Friday, October 30, 2015


During her childhood my youngest often asked, "Are you mad mommy?'  This question seemed odd,   I didn't think I was mad.  I certainly didn't feel mad at my kids at the time this was asked.  Looking back I should have tried to figure out why my kids thought I was often angry, but I didn't.

Shortly after the depression lifted, I was at a bank trying to deal with my mortgage.  I went to one branch and they sent me to another.  The second branch sent me to a third and they suggested I go to the branch which had issued the mortgage.  It was very frustrating.  As I left the bank I saw the glass door leading to the parking lot.  All I wanted to do was kick it so hard the door shattered.  Had I acted on it you would have seen RAGE, footage on the 6 o'clock news and probably a broken foot!  Instead I opened the door, walked to my car, and sat, amazed at these rather out-of-control emotions!  It was an "ah ha" moment, where I got why my youngest had asked so many times, "Are you mad mommy?"  I was.  I had a huge well of anger which had been stuck under the lid of depression all those years.

Anger scares the hell out of me.  I avoid it at all costs. Arguments and heated disagreements between anyone are scary too.  Recently I was with my youngest.  She was upset about things I had done in her childhood.  I said, it's ok to be angry with me.  But as she said, it really isn't.  She can't express her anger at me.  No one can.   Not even me.  I'm not exactly sure what will happen.  Will the world explode into a million pieces?  Will I?  What about the other people?

And because anger is so scary, when I feel anger and can't sort it out, I revert to what was always the acceptable behavior from my childhood -- be sad, be depressed, be quiet, tamp the anger down.  I really need to find a better solution!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Overcoming the Habits of Depression

In 1992 I took to my bed and didn't/couldn't get up for two weeks.  It was then that I acknowledged I was probably suffering from depression.  I actually wasn't unhappy, just debilitated.  I read, I wrote in my journal, I tried to figure it all out.  This episode was set off by someone else defining me -- and me not standing up for what I want.

The trigger occurred while I was at a wholesale gift show with people from an antique co-op I was part of.  They were celebrity hounds.  They were going to hang out outside The Golden Globes awards and watch for actors.  I really didn't want to go.  I went to college with Robin Williams; the producer of Dr Kildare was the father of a close friend of mine; the son of the actress who played Josephine the Plummer on those commercials was in my 4th grade class,  To me, celebrities are ordinary people with high profile jobs . . .  and I was hungry!  But they said, "Of course you want to go, you'll have fun."  I didn't argue.  I just let them define me.  Instead of saying, no I don't want to do this, I went.  It was cold.  I was hungry.  I didn't care about seeing celebrities.  And as the night wore on and I didn't have a way to get back to our hotel, I got more and more miserable.

My life might have turned out a whole lot better if I had acknowledge how LIVID I was.  If I had just blown up, gotten mad, thrown things, not apologized for any of it and carried on.  Or if I had gone to therapy to see why this had triggered such a response.  But I didn't.  In my family it was never ok to be angry, while crying and miserable was perfectly acceptable.

In 2001 I had a healing of the depression.  It was wonderful.  The world looked to be a whole lot brighter place, literally.  I no longer heard the tape saying I was lazy, in fact it was (and still is) very quiet in my head.  It was very evident to me, my husband, and my kids that a healing had occurred!

But since that time things have happened that have been tough for me.  Relationship woes, which I wrote about two years ago.  Mom issues, which are currently calling for my attention.  Everyone involved knows I'm no longer depressed.  That is nice.  But the healing is incomplete.  When I am sad, this habit of acting like a depressed person takes over.  It is affecting my ability to get things done and more importantly it is affecting my most precious relationship with my kids.

So I am committed to sorting this out.  I know a therapist.  I will write, which always shows me what is really going on with me.  I will study and pray.  You're invited to come along as I find a way to live the life I want.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Getting My Life in Order

Three weeks ago I started an online course entitled Blogging from the Heart.  Now in general, I like taking classes.  I'm not always real good at finishing them, but I always start out quite gung ho.*  This course started the same, great enthusiasm, lots of note taking and pondering.  Then I noticed something wonderful: I kept going!  I have read all the lessons so far.  I have done all the exercises.  And the weekends are a little sad because there are no lessons then!  It's a first for me.  The only thing I hadn't done is write a new blog post.

Monday thru Friday I get a lovely message in my inbox from Susannah Conway, with a lesson pertaining to that week's topic. So far I have examined blogs I love; written a mission statement; examined why I want to blog; and discovered the unasked, but for me, more important question, "why did you start your blog?" I have also looked at who I am writing for, finding my voice, being original and being vulnerable, plus getting all sorts of tips on writing, etc. This course is amazing!

Today when I opened the email I was particularly struck by the encouragement --
 " . . . hopefully you feel a little more comfortable about sharing your heart on your blog."  
So I came over here, because this is a blog where I have shared my heart.  And I realized this is still a blog where I want to share my heart.  It has been two years since I posted here.  My last series of posts were cathartic.  But also wrung me out.  I guess I needed the break.

This morning I read those old posts and knew it was time to get my life together, as it is now.  New issues.  And to do that I think I need to be a lot kinder to myself.  I have a lot of things I want to accomplish and a tendency, when overwhelmed, to stay in bed, read, or watch netflix.

