Sunday, September 6, 2020

Time flies

 I am working from home and this past month flew by with me sitting for hours in front of the computer connecting with teachers and students.  I am struggling with using my computer for work, play and connection.  The computer keeps us connected and keeps us apart.  If there were no computers, they would have to figure out how to teach students....we would probably be in school instead of struggling to make lessons make sense online.  Somethings work ok.  Computer programming classes are done on the computer no matter where you are located.  However, really tough to had at flowers over the internet for students to learn to arrange them.  The visual information does not replace the smell and experience of handling flowers and placing them beautifully in a vase.  No matter how much we talk, it is not the same experience.  I like what the teacher is doing by engaging the students interactively online but that is still not the same as handling the flowers themselves.  I'm ready to go back to work at school when they are willing to open the schools and let us go.  

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Unsolicited Advice

My children let me know that as adults it is no longer ok to give unsolicited advice.  I felt hurt.  I only wanted to help.  A life long habit needed to be examined.  I shied away because I needed to get to a place where I was ready to listen. (aka I needed to be humble.)  An article popped up on Facebook and I saved it for weeks waiting.  Finally this morning I took my courage in both hands and started to read.  Instead of feeling attacked or put down the article gave examples of what it looks like and why it isn't healthy.  I am on the road to healthy so this approach kept me more open to what they were teaching me.  Then it pointed out why it is ineffective and harmful to relationships.  I am also in some groups online where people are looking for advice.  What to do?  The article pointed out that when people are looking for advice presenting information as "This is what I experienced...." or "One possibility is...." or another way "A suggestion you might consider....."  all implying that the listener is capable of making up their own mind and finding their own solution.

After reading the article, I thought what if I had not given unsolicited advice to my children?  What if I encouraged them to find their own solutions?  What if I had done differently?  Well I didn't but that doesn't mean I can't move forward with change in my heart and paying attention to how I share my thoughts and feelings with others.  Learning to listen more, problem solve yes.  My brain is hardwired to problem solve which was really good when my job was fixing computers.  Now I work with helping people, I need to re-access, examine, and consider how to take this information and more fully incorporate it in my life.  I have some thinking to do too. 

My counselor first proposed this concept to me years ago.  He describe raising kids is like playing football.  (Yup, raised my eyebrows at that one.) He went on to explain, when your kids are little you are out there on the field telling them exactly what to do like a quarter back.  When they grow to be teenagers you are the coach with a whistle shouting from the sideline.  Then all my kids became adults with children of their own, I throw away the whistle and I get POMPOMs to cheer them on.  I'm still working at what that looks like.  Sometimes they really do ask for my advice and I am challenged how to present any ideas in a way that is supportive and allowing them to make the final decision. 

Changing me is a life long journey.  I am thankful for advice I received over the years from others.  I want to pass on the good ideas and helps I received like passing the baton in a relay, I realize I need to do it in away that I am not beating them over the head with baton.  I am a work in progress. 

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Getting back on track

June was rough.  No doubt about it.  This past July 4th I felt imprisoned, less free than I felt for years.  I took it badly.  I refuse to live in fear.  Age 42 I had cancer, that is scary.  I lived.  Same week I found out about my cancer, planes flew into buildings and fields.  So many died in a day.  I lived. Counseling taught me a whole new level of emotions that I didn't know existed.  I lived.  I am alive still after months of staying home.  I'm done being afraid.  I am making mask, I'll wear them not out of fear but because it is the law right now.  When it is no longer mandated, I will stop.  Mask wearers threaten me with my life if I don't wear them.  People that I thought were nice people, aren't.  It was an eye opener for me. 

I am sleeping better.  I finished some big projects, pictures below.  I am getting back on track.  I am deciding how I am going to live.  I am working on new projects and relentlessly working on cleaning and sorting over 30 years of paper stuff.  I am letting some things go and hanging onto others.  My children are in their 30's and I have a box marked to throw-away-after-I-die.  Looking at little hand prints and precious learning to write brings me joy.  Report cards were all shredded.  My children did well in school but report cards are just sad and mean nothing to into the shredder they went.  I let go of anything that brought me sadness, most of my mother's letters to me.  Anything that I felt hurt by, went in the trash.  I saved things to prove they happened.  After this past month, I don't need to prove how I feel about anything.  I feel what I feel and if someone else doesn't like it, then I do not need to prove why I feel what I feel.  Break through.  I spent my childhood justifying my existence and that I had feelings. If I couldn't "prove" something with hard evidence then it didn't happen.  Yup, classic gas-lighting.  I filled the shredder several times in two days.  More still needs to be done but I feel like I lifted a burden off my shoulders.  I do not need to prove that how I feel is legitimate.  Wow.  This is something to celebrate. 

