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Lean on

September 7, 2016

My friend is going through a break-up. It’s been devastating for her, magnified x1000 because she also suffers from anxiety and depression. It’s  bad enough feeling severed from something even in the best of circumstances, so yeah..I feel terrible for her.

My last break-up was with my babydaddy, and it was so traumatic that I refused to be in a relationship for 8 years after. I spent a great deal of time in mourning, but eventually became a cheerleader for the single life. As hard as it was to be a single mom, it was easier than the alternative: trusting someone. I soon realized I was the in the minority. Most people prefer being partnered. I didn’t. I understand now that it was probably due to the circumstances that surrounded the end of my relationship (raising a daughter alone, watching her father get married and have a baby with a new woman..etc). I had bad taste in my mouth about relationships for a LONG time. It also didn’t help that I witnessed many of my friends cheating on their girlfriends/boyfriends, and watched my own parents’ marriage dissolve into a baffling series of events (more on that later).

I generally regarded articles like this with a degree of scorn and superiority. The following statement just didn’t apply to me:

Someone with a partner would have a person to lean on during this time.

I mean.. when I was single I’d lean on my friends, and that was enough for me..99% of the time. They gave me enough support, love, acceptance and strength so I could get through my daily life. Sure, I had moments where I’d feel alone, scared, hopeless and miserable. But those moments weren’t unmanageable. I realize now that I was lucky as HELL. For some people, it’s not just about moments that pass.. It’s about EVERY DAY being made up of  thousands of moments of pain and sadness.

Now that I’m coupled, I understand the luxury of having someone to lean on. My friends were amazing, but they didn’t offer the 24/7 access to comfort the way my boyfriend does. When I’m scared in the middle of the night,  he’s there. He also makes it easier to deal with many things, like mentally checking in when he sees me going down a Cortisol-induced spiral. It’s incredible having someone to put a dampener on your inner voice, the one that tells you “OMG THIS IS THE END OF THE WORLD!!!”. When you’re single, you don’t have that. It’s just you on the front lines of your own mind.

But life’s not a suffering competition . Nobody’s pain is more or less valid than someone else’s. We all have feelings, and we shouldn’t try to legitimatize of someone’s pain based on what we think they’ve been through. Unfortunately, I did a lot of comparing when I was single. It was my coping mechanism. It helped me get through the struggles and sadness I felt.

Confession: It gave me comfort knowing another person might have failed, or fallen apart when I succeeded. It was a selfish, prideful, self-promoting feeling, but I indulged in it, because I was alone. Because my friends were coupled, and I didn’t have someone to learn on.

Well guess what? I’m not a rock, not a f***ing superhuman, and I’ve failed just as many times as I’ve succeeded. Being in a relationship forced me to confront my false perceptions and vulnerabilities. Being single let me build a bubble around them. My bubble needed to be popped..

But more on that later..

 

the last 18 months..

August 16, 2016

So I’ve been trying to write again.. good lord a YEAR between posts, really? SHAME ! (GoT reference there) I must have a life or something outside this blog. Actually a life that in the past 18 months included: moving to a new state, new house, new job, in with a (relatively) new boyfriend, getting my kid started at a new school… you know…basically starting a new life (no big).

Oh and my kid is TEN now. When I started blogging, she was less than a year old.

Here’s some perspective:

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Then

lilly10

Now

BLOWS MY GD MIND..

I started this blog in 2007 because I had recently become a single mom, was struggling to find a place to live, and was generally overwhelmed with how I was going to handle parenting alone.

Is it cavalier for me to say that parenting was the easy part?

Yeah.. it’s relationships that are hard…

OK so parenting is hard too. But after being single for 8+ years, I was comfortable with it. I had gotten into a groove where I was competent at handling my job, child, LIFE .. etc on my own. In fact, I was good at it. By the time LB was 5, I had a decent paying job, nice apartment, excellent schools for her, and my cooking had been upgraded from cans and boxes to mostly fresh food.

