No, this is not a post about walking for a change, because it has been raining for two days and I have not been able to go ;)
This is a deeper post, something that I have been reflecting on for a couple of weeks now, and I feel like it is time to bring these thoughts out into the light, to help me process them.
As you know if you have been following along, I have made some lifestyle changes. I spend a lot more time with my parents and my kids, even though my family is going through a rough time right now because my Dad has a chemical imbalance and only recently agreed to do what he is supposed to in order to take care of it. I am a lot closer with my mother, and I love seeing my older kids much more often. I started to tackle my body image issues, and I am very pleased so far with that. My home life is wonderful. Alex is enjoying school and just had her 6th birthday. I have a few wonderful friends. I have started taking better care of me, and that included my mental and spiritual health.
I still have my ups and downs, because I am bi-polar and always will be, but I have learned how to not let the downsides get so extreme. I have learned that truth without compassion is brutality. I have learned to come out of that shell I was in, my "hermit mode" as I called it, and have realized that I enjoy being around people, and going out to do things. I have new friends, ( real life, in the flesh ones! ) I have had some new experiences, which have been great, and it has affected the way I live and look at my life. I still have to take in the flesh people in small doses, but it gets longer and longer each time I hang out with people. I have been in full Hermit Mode for 4 years...I knew it would not happen overnight, but it is happening much faster than I thought it would. I have learned to stop avoiding sticky situations because I hated confrontation. I was agonizing over Vicky last week, because I was worried that she was having an issue with me, and I finally got my nerve up and just went over there one day and it turns out my inner hermit was playing tricks on me to try to get me to stay in my old life patterns, where she was comfortable. I am a Taurus, we do not like change lol.
I am a much calmer and less volatile person than I was even as short as 3 months ago. I started doing things just for me, and realizing that it was okay to do that. I learned that I was so far from the whole person I thought I was it is not even funny. My "Bull in the china shop" approach towards people, and their emotions, cost me things that were very dear to me. Some of those things I have gotten back, some I probably never will. I thought I was okay with who I was, but after a major upset to myself happened, and I got out of the "It must be someone else's fault" denial stage, I started taking a long look at myself, and I realized I was mostly pretending to be happy, convincing myself that the way I had been was okay, when it was not. I was not miserable, not with other people, the problem was with myself.
I have spent the last couple of months looking deep within myself, and sealing up the big huge holes and the tiny little hairline cracks that were on their way to becoming canyons. Walking and changing my body is the easy part. Exploring the deep, dark caverns in my psyche was and is the hard part. My internal changes are reflected in my outward lifestyle, hence the finally getting off my butt ( literally ) to get healthier, it is reflected in the way I feel about housework and my surroundings. It is reflected in how I interact with people, or do not interact with people. It is reflected in the new and so much better relationship with my parents and my older kids.
I am always talking about cleaning clutter out of my house, and all I usually ended up doing was moving it from one place to the other, not really getting rid of anything. Not so anymore. Since I have been working on my internal clutter, I have been throwing things away with almost reckless abandon. I have been rearranging, and purging, and even acquiring a few new things because I now have the right mindset to add without excess.
One of the casualties of my broken and volatile attitude was a friendship. It did not bother me at first, because I was to stubborn and pigheaded to realize that the way I handled things ( and not just that one situation, but several before it ) directly influenced the outcome, in addition to other things from both parties. Eventually, after this internal review, I realized I was just as much as fault, but by then it was to late, and I lost something that was an integral part of me. The last two weeks I have thought of this person almost non-stop, and dream of them every night for the past two weeks, which is very unnatural for me, to dream of one subject for more than a night or two. Yesterday I was on one of my purging and cleaning tangents, and I decided to clean out my side of the entertainment center, what I call my spiritual cabinet. 75% of the things in that cabinet came from that person I am talking about, and I saved every letter ever written to me by this person, and as I was rearranging I found them and re-read them, and ended up sitting in the middle of my living room floor, crying my eyes out for over half an hour. Months after it happened, I was finally able to process it all, and to grieve for what I had lost. I know that neither of us were perfect, but I finally saw MY flaws, and the mistakes I had made, and how I could have avoided it, but let my stubbornness take over. Last night I had a long and detailed dream, and when I woke up this morning, this nagging feeling that I needed to contact this person would not go away. I finally sent a short email, and I hope they still have that email address. I do not expect a reply, nor do I blame them for not wanting to speak to me, but that feeling would not go away until I sent it. Everything happens for a reason, even if you do not understand it at the time.
I laugh more, I talk more, I enjoy life more. I know it is a constant work in progress, everyone is, but I finally got out of that state of denial I had been living in. So much goes on in my life on a day to day basis, and I am no longer overwhelmed by it the same way I used to be. I realize sometimes I have to step back and decompress, instead of letting it build up because I do not want anyone to see thorough my hard-as-nails persona. I am still that person, but I am finally letting more the person I am at heart come out. It might be true that if you never take risks, or let yourself be vulnerable, that you will be hurt less, but you will also never really live a full life. I have spent the last 16 or more years building walls...and at first I finally started chipping away at them with a chisel, but now, I am attacking them with a sledgehammer. My old way of looking at things has cost me more than I wanted to admit, and I do not want to be that person anymore. I can be reserved without being cold hearted, I can be truthful without being hurtful. I am worthy of being happy. No one can change that but me.
What will happen now that I am letting people in, and dropping those walls? I do not know about in the long run, but short term some pretty awesome things have happened, and it hit me finally that the reason they were happening is because I was putting my true self out there, and the Universe was responding to my intentions and the desires I was putting out there. It is long past time for me to lose that jaded mask I wore for so long, and now that it is gone, I can finally breathe.....