But ya gotta have friends…

A year ago when my husband informed me he wanted a divorce I realized just how isolated I had become. I really only had one person in my local area I would consider a friend. Sure I, like most people in today’s modern society I have “friends” on social media. But I really realized just how alone I was. Fighting this battle alone, left to raise kids alone, with no support system. Nobody to be there to hold me while I cried as I mourned the end of my marriage. Or to cheer for me as I started to gain my feet again. I had my kids and that was it. While I love my kids there is so much that they shouldn’t have to see or feel and their mothers deep mourning is one of them.

I started looking at why I isolated myself, and deciding what I should do about it. Evaluating what kind of people I want in my life and then I slowly started adding people who are kind, generous, funny, lighthearted individuals. People who like me enjoy helping each other, laughing and sharing a good meal. People who aren’t afraid to do dirty work, or cheer me on as I do my work. Finding like minded individuals who like to go out and play at the park or on the beach. Friends who want to hike or fish, dance, listen to music.

The more curious question I find myself pondering is how did I allow myself to become so isolated? How did it become acceptable for me to have no friends who come over and enjoy a BBQ or help bust out projects? How did I make excuses for this behavior that prevented me from having friends? His jealousy and constant accusations made it so uncomfortable after friends would leave that I slowly stopped inviting anyone to be a part of my life. If I went anywhere without him I was accused of having an affair, ironic since he’s the one that wound up cheating. I stopped looking people I met in the eye, I stopped laughing with people, I quit inviting friends over because he would constantly tell me how I was doing something wrong. The manipulation was so intense that I learned to put distance between me and anyone else I may have come in contact with.

About 6 months ago as I was doing therapy I realized just how isolated I had become. I missed the physical connection of friends, family, people you laugh with who enrich your life in a million little ways. I slowly started feeling my way into this space where I am finding friends again. Where I am meeting people who make me laugh. I am enjoying hanging out with people and making friends who are supportive, kind and who can joke without there being fear of belittlement coming at me.

As a friend I am someone who wants to help and support my friends too. It makes me happy to just be able to be there in whatever way possible for my friends. If I can I will. I have learned new healthy boundaries for myself too, and if it’s not possible for me to do something I’m ok with saying no. But for a friend I will go the extra mile.

So if you are a new friend, thanks for being a part of the journey to finding a healthier me. Thanks for helping me step back out of the shadows and for helping me make healthy choices. If you are one of the few who has been there through it and watched from the sidelines thank you for still loving me, and even more for being excited for the changes for the better happening in my life.

Getting relief from chronic pain

As the ache of pain has subsided in my life, both the chronic pain I have lived with and the fierce pain of a shattered heart, I am discovering a new person in my skin. One with drive and passion and a sense of adventure. A friend says let’s go and I say yes instead of “if I’m having a good day”. That in itself is amazing, but the why is even more amazing!

Back in December of 2018 while my world was crumbling I took a leap of faith and joined a gym. So outside my comfort zone that I didn’t know if I would continue, or if I would even accomplish much. I mean I still have fibromyalgia and there are still pain days, but I had to do something different. I couldn’t sit by on the sidelines of life anymore… Wondering… Dreaming… And hoping for something better to come along. I had to take control and do it! I had started taking CoreAo on the 31st of July, the infussion of anti inflammatory properties helped my body so much that it gave me movement back. So I was primed and ready to go. I also hired a personal trainer, and my first trainer was amazing, guiding me through motions that were completely new! Her schedule got busy as she entered a competition and I switched trainers. I opted to switch to my friend who also has been cupping me to help with problem areas. She is learning all about fibro in a very detailed way. Learning some of the insane ways that fibro reacts and what causes more inflammation and what to avoid. Let me tell you folks, don’t let fibro hold you stagnant. It’s the kiss of death. Moving hurts, doing to much hurts, being still hurts.

The start of the journey in healing

As I have progressed on this journey I have found that my emotional torment of an unfaithful husband who was controlling and manipulative contributed a good deal to my physical pain. It magnified how much pain I was in and how my body responded to pain on any level. The body has a natural fight or flight response and stress is a trigger for that response. However when you are living in a bad situation that maybe you mentally aren’t acknowledging your body still has the triggers and is storing the response which is then converted to pain.