Yeah, it was hard work, and there were times when I was lonely, but I eventually I began to really enjoy my life as a single mom. I also think I was very lucky, obviously being the recipient of white privilege. I managed to make a chunk of money on donating my DNA, which has floated me through emergencies and drama, and I’ve been awarded a good amount of free time while my daughter spends summers with her dad (Roofie and I are on civil terms now).

But best part of it was.. I called all the shots in my life. I made all the decisions, the choices.. AND I took all the credit. I was the hero of my own story.

And that is a glorious feeling.

But now I’m in a serious relationship…..and it’s hard. But more on that later friends😉

Green Chile

August 19, 2015

Guess what? Yes, I know, I actually blogged, but more importantly….. It’s that time of year again in the southwest!

CHILE. SEASON.🙂

I could feel the slow Capsaicin burn creeping up my fingers, making me smile at the pain that would linger on my skin for hours. This is gonna be a hot batch, I thought to myself with glee. Funny how a plant probably developed this chemical in order to keep humans AWAY from it, and yet we “put that sh*t on everything.”

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slimy green chile tentacles

Ahhhh the therapeutic ritual of prepping chile:

Peeling off the blackened, fire roasted layer of skin.

Stripping the seeds off the slimy vegetable flesh; reminds me of octopus tentacles.

Pulling out the pulpy green innards…

Straight up GUTTING, Yo.

I LoOOVEEEEEEEEE chile season.❤

Positive Affirmations

March 4, 2014

Positive Affirmations

Yesterday was all doom and gloom. So here’s some enlightenment from Skeletor himself. Smile errrbody. Today will be grand!

I’m back with a Facebook rant.

February 25, 2014

Begin standard disclaimer: I know I haven’t blogged in FOREVER, yes, I suck.. blah blah.

Here’s why: I’ve been sliding deeper into the sludge of Facebook, which has been alternately emotionally & mentally unhealthy and slowly sucking away my creative writing ability. I used WordPress to express my thoughts, channel my fears and pains, connect with others and feel amazing satisfaction in the process. Facebook doesn’t give me that.  It’s become a tiny, frenzied world of competitive irritation and disgust for me, yet something I can’t stop looking at. I feel like it’s giving me OCD, and this is coming from a pretty laissez faire Hippie.

I used to blog once a day, which allowed me to actually THINK before I posted. Facebook has really brought out the thoughtlessness in humanity (and me!).  It’s so easy to constantly put sh!t on there. With a click of a button or swipe of phone, I find myself sharing CRAP all day long now. It’s not one status update, it’s Memes, quizzes, photos, songs, videos, political campaigns, contests & articles. My news feed is splashed with digital vomit. I find myself hiding people’s posts more and more often. I do my best to avoid the “like” addicts, begging me for attention.  

The worst part: I feel like Facebook is making me dislike my friends more, and creating a judgmental asshole out of me. But what are you supposed to do when things are posted? It’s right THERE, intended for you to respond to it in some way. It WANTS you to like it, right? That’s why the stupid “thumbs up” button is so easily clicked. There’s no “I hate this crap and I can’t believe you like it” button. Or, “Yeah that was cute the first time someone posted it, but at this point I never want to see Grumpy Cat again” button.

Please don’t get me wrong. I love my friends. I just hate how Facebook has changed our relationships, how it’s cheapened them, hyped them up, yet trivialized them into “status liking”.  It doesn’t make me feel closer to them. If anything, it makes me feel further away, especially when 50 other people have liked a status and I want to run away screaming from it. I hate how Facebook has worked its way into face to face conversations, and how a room full of people will all be Facebooking from their phone instead of talking to each other.

Mostly… when it comes to internet crud.. I just…don’t want to know (see my Facebook theme song below)

I feel like most parents will say the reason they are on Facebook is to keep up with far away family. I know my Grandmother scans my page daily, hoping to find some photographic gem of my daughter picking her nose so she can treasure the moment forever. Once you have kids, you learn that it’s your DUTY to provide the elders with nostalgic gratification of said offspring.

