Blog, or not to Blog (consistently)?

I guess we won’t know until we get through it a bit more. LOL.  I’m inspired to refresh my blogging and become more consistent with it thanks to, yet again, my friend that inspired me to start blogging in the first place reviving hers.  Shocking. *smirk*

It’s a new year, full of new challenges, opportunities, and self-imposed goals.  Some new friends have come into life, others are migrating out.  My tribe seems to be far more genuine now….the way it should be.  There are certainly a few people that I need to make more effort to be in contact with that I value in my life, and I will do so.  I love all my diamonds in the rough. (Now I want to go watch Aladdin, doh!)

I’m not certain what this year will have in store.  I know what my hopes are.  I know what some of my goals are.  And I know that the universe has an ironic and twisted sense of humor. *smirk*  I’m sure it will be another interesting year to say the least.

I have to say, that it started off well so far though.  I had a pleasant belated Christmas with Elizabeth, her spawn, and her spawn’s friends.  The steak and tater tots weren’t bad either.  Came back to Roanoke early, and was able to take a sick friend crackers and sprite for her tummy and hang out so she wasn’t by her onesy on NYE.  I’m OK with it myself, but others aren’t, so I felt good to be able to be there for her.  Then I stayed up texting a new, dear friend for a while…and did some remote work so I could goof off later this weekend. LOL!  So maybe not a perfect evening, but none-the-less, a truly “me” evening.

And, since my resolution accountability partner and I agreed that today is a gimme and we start tomorrow, Bojangles for a late lunch and then a nap and cleaning.  Still, authentically me.

A good start.  I’m content-ish.

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Always look on the bright side of life….*whistle*

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 It’s been a while since the last posting.  I blame my typist.  He’s been a bit “oh, I should work” and “oh, I should get out from in front of the screen once in a while.”  Fickle bastard. 😉

Anyway, I posted something the other day on the QotD Facebook group about happiness being a choice.  An oversimplification, but not without truth to it.  Not wanting to be a hypocrite, I’ve been trying to keep it in mind and, for lack of better way to put it, “practice what I preach.”  It’s usually easy for me to be positive when encouraging others, but it’s a far different animal when dealing with myself and my own negatives.  So…the challenge, to simply say “It’s going to be a good day,” and not let it not be.

Amazingly, it’s been working, more or less. 🙂

An example: yesterday a client called with a financial situation that made the $900 check I was on the way to the bank to deposit non-cashable.  In days past, this would have sent my mind into a tailspin, circling anger and melancholy.  This time, though, it was more of a quick stumble and recovery.  Was I frustrated, goodness yes.  Was I a bit angry, yep.  But I was able to wash them aside and continue having a good day.

Another example: I’ve had a bit of water leaking in the house during the past two heavy rains.  So, I crawled up the ladder Tuesday to see if I could see anything.  Oh, look, something’s made a nice little hole in the roof above my bedroom. *rolls eyes*  20 minutes and a relatively stable patch later, back on the “happy” train with a plan of how to fix it semi-permanently until I can save up for a complete roof redo.  (Aside, thank you DIY websites.)

Granted those two are more of fiscally slanted examples, which get everyone down now and again,  but it’s across the board.  In my personal life, I’ve swallowed my fear and pride and started having more frequent dinners with Mom.  Nothing terribly fancy, Mexican, Olive Garden, etc.  But just putting my foot down and making work sit on the back burner and making more time for the people that I care about and are important to me.  Like the other night when a friend had a porch party.  I had remote work that I was doing, but she took the time to specifically invite me (as I generally don’t assume even in blanket invites, which this one had), so I made the call to go hang out with my friend(s) there.  It was a very relaxing time, bonded (I think) more with another friend over some jokes about another party goer (ok, kinda snarky maybe, but it wasn’t meant meanly).  Overall, just a really good time, with really good people.  This coming weekend, I’m hanging out with another friend, her kids, and an ex (also a friend) and his kid for the Fourth.  Will it be a bit awkward? *shrug* maybe, but the other night it was okay mostly…though that was just us three on her porch. I love her kids, don’t know his very well, so we’ll see how that dynamic plays out.

Regardless, the focus on choosing “good” and “happy” and refocusing on being around people I care about has made a world of difference in both my overall happiness in life, and in the ease with which I can stay focused and “actively” happy, as I call it.  Not that I don’t love what I do for a living, and certainly not that I can -always- choose to blow off work…deadlines happen after all, but shifting the priorities seems to have had only positive effect all around. 🙂

Here’s hoping the train doesn’t get derailed. LOL

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Life through hair bands; Whitesnake redux.

It’s odd how I think of all the great things I need to write about, then finally sit down to type them…and they’ve escaped.  Blah!  Silly brain.

To refocus, though, apparently Whitesnake “Here I Go Again” of all things….Don’t ask, I’m scratching my head on it too. *grin*  I guess I’m in the mindset to examine what I kinda have with people twice in the past week.  The last big breakup and the preceding relationship, and, naturally, how it set the stage, hell, pretty much was the direct catalyst in many ways, of the paradigm shift of last month.

Let’s look at it backwards (more or less), as hindsight goes that direction anyway)

For a couple weeks after the breakup I was in the natural emotional maelstrom of questions, vacillating wildly on the stages of grief, and generally being as “checked out” as I could be mentally and still function and do my job.  We all know that place, so I’ll not dwell on it (though if you mercifully don’t I’ll be glad to tell you about it over drinks).  Anyway, a couple weeks after the breakup (which was the Saturday after Christmas, just for time frame reference) she asks me to come over so she can better explain the who’s, whats, and wherefores.