When we start living more authentically and relieving the stress we find the pain starts to daminish. Pain receptors are tied to fascia, and fascia is our bodies first response in the fight or flight trigger. Fascia is a connective tissue that is throughout our bodies. In every person I know with fibromyalgia they have bound fascia. Bound fascia triggers pain.

As I have worked through emotional triggers, and worked on fixing my fascia, my inflammation through out my body and cleaned up my diet I am down to manageable pain levels. I have an average pain day of 2 on bad days and they are few and far between. I now am working out lifting weights building muscles, and working on my fascia every day. Not a day goes by that I don’t work on something with my body.

I’m down from a size 20 to a size 12/14. But even more importantly I’m feeling free. I’m free of pain, free of weight, and building muscle and feeling like a whole new me. I laugh easily now. I have more energy to do the fun things and less desire to be home bound. I love exploring and doing something new with my new found energy.

The knowledge I have gained combined with my coaching certifications are what is propelling me to help others in the kind of pain I lived with for to many years. If you suffer chronic pain and want a coach to help get you on track get in touch with me.

Another job…

Aside from working at the gym several days a week I recently was hired to be the Marketing & Advertising representative for Our Soul Oasis, the e-zine I write for. As the e-zine has grown I have picked up more business and blogging has taken a little back seat.

Advertising & Marketing Representative

I love this e-zine and helping others gain publicity for their businesses is a wonderful way to spend my day.

We are building up to a busy fall starting with a giveaway that will be see on national TV. I am participating in the give away, with a free intuitive reading as well as a coaching session. You will have to go to Our Soul Oasis to enter the contest. Then we have our regular editions coming out and a shoppers catalog for the holidays!

All of this is happening all while I’m trying to finalize the divorce, raising teens and preparing to move closer to my family back out west coast. My kids and I decided that family was most important, my sister had a baby and my brother and his family moved closer to her. We knew the time was coming for us to pack up and go back towards family. Having people you can trust and build on is going to be of the utmost importance as we rebuild our lives.

I love blogging, and will continue to do so, even if it is sporadic right now with life being messy. So stay tuned to learn more about all the ongoing events. I am certain there will be some adventures to tell shortly.

A fine line

I don’t think I ever fully grasped the saying “its a fine line between love and hate” until now.

Yesterday as I stood in my half renovated kitchen angry at the entire situation I find myself in. Angry at the man who put me here and angry at the world that just moves on even with my heart still shattered into a million pieces, it dawned on me how a person can do both. I do. I hate this man and yet I still love him.

I stood there washing the dishes that had piled up while I worked because every adult in my house works and its just two teens who have had to take on more than any teens should be forced to. I saw clearly how much I hate this man because his selfish choices are hurting me and my kids. How much I hate who he has become and I hate how much he hurts our kids. I despise this person. This person doesn’t deserve my awesome kids, the ones I am raising alone now. The ones who step up in a million tiny ways. The ones who see me come home at night and know how exhausted I am. The kids who see the tears I can’t hold back or hide. So as I stood there washing dishes preparing to finish the renovations on this kitchen so that we can have some semblance of normal in an otherwise insane world I sobbed. Washing dishes, being in the kitchen used to be my favorite thing. It was the place I showed my family my love in all the home cooked meals, in all the moments spent together laughing and cooking. It was the heart of our family, he would come in and wrap his arms around me while I cooked or washed dishes kissing the back of my neck and telling me how much he appreciated me. That was before. Before he walked out. Before he stopped caring. Now I am left to pick up the pieces and he just ignores us as if the last 25 years meant nothing. As if all those promises didn’t matter.

So I angry cried. The injustice of everything happening has me seeing just how easy it is to hate this man for doing all this to our family.

It is easy to hate in these instances and harder to find the ways to be the loving kind and compassionate person I strive to be. It is hard to admit that I also still love this man. He is the father of my kids and the man I promised to love forever. His choices cut my soul and his lies and the lies of his new girlfriend rip my battered and bruised heart even more. I however can not deny that I still love him, thus causing the paradox of love and hate in my heart. Hate is an ugly thing, it festers like a tiny sliver just under the skin. left untreated it will cause infection that will ruin your soul. Hate can be a good driving force to get things done, but using it in such a way only feeds it instead of diminishing it. Hating him only causes me more pain, and yet I still can’t get it out of my heart.

