This is a picture i took for the Candy article. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Isn’t it funny how food can bring comfort? I’ve been having a rough week. Running and I are still having issues and without running I feel like I’m on the brink of losing my sanity. I was picking up a prescription medicine at the pharmacy earlier this week and I saw some Easter peeps and old fashion jelly beans (not jelly belly or starburst) on the shelf. I picked them up and took a walk through midtown munching on them – trying to escape the office and my thoughts for just a few minutes.
As soon as I took a bite into the yellow peep, I had a rush of happiness. My memories of Easter Sundays searching for eggs in my childhood home with my sister became so vivid – a rush of happiness ran through me.
Spring is on the horizon and with its reminders of new beginnings, new life and hopefully better running days.
I survived the race to the end of the year. It was a very busy month for me at the office and at home. I didn’t have much time for creative writing or even getting my thoughts together clearly because I was consumed by work, parenting and my new relationship. I forgot how consuming a relationship can be – and I don’t mind it at all.
In addition, it was the first holiday season where I was happy in a long, long time. I believe part of my happiness was that I had set my intention on becoming happy as my 2011 goal – my goal was to be fulfilled in mind, body, and soul. I felt like I was achieving the goal by around September/October of 2011. I was running again, I started to explore my spiritual side and I was finally feeling content with my life. At some point in the fall almost at the exact time all of these things were coming together I met Mid-Western Boy. As a result, I know I must attribute my happiness during this holiday season to him as well. The final – most wondering reason I was happy this holiday season was that I had my son for the holidays this year and I was able to enjoy spending time with him .
I love that 2011 began with the setting of my intention to be fulfilled in mind, body and soul and that I actually achieved that by the conclusion of the year. It was the first time in my life that I set an intention for the year and actually worked on it all year.
What I am proudest of is that I have finally found some sort of spirituality. I’ve become a person who trusts in the universe, a person who believes in synchronicity. A person who looks at the choices life presents and does not judge them but follows what she thinks must be some divine plan for her. A person who tries to look at life and life’s events in a more positive way. This positive outlook and trust in a divine plan has made life a bit easier.
Now as I look towards 2012, I am focusing on setting my intention on how I plan to further grow as a person. My intention is to improve upon the growth in my spirituality and to continue to increase my faith in a divine plan. It is also my intention to focus on continuing to develop my relationship with Mid-Western Boy and to ensure that it remains a healthy relationship where I continue to have my emotional needs met (and of course, hopefully provide him the same).
I’m excited for this new year and of course the focus on these new beginnings, I will trust in my faith in the universe that wherever life takes me over the course of the next 12 months it is ensure that I evolve into the best me possible.
Cover via Amazon
- Image via Wikipedia
I have been working on my personal evolution to allow my inner light to shine brightly for almost three years now. My light, as you know by now, was almost destroyed by my ex-husband. I have been working on exposing my light since the day I left my home for the emergency room with my soon to be brother-in-law and my infant son. I’m not going to say it was easy. This road has truly been a difficult journey. I continue to be enlightened everyday about how to change the way I think about my life, how to accept the path I have taken and to be comfortable with the uncertainty about where it is going.
It has been almost three years since I realized that there was no turning back – my marriage wasn’t going to grow and that it was actually destroying me, and if I stayed, destroy my infant son’s emotional well being. I made the decision that I had to leave but I was so weak – I needed a sign from the Universe to support this decision. I had not told a living soul what was truly happening inside my home. It was DISTRUBIA. On a daily basis I asked the universe to give me the power to escape the hell I was living in and the universe answered almost immediately with an event that changed my life forever. And I never looked back. I knew the Universe answered me – gave me the sign and support that helped me to know that even though I had taken vows to this man – I can break them. In addition, the Universe made sure that I had the support of my selfless parents and loving friends to help support me through those difficult months when I had to not only grow my self-confidence, my love of myself, but also to fight the most difficult battle I had every encountered with another human being. The Universe delivered people into my life at the right time that helped me to make decisions that were difficult and untraditional and each time I made it through – I know now that I am resilient and strong.
I’m nostalgic because it is one month short of the three years since this war had been waged in my life. I have grown so much and I have learned so much. However, there is much more learning to do. I received a gift from one of those supportive friends of the “Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle. I have been struggling with achieving that inner peace that Mr. Tolle discusses in his books. He talks about thinking about your relationship with the Now. He says most people treat the present moment “as a means to an end, as an obstacle, or as an enemy” (see A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle, p. 202). I’ve always struggled with being “in the moment”. I’m always thinking about the future. This is so limiting. The Now is the only thing that is important because we don’t know what the future will hold. The past is the past and I have not control over changing what has been done. I have been struggling with accepting the Now. While I am grateful for all of the wonderful things in the NOW, I’m always worrying about what the future will deliver to me. My goal for the next few weeks is to focus on the Now.