Today I am giving myself a break -- a break from scolding myself.   From thinking before hand I can't get anything done, so why try.  From all the family members (me included) who have defined me as lazy or unproductive.  From thinking that whatever I do is the wrong thing and whenever I start it is already too late.

Instead I am going to notice the things I do today.  And I am going to rejoice in them.  In my 20's I was a summer camp counselor at a co-ed church camp.  Every Sunday evening we had a staff meeting -- to give needed information and also to share the good things that had happened that week.  The counselor for the littlest boys (6-7 yr olds) shared that each day he looked to find something to be grateful for in each of his campers.  One camper was very challenging.  The whole staff knew about him.  But the counselor said this camper brushed his teeth every day and while it was the only thing he found to be grateful for, at least there was this!  So while I think I will do more today than brushing my teeth, I know there is one thing I can be grateful for in myself!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The Past Two Years

I didn't mean to stop writing this blog.

I think what happened is I actually did write out my pain and sorrow and come to a place of peace.  The relationship I was sorting out did not end, tho I hardly ever thought it would.  It limped along for another year and a half and then six months ago it became loving, trusting, and fun again.  So good, in fact, that I am planning some time in a warmer climate while he has to stay home and work.  That may seem odd, but I have always loved to travel and he has not.  Until I lost trust, I would take off and think nothing about it.  Then I worried what might happen if I was someplace else for an extended period.  I guess I can say the trust is back.  Otherwise I never would have planned this trip.

So relationship woes seem to be at an end.

I am still looking to up my productivity and live a more creative life.  I'm not sure what is needed for that, but I'm open to see where this takes me.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Learning from the movies

I am a sappy romantic.  I love romantic movies and television shows and the idea that people might be fated to be together.  I could name more than a dozen movies with the concept of fateful meeting or staying together despite all odds.  I could also name movies like The Way We Were, Two for the Road and Casablanca, which I also love, where true love did not win out.  It just seems to me that watching someone else on the screen (big or small), can sometimes tell me what is true in my life. 

Today I was wondering what keeps people together, when sometimes the bad memories overwhelm the good.  If two people belong together how do they deal with feelings of disappointment, of potential unrealized?  How do I deal with those things?  How do I reconcile the idea that some people belong together, with my belief that there is not just one person for each of us.  Does fate play a role in real life, the way if often does in the movies?  What keeps couples together?  What has kept us together?  There have been times when I was ready to leave.  Times when he was ready to leave.  And yet, here we are.  Still together.

I guess what I really wish is that I wasn't so aware of the difficult times.  I haven't forgotten them.  I'm not the most forgiving person in the world.  I can hold onto grudges and old hurts.  And while I am very proud of my amazing memory and all the wonderful things of the past, it's not a selective memory, more's the pity!  Where are the machines from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind?

I do not have an answer.  I do not know what is needed of me to let go of the ugly past and keep only the golden shining memories.  And is it realistic to do so?  As with all things in my life I want to work out, I will keep thinking and writing and watching romantic movies to see if I can find the answers. 

Sunday, September 1, 2013


Early on in this month of attempting to get un-stuck, I realized that the whole key to moving ahead  is forgiveness.  There is an important person in my life that I have to forgive. But knowing that and doing it have been a whole 'nother thing. I have been so angry and I have not wanted to forgive.  It just never seemed fair that I have been so hurt and the other person seemed to get off without punishment.

This morning I had a major meltdown.  I was in pain and scared. overwhelmed, hopeless.  Luckily there are people I can turn to who are always there to help, to give comfort and healing thoughts and that was what happened.  But once I had calmed down, I realized I have been so involved in my own hurt and pain that I don't always listen, specially not to the person who I want to forgive.  So I wandered downstairs and said, "I'm sorry,  Do you want to talk about it?'

And I just let the other person talk.  I listened.  I answered when a question was asked or a comment sought.  Interestingly the conversation was actually all about me.  Only this time it wasn't me doing all the talking, or even most of it. 

And what I took from the conversation is that I can forgive without ever saying or thinking that the trespass was ok.  Forgiving is not about saying it's alright when others do or say bad things.  It's about letting go so we can move forward.  And that maybe, in this case, I don't have to consciously forgive.  I can know that forgiveness is what is needed and trust God to get me there in the gentlest way.  That it's possible to get to forgiveness and only after it has been given to realize I am there. 

Saturday, August 31, 2013


I have come to the end of the month.  I wanted to blog every day.  I didn't.  Still I'm really pleased I was able to write as often as I did.  It didn't turn out to be a way to establish my business, which was the inspiration for the daily post goal.  But writing here has been insightful and helpful.  I have gotten no comments and I'm ok about that.  This has gotten me over the thought that only with feedback can my words be validated.  I have written for myself.

Still I have accomplished some business related things: 
I have set up and sold at the flea market 8 times.
I have sold 205 things, that's 205 items out of my studio.
I have made $853, which is way more than I would have made if I spent the time watching netflix!

I discovered a women's group of small business owners, including some artists.  I have connected with a coach.  I have signed up for a retreat to allow me to walk into my dreams.

I haven't made any art.  I haven't wholeheartedly committed to my relationship.  I know the only thing needed to do both is to forgive with my whole heart.  It wasn't an easy thing to discover.  I find it is not an easy thing for me to do.  I am still resisting.  I have a sneaking suspicion that I am the one getting hurt the most.  But I'm not giving up on myself or my goal -- to be creative and happy.  I am just going to have to keep going.