So I went to bed praying for my husband, Because we are still married, albeit seperated and on our way to divorce, I suppose since he wont talk to me. I prayed for him to see the truth of his actions. I prayed for him to find himself (the true self that he has always been) and I prayed for him to find forgiveness for himself. I quit praying for him to come back to me because the truth is each day he chooses anyone else over his wife and kids is another day he chooses to hurt us and I just don’t see any way back from that. But I do hope that one day, sooner rather than later, he gets real professional help and can start to make amends for the sake of our kids. That one day He will choose to see all the hurt he caused and he will choose to start to make it right.

As for me, I am still angry today. angry that he has this much control over me, angry that I am still so hurt by all of this. Angry that I am in this situation. Angry that I can’t just walk away from all we had planned together too. Angry that I allowed myself to be financially dependant on a man who promised to love me and take care of me forever. I chose to stay home and raise our kids, but he also chose for me to do so and then he walked out knowing that I would have no way to support myself or our kids. I am working hard to change that, but entry level jobs don’t pay much and teens still need me. I am still homeschooling which means that in my “spare” time I am working on all the other things that take priority. It’s like doing the job of a handful of people only I am one person.

Now I understand fully how you can love and hate a person. I try to focus on the love but everything is a balance. I can’t ignore the hate either. I just hope I can learn to not allow it to consume me, festering with infection.

The fallout is always the kids.

Recently my daughter felt the need to take to social media and put it out there just how bad she feels about her father’s choices and how it makes her feel unimportant. How heartbreaking it’s been for her and her younger brother.

This is something I struggle with because I see the pain it’s caused them every single day. I watch the little ways that they both have changed. They are less trusting, less carefree. They both see how hard I’m trying and they both are stepping up in ways that makes me feel both proud and a little guilty because they shouldn’t have to. It was our job as parents to protect them from this and his choice to walk away wasn’t just from me, he walked away from them too. All the things that they expected him to be there for; birthdays, holidays, driving, graduating, celebrations, weddings. The list goes on and on.

I know for myself I never imagined doing any of the things I’m doing alone now. So I can understand their anger and hurt. My goal is to try and get them through the hurt and anger without belittling their feelings.

They are not children, they are teens. They understand far more than most people realize. The hardest thing I’ve had to do is listen to their anger and not feed it. The truth is they feel angry about all the same things I do. So not feeding the anger but rather trying to explain that they have a right to their feelings, but let’s try to find some compassion. Trying to encourage them to respond if he decides to reach out is hard. They feel like it’s never enough and the truth is it’s not. But if it’s all he can do then it’s something. I ponder if that’s even my job, helping them hold compassion for a man who walked away and moved on with his life like none of us mattered? All I can think is that eventually they may wish they had any relationship with him and if I don’t foster some compassion for him then will they ever accept what he can offer?

I don’t know if I’m doing it right but I’m doing this dance to the best of my ability. I’m trying to help them heal the hurt and anger while trying to heal my own hurt and anger. I am trying to make sure I do not put to much on them, but I also can’t do everything either. It’s a balancing act that some days I feel I fail at miserably and then other times I think I’m doing it pretty well.

I’m proud of my kids for speaking up and owning their hurts and pain. I am also incredibly sad that they have to. This isn’t always the man their dad was, this was exactly the kind of man he despised. How does a person become the type of person they once despised? That I don’t have the answer to.

I am a single mom now and that role is exhausting. I get tired of being told that I’m going to be ok. Nothing about this is ok. It’s just the only option I have and I’m determined to do the best I can at it. I won’t ever feel good about being forced into this situation but I’m glad that my kids know how much I love them and how hard I’m trying to take care of them. I’m proud of the fact that they know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I will always take care of them. I will fight for them and fight the world if I have to on their behalf.

Deep thoughts

The time line of my life is marked in joys and sorrows just like everyone else’s, but I find myself going back over all these moments with a finer tooth comb than i ever did before.

I am struggling with questions I will never know the answers to. Did I ever really know the man I married and lived with?