Mr. Tolle says is that we should not judge what is happy or sad in our life – we should just say to ourselves as we experience different events in our life – “this too shall pass.” He believes that this will bring awareness that these are fleeting moments in every situations – good or bad — and “when you become aware of the transience of all forms, your attachment to them lessens and you disidentify from them to some extent.” He believes that this detachment will allow you to enjoy the pleasures of the world while they last without fear of loss or anxiety about the future.” (Id. p., 225) THIS prior statement really resonated with me. This is what I need in my life. I need to enjoy the pleasures of my life – without fear of loss or anxiety about the future. I have never done that before. I want to start doing that Now.
I endured some painful suffering three years ago – “and it too shall pass” – I know it because it has passed. Now, I need to focus on this happy, peaceful time in my life. I know that this “too shall pass” but I will try my best to enjoy the pleasures of the moment without the anxiety of what the future holds.
Today is my birthday. I turn 35 – I’ve officially entered my mid-thirties. I remember when my Dad turned 40 and we had an “over the hill” party for him. I don’t believe I’m 5 years closer to being “over the hill” and I think I’m much younger than my dad was at 35 but we shall see as time does its cruel crawl to that “over the hill” milestone.
The first real relationship I had after my divorce was with that certain gentleman that I told you about – who was 10 years younger than me. He was the most beautiful looking man (or should I say boy-man) I thought (and still think) I had ever laid my eyes on. Me, so practiced in self-criticism, so very self-conscious of my age, harbored several insecurities that “everyone” could tell how much older I was than him when I was with him. I also felt insecurities about how he would find distaste in my body that had delivered vaginally a 7 lb 7 oz little man. My inner life would constantly be preoccupied with evaluating the supple body and skin of beautiful twenty-something year olds walking the streets of New York City that I believed this beautiful boy-man should have been dating.
After our relationship ended, I wallowed daily in the thoughts that my beautiful boy-man may at any moment fall in love with some supple twenty-something year old who did not harbor the scars of delivering and carrying a child and he would think to himself what the hell was he thinking of sleeping with and spending time with such an old lady as myself?
Luckily for me, these thoughts were put to rest a few weeks after our break-up (sometime in July) at my annual check-up with my Gynecologist. I have been seeing this certain Gynecologist since I moved back to the city so she was not the same Gynecologist that delivered my son (although the history of my childbirth was in her charts). As she was doing my sonogram and physical checkup of my ovaries, she told me that my uterus and ovaries were in great shape for when I was ready to have a child. So, I looked up over my feet hoisted in those stirrups and said “Dr. M – I delivered a child almost 4 years to the day”. And she blushed and was quite understandably startled and proceeded to look more closely at my digital chart on her electronic device and profusely apologized for not reviewing it carefully before seeing me. I said it was quite alright. When she checked my age she told me she thought I looked about 10 years younger than I was!
At first I was startled that this Gynecologist could not tell from looking at my vagina that I had delivered a child vaginally – don’t we all get kind of messed up down there after pushing a baby out? I was distracted and wondering if I should find a new Gynecologist. A few hours later I realized that I needed to listen more closely to the message the universe was trying to send me – that this was not cause for alarm – this was cause for celebration! There was no need for me to be caught up in how I looked “so old” or the “numbers” and to stop being distracted by thoughts that my “private parts” were not up to par with some young thing’s vagina!
So today when I celebrate my birthday, I will toast to my “25 year old-vagina” and remember to feel more confident in my body and my skin the next time I expose myself to a man like that again.
I have admitted to many of my friends that I feel that my life is incomplete. I have so much in my life and I am very busy enjoying every aspect of it but I feel like something is missing. I have admitted that what I really want now is someone to share my life with – someone to share my son and all of the amazing things he says and does. I want someone to enjoy the meals that I love to cook – I want someone to share my happiness.
In all honesty, I feel really weird about this strong desire for a relationship, for a boyfriend. I have a socially full life and I am so very independent – so why does an independent woman like me desire a man in her life to complete her? Isn’t this the very antithesis of why women have become so independent – to free us from being bound by an unfulfilling relationship?
Growing up, my mom, who did not have a higher education or a career told me almost everyday that I will go to college and get a degree so I do not ever have to rely on a man. Little did she know at the time (30+ years ago) that her daily mantra influenced me to have a career and was one of the most important gifts that she gave me – my economic freedom. She prepared me for my freedom to walk away from an abusive husband. Now that I have this freedom from a relationship that nearly destroyed me – why the heck these several years later would I want to seek another relationship where my freedom could be jeopardized? If I have such a full life, why is finding a boyfriend such a strong focus of my inner life?
I’ve been struggling with this thought for weeks now – but I have concluded that it is human nature to want to be a part of something greater, to be attracted to another person and to spend time with that person. To want to evetually form a tribe with that person (a family with that person). I’ve accepted that I’m okay with this focus and that it is an important focus.
I have been using an on-line dating tool and I was griping the other day to a friend that I feel like the on-line dating tool isn’t as romantic as meeting someone at a party or through a friend or any other spontaneous way people meet in their life. AND I am starved for romance and I want to meet someone in a romantic way.
