>In the garden

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In the garden there are feral friends…

and, a NEW! tiny, baby feral friend.

What a pleasant surprise!

Happy Tuesday!

Peace and new beginnings

Challenge: Forgiveness

Forgiveness isn’t something nice I do for someone who is “guilty”.
Forgiveness is something nice I do for my own mind.
Do I want a mind that tortures me or one that is a friend to me?
-Hugh Prather

I am struggling miserably at this forgiveness challenge, and I think I may have just realized what I am doing wrong.

One of the perception shifts I’ve been toying with is finding my own accountability in this tragedy and ultimately drawing on that to regain some of my control. What I’ve found is if I accept that I misjudged Joe and not that he simply betrayed me, I move from a life where everything just happened at once to a series of smaller more deliberate, intelligibly digestible acts, that I actively participated in. Yeah, that’s it. I like my life to make some sense, y’know have some order and of course control.

In this shift though, I came to depend on the fact that he would actually acknowledge that I did misjudge him, but as he continues to deny any semblance of accuracy in my truth, I find I have hit a wall and the painful recognizance that I have been trying to forgive the wrong person.

I need and must forgive myself for willing this man to be who I wanted him to be. I must forgive myself for all of the feigned nobility I gave him the power to exude, and for denying my truth to enable the lies. I must forgive myself for declaring enough is enough. I must forgive myself for my figurative farsightedness and for my misjudgment of character, both of his and mine.

What I’ve been doing is turning the other cheek and still denying what lay in the periphery. I’ve been “nice” to him to assuage what I believed was his guilt, only to be slapped in the unaffected cheek with the realization that he has no guilt, only more lies. It is hurtful, this recognizance that he has graduated from the one who told a lie to a liar. I guess it isn’t really that hard seeing as how I engaged in my own unspoken lies right alongside as I denied the truth that our relationship-at least the one I wanted, was in fact over several affairs ago. Wow, that really winded me to admit, “several affairs”.

Evergreen

During a long walk after a long chat, there was a reprieve from my figurative farsightedness and in my immediate reach, I found the potential for greatness; I found love.
In a moment replete with joyous pain (Stay with me I’m still walking, not that kind of moment, I’m celibate.) my roots began to extend from the sole of my spirit and fill the chasm in my heart. Shortly thereafter, I realized that while I was displaced, I was no longer in despair, that indeed there was a place in which to root my plentiful harvest of love, light , peace and boundless hope-and he’s pretty damn handsome at that!
These days as our hearts, minds and spirits grow, I feel my branches extending toward the light. These new branches are not as rigid as the former, they dance in the gusts, they do not break. They are routinely cultivated by my Self and the awareness that no other being can stop me from growing and render me lifeless, I am empowered, I am in love, I am evergreen.

>601: Let’s have some fun

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Peace sign bracelet in brass and jute twine. See [here] for other color combinations

Today is my sixth hundred and first post, what a milestone! During my blogging hiatus it became apparent to me just how essential this social and creative outlet is for me.

I’ve, since 2011 began, experienced some personal tragedies and through it all my blog friends have hung in there, some of you sending messages of support, others have just joined me despite of my erratic posting schedule, and for that, I am truly grateful.

Over the past 5 months I have gone from a tragic separation to an incredible journey of self restoration, recognizance and improvement. If you are so inclined to join me, feel free to request permission to read my personal journey at 3 Dollars & Six Dimes.
Let’s get on to the fun stuff! In finding my inner peace, I designed these summery fun Peace bracelets as a reminder to live peacefully and colorfully. To thank you all for your continued readership and support, I am offering a giveaway of any one (1) bracelet of your choosing to one (1) lucky winner. To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment telling me one way you live a peaceful, colorful life! The winner will be chosen at random, by Yael Rose, my very own random name selector!

Peace and gratitude

Solve for Ex

I took a rhythmic 3.6 mile walk to the bank, stopped for an even cuter NEW! haircut and a pack of Twizzlers.

One twenty-two year relationship

A once happy family of 4 (not including the current 5 cats or the friends we lost along the way)

An eight-months-long affair with a twenty-five year old mistress with 2 children of her own (I’m summoning the winds of Kali as I type)

Sixty plus days of sheer agony

5 prescriptions for antidepressants, anxiolytics and anti-psychotics

One free legal consultation

Seventeen thousand dollars in shared debt

One brand spanking NEW! (and my first ever of the disjointed variety) checking and savings account

One three hundred sixty degrees journey

One new beau

That which remains:

One woman standing on her own two feet!

Seven: Restrospectively speaking

“We think self-esteem lies in our accomplishments and that our accomplishments are held safely in the past as the storehouse of our essence-but it is the prison of our soul. The past can’t tell us what we are. All it can tell us is what we are not this instant.” –Hugh Prather

It is with great reticence and vulnerability that I surrender my crown and title as wife, but a crown it is, it is not the top of my head, nor is it the beat of my open heart.

