It is quiet. Miss M is at day camp (theme for this week: FOOD, her favorite thing right after swimming and dancing), and she is also at her dad’s for the week. My apartment is clean, and actually staying clean. No dolls and Roarin’ Waters juice pouches anywhere in sight. No Netflix constantly running in the background.
It is sunny. I went for a hike on a nature trail today, and the trees rained. Later today, I’ll take a book to the pool with an adult beverage and read and live dangerously in the UV rays.
This is one of the few perks of teaching, combined with being a single parent. I’m not bragging or trying to make anyone envious or feel bad. I mean, you can have it too. They’ve got programs that’ll get you into and in charge of a classroom in a mere 8 weeks or less, go sign up. You, too, can revel in the stress of August – May data mining. We can go out for margaritas after work every Friday and bitch about things completely beyond our control.
Last night, I had dinner with 3 friends. Three of us met in 1998 when we all started working at the same school, and one of us came in a couple of years later. Together, we’ve watched the education pendulum go right, left, backwards, forwards, and it’s current state: psycho. We have, all 4 of us, been friends for 17 years (or longer). We get together about 3-4 times a year, sometimes less if I’m under a lot of stress and can’t organize the get-togethers, sometimes more if things are fairly okay. One of us, Amelia, just retired and is moving back to Louisiana soon. This could possibly have been the very last dinner together as a tribe of 4, and so I am deeply happy for her that she’s free (SHE’S FREE!!) but also very sad that she’ll be farther away. But first she brought me a salt lamp for my apartment. To soak up all the negative ions. I can already feel it working.
I can’t tell you, Internet, how much these 3 ladies have meant to me as part of my journey. I have other friends who mean just as much. But these three women are – gosh, it’s really hard to put into words what we are to each other. Carol, who is the most deeply spiritual of all of us, says that sometimes people meet and form circles that are meant to accomplish something important. And that, along the way, we do meet people who help us accomplish important things, and we help them. There was a reason we were pulled together, and have stayed together all these years. A deeper purpose we may never know, at least not while here.
All I can tell you is that, after I am in their presence, I feel a deep sense of calmness and peace. Every single time. I shared some of my recent Life F Ups with them last night, and Carol put it into go-with-the-flow, big picture perspective for me: the Universe divinely intervenes in ways we never even know about; this thing I did on the surface appears dumb, but it happened and never ever question anything that happens especially when it appears dumb on the surface. Divine Intervention is just mysterious like that. And this thing over here that I’m kind of confused about – stop overthinking it, just enjoy it for what it is. And that, ultimately, some people we were always meant to love, but not always meant to live with. Love never dies, it adapts. That everything is temporary, but everything has a purpose leading us to where we’re meant to be and who we’re meant to become. Every person, every experience, every single good and bad thing that happens to us. It’s connected, we are all connected. It’s about flow.
I really wish Carol would just adopt me and let me and Miss M live with her and her husband. Like, we’ll do their laundry and stuff.
And Valerie, such an entertaining storyteller. She probably has about 3 psycho-thriller novels in her. At least. She’s a Christian, and if I were to ever stop being a lapsed one of these, it would be because she actually practices what Jesus taught. And she knows how to be really tactful but firm.
That green notebook up there. That’s my (current) psycho-spewing journal. Oh, if you could see inside of it, you’d wonder so deeply about me. Yesterday, I literally wrote “Fuck you, Universe!!!!” in it. I always say I want to be like Anais Nin – if you could read what’s in that thing, you’d probably let me know I’ve got a very long way to go before I’m even remotely close to her bohemian, go-with-the-flow take on things.
I’m starting to figure it out, though, I think (I hope). You know how I’ve felt really angry for a long time? I’m actually not quite sure I’m all that angry, as much as I’m just deeply insecure and using indignant responses to disguise it. I used to say I worry about people (specifically men) abandoning me, but I’m not sure that’s really what it is. If I decide I love you, I don’t go (unless I figure out I absolutely have to, for my own well-being or yours or both of ours and this is always a painful realization for me). So if YOU’RE going to go, I get really really weepy and also a little “well, screw you too!” about it, but I also always move on – enjoy your life without the pleasure of me in it. I’d have bought you chocolate and remembered your birthday and bitched over margaritas and stuff with you for decades, but that’s cool. When I win the $600 million lottery, don’t call or anything.
I think it’s that I don’t want to be used; I want to be as important to someone as I make other people important to me. I spent 15 years in a relationship/marriage in which I valued the other person’s opinions, wants, needs so much more than my own that I rarely said no. I changed my looks, the way I dressed, the way I decorate a house…I spent a long, long time trying to mold my shape to fit into someone else’s hole. So much so that if you ask me what shape am I today, I really couldn’t tell you. The people pleasing simply must stop; yet I’m so afraid if I say NO, that I won’t be important enough to the other person to forgive me, or to stay with me.
Yet it never occurred to me – if saying to someone, “That’s not going to work for me,” is enough to make them leave, were they ever someone I’d want in my life to begin with? Who do *I* want in my life? If someone tells me, “That’s not going to work for me,” I typically say: Okay. And give in to what works for them. I rarely ask for what I need or want, and then I end up resentful which turns into anger, which turns me into what you’ve often gotten to witness here on this blog.
This will be a process. And so today, in my green journal, I apologized to the Universe for my writing outburst yesterday, and I asked It to help bring me the following:
Trust for people who are brought to me.
More spine to say NO.
And I asked the Universe to turn me into an Amy version of Carol. With some Valerie storytelling and Amelia stamina to go with it. But mostly, I think I just need to find and latch onto a sense of flow. There’s a process to where I’m being taken, and I’m so busy overthinking and worrying about other people that I’ve been paddling upstream for weeks, for months, for years, and I’m exhausted. So I’m just going to stop rowing and let the Universe take over. What is, just is. What will be, just will be. Relax and enjoy the ride and the scenery.