Ask and it Shall be Given. The very next day after griping to my friend – I met a man in a very spontaneous and extraordinary way! I met a man in the elevator of my office building! We both walked onto the elevator in the lobby of the building. There are 35 floors of my office building. I work on the 19th floor and he works on the 9th floor. We do not work for the same company but we have the same degree. By the time the 9th floor doors opened, this gentleman asked me my full name! Within an hour – he had located my information on Linkedin and through my company’s main operator. He called and left a message for me at my office and sent me a message on LinkedIn. I have a date with him next week!
All I did was ask the Universe to have me meet someone in a romantic way – and the universe once again delivered. I am a believer in the power of prayer. I’m also a believer that every opportunity comes with a lesson. I am ready to learn from this lesson the universe is about to teach me (and excited about it too!).
I, like the rest of New York City and the people of the United States, will never forget the day we lost so many Americans – when an act of war – took place in our beautiful cities, in our free country, in our airspace. We will never forget the ultimate sacrifice that the men and women made walking into those burning towers, when people were trying to escape a future that they never expected. We will never forget the men and women that went to work in one of those concrete pillars that seemed indestructible on what seemed like a normal Tuesday morning and didn’t return home to their families. We will never forget the volunteers that worked to clean up our city for months and the emotional and physical pain they must have felt to be at “Ground Zero” and experience that emotional pain on a daily basis for months. We will never forget the sacrifice these volunteers made to their health.
It was my second day of work as an attorney after graduating from law school. I was hired as a law clerk at a federal courthouse. I didn’t know a soul in the building. The judge never made it to work as he was caught up in traffic coming into the city from Long Island. I was in chambers by myself when the first plane hit and lost access to the network connection and the internet but didn’t know what happened just yet. When the judge’s secretary arrived a few moments later she took me to the jury room to see if the only television in the courthouse was working. I will never forget the men crying as they streamed into the courthouse. Many of them watched the plane hit the WTC when they were arriving into the city from the Staten Island ferry. I’ll never forget watching that second plane hit on live television and knowing immediately that it was an act of war on our city. I will never forget walking to my parents home with pieces of the World Trade Center all over my body or the smell and taste in the my mouth. I will never forget the silence of all those people walking out of the city into Brooklyn.
I will never forget the day that changed how I view my safety in this great city.
Today, I pray for the family of the victims and hope that they find peace and acceptance of the ultimate sacrifice their family members made on this day ten years ago. Today, I will pray for peace in the city I love and this great country we live in – so that my son and future generations will never know this feeling that we all who experienced 9/11 feel. I pray that my son never needs to feel that he may not be safe walking the streets of our city, flying in a plane, taking public transportation or going to work in one of those great pieces of concrete and steel that dot our city’s skyline.
When I was a little kid my dad used to tell me that losing “builds character.” He meant it in relation to when your team didn’t win or you didn’t come home with that science fair trophy. At the time, I didn’t really understand what he meant. I didn’t really understand he meant until very recently – when I underwent one of the most significant losses in my life – my dream of a family life. Very recently I realized that what my dad meant was that losing something important to you forces you to undergo a transformation – it forces you to evolve – to find a greater meaning than the one thing you feel like you just lost.
Losing the life I thought I wanted has forced me to undergo a transformation – to take on a journey to find myself. I realized that I read “Eat, Love, Pray” by Elizabeth Gilbert too soon – I read it when my son was a newborn. I didn’t really understand what message Ms. Gilbert was saying at the time (that’s how lost a new mother can be in her new life!).
I recall that I thought the protagonist was pretty whiny and I didn’t understand her personal struggle. However, there are times when I reflect on her book and I totally understand her message. While I still don’t love her book like many others have, I can, like I think many woman can, relate to her feeling of claustrophobia within her marriage and her rethinking the life’s path she took before she awoke one day and said this isn’t working for me.
She was a very lucky woman to have the opportunity and luxury to take one year off from her life to find herself and to forgive herself and heal – not many people can do that. I certainly do not have that luxury (although there are many days I wish I did). Even without the good fortune of being able to take a year out of my life to focus on myself, I am doing just that every day within the fabric of my life. I, like Ms. Gilbert, am searching for all that she was searching for – food to feed my soul (albeit more of a vegetarian/vegan ilk); I am on a desperate search for spirituality (a hope to feel connected to my soul and the divine) and of course, I am hoping to find true, healthy lasting love.
Everyday I tell myself, I am grateful for this challenge in my life, the challenge of being a single parent, the challenge that is making me grow and evolve into a stronger, more balanced woman. I hope that one day I will produce something that has touched the lives of others – just as Ms. Gilbert has with her book – but for me my production would not be a best-selling novel or a made for the silver screen film. Instead, my production, I hope, would be that I can finally be a peace with myself and help others to be at peace with themselves too.
I hope you take the time to be thankful for the challenge that you are undergoing at the moment and have the knowledge that this challenge is encouraging you to grow and evolve into a more beautiful person.