Saturday, 30 January 2016

Cutting Out Toxic People: A Stupid Downside

A few years ago, I stopped having a relationship with my mom.  I have written a post about it, and although I am still unsure as to whether it is necessary to post it public or not, just writing gave me a lot of clarity on the issue.  Also, a big bonus, was that I no longer dream about her, ahhh the power of writing.  Just to summarize, in case I do not post it, she was abusive, and unwilling to continue counselling with me or work to move forward from her previous treatment of me.  So I made the decision to no longer keep the toxic person in my life, a decision that I made to ensure that I am in control of my life.  More power to be who I am, free from that detrimental blame game.  Who I am is on me, and if you have been following my last few posts, you know where I am heading with this.

Unfortunately, I was unprepared for one little side effect of not having my mother in my life.  It turns out, that people who are close to me, are interpreting me gaining control of my life and cutting out abuse, as something to fear, for their own relationships with me.  Rather than analyzing whether or not they are treating me, in the same manor of respect that I treat them, there is an underlying fear that I will just cut someone out for no reason.  Almost that a few now pussy foot around me.  I don’t know quite what to make of this.  Am I expected to bash  my mother and tell everyone the horrible things that are a part of my childhood and teenage years to gain sympathy for my choices?  Am I expected to have to justify my past decisions? Or to make promises to current relationships, that I will never close the door to them no matter what?  Is each relationship supposed to be equal in my life?  

I am at a complete and utter loss.  Making the decision to end things with my mother, was nearly a decade in the making.  We went through not talking, rules to be in the same room together, counselling, and every level of communication tactic we could think of.  In the end, I was exhausted and tired of crying.  I closed a door to gain my sanity and better control of my life.  It was a horrible experience, and one that I hope NEVER to have to repeat.  That being said, I will not tolerate abuse.  And I hope I have learned to never let a relationship get that bad again. 

But why on earth would a very dear family member, throw in my face that they are worried I will just shut them out too?  I now have to deal with something incredibly painful, with someone who really doesn’t have any fear or worry and just put me in this conundrum out of anger.  I don’t particularly want to have to justify myself to anyone but me.  I know what I have done and I have what I feel are valid reasons.  And honestly, I am happy, so who the fuck cares if I have someone in my life or not?  Being a parent does not give you the right to treat your children with abuse.  Being a child does not mean that you have to tolerate abuse just because they gave you life.  And damn anyone who wants to make me feel guilty for finally having peace, sanity and happiness.

Saturday, 23 January 2016

Rose Coloured Friendships

In trying to bring the three faces of myself into one all encompassing kick ass being, I can see distinctions and traits that stand out as separate entities and need unity.  The one that has needed extra attention for quite sometime is the face of me that is still tied firmly in my past.  As I said in my last post, I have friendships that are maintained with rose coloured glasses.  Maybe a few of you have felt this, a friendship that you have had for so long, that as you grow and change through life, the rational for being friends is replaced by time, which I will call history.  You just have so much history together, that you don't even think to analyze the friendship or see of it is really is worth keeping.  You accept that person through and through, and just stop trying to better each other.  The comfort is there, the time spent, and you could just as easily accept that you will be friends for life.  Or you could react, challenge each other and re-ignite the reason for being friends in the first place. 

If this were a marriage it would be headed for divorce or counseling.  But being a friendship, it seems different.  It seems to want to fall into the category of unconditional love.  And yet, if nothing is being gained and in fact is starting to play a detriment to one’s life, then why keep it?  Just because it is comfortable, does not mean it is a good thing.  A comfortable career is boring, the same holds true with a marriage, and with trying to bring symmetry to my personalities the same must hold true for friendships. 

I have grown lazy in my friendships.  Pretending that they did not need work, and that I was comfortable having people in my life who remind me of who I used to be.  I want more.  I want friends who want to hang out with the person who is working to master all three faces of herself.  Who want to laugh, drink, do silly things, and not accept any mediocrity.  This is who I am at work, with my colleagues and customers.  I challenge all my staff, along side myself to push through, think outside the box, and better themselves.  I am good at cheerleading when it comes to work.  I have been lousy when it comes to friendships.  And I think the common denominator is my lack of assertiveness.  I am not assertive with my friends.  I have wanted simplicity and a nice glass of wine.  Playing nice has left me with nice friends.  I want better, and I want to be a better friend.  I have broken all rose coloured glasses with my family, and colleagues, and now it is time to do the same with my friendships.  One amazing person for all aspects of my life.

Saturday, 16 January 2016

The First Post of 2016 – Picking My Direction

I write with a very specific blogging voice in my head that allows me to take a step back and observe a situation and write objectively.  I think 2016 may take a different direction as a few things in the last year really stand out for me and I do not like them.  I feel a false sense of control over my life, namely over my actions.  I have friends with whom I need to take the rose coloured glasses off for.   And writing that brings me to the startling realization that I need to take the rose coloured glasses off when I look at myself and my actions. 

I fight a fear off and on, that I will become my mother.  I push these thoughts and feelings aside and say to myself that I am stronger than that fear, and that I do not possess the mental demons that she does.  So I fight fear with avoidance and surrounding myself with situations that are relatively easy to control.  My closest friends don`t challenge me.  And I don`t challenge them.  This creates a stark contrast to my home life, where I am constantly challenged to be the best I can by E.  And also contrasts to my work environment where I have worked my ass off in the last 2 years to get to my current position.  The frustration now lies in the fact that I need to bring a level of symmetry to these three facets of my life. 

I took some fairly strong risks in dealing with the men of my machine shop, and for the most part, when I was confident and sure of myself, things have worked out according to my plan.  I am beginning to remember this and bring this mentality home with me, but it is a slow process.  I have grown used to telling stories to E of my battles and needing his help and insight to solve them.  Now I need to start bringing home the stories of my conquests and amazing feats of customer service brilliance and managerial triumphs.  But I think it is easier to talk about the negative than it is to brag about the positives.  Why?  Quite simply the feedback loop is certain with negative.  It is uncertain with boasts and confidence when you do not have practice.  It is a fear that amplifies when I let the thought creep in that I am being a bitch or aggressive.  Pride has less reward for me than the fear of the consequences associated with displaying horrible traits.

But here is the honest truth.  I don’t want to hide in fear.  I want to be better than that.  I want to have my shit together when I finally decide it is time to have children.  I want to have my shit together so I can enjoy the thoughts and feelings that I have and enjoy them for myself and my partner.  When E and I drove home from California a thought was presented to me.  That I do not have control over my own assertiveness.  I am not comfortable toting that line between bitch and control of myself.  So I play an avoidance game, where passivity rules.  I rationalize that I ruffle enough feathers at work, so at home and in my personal life, I just want peacefulness.  Well, the reality is, that it is never going to happen.  And I need to actually see this, accept it, and become good and enjoy dealing with owning myself and trusting my reactions. 

Is this something that children with sibling practice together?  Pushing boundaries, and testing surroundings?  I know as an only child, I honed my skills at reading a room, reading lips and body language and being able to understand those around me.  However, I did not test or push myself or test my limits with anyone else.  My circle of friends was always so tiny and my family so tight that it didn’t enter my mind to push buttons.  I figured I would get farther by always following the rules.  As I write, the voice in my head doesn’t seem to have delay.  I am taking control over the earnest desire to be a balanced voice of reason, and just be me.   I have nothing to prove or anyone to impress.  All I’m doing is forgetting fear for a while and trusting that my assertive nature will bring clarity to my emotions, and someday become natural.