So YES, I admit it serves its purpose. Sharing joyous moments and keeping connected with loved ones is valuable to me. But I don’t think 1000 baby pics should be plastered all over Facebook just because you are BORED and kid pics get tons of likes. The ease and obsessive nature driving the endless hours of Candy Crush, Farmville, meme sharing and other unimportant sh!t is what is burning me out on FB.

I guess you could argue that blogging is the same: just unimportant opinionated drivel, here only to serve my own selfish needs, ease boredom and provide myself with entertainment. The difference for me is, how I feel when I do it.  I feel good when I write something I’m proud of.  Status updates aren’t writing. They are announcements; blips of intention, some good, some bad, some totally meaningless. They are so easy to make, it’s like fast food; served and consumed and thrown away without even tasting the ingredients.

So I’m trying to slowly wean myself off Facebook. Or at least check it in moderation. It’s become difficult because so many people plan events through the website, and hardly ever communicate outside of that.  I also want to get back to being creative, because I did find a lot of joy and even actual relationships by writing this blog.  I’m friends with a lot of bloggers on FB, many of whom I’ve never met in real life, so seeing their kids grow up is kind of miraculous. It’s a treat, and I do enjoy it. So, thank you for letting me be a part of your lives.

Maybe I feel like I’ve lost some type of depth in my life, and I’m using Facebook as a scapegoat, when really I should be able to just ignore things I don’t like and control my obsessive behavior like a normal human being.

Either way.. we’ll see what happens.

Enriching your life

May 25, 2011

My mom has been writing me letters. Real letters, not email. When she wants pics of her grandchild, or make sure I’m still alive, she will call or text. Sometimes we Skype with the kid.  She decided she wanted to write letters because she felt disconnected to me. She doesn’t like the distance between us. I think my moving 400 miles away was an emotional slap in the face to her. She thinks it was physical evidence of my desire to escape her.

Anyway, over Christmas she felt I was being cold to her. I’ve never had that mother/daughter relationship where we did each others nails and told secrets to each other while brushing our hair. The more trouble I got into, the more I tried to keep her away from my problems. Eventually I had no choice but to let her help me, and since then I’ve had a hard time getting over the guilt from that.

I like to blame Astrology, so this all can be tied back to Saturn Returns. When you are 29-30 you are forced to deal with your “mommy issues” and my mother sending me a big box of stationery seems to be its materialization in my life.

A lot of things came out during our exchange, most of it painful. She’s worried about me being alone. She thinks her relationship with my dad has set me up for a life of failure when it comes to men. I don’t think she can blame herself for my screw-ups, but I was kind of scared she was right in one respect: That I was doomed.

Read more…

Someone for everyone

May 11, 2011

Yes I’ve come back. You’ve noticed? I’m still posting over at my new blog Pisces Pictures, but I miss this one. Its been here for me so long (4 years now) and somehow it’s comforting to see its face again.

I’ve also been catching up on the other single mamas who I started reading almost half a decade ago. SO MANY CHANGES! Engagements, weddings, graduations, higher education pursuits, job changes, moves, break-ups, pregnancies… it’s amazing.  The more I’ve been catching up, the more I want to make a whole post dedicated to their lives.

So here goes:

Single moms who are now married:

Single Moms who are engaged to be married

Single Moms who were engaged, but decided it wasn’t for them

Single Moms who are in serious relationships

Single Moms who are pregnant or who have had another baby

Single Moms who are pursuing degrees

I’ve kept up with these bloggers via Facebook, mostly. But some of them I’ve stopped reading their blogs and in my absence, they’ve become private or password protected. 

Now I must go and beg for forgiveness.

 I’m still single. I haven’t had a baby. I haven’t gone back to school. I don’t have much news to report. But it makes me hopeful to see everyone else moving forward. Maybe I will get there too.