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Mean People Suck: Don’t Let Them Suck the Life Out of You

ugly buzzardNice and mean. Two simple words not often given enough credit for how important they are.

Nice matters. Mean sucks.

Today I’m going to be writing about mean, because recently someone has taken all of the vulnerability I shared with them, and been very mean.

In the past 24 hours I have been told that my friends and family are crazy. That’s pretty damn mean when the person spewing bile knows that mental health struggles that have gone on due to physical, sexual and emotional abuse throughout my family and friends lives.  The security of my home has  been threatened and I’ve been told some nasty, nasty things from a person who was dear to me.

But I’ve done mean. I survived it in my childhood home, in the workplace and even relationships. Which is to say, that my ability to overcome it is great. In other words, when someone is mean, the only thing I know that I can do is to disengage, and enter survival mode.

And how much fun is that? It isn’t. And I’m too old for this shit quite frankly. I’m due for some free-spirited, joyful living, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.

When someone shows me how ugly their spirit really is, I choose not to invest my time or energy there. After all, I’ve got more important shit to do, like create a non-fiction masterpiece, and have wine-soaked discussions with kindred spirits. Fuck mean.

If you’re out there with someone who is a nasty little troll, whether it ‘s at home, at work, at school or in the community, try your best to disengage. Try your best to identify the hardest times to control your reaction. Focus on what you love; your art, your job, your pet, your kids, your daily walk around the block….

beautiful birdMean sucks.

Remember, mean belongs to the person spewing hate. It doesn’t belong to you, so don’t carry it. Take a deep breath, envision yourself surrounded by light which protects you from anyone else’s bullshit, and step forward into your own life.

 

 

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The Magic of Christmas Appeared in the Form of Ambrosia

"Isn't there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?" ~Charlie Brown~
“Isn’t there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?”
~Charlie Brown~

The magic finally happened for me this year.

I had just put the tacky Christmas goldfish ‘sunshine-Jello-salad’, into the fridge and was stirring together the tacky ambrosia, when I felt the first sparkly jolt.

Christmas?! Yes!

Perhaps it was going through the motions of tradition that brought it about for me this year. On the eve before Christmas Eve, I found some magic. It started with a kind message from one of my oldest friends who helped  me realize that I don’t have to constantly be strong for everyone else.

Just in time for Christmas Eve: my favourite part of Christmas.

To say that it’s been an anti-climactic lead-up to Christmas is an understatement. In fact it’s been a Christmas time to remember. Often these are the years that build character and help us empathize with others who struggle through the holidays.

One well-meaning soul typed a comment about having expectations too high at Christmas time.  This Christmas has not been Christmasy, and it’s not because of any expectation, it’s because of loss. Expectation is an interesting concept, and one worthy of discussion.

We live in a hurried world where sadness and empathy take time none of us want to take. I believe that encourages platitudes about ‘no expectation’ and ‘not being attached to outcome’. Hogwash and pith my darlings.

It’s right up there with; having a stiff upper lip, not crying in front of the children, and keeping yourself busy. I’m a ‘loss’ professional, and I firmly believe in having to fