Archive | April 2015

This Guy I Know

There’s this guy I know who has been a part of my life since we were about 8 years old. We went to school together all the way through high school and then lost touch. He went off to college and I became a mother. We didn’t see or speak to each other again until 20 years later, and there was no one I was more excited to see than him.

You know how when you’re a little kid, and you have your bestest friend ever or someone you will call on to come play outside or confide all your secrets to – well, that wasn’t him. However, if you were to make a list of friends from your childhood of kids you always thought were in your “circle” that you never minded if they were around or part of the group or just in eyeshot…he was always on that list. I guess there was just an air about him that I picked up on back then. Something that I would never be able to explain as a child, or a teenager – just an innate sense that there was something.

Over the years, I often wondered about him. If he was still in the same area, whether or not he got married, had a family, moved out of state. You may recall, before all the social networks, there was a website called “Classmates”. It allowed you to put your name in a database according to the school you went to and the year you graduated. I believe you had the option to make your information public in case people wanted to get in touch with you or you could click on the names of registered people and the website would send them an email letting them know so and so is looking for you. When I signed up on that site, he was one of the first people I looked for.

It’s now been just about 7 years since our renewed friendship and I would never have been able to predict just how important he’s become to me. I can’t imagine going any significant amount of time without speaking to him – which is mostly via text because he is always working. Even when he’s on vacation with his family for only a week, I am losing my mind waiting for him to get back so I can tell him whatever funny or dramatic story happened while he was inaccessible.

He has without a doubt become my bestest friend ever. He probably doesn’t believe me when I tell him that he is the only person on Earth that knows 99.9% of everything about me. There’s just some sort of connection that made me so comfortable in confiding things to him that I would not tell anyone else. In short, he’s become my confidant, my listening ear, my guru, my therapist, my consigliere, and more importantly – my family.  Whatever the topic may be, there’s always some piece of sound advice that he gives that just makes more sense in the way he says it than if I were to have thought of it myself.

Now, I’d like to say I am all this and more to him, I’m sure on some level I am. After all, he’s a man and men don’t always pour out their feelings and emotions the way women do. But when he does, I appreciate the fact that he is letting me see a side to him that I’m sure he keeps out of view from others. It’s rare that you really get a glimpse into what a man feels and thinks, and it’s actually very endearing.  And it makes me feel extra special when he let’s his guard down with me.

The hard part about this friendship is that we live in different states and so I don’t get to see him often. He doesn’t get time for too many phone calls because his job is beyond ridiculous and he’s basically always working. Plus, being in my current situation, I can’t really just pick up the phone and talk to another man without it causing some type of fallout – unless of course it’s a relative. Also, probably as a result of being in my situation, I feel a certain level of consideration for his wife’s feelings because I wouldn’t want her to think there was anything more than a sincere friendship, so I don’t bother him when he’s on family time. Not to mention, from a woman’s viewpoint, I don’t know that I’d be so comfortable with my man (of the future) being on the phone with another woman, even if I knew her and was friends with her, no matter how innocent.

With all of the above being said, this post is being written as part of #BeWoW which stands for Be Wonderful on Wednesday. In which we are asked to share something inspirational, motivational, encouraging or something that just brings a feeling of wonderful to our lives. This friendship is all of that to me and so much more, and although I try to sneak that in there every once in a while, I’m not sure he gets it. So, why not post for the world to see?

I’m letting you know, ever so publicly, that you truly mean the world to me and I am so grateful to God for reconnecting us. There has not been one day that has passed that I am not aware that there is a reason and purpose for you being such a strong presence in my life – and I am beyond blessed for that. You are a wonderful human being, a wonderful man, son, brother, husband, father and friend.  I hope you know and believe that.  It’s something you should be told often and by many.  I am also fully aware that you are gonna have at me with this, telling me how sensitive I am – that’s fine – I can take it. 🙂

For everyone else who reads this, my advice to you is to let the wonderful people in your life know what they mean to you – whether it be a friend or family or someone you only know on social media. If they make you feel wonderful…let them know and reciprocate.

Have a Wonderful Wednesday!

I’ve Said Too Much

RonovanWrites Weekly Haiku Challenge #41

Prompts: Want & Tatters

Set in wanton ways,
A wood chipper turns me on,
Oh, how it tatters.

Thus, I’ve said too much. 🙂

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For more of my Haiku, click here.

Damaged Goods

Recently, I’ve been noticing a few personality traits that I now realize are related to my being in an abusive relationship for so long.  None of them are new but I am just now seeing how so much of me is netted into this lifestyle.  A little over a year ago, I had written a blog post called Survival Mode after reading another blog post (That Wasn’t Me…This Is Me), which triggered an understanding/clarity of how “we” -the abused- get sucked in so deep to a point where we are almost physically and mentally incapable of getting out.

People who have never experienced Domestic Violence or abuse in any form, are typically the ones spewing all the oh so popular catchphrases, such as…Why didn’t she just leave?  What those people don’t understand is that it’s so much more than a woman saying, I love him, and then all of a sudden – CURSE PUNCH KICK – and her saying, I still love him.  I’m sure there is a percentage of that scenario but it’s not the norm.  At least not for me, and I never understood that mindset.

Once upon a time, I was normal.  I don’t know when exactly because apparently I’ve been carrying the burden of abuse around for such a long time.  Let’s just go with the topic of boyfriends.  Okay.  So, I was normal.  Dated guys.  Never got hit.  Never got mistreated.  Never got spoken down to.  And then I meet HIM.  Once he realizes I liked him, the game begins.  I chase, he ignores.  I ignore, he chases.  I date someone else, now he’s in love and can’t live without me.  Now, this could have all been part of his own personal issues with shyness and not knowing how to relate to females in general, or was it premeditated?

The beginning of the end.

When we officially started dating, we had known each other for about three years.  So, he knew my background, my ex-boyfriends, who I associated with.  Being that he was telling me I was his one and only, he slowly started to manipulate his way into my every day.  And since it was a new relationship, seeing each other every day is normal, right? This is where the manipulation began.  It was slow but very steady.  Convincing me not to talk to other guys because I was his girlfriend now.  Until I didn’t speak to any of my male friends.  Even ones that there was never any romantic involvement with.  Next were my girlfriends.  He either didn’t like them or they didn’t like him and it was easier if I just stopped hanging out with them.

As time went on, the textbook abuse code of behavior was activated and carried through almost methodically which began with the ever so subtle isolation of friends and family, followed by jealousy and control, criticism, sabotage, blame and anger …. just to name a few early warning signs – aka – I wish I knew then what I know now.

“It is not this massive oppressive nature that comes at us all at once. Instead, it innocently seeps into our everyday consciousness until it’s all that we know.  Even though the little things seemed so big as they were happening, by the next “BIG” incident that last one could easily be considered almost nothing. I learned the dos and donts of what makes an abusive man angry and quickly and without conscious knowledge I knew just exactly what would rock the boat and so my main goal from day to day was NOT to rock it.”

People wonder how we get so brainwashed that while all of this abuse is happening years are passing by and we still haven’t left.

Like I said in Survival Mode:

“As the years go by you just learn how to respond. What facial expressions to use and when to just answer yes or no without a story behind it. People wonder how you can live so many years this way…truth is, when you are so busy living from day to day just trying to make it through the day without a hitch, time friggin flies.”

And now here I am, still surviving.  Attempting to heal from within so I can heal once I’m out.  I can tell that it’s working because everything is becoming more clear.  These “traits” I mentioned in opening…are the side effects of my life.  One of which came to the surface last weekend when I snapped at someone I love, telling them to “shut up” because they were suggesting I do something a different way than I was doing it.  My brain heard a command and my defensive reflex took over.  I later apologized, explaining that in order to deal with being spoken to a certain way for so many years, my brain instinctually created a sort of coping mechanism which unfortunately reared it’s ugly head with the “shut up”.

The thing is, I never realized this reflexive response. Or maybe it didn’t strike me the same way before.  This person’s response was a look of hurt and disappointment causing them to walk away from me and leave without saying good-bye, and it hurt.  It hurt me because I hurt them.  It made me realize – which I also explained – that there are so many other things that I’m not even aware of that are ingrained in me because of this and I probably won’t even know until I’m away from it. On top of that, I won’t know how long it’ll take me to undo it all.  At the end of the day, they understood.  And I was left wondering what other attributes will pop up when least expected.

Unfortunately, I’m sure there will be plenty.  I’m aware of some of the PTSD symptoms I already have, which suck.  I have finally become very aware that I suffer from intermittent depression – mostly extreme sadness and episodes of crying spells.  Currently, dissociation seems to be the flavor of the month…past few months…maybe longer.  I’ve been unable to focus (usually when working) for at least six months or longer and daydreaming is another symptom.  I seem to “check out” often – sometimes mid conversation.  I thought that was just selective hearing. 🙂

It seems to be a good thing that I am starting to become more aware of all of these issues.  The more I understand that which ails me hopefully the faster and easier the healing process.  We’ll see.

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If you have been in an abusive relationship, you should read Effects of Domestic Violence posted on The Joyful Heart Foundation website.  It is very informative.

My story starts here.

Just Rambling

As I sit here, with a butt load of work, my mind keeps trailing off. Thinking about this and that.  A little of everything and nothing in general.  My life, my path, my accomplishments, my good days and bad days, my writing, my blog, my poetry, the silly things that make me smile and the handful of people in my life that I love unconditionally.  Just a few moments (or an hour) of reflection.  I’m not really sure what brought it on.  Or why I decided to come here and write about it.  Something in me just said — say it out loud.

I spent a few minutes rereading some of my last few posts.  Some of it made me laugh because I wondered what people thought about some of the poetry I’ve written – the lovey dovey stuff.  When you come to this blog, and see the title of it, the last thing anyone expects to see is a sappy love poem.  So I should just say now…NONE of those are for my abuser. Lol. The thought of anyone even thinking that (eww) makes me nauseous.

Since I started writing poetry as a teenager, and throughout my life, I’ve only been able to write what is happening to me.  Whether happy or sad, it’s always been an emotional journey.  Literally, my life on paper (or a screen).  As I read other people’s poetry, I often wonder if they are writing about something in their own lives or if they are one that can just write beautiful words that go together in such a way it strikes a chord with anyone who reads it.

I’d think – for poetry especially – there has to be some thread that ties it to the writer’s life, thoughts, feelings.  Even fiction writers, in my opinion, probably start with some small seed of truth and spin from that.  For me, I have the two extremes to pull from.  If you’ve read my blog since it’s inception, you’d know I’ve somehow managed to live a double life.  Love on one side … marriage on the other.  So at least it helps to give whatever I write a little…texture.  There’s the good and the evil, the happy and the sad…the occasional sap and the (very) borderline erotica.  What can I say, it’s who I am.  😉

Anyway, that’s all I have to say, which was basically nothing.  I’m glad to be part of this WordPress community and at least have somewhere nice go when my mind wanders.  Thanks for taking the trip with me and guiding me through your own adventures.

Back to work for me.  Enjoy your day.

Heart & Soul

Her Haiku are…micro chapters of her autobiography. They tell a story. You can tell where she is and what she is thinking in the moment. In other words, her Haiku are honest.” — Ronovan

For those of you that don’t know, Ronovan, the host of the Weekly Haiku Challenge that I participate in, does an end of the week review, a round-up, if you will, of all the Haiku challenge participants.  He is always kind in his reviews, even when at times he doesn’t connect with the poetry.  His goal, I believe, is to have everyone read each other’s work and support one another.

The quote above is just a fraction of the beautifully kind words he wrote of my work.  (To read in full, click here.)  I think I appreciated these words above all other weeks’ reviews because I know that he gets it – what I’m trying to do with Haiku.  The fact that my poetry is reflecting my story and what’s in my head at the moment AND the fact that people -get it- means a lot.

That being said, this week’s word prompts are New & Time.  These two words are almost custom made for my story.  There is so much I could do with them.  However, staying true to what’s in my head and my heart at this moment, which is even lighter than last week, I can’t help but end up with a somewhat softer and mushier Haiku.  And because the mush overfloweth, this week there are three for you…of my Haiku.  I hope you enjoy.

Time spent together,
Reminiscing of young love,
Making new mem’ries.

As a new day dawns,
We breathe in rhythm and rhyme,
Our hearts know no time.

Twin flames burn as one,
Two souls forever embraced,
Thus, the time is near.

I just realized I didn’t put ‘new’ into the third haiku but I like it as is so my brain is refusing to think of a proper adjustment using the word new.  I’m leaving it the way it is.

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You can read more of my Haiku here

View my poetry in pictures here.

Ripple Effect

This is my first #BeWoW blog post. This stands for Be Wonderful on Wednesday. It was created by the one and only Ronovan of RonovanWrites. I’m convinced he somehow has a 36-hour day compared to the rest of us with a measly 24-hours. There are so many different aspects of his blog, he’s got to either be parked at the computer all day or (if possible) actually be part of the computer itself. 🙂

Moving right along…

I’ve been wanting to participate in #BeWoW since it began but I find that Wednesday, being mid week and all, is one of my busier days.  So I’m either too busy with work or I can’t find that just right inspiration to post about.  Luckily, this morning I watched a video that fit the #BeWoW bill.  A wonderful message told via a beautiful video.

It’s message: “A simple act of caring creates an endless ripple.”

Caution: May cause eyes to leak.

Whenever possible…create an endless ripple.

Heart’s Desire

Another Monday, another Ronovan Writes Weekly #Haiku #Poetry Prompt Challenge.  It’s hard to believe we’re up to week #39.  I started this Haiku Challenge at week #8.  Hook, line and sinker…I’ve been in every week since.  This week’s words to use are Vie & Reach.

Usually, my haiku have a little twist of the knife 🙂 but it’s a bright and sunny morning and finally, spring has sprung.  I guess that has me feeling a little lighthearted.

Heart’s Desire
A far reach for love,
To vie for one’s attention,
Countless ways to end.

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Read more Haiku challenge entries here.