Crocheting is therapy for me.  Getting better with each one I complete.  

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Haunted by past

WARNING Major Rant below.....READ WITH CAUTION.  

I worked hard and long in counseling.  I felt I made a lot of progress.  This year started hopeful and exciting.  Then came COVID panic followed up by natural disasters, fires, earthquakes, run of the mill planet Earth happenings then tolerated riots with bricks appearing in strategic positions to maximize damage hurting those that they were supposed to be for.  Anarchy, fear, and bullying are this new world order they are demanding we accept.  Not just no, but HELL no. 

I lived my childhood with irrational demands and fear mongering.  My mother is dead and here she is multiplied by millions screaming, "Do this or you'll die" "Do that or your family will die" no proof, no studies other than what is presented by a media that is known for changing the "truth" more often than most people change their clothes.  I've lived this, for years.  People, this does not end well.  The emotional, social impact are going to be far reaching and incalculable.  We will recover economically eventually but will the broken homes, broken lives, and broken children care? 

The screams of a few are drowning out those that are trying to say, "This may not be the best way to do this."  The screamers don't care, they want what they want and they will destroy anything and anyone that gets in their way.  But to me the screamers are merely puppets on a much larger stage and few will believe there are puppeteers pulling their strings creating chaos so nobody pays attention to what they are doing.  This will end badly for so many and I do not mean just those that might get COVID, a horrible disease that kills, but the hundreds of thousands and millions that will start to believe this insanity must be their new reality.  I'm not handling this well, at all.  Once again, I feel helpless as my reality is ripped to shreds then I am told I am unreasonable for not complying. 

Nope Nope Nope. 

I am thankful for being Christian and knowing that in the end God wins.  However, things are really messy and don't look like they will get any better any time soon because you see the puppeteers believe they have the power and know the right buttons to push to send everyone scrambling for cover.  A war is on and no one believes it. 

Monday, June 22, 2020

Added guilt

Guilt is an important quality to a certain degree and type.  If you hurt someone, you should feel guilty for doing the other person harm.  Some people might call it their "Jiminy Cricket" prompting them to do the right thing.  However, there is another type of guilt that is far more destructive.  It is the guilt passed from abuser to victim that is more like a swarm of locust poised to destroy peace of mind and sometimes the person.  These are the shaming blaming behaviors that the abuser blames the victim for their behavior.  The screams of rage, "You made me do this. If you were good I wouldn't beat you." Or some other variation that implies that the abusers erratic and irrational behavior is the victims fault.  A friend on Facebook shared an article that is helping me wrap my mind around this difficult issue.

I like this article because it breaks down the guilt monster into 3 components...

No one wants to see your feelings.
Your feelings are shameful.
There is something wrong with you.

I learned to hide my feelings so well, I hid them from myself; also known as dissociation. I feel ashamed when I had feelings of anger and most of my other emotions. I got the message loud and clear there was something wrong with me.  I was damaged, faulty, making mistakes, stupid and the list of things that I was went on and on and on.  No doubt in my mind there was something wrong with me.  Then came counseling.  Trying to undo all this brainwashing crap took time and effort, I am a work in progress.  I am still working out that my feelings are important and valid; most importantly I was just a little kid tried to cope in a bizarre situation.  I want this article to go back to and review again how I am doing at recognizing what is my responsibility and what was shoved off to me by my abusers.  Kind of difficult when they feelings feel so similar.  I finally hit on the idea of whose problem is it, and who has control of the out come.  If it is me, then I need to pay attention to those feelings of guilt so I can apologize and work towards better relationships.  If it is their responsibility, time to strength my boundaries and clarify that they can't treat me like that.  It is definitely a work in progress. 

Monday, June 15, 2020

You Tube helper

Ever wish there was someone you could ask Fix it questions without emotional baggage or lectures?  A friend posted an article about this guy that has done that.  Yes, there are Dad jokes.  Its ok.  He has his own You Tube channel and he shares how to do basic fixes around the house, yard and car.  This is information I learned the hard way with a husband that was on the road for his job most of the week.  If the toilet stopped working on Monday, I couldn't wait until Friday for him to fix it.  Yes, I know how to replace the chain on a toilet.

If this doesn't interest you, no problem.  But I figured for someone out there some where this might be helpful.