When did the cheating really start? How many lies did he tell? How many lies did I believe?

One thing I know for certain I loved him with my whole heart. I respected him and was supportive of every job change, every move. I was supportive of his choices and he made many without even considering me. I forgave and forgave because that’s what the creator calls us to do. I honored him and loved him and chose him over and over again.

I didn’t even always choose me and my health, he came first then my kids. Never me.

Why is it that we women think that’s the right order of things? Our partner should be our equal not one above or below. Even the creator gave us instruction on the roles for husband and wife, but says he took the rib to create woman so that we were equal and that women should be protected, and cherished. He didn’t do either of these things in our marriage. More often than not he left everything on my shoulders, o hey I’m taking this new job so we have to pack and move by this date. It fell on my shoulders to prepare our children, pack a household and take care of moving all utilities or canceling subscriptions.

It’s no different now that he’s chosen an affair and new woman. He walked out left me saddled with an insurmountable task of home repairs, didn’t lift a finger to help after hurricane Florence came barreling through and decimated our town. He hasn’t seen his kids in almost 9 months. Realizing that he is not a man of integrity is shattering, and telling about his character.

I no longer am willing to put forth so much effort to make his life easier or better. He walked away. He chose his life. I’m now choosing mine.

Happiness is just around the corner for me. I can feel it building. I can feel the joy bubbling just under the surface. I am finding more moments of peace. I have tried everything to reconcile and he refuses to even talk so it’s time to move forward and teach my children that you don’t need a man to make you happy. Neither do you need a looser who cheats on you and destroys your self esteem.

If your partner isn’t bringing out the best in you and isn’t treating you as an equal please get help. Don’t wait. Don’t keep hoping for the best. If you value your partner communicate. If your partner doesn’t communicate that’s a good indicator of where they place their values. Believe their actions, not their lip service.

The more work I do on me the more I’m seeing that the amount of love I gave him was all the love I should have been giving myself. I need to love me that well and not give it away to anyone else. Nobody can complete us, they will eventually leave and if we are not whole the void they leave will be insurmountable. When we stop looking for love outside of ourselves, but rather find the light of the creator deep within we can heal old wounds, and love ourselves as the beautiful creation we are. Find your worth alone before you try to find your worth to anyone else.

It’s not all roses…

When you are constantly looking for life to be better somewhere else your problem isn’t that it isn’t good where you are it’s that you fail to water it, tend it and nurture where you are.

When I discovered my husband’s infidelity I felt like it was my fault. Like I didn’t do enough or say the right things. In doing all my work I’m seeing that that’s insane. I was an amazing wife, loving supportive and doing my best despite him choosing not to water or tend his garden. I still love him but he’s choosing to look for greener pastures leaving me to tend our garden alone. Despite my plea’s for counseling to help us get through it he’s choosing a different path, and yes it hurts. I devoted my life to raising our children, supporting him in every job change and move for these jobs.

Don’t get me wrong I was far from perfect. I have my faults. My chronic disease of fibromyalgia caused me so much intense pain I had to stop doing much of the things I once loved. I couldn’t stand and cook for hours or do all the shopping all the time. I couldn’t care for my family the way I once did. The pain left me exhausted, cranky, and alone. This is something I realized, I was always alone.

As I’ve been journaling through this separation something I realized was that at the height of my worst the person who vowed to always be my support wasn’t. He was busy watering the garden somewhere else, and he left me alone to navigate the pain and my feelings of being worthless because of this disease and what it was taking from me. He wasn’t being my partner.

When you spend your time watering the lawn in your neighbor’s yard then complaining that your grass isn’t green that’s where you are missing the opportunity to make your life everything you want. When you don’t communicate and don’t put in the effort into loving the life you have you are missing the chance to see it bloom into everything the creator promised for your life.

I’m now watering my own grass, tending my own garden and giving myself the love I deserve. My heart is still shattered because I still love my estranged husband. But I have to take care of me. In tending my own garden I’m finding physical healing. I’ve been almost completely symptom free for nearly 8 months. I’m building a new body and healing in ways I didn’t know I could. Being symptom free is amazing. It’s freed me up in ways I never imagined.

I’d love to help coach you if you are struggling with a chronic illness like fibro.