When I’m asked about Marriage…

My brother came to visit this weekend.  It was lovely to hang out and not have anything else going on (for once).  To get to sit down, chit chat about everything and nothing, watch a flick, eat some good food… it was needed.  🙂

One of the topics that came up – quite often, actually – was marriage.  His in particular, but also the concept in general.  Would I ever get married again?  I think I’d resigned myself to stop giving advice in regards to marriage about 4-5 years ago.  I think it was the moment my second marriage ended that it dawned on me that perhaps I shouldn’t be giving out advice.  That maybe marriage wasn’t meant for me  😀  But that’s ultimately, selling myself short.

My first marriage – I was young.  I’d been with the man for 6 years and felt that I was making a sound decision.  And – in the scheme of things – had I not married him, I’d not have had my daughter.  So – I can’t say it was all bad.  And how could I have possibly known that marriage would turn the man into someone else?  We were only married for two years – so in general – I don’t typically count it for much.

My second marriage lasted 12 years.  I came into my own.  Grew up.  Really learned what it meant to become a wife… and a mother.  I was good at it.  All of it.  I packed lunches with love notes, I kept a tidy house, always had everyone’s favorite food and beverages stocked on hand… Anything that was asked of me – was handled.  I am naturally quite affectionate and always up for anything – be it adventuring somewhere, or snuggles on a couch.  I was always loyal and never strayed.  Did my best to never do anything that would disrespect myself or my relationship.  It was this relationship that taught me the true meaning behind being a partner.  What it meant to stay … even when everything tumbled around you.  Perhaps I’m an odd duck – I don’t look back at my marriage as a failure at all.  I look back and see it as a stepping stone for me becoming who I am today.  A strong, independent, caring, giving, funny woman.  Someone who always tries to see the good in others or in a situation.  And in many ways – I was always her… but time has helped me in many ways.  I’m more patient now.  I listen better.  I speak up more and try and compromise more.  I’ve also learned that all of those expectations that I had of myself in my marriage … were both not enough – and too much.  You see… I could have never known that we’d have a son.  I’d have never been able to see into the future and see how losing that son would break us all.  What’s interesting tho… we’re not broken anymore.

My ex and I manage to co-parent pretty well.  Of course there are times when we frustrate each other… but don’t we all?  That is the joy of being human.  We work together as a team to provide for our kids in the best way that we can.  And for the most part… I consider myself lucky to have him in my life.  I know that my children will never wonder, as I did, why their dad doesn’t want to be in their life.  He wants it.  He tells them regularly how much he loves them and I’m sure he wishes he had the ability to provide more.  I respect him for that.  And what’s interesting – he makes a point to let me know just how much he respects me for all that I did.  I know his fiance gets uncomfortable when she hears him say how amazing of a wife I was… I wish she understood that him sharing that doesn’t in any way undermine his love and devotion for her.  And it’s not him comparing her and I in any way.  She’s amazing – and we’re all incredibly grateful that she’s in our lives.

Would I marry again?   Yes.  And that’s a resounding YES.  But with lots of caveats and me saying “however and but”.  When it was brought up this weekend, my response was leaning more towards a NO.  It surprised my brother to hear it.  He saw me when I was married.  He knows what kind of partner I am to someone.  My NO wasn’t because I’m scared of it.  I would love to find myself in a situation in the future where I had a partner.  A true partner.  Someone to laugh with and grow old with.  To cook for and travel with.  Someone who actually understands me (as I’m not convinced either of my ex husbands ever really did).  Someone who lets me into the deeper darker regions of their heart – someone who trusts that I would never intentionally hurt them and would lay my life on the line to keep them safe and happy.  Ultimately – someone who feels as I do.  But the thing is… I’d have to be absolutely sure that they reciprocated those thoughts and feelings with me.  I’d have to feel safe again.  Safe enough to allow myself to be vulnerable again.  It’s possible… and ultimately, I know the right man is out there for me.  So who knows… maybe some day.

I think the other thing that doesn’t sit well with me – is what’s the damn rush?  LOL.  I mean – yea – i’m the girl who likes to know where she stands in a relationship.  In fact, I’d say for women like me ,it’s why we ask to put labels on our relationships to begin with – so we understand what’s expected of us.  What role are we to play in this relationship?  Once we know … we get to what I like to call “the coasting stage”.  This stage is bliss.  Where you can spend many years happily coasting along with someone.  To me – this is the zone to aim for.  If things progress from there – cool beans – but if they don’t – i’m ok with that too!  Because at that point – you’re happy in the coasting stage so it doesn’t really matter.

I really AM an odd duck.  Between my buddy M, my brother, and a few other male friends, I’ve had the privilege of seeing what it’s like to date women.  And can I just say – for the record – Women can be NUTS.  Seriously … nuts.  Yea – men can be crazy too – don’t even GET me started on some of the horrendous dates I’ve been on.  But some of the stories I’ve heard – some of the behavior I’ve witness from my fellow ladies… DAMN.  And if that’s what men have been dealing with – then I’d wager that dating me would come as a bit of a shock to the system.  As I’m VERY different.  But then again – they’d probably be more likely to assume I’m just like every other woman out there – and not likely get the chance to show them that I’m not.

So … brother dear… when I don’t give you advice on your new marriage… it’s not because I don’t care, nor is it because I lack advice to actually GIVE.  Marriages… hell – relationships are all about growth and learning.  These tests you face – are yours, and I’ll cheer you on from the sidelines – but I won’t necessarily share with you.  And who knows – maybe someday – i’ll join you in the journey again.  I’m pretty damn happy and content where things are right now, and that’s certainly enough for me.

 

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Content & Happy

Hehe… the joy of being me, is that there always seems to be a billion and five thoughts running through my head at one time.  For the mind of a creative… thoughts generally spin out and in like water rushing from a flowing river.  Sometimes they stay on topic, sometimes they do not.  There are pros and cons to this… from a job perspective, it means that I almost always have a new swirl of ideas and brainstorm fodder to pull from – which is always a good thing.  On the personal spectrum, it’s not always a good thing, because it often means that I overthink things, or come across as the random A.D.D girl to some friends.  Which I’m almost positive leaves them thinking I’m a bit of a dork – but I’m ok with that.  Cuz ultimately – I AM a bit of a dork.

I’ve spent the past few days, sick.  I swear – it’s been the year of the cold and flu in my house and it gets old fast.  I’m home from work today – currently perched on my couch with my laptop and a new series I’m enjoying playing on the television.  I was pretty stressed and anxious yesterday – but today – i’m feeling relaxed, content and happy.  It’s nice.

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I can’t believe the year is almost over.  We’re about to go into 2018, can you believe it?!  It’s interesting to look back at times, see how much has changed… how far I’ve come.  Both over the years, as well as over such a short amount of time. I’m so pleased.  Who knew life would work out this way? 🙂

Much love to you all.  I hope you all have a wonderful day.

Goodnight Neverland.

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When you decide to give in to hope

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Hope is a funny thing.  It’s just a desire or a want.  And when you decide to just give in to it, you throw your hands in the air and just wait for whatever is going to happen to actually happen.  A person’s hopes and dreams are ever changing. morphing as you age and experience more of life.  It almost makes you wonder how anyone is supposed to keep up.

When I look into my future… I’m hopeful over so many things:  Success for my side business, Happiness and health for my children, Continued success in my day job.  I’m hopeful that I will continue to learn and grow.  That someday, I’ll master the art of healthy communication, and find myself surrounded in healthy relationships.  I’ve learned so much – thanks to counseling and reflection, but I’d be kidding myself if I thought that was enough.  Now it all comes down to continued practice and learning. And sure, I could stress about it, worry over it, try and find a way to gain some sense of control over it all – or I could just throw my hands into the air and give in.  Give my all.  and just be patient.  It’s not something I do well.  Patience isn’t a virtue I possess typically – but maybe that’s the point of this lesson.

I’ve got some christmas music playing, and I’m snuggled under a blanket on my couch as I write this post.  The kids aren’t home for the day yet and I’m enjoying some quiet time.  I should be down in the lab… I still have quite a bit on my to-do list to tackle before my event at the Pottery Barn on Sunday, but I think I needed to take a moment and just let my thoughts flow first.

I love the labspace for my business.  It’s taken over the downstairs of my home.  Stainless steel tables, melters, shelves full of bottles and barrels of all sizes, jars of colors lining a wall.  It always smells different in there.  Yesterday it smelled like apple cinnamon… today it’s a white sage – very clean smell.  Of course, the smells change based on what I’m making or packaging or curing at the moment.  It’s become my playroom for art projects and fun experiments.  I have a new experiment brewing in my head that I can’t wait to attempt.  It’s funny to think that this time last year, the lab didn’t exist downstairs.  I was just messing around in my kitchen.  How far we’ve come in such a short amount of time.  It’s funny – I get so impatient with my progress – the business is not (yet) where I thought it would be.  BUT… then I think back to the days I started and ran JW.  It took me 3 years to build that company up enough to be stable and consistent.  And in my first 2 years, I made a couple decent flubs of mistakes…. learning curves!  So I’m trying to cut myself some slack this time around.  But it’s hard.  Damn that aries impatience.  🙂

But we’ll get there… once again – this is something I just have to give in to hope on.  Keep busting my butt …. it’ll come about in it’s own time.  And when it does – this dream will be a reality.  The dream of having my own shop.  To leave the tech world for a while, work the shop, write a book… maybe consult here and there on those special projects the tech world needs me for.  I’ll get there.  Just keep swimming…

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Update: It’s been a while

First off, I suppose I should apologize.  You see, I use writing as a release.  When I’m feeling down, or lost or anxious… writing helps me find a way to vocalize whatever it is that’s weighing me down.  And once I can do that, once I process it – I can let it go.  But in the past few months, I’ve been on a bit of a rollercoaster, and haven’t really had the desire to do much writing about it.  So.. here it goes… a brief update on all the busy happenings that have been my life since I last wrote.

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My side business is doing very well.  I imagine at some point towards the end of the year, that it will no longer be a side business… but something a bit more on the main business side of things.  It’s exciting and has been a lot of fun.  My best friend and my daughter are both heavily involved and it brings me a lot of joy and fulfillment to work on it with them.  Not to mention, I can pour my creativity into every new recipe or batch.  I won’t lie, a LOT of my time has been poured into my business… between making the products and making sure they have the proper cure times, researching recipes and new products to add to my lines, testing batches, labeling & packaging, shipping, marketing, attending pop ups or shows… it’s a LOT of work!

I had a bit of a health scare for a few months.  Ended with me having a procedure that, at least so far, has given me some answers.  I’m learning how to manage.  Some days, I have more energy than others, but I’ll be damned if I’m just going to sit by and feel sorry for myself over it.  I’m unique. LOL.  That will have to do.

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I’ve attended a few events, a fair, have visited a few farmer’s markets and even had the privilege of participating in an east indian wedding… such an incredible experience. And the photos.. let me tell you!  All the colors!!!  Such a treat.  It’s been a lovely summer so far, and it’s not quite over yet.

My daughter and I are planning a mural on the long fence that is on one side of our property.  We’ve got a few scenes we’ll work into it, and we’ve spent a decent amount of time planning it out and discussing each scene.  I’ll be buying the paint & supplies tomorrow and we’re both pretty excited to get it going… even if it will take a while to complete it.

Mid-way through August, I’ve rented a little cabin for a couple of days.  I’m hoping the new Kayaks that I’ve ordered will be here, but if not, I’ll use one of the old ones.  I’m really looking forward to it.  To get out, explore… whether it’s by car, foot or boat.  To have nothing pressing, no rush to do anything except what I want.  There’s even a hot tub… so if I want to relax and soak under the stars… I can.  🙂  Absolute bliss.  I’m craving a little quiet.  To slow down and just watch the world around me.  I’ll be sure to bring my camera.  I like to capture that which inspires me.

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My day job has been going really well – we’ve been taking on a few projects that really have me excited.  I’m enthusiastic to see how they go… projects often morph and take on a new direction from how we first imagined them.  It’s a bit like watching your child grow up – and now you can’t really control what direction they take.

I’m still consistently losing 2-5 pounds each week.  I’m pleased by that.  I know I’ll plateau again… will just keep going.  The way I see it, it took me a while to put on the weight – going to take just as long to take it off.

I’ve had an interesting couple of weeks actually – my roommate/nanny is going to be moving out at the end of August.  There’s been a little drama here and there in regards to that… so I’ll be happy to have the house back down to me and the kids.  Shoot – I can’t wait to feel comfortable getting juice from kitchen in my undies again! LOL.  But between her drama, and some drama with our neighbor behind us who wasn’t happy when my daugher washed the car and streams of water went into his yard, and the fact that I had to once again stand up to the ex to remind him that I don’t deserve to be treated with verbal abuse when he’s not getting his way… I’m so over it.  And truthfully, my confidence has taken a hit this week.

Normally, I don’t let things like this get to me.  Not really.  I may be upset for a few minutes, but truthfully, I calm down pretty quick and get over it.  But people this week, have left me feeling a bit confused, and more than a little lost.  I don’t think I was expecting it, so of course, it tripped me up a bit.  But I’m working through it.  I think it’s just a moment when I have to consciously decide that I will continue to just be me.  To unashamedly… Be. Me.  To do what I always do… to keep on keeping on.  Take me as I am, or leave me be.  I don’t think that can be a poor choice.  I suppose it would depend on how emotionally healthy “Me” is in this scenario… but in this circumstance… I feel pretty good about that.

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Frustration, moods, effort, relationships and birthdays

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I’m in a mood today.  And I can’t quite even put my finger on what that mood actually is. I’m frustrated, and antsy, I’m contemplative… really – what it comes down to – I’m craving attention.  A sincere, adult, no ulterior motives, genuine connection with someone. I don’t know… Ever since I decided to take a long ass break away from the dating scene – I’ve discovered that I go through phases.  Sometimes, I’m perfectly content with my social life.  I have a lot of amazing friendships that I cherish and adore.  I get out, I’m also quite busy as a mom and an employee and business owner.  But sometimes… I crave something different.  A real connection with someone, at more than just a surface-deep level. Sometimes I’ll meet someone and think – ooh! There’s something here!  And the moment I give into it, is often the moment they decide they have far more important things to be spending their time on.  Or… they’ll tell me that they are interested in pursuing something with me, but then the communication will lag in such a way that I have no choice but to believe otherwise.  It always seems to be hot or cold for me.  When I DO find someone who’s wanting to put in the effort.. there always seems to be a catch or some very serious red flags.  Perhaps they are an alcoholic, or just got out of a relationship a few months back, or are deep in the throes of working through something serious, like depression or PTSD from American politics and can’t seem to figure out how to move forward from it.   It’s enough to make a woman think she should just stick to being alone.  Maybe the dating world has changed in a way I didn’t expect.  Perhaps the concept of putting in a consistent effort on someone is outdated.

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Effort.  Have we all just become lazy?  Do people not feel like they need to put effort into building and maintaining their relationships anymore?  And I’m not talking about just love relationships here, friendships too.  It was my mentor, who maybe 4 years ago, told me that in order to really network from a business/career standpoint, that any relationships you make, have to be maintained.  Like my garden.  If I neglect those relationships, they’ll go stale.  When a relationship goes stale, it takes even MORE effort to attempt to jump start them.  Her standpoint was that it took less effort to maintain than it did to try and go back and repair them.  I think I took this viewpoint to heart… with all of my relationships.  I’m not saying I’m perfect here… as life happens and sometimes you just have to ride the wave that you’re on and let cards fall where they may.  But it was this advice that led me to really look at the relationships in my life.  Which ones were toxic, or one-sided?  Which ones were weeds that were choking out the rest of my gorgeous garden and what could I do about it?

The ex, his fiance and I have managed to come to a new place in our relationships with each other.  Co-parenting is some seriously tough stuff – and I’m learning more than ever, that just because he is my ex – doesn’t mean he’s not going to continue to be an active participant in my life.  So I’ve really focused on trying to connect with his fiance.  She’s a lovely woman – truly, someone I could be friends with if things weren’t what they are.  For the longest time, she’s been leery of me.  I think she worried that I still wanted to be with the ex.  HA! No thanks!! It’s only in the last month or so, that she’s started to thaw towards me.  I won’t lie, I’ve laid on the charm in order to disarm her a little more and it’s working.  When they drop off my son now, they hang out for a little while and chit chat about the week ahead, and various things going on in their world.  It’s a relief. My ex husband and I will NEVER get back together … this I am absolutely, 100 percent positive on.  BUT… He’s been one of my very best friends for almost half my life.  It’s bothered me a lot in the last 4 years, that that seemed lost.  But lately – I’m seeing it come back – in a new form.  And it’s nice.  I missed him in that way.  And I like her for him.  They seem to be good together.  Is it weird that I can say that?

Overall, it was a good weekend.  This coming weekend is my show at Pottery Barn for my side business.  Then the weekend after that, I’ll be celebrating my birthday with friends. Holy cow I’m officially turning 35 this year!!   My friend J is hosting a party at my house.  She’s invited 100 people!  I know not all will show (THANK GOD!) but it should be really interesting and exciting to see how it all goes!  Then after the party, a smaller group of us are going to go out and sing Karaoke.  Hehe… my friends are such good sports.  I know most of them hate karaoke, but they encourage me to get out and sing.  They know it was once a HUGE part of my life, and I’m grateful that they continue to push and encourage me to not give it up.  My daughter joined choir this year.  She seems to be enjoying it, although she made a comment on Friday that I had to sit and talk to her about.  I guess she’s been nervous to sing around me.  She says I’m intimidating to someone who struggles with pitch, and feels that she’s never going to learn to project her voice.  I offered to help her in any way that I can.  I’d be happy to work through some scales and help her learn to control her diaphragm a bit more.  Lord knows, when I need to be, I can be LOUD.  😀  She seemed to perk up at that one.  She wants to be able to earn a slot for a solo.  It’s funny how it brings me back. As a teenager, I was in every choir, I took professional lessons 3 days a week, I was in as many musicals and music productions I could get my hands on.  I think she’ll find her own on this one.  But I love that my child has yet another common interest as me.  🙂

Well – I better get to working.  Hope you all have a lovely day!  Much love to all of you in Neverland.  Talk soon!

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