; the 13th and I have absolutely no idea how I want to spend it. I have a massage scheduled for the 11th and I’m taking off the 12th, but nothing planned as yet. I find this oddly amusing and exciting because I usually have something planned.  Things will fall into place and I’ll enjoy the times beset to me.

I watched the documentary, Stories We Tell by Susan Polley and it made me rather sad.  In so many ways, I related to her experience, because I was 5 before I found out my stepfather wasn’t really my father and I met my biological father and two of my seven siblings.  I was about 13 when I met my eldest; now deceased brother and spend decades not knowing my remaining siblings. To date, I’ve met and know all but one of them.  Truth be told, I really don’t care if I ever meet her. I’m almost 47 and she’s went into her early 60s, I presume so what could we possibly talk about or how could we bond?  It’s rhetorical really.  I do find it sad that there are so many children who have no idea of their true paternity or that they have siblings they don’t know.  More than it, I think it’s scary.  I’d hate to be the one who found out I was involved with a half-brother, cousin, or other family member.  Eek!

Even though I’m not married yet, I’ve already decided how the bridal party will be dressed, the colours, and that there will be NO cell phones permitted. I find it rather distasteful that people attend weddings and other formal functions and publish the photos without the consent of the parties whose event it was.

I mailed some birthday cards and it felt really good. I enjoy acknowledging someone’s special day and being able to have them have tangible proof of my remembrance and wanting to share in their happy occasion.  I still have more cards to send; September is a very active birthday month.

My college reunion is next month and I don’t feel the same excitement that I’ve had for the past three.  Maybe because I’m in transition in my life, but I can’t say that with certainty.  Maybe it’ll come to me by the end of the month when things and people start really getting into high gear.

I haven’t received the invitation yet, but have been invited to a college friends 50th birthday celebration.  I was quite flattered when asked for my mailing address.  We’d always gotten along while we were in school and I got the impression he had developed an interest in me when we’d seen each other back in 2010, but nothing came of it.  He never pressed it and it was left alone. I highly doubt there is any romantic interest even now; it was merely a situational thing back then.  He’s a classy guy and I know his event will be as he is.  A very close friend has also been invited and I’m looking forward to attending.

I STILL need to lose at least 10 lbs and hope I’ll actually get around to losing it.  I need to get my body back to where I’ll actually enjoy looking at it and not tolerating it.

Yea, I said it!

 

Books and covers…

abuse

 

We see many people and gleen an impression of whom we thing they are. What’s wrong with that picture? Well, maybe after reading the image and this post, you may just stop doing that.

I saw this on Pinterest and found myself deeply moved by its content. Not because it spoke to the mysterious “he” that it spoke of, but more to the fact that it so reminded me of a friend.  What impacted me the most about it, was it spoke damn near spot on to how I watched her act in almost all the years we’ve been friends, but primarily over the past decade.  She promotes self-imposed image and role of the “good girl”, the poster image mother, the entitled, and other such lofty positions/opinions. I’ve watched her polish up the veneer she wears so proudly to detract from the fact that this very thought-provoking image proves.

All too often, things such as the B&B and depicted is targeted toward me; however, I’d like to counter that and say, women as pretty much on par with this form of behaviour.  It’s more socially acceptable for the women to be or play “the victim”, so they’re more likely to get away with it or have it dismissed or ignored.  Personally, I think it’s all bullsh*t!  I’m sick and tired of the ghosts of women past, who fought and died for the equal rights women have come to afford, want, and/or expect, essentially for naught.  Now, I’m not saying there aren’t those who are actual victims, but for crying out loud, let’s not continue to buy into the bullsh*t.  Yes, men are often times guilty and less likely to seek counseling, treatment, or some form of help for whatever their emotional issue is, but I bet any one of you fine readers can identify a woman who personifies the B&B.

Please don’t think for one minute I’m disparaging my friend of speaking behind her back because that is certainly not the case. I have spoken with her about her viewpoint, antics, and actions and I very much still care for her; however, her antics leave much to be continually desired.  I’ve been the party that sided with her and comforted her while she played the victim.  For decades she has chosen this behaviour as a front to not dealing with real issues.  Sadly, the Baiting and Bashing has played a part in the demise of her marriage and adversely affected our friendship.  Her soon to be ex-husband has his own issues and culpability, which lead to where they are now, but, I say once again, I’ve seen and heard first hand the B&B.  I’ve tried to talk to my friend and offer my suggestions on how to best work through her issues, but it remains an action undone.  I can’t continue to aid and abet in such behaviour as I find it counter-intuitive to ones growth and development, so I remain distant and hope that she’ll one day see past herself and deal with the issues that have caused her to be this way.

