Me, Myself, and I

Brokenness

I haven’t written much lately. My husband tends to feel like he’s letting himself down when he doesn’t write for a long time, but for me it’s kind of a relief. I have noticed that I tend to write when I’m sad. Or angry. Or when I just need to process things that I can’t wrap my mind around. If I’m not writing a lot, it’s a pretty good indication that I’m doing well. I’m happy. I’ve got stuff figured out. Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule…

I had surgery at the end of August and I was pretty dependent on J for most of my daily needs for quite a while. (That was horrible, by the way. I had no idea that I valued my independence so much!). But once I was on my own two feet again (albeit with some pain), I was much better.

And now here I am again, which means I need to figure some stuff out. Counselor says I need to cultivate a relationship with myself. I need to learn to love myself. Forgive myself. I don’t know how to do that. She also recommends I do some kind of art, because it’s a way to be creative and explore myself without the analytical stuff that comes out when I write. I don’t know how to do that either.

But I am learning to sew. And I bought glitter. That’s a start, right?

But what about liking myself and forgiving myself? What do I like about myself?

  • I’m very smart.
  • I’m great at communication.
  • I’m the best (job title) that (company name) has ever had. Their words, not mine.
  • I have moments when I’m really fun to be around.
  • I can make some people laugh.
  • I think I see a beauty in the world that others often miss.
  • I’m generous and kind.
  • I’m a great baker.
  • I’m creative.
  • I’m trustworthy.
  • I’m fiscally responsible.
  • I’m analytical (Yes, I like that about myself, but I certainly do have to keep myself in check in that regard.)
  • And what do I need to forgive myself for?

  • I’m not perfect.
  • I sometimes hurt the people I love.
  • I’m overweight.
  • I’m bad at keeping my home clean.
  • I’m not sure how to forgive God for His silence lately.
  • I’m not sure how to forgive God for allowing my mom to get sick.
  • I’m not beautiful.
  • I’m not as witty as I wish I was (…as I wish I were?)
  • I’m often lazy.
  • I frequently don’t do the things I “should” do.
  • Why does the bad stuff feel more potent than the good stuff? How can I choose to focus on the good things about myself, when they don’t feel as real or as important as the bad things?

    Starting Anew

    Brokenness

    It’s been a long time and I can feel the lack.  I lost myself sometime during the last decade and I think, in part, it’s because I stopped checking in with you.  I became so preoccupied with, I don’t know, trying to be happy in my marriage that I forgot to try to be happy just as me.  …I forgot to try to make sense of my own heartbeat and rhythms.  And now, I sit before you feeling like a child.  Vulnerable and lost and lonely.

    I feel like I have such big thoughts, and big emotions, but when I tried to sit down and write about them, I was overwhelmed with not having the right words.  I was crippled by insecurity, too.  Whatever I wrote wouldn’t be good, so why bother?  Well.  I think it’s time to get back to my own soul.

    I’m not very good at follow through, I have discovered.  I want to make a grand statement that I’ll check in every day for the next year, but I can’t promise that.  I can’t promise that I’ll even show up once in the near future…  …but I’ll try.  At this point, that’s the best I can do.

    Right.  So, with that out of the way, where to start?  The beginning’s been done before, but…maybe I haven’t fully dealt with all of that yet.  So, maybe I should start back then again.  A fresh start from the beginning for another new year (almost).

    My mom.  She loved me so much.  Still does, but it’s different now.  I feel like that song “Fix You” by Coldplay does a good job of explaining how I feel about my mom.  When tears are streaming down my face and I have lost something I cannot replace…  Well, my mom’s broken.  She has dementia and is lost to me.  It’s so heartbreaking to watch her demise.  She was so vivacious when I was a kid, but when I’m really honest, I don’t really feel like that’s how I remember her.  I remember her as a fragile, broken thing, even back then.  I don’t really remember much from my childhood prior to my dad’s departure.  J says I became alive when he left.  Like, I became an emotionally sentient being at that moment in my life.  I think he’s right…  Or maybe I am so messed up and compartmentalized that I just don’t remember who I was back then.  I think maybe, actually, that’s the truth.  I don’t know.  Maybe it doesn’t matter.

    When I think of my mom BDD (before dad’s departure), I only have a few memories, and those, not very vivid.  Like, I remember looking at her old gnarly shoes and asking her why she didn’t have newer, nicer shoes.  She told me that she had spent her money on us, her kids.  I remember then, thinking of the sacrifices she had made for me.  But looking back, I also have a kind of resentment too.  She didn’t take care of herself, and she blamed it on us.  Her underwear was perpetually holey, and it’s my personal belief that no woman should have holes in her undergarments.  She didn’t value herself enough to spend a tiny chunk of that change on getting herself the things she needed.

    I feel like I’m not allowed to harbor resentment against my mom.  Even as I type that, I’m trying to tell myself to forgive her, but …  How?  She lost herself in her own marriage and in her own role of mother, and I am mad at her for losing all those years.  For losing herself until DD.  Why couldn’t she be a whole person so I could have a good role model of what it means to be whole?

    I resent myself too.  Why did I repeat her mistakes?  I look at myself and I’m disgusted.  I am fat.  I have frumpy clothing.  I don’t like me, and I don’t blame me for that because I don’t think I’m very likeable.  I don’t feel worthy of love.  Intellectually I know that’s not true.  If someone I cared about said that, I’d hold her and tell her how special she is and how much she deserves to be loved.  I’d tell her that I love her.  Why can’t I give that same grace to myself?  Why do I have to be so hard on myself?

    I really miss my mom.  When I think of her, I can’t help but cry.  Why does she have to have dementia?  If she has to be sick, why won’t God take her home?

    I don’t have that answer.  I don’t think I have any answers.  That’s why I’m here.