At the time, I really am not sure what I was expecting or hoping for: closure?  a logical reason? several? an emotional salve? for me?  for her? I think I honestly only really agreed to it because I thought it would help her with the “sorting out my issues” which she stated as why we had to split up. (As an aside, I get that, I respect that reason, even if I didn’t believe that it would help.  She did, and therefor it would help, right?)

For privacy reasons I can’t, or won’t, go into the actual items discussed.  Suffice to say I left realizing there was absolutely NOTHING I could have done to prevent it, had done my best for her and the relationship, and it simply wasn’t going to work.

Some small amount of time passes, I come down off the semi-relieved balloon ride.  Wait a second!  These events and issues she talked about in the past, they coincide with this, this, this and this in our relationship, the getting together after pining for/wooing her for 6 months after she friend-zoned me the first time, the friend-zoning, etc., etc. etc.  *frowny face with Spock eyebrow* Hold the phone.  When I asked her “why now” when it finally happened and got “You weren’t what I was expecting, but you were what I needed,” correlates with (redacted)…..motherf-er.  Was it all just an experiment?  Was I just an excuse?  A cover? A source of budgetary supplement? Was the entire relationship a sham? A game?  Had everything I’d done, tried to do, and sacrificed been a carefully cultivated response, knowing my giving nature and level of love, to get what she wanted?

Flash forward to making it through the hell month that was April.  I’ve come to realize it doesn’t really matter what it was from her side.  It was real for me.  I did what I could, what I thought I should, and probably more than most would have.  Through consciously trying to get out there more, meeting new people, making new friends, hanging out with existing friends…admittedly, at some points simply faking it until I made it, I’ve come through it.  I’ve dealt with it and, aside from those really tired/stressed times when everyone replays “crap”, it’s a closed door.  Hands washed.  Soul purged.  Paradigm shifted. 😉

I’ve met some amazing people.  I’ve had even more amazing conversations.  I think, for the first time I can remember in a very long time, I’m not internally disjointed.  There are no blinders on.  No fear of people evaporating if I share how I got here, the good and the bad.  I’ve realized that I have more to offer than just being the “nice guy.”  I’m, for lack of better way to put it, wholly myself again.  Who I am outside matches the inside again.

And I’m pretty damn awesome, apparently…but I wouldn’t be “here” without the amazing people I have in my ‘verse. New and old.  So thank you.

Mirror, Mirror….

Thanks to a few days and visiting with my trifecta of “go to” friends this past weekend I’ve come to realize that the paradigm shift has already happened.  Like many changes, it was subtle, or at least hidden, in the pains in the preceding weeks.  What I’ve been doing the past week or so has been moralizing over it and not realizing it.

The choices I made that got me into the situation last month were made out of love.  I shouldn’t beat myself up over that should I?  Just accept that it wasn’t the wisest course and move forward a bit wiser and more frugal?

Does it make me an asshole for trying to be more self-preserving, not putting everyone else first the majority of the time?

It kinda feels that way.

More to the point, how do I judge it?  Is it entirely subjective, based on how I feel about it?  How others perceive it?  Can it be objectively measured?

To borrow an analogy from a friend, the new pants feel weird. Not bad, per se, but different.  I’m not sure if it’s a more flattering cut or not….yet.

Is that you John Wayne? Is this me?

I suppose if I want to do justice to chronicling change I have to figure out/record baseline.  Status Quo?  “Normal”? Where I am now?  And probably where I’ve been too.

That’s a -tall- order.

One that might, now that I’m thinking about it, might actually be a large part of the whole process of change: examining the current, dissecting the past, and plotting the path to the future.  And certainly one that won’t fit in a single post! LOL.

I’ll say this for baseline.  I am generally a happy, oddly idealistic, sarcastic, “don’t let myself become bitter” guy.  Or at least that’s what I shoot for.  Life is life, so it’s not always as obvious/easy to see that.  (Aside: a good tell that I’m having a rough day is if I don’t make bad puns or innuendo)

So I guess we’ll just start with the snippet of the present of why I think I need to change.  Or maybe not myself “change” per se, but how I act/react to things.  I’ve always been a giver.  It’s just what I do.  Like, to the point of self detriment at times.

BUT

I can’t do that anymore.  At least, not as infrugally.  Is that even a word? Non-frugally?  Whatever, I gotta tighten up, be more rationally selective of doing things for others.  I don’t do it for any reasons more than they need help, and it makes me feel good….but at the risk of sounding like an ass, shouldn’t there be reciprocity in any relationship? Isn’t that a hallmark of friendship at it’s very basic level?

I don’t really ask for much, I don’t really need much very often.  I’m fairly self sufficient, I think.  But sometimes even the person that provides the shoulder needs a shoulder of his, or her, own.

So yeah, the past month, with its ups and downs, hopes and dashing thereof, shenanigans and fuck-a-doodles is forcing my hand.  Well, not really -forcing-…I suppose I could stay in a “meh” state….but I don’t want that.  I’ve never wanted that.  I actually enjoy life, and am excited and driven to get my company, and by extension, my life where I want it.

But the old ways aren’t necessarily going to get me there, let alone help me connect with people that should be there with me, and along for the ride.

Testing 1…2…3….testing….is this thing on?

So, yeah, working on creating a brave new world by challenging how I’ve always done things, reacted to things, etc.  Seemed only fitting to chronicle it somehow….and with the example of a friend, the blog-o-sphere was chosen.  I’m not sure where it’ll go, not sure what it’ll say (ok, some idea).  One thing I’m sure of, it is, in its entirety, for my own benefit.  If anyone else gets something out of this, GREAT!  Conversely, if it pisses you off, hurts your feelings, etc. a) let’s chat about it I like different perspectives and welcome constructive criticism, b) stop reading if it bothers you that much.  (I’m a fan of common sense, which sadly seems anything but common).

Right, so I should probably actually work now.  More later.