At the end of the day, I live by the rule of, “what’s right is right and what’s wrong is wrong”.  I’m not a sugar coat it kind of gal; I say what I mean and mean what I say.  I’m rarely passive-aggressive and would rather own my words and actions than pass the blame.  Life comes with good and bad and we must accept it and work toward that which we’ve earned and not what we feel entitled too.

angrynarc1

Yea, I said it!

Transition

I’m in an awkward place in my life right now and it causing a myriad of mixed emotions.  I’m in a life transition; women stuff! I knew it was coming; it’s inevitable, but it isn’t sitting well with me.  Why? Because it has a couple other dance partners on its card and quite honestly, it’s a quite a lot to handle.

Ordinarily, I do well multi-tasking; it’s what I do and quite frankly do pretty well; however, this, these transitions are happening hard and fast and oftentimes without warning. The life (woman) transition causes mood swings either high or low, are causing me to want to retreat into my own world where I don’t want to interact outside of what is deemed necessary.  I’m fortunate that due to a medically induced physiological chemistry change I underwent almost seven years ago, I’m somewhat armed and prepared for what I’m going through (and will continue to go through), but it doesn’t make it any easier when a certain unwanted “aunt” makes unscheduled appearances causing me to remain in a heightened state of womanly awareness.   That drama aside, I endure and deal with it accordingly.

The other transition is that I’m in the last quarter of my old year and while I look forward to my forthcoming new one, I’m a bit torn over its inception.  Forty-seven will be an in between stage.  No longer 45 and not quite 50.  I’m happy with my growth and accomplishments this past year and have dealt with many things and people in a manner that has been conducive to me not having a mental health breakdown or facing indictment.  I embrace the serenity prayer in its entirety, hold steadfast to my faith, live in a fashion that best suits me and my needs and not under the scrutiny of what society thinks is appropriate for me, and am thankful for the close few who are always in my corner.  The place I’m in my life right now; as long as I don’t completely lose it (refer back to the aforementioned transition)  will be the mental and emotion segway to what could most likely be an amazing turning point in my life.

The final transition is by far the biggest, most fearful, most life-altering of all…Moving in with My Love.  I understand it’s a normal and expected part of relationship maturity; however, I’m finding my understanding and happiness bordered with angst, trepidation,  confusion, conformance.  It’s been more than a decade since I’ve lived with a man and small children.  Lil Lady is now 22 and has been out of the house for +/- two years and although I was okay with her living and being at home, it was still an adjustment.  While her father still alive, she and I only lived together two weeks a  month because she’d spend alternating weeks at my house and her fathers.  Given his and my former proximity, there were times when I saw her almost daily, but we still didn’t live together daily and hadn’t since she was about four years old.  Yes, quite a transition for me. I had a roommate and temporary house guests from time to time, but these past four years have been mostly lived by myself.  I’m neat, orderly, and territorial.  The latter being hard for many to understand.  Personally, I don’t know what’s so hard to understand about that. It’s my space, my things, please leave them alone and ask if you want access.  That’s just politeness in my opinion.  Being with a man who has small children was the mother of all transitions, but I’ve fared well over the past almost four years…living with this will be the mother’s grandmother of transitions.  Don’t get me know, I’m not complaining; merely being honest here.

The combination of these transitions occupies my mind daily, although the pre-birthday one is the least of the three in terms of mind occupancy.  I’m prepared for that. I make this transition annually and prepare for it typically with vim and vigour.  This year, given the two accompanying ones, it seems a bit overwhelming I suppose.

I don’t know how I’ll fully navigate the first and last; hopefully with grace; though I anticipate there will be some meltdowns from time to time.  Hormones and angst are a bad mix. I’ll have to talk to LadyLee about that; her being a chemist an all.  Jokes aside, I’m just venting, being honest, and using this as a means to express that which I haven’t said to My Love yet…I will though!

If any of my sage readers have any words of comfort, understanding, empathy, etc. please don’t hesitate to share.

 

Yea, I said it!

Random

It’s been a while since I’ve done a decent post and while I have much I’ll eventually post, I’m currently feeling like a boat adrift.  My thoughts are erratic at best and I’m finding myself less and less satisfied with things/people around me and in life as a whole. I’m not one for wallowing.  Nor am I one whose a part of a situation instead of the solution; however, right now, I think I just need to be.  I’m not falling into a temporary dark state; instead I am allowing whatever this “feeling” is to exist and then run its course.  All too often, we strive to “try to figure it out”; spend too much time trying “to get to the root of it”; and/or look for the needle in the proverbial haystack.  I believe I’m in a “let go and let God” state of being.  I prayed this morning for peace in my spirit; to keep my heart open in order to give; and to be moved in a direction that is wholesome to my overall well-being.  I refused the distraction of the radio and prayed in silence as I drove to work and allowed myself to revel in the sound of my thoughts as they occupied my mind.

