Think about it…

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“Sometimes we have to give up the whole world in order to keep someone who means the world to us.” ~M


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Rambling…

I finally started seeing a therapist several months ago, and my therapist has tasked me to try and figure out what I want for myself. I never really think about what I want out of life without first thinking about how my desires will impact everyone else around me. And according to my therapist, this seems to be an area that I need to work on. I place others needs before my own a lot of the time, and I mainly do it because I try to protect my friends and family, and do what seems best for them. I also tend to compare myself to other people, and think that if they’re alright with something, that I should be too. And right now, there are a lot of people telling me that I should be okay with the life I have and appreciate what I have. A lot of people think I should disregard the hard to deal with issues in my life, and just accept everything as it is; but should I? That’s another question my therapist wants me to figure out for myself. And according to him, I need to stop listening to other people and make some decisions for myself. The problem is, making decisions is difficult for me. I grew up in a very strict home, being directed and told what to do every day of my life. I wasn’t allowed to make my own decisions. And so when I was finally out on my own for the first time, having to make decisions for myself, I really didn’t know how to do that. I think it’s funny how our growing up experiences affect us so much later on in life. But this is just one example of how our upbringing can really screw us up. I know my parents did the best they could, but I just wish my mother hadn’t been so darn overprotective. Oh well… I’ve made plenty of mothering mistakes myself. Just ask my four girls… I’m sure they have a million stories to tell. I guess we can only try and do our best. We are only human, after all.

I really loved my rose-colored glasses…

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I’ve kept silent for a long time because I wasn’t even sure what to say. And even now, I really have no idea how to articulate all that I’ve been wanting to share. The one thing I do know is that this year has been really hard; maybe even the most difficult year of my life. The thing is, I feel like I have nobody else to blame except myself. I’ve made some very stupid decisions, and I’ve been paying the price for a lot of them. And it’s interesting to me, at the age of 47, that I am still making such idiotic decisions. One thing I’ve realized is that I need to start trusting my gut more and not allow people to walk all over me. This entire year, I’ve been choosing to disregard things that I didn’t want to believe because it was just easier to look the other way. I thought it was better to ignore what was right in front of me, and give the people in my life unlimited opportunities to redeem themselves. But that way of thinking only backfired and has sort of destroyed the trusting side of me. I know now without a doubt that I have nobody else to blame except for myself because I chose to ignore the obvious, and accepted the consequences in doing so. But I’ve also learned that I can’t allow it to happen anymore, and even if it means further heartache, I have to continue to stand up for myself. I really loved my rose-colored glasses, and if I could wear them for the rest of my life, I would. But I’ve decided that those glasses have outgrown their usefulness. The world isn’t rosy at all, and I don’t know why I ever decided to pretend it was.


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Quick update…

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Hey Everyone,

I know it’s been awhile since I’ve posted anything and so I thought I’d give you all a quick update.  I haven’t been shirking my blogging responsibilities out of choice, just been really busy because I’m back in school now and it’s taking up a lot of my time.

So today, I wanted to share what I’ve been doing in one of my classes.  I decided to take a fun class to begin with, and here’s one of the drawings I recently completed.  It’s been so much fun getting back into sketching, which I really haven’t done much of since high school (which was 30 years ago), but it’s slowly coming back to me.  Anyway, it’s always good to revisit the things we used to enjoy, all in order to see if we still find pleasure in them years later.  I’ll try to share more photos of my work from time to time.

Hope all of you have been well.  I’ll try to catch up on reading all of your blogs as soon as I can.  And if there’s something I’ve missed that you’d like to share with me, then please leave a link to your post in the comments below.  I always love it when you guys share things with me like that.  😉

 

Him Vs. Her – Manipulation

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Have you ever been manipulated by a family member? Perhaps even one of your own children?

We have four beautiful girls. All of who are very intelligent and sweet. Yet over the years, my husband and I have been manipulated on several occasions by those same sweet girls. It started off innocently enough at first. One of girls would say something like, “Mom, can I have a cookie?” My response… “No, it’s too close to dinnertime.” Five minutes later…. “Why are you eating that cookie? Didn’t I tell you it was too close to dinnertime?” Daughter’s response… “Well… I asked Dad, and he said I could.”

This is just all too typical of how things usually go. If the kids ask me something and I say no, they immediately run to dad to see if he will say yes, and vice versa. During the early years in our marriage, this was a huge problem for us. I would get mad at hubby, thinking he should know better than to give one of our girl’s cookies before dinnertime and then he would get angry at me, since he really couldn’t see what all the fuss was about. Of course this is just one simple scenario; as the girls got older, saying yes to cookies was the least of our problems.

Years passed by and we still hadn’t figured out that by allowing our girls to manipulate us, we were creating some serious problems for our marriage. There would be times when the kids would make plans with me to do something, fully knowing that their dad wasn’t ok with it, and then I would get blamed for allowing them to do whatever it was their dad had already said no too. This scenario of course went both ways. This caused a lot of resentment to build up in our marriage. The girls eventually figured out which one of us was the most likely to give them the answer they wanted, and so then they would use that knowledge to their advantage.

Hubby and I made the mistake of letting this continue on for too many years. If we had been smart, we would have learned sooner to communicate better and make all of our decisions together as a family. Unfortunately, with the way our work schedules were back in those days, we really didn’t take the time to communicate with each other like we should have. Because of this, our relationship with each other and the relationships with our girls really did suffer.

Fortunately, we have since learned, if one of our girls asks us for something, we make sure that they haven’t already been told no; and any really important decisions, always get discussed together as a family. We have found that by sitting together at dinnertime, we now have the opportunity to discuss things which are currently going on. It’s the perfect time to make future plans for upcoming events and it helps keep everyone on the same page.

Do you struggle with this in your own family? And if so, what have you done to try and remedy the problem?

 


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