So much of this struggle to find myself and reclaim my Self has been worn and warped by titles, accomplishments and positions held previously. In my mind’s eye, Tameka became and accomplished all of these titles, places in society and earned things to behold, despite her already fully present, ever growing and accomplished Self.

There is no higher accolade than mother, I thought. There is nothing greater than being claimed as some perfectly imperfect man’s wife, and being learned is rife with richness. Now, I add to that: being my Self each day, honoring my child within, claiming my peace and accepting that I am enough and I indeed have enough. That, is the penultimate state of spiritual wealth, second only to loving and openly receiving love. Breathes easy.

Six: Coming up for air

N. Phoenix 4.17.11

Aaah…changes in perspective have proven positive, may the wonders never cease.

I’m feeling free instead of lonely, I’m living in the peaceful present versus a formidable future. I feel well-received by loved ones who’ve all but obliterated the recent feelings of rejection and despair. I’m in a great place and my feet are- I believe, planted firmly here in this moment. I’m taking it all in and it, the Universe, just keeps bringing me up for more fresh air.

I’m in love with my life just as it is because it’s mine. Carpe diem, friends!

How time flies…

The parents and me ’73

I received this picture in the mail today. My mother had my sister send it to me; not sure why, but it came at an excellent time. One of my meditations on self love urges that I think of a time when I felt an overwhelming sense of love from anyone and try to duplicate that feeling as my intention.

My childhood, and the relationships therein have been a large part of my focus since the journey began. I’ve been examining my role and that of others in this crazy maze called love. I’ve been wondering about the difference between love and desperation, between abandonment and freedom, willful ignorance and fear.

I look at this picture and can never quite remember my mother’s gaze being so endearing towards me since I could speak. And, by speak, I mean speak out against her addiction, her abuse and her indifference. Just as I’ve felt through the years that Joe too, silenced me by withholding love; in looking at this picture, I now wonder if I’ve given him undue “credit”. Mayhaps, I’ve silenced myself to receive and sustain love, in a cycle of suppressive emotional binging that has me now feeling filled with pain and poison.

I share my true voice in my writing and that makes the relationships I’ve made through my writings that much more genuine. You all get me and appreciate me, mouth and heart open. This was the thought I had as I slid down the south-facing wall between my desk and the window and flipped through a journal from 2006. The following entry has my stomach in knots and fists clenched pale with resolve:

What can I do to turn my aloof husband into a human? I am so TIRED! I wonder sometimes if [this life] is just a cruel trick and I’ll never be “rewarded” for all of this hard work.

…I just want to ‘check out’, but I owe it to this family, and myself to abide by my word and the commitments I’ve made. Of course I could claim a god and chalk it all up to being human, but I won’t because, I just might be crazy enough to change the world or render myself useless trying to”. -January 2006

I’ve recently come very close to useless; MDD, hypersensitivity to light and sound, severe digestive issues, rapid weight loss, auditory delusions and days’ long bouts of acute hopelessness. This life might indeed be a cruel trick, but I’m not going down without the last laugh or the last word. I will be loved and I will be heard, because I am here and I am worthy.

“Words mean more than what is set down on paper.

It takes the human voice to infuse them with deeper meaning”. -Maya Angelou

Progress Notes

Things are progressing for me. Pauses for applause. There’s a hope in which I’ve seemingly joined alliances, it keeps me grounded amidst the tempest of my life. Make no mistake, I have very dark, cloudy moments, but there are those bursts of light where I can actually see myself reflected in passing puddles; a few have tempted me to splash about in ’em. I’m coming back, and it feels incredible. The best part is that I’ve missed me, and not the just the me I lost when my marriage ended, but the pieces of me I lost when it began at just 2 weeks into my 18th year of life.

I’ve been seriously toying with my perception of things, y’know looking at this as a beginning and not just an ending, creating a vision for my future as one of freedom instead of loneliness, and culling those who just aren’t cut out for the journey.

The addition of anti-psychotic meds to my “Sparkly Girl Chemical Diet Plan” has made a huge difference! There’s so much more to life than sadness and dread, although the “clarity” seems to put the kibosh on areas of my creative focus, I’m taking the steps to hone in on what it means to feel without fear.

Choices

He apologized for the pain his “choice” has caused us. I immediately began to tear up as I read the word, “choice” over and over again. The realization that we were operating under two polarized sets of commitment guidelines stings. I never wanted to know I was a choice as my only choosing was to wake each day and love him, oftentimes in spite of himself.

Those words permeated the tenuous membrane of spotlessness I’d just begun to construct. I’m dealing with so much behind what has happened whilst battling my own demons, I need my strength too much to engage in the pedantry of commitment now and who knows maybe ever.