I rarely think of my time as being wasted when I do nothing because just being still is often more of an accomplishment than constant motion.  We’ve been adversely conditioned into thinking we have to always do something, which, in my opinion is a jagged pill I refuse to swallow.  Why?  Because stillness is important.  Correction, it’s a necessity.  Why you might ask once again?  Because if we’re constantly doing something, when do we actually get to appreciate who we are, what we have, and whom we have it with?  I don’t mean casually; in passing because we’re interacting on a social level, I mean, actually exclude noise, distractions and just be.  Think of the last time you sat with your children, spouse/partner/significant other/friend and just chilled and enjoyed the moment; no electronic device, no thoughts of work, or any other interference and fully appreciated it?  Think of the last time you looked up from your device and said hello how are you to someone and actually meant it and it wasn’t said out of casual tone or in passing?  Think of the last time you let a chore pass without feeling guilty?  Be honest here; I sure am!  So many of us refuse to allow stillness to be a part of our being.  So many don’t really notice the change in colours, a flower that bloomed, the person at the bus stop they may pass each day while driving to work or actually strike up a conversation with a fellow commuter.  These things make me sad, but they also make me appreciate my moments like this.  I know we only have a limited time on this earth and we’re all trying to make the most of it; but again, how many consider that stillness is a part of our time?

Not checking Facebook, Instagram, Email, playing an electronic game isn’t making the most of our time; it’s often squandering it.  I bet if we calculated the time spent not interacting we’d be astonished with the results.  That same time could be spent taking advantage of the beauty around us; the people around us; being a part of something greater or even better than ourselves.  I think; no, I know that’s where I am right now.  I’m cherishing the moments where I don’t have to or want to do something because a social or even personal choice dictates.  I recognize that I’m feeling the weight of living alone as I have done for the past two years, Lil Lady is grown up now. She’s chosen to have a place of her own with her fiance and dog and that’s a good thing because it’ll be how she learns and how she’ll be able to balance her budget, her time, and her life as an adult.  Living alone is good for me because I’m territorial and I enjoy my time, my space, and my things to be where I left them without interference from another party; however, I know it’s time to change that part of my life.  Truth be told, I’m both ready and reluctant for this occurrence because, as I said, I’m territorial. I’m also rather neat and like things in order.  I want messes cleaned’ I want things put away, and I want these things done without having to prompt another party to do them.  I can handle change, but this one will truly take getting used once it occurs.  Pray for me okay! 😉

So, here I am, three months shy of my 47th year of life.  I’m beginning to think this “feeling” is a product of that last quarter phase out of my 46th year.  I’m contemplative.  I’m slightly indecisive.  I’m evaluating.  I’m restructuring.  I’m growing. I’m reflecting.  I’m planning. I’m preparing.  I’m many, many adjectives rolled into the multi facets of being Blu Jewel.  I’m okay with it all because….I know the struggle because I’ve lived through many and overcome.  I know the preciousness of life because mine has been threatened and challenged.  I wore the weight of my pain/shame and appreciate the lightness of being for having rose above it.  There are many positives to my former negatives and the best part of it all is that I have some of the greatest life lessons for it all.  I’m now a healer; a teacher; a mentor; a mother; a friend; a lover; and one day a wife (again); none of the aforementioned come in any particular order, but that is my then and now.  I’m not naive to think that this closeout period will be silver lined, sprinkled with rainbows, and full of sunshine, but what I do know for sure is that trust has been earned and loyalty has been shown, and love has been given from those I’ve needed it the most from.  Those are the ones I cherish.  Those are the ones I stop what I’m doing; or sometimes not doing for.  In those people, I include myself because I am an important part of the equation and in this tapestry of life I am woven together with love, peace, joy, and the occasional appearance of pain, tears, and discontent; however, it does not taint my picture; it merely adds a beautiful hue to which keeps me grounded.

What started out as a random post has now formed into something purposed and meaningful of which I couldn’t be more proud.  I, without initially fully recognizing it, turned nothing into something and proven that even when we think we not doing something; we’re always doing something. I’m thankful and grateful for this moment of “nothingness” 🙂

Enjoy your lives my friends!

 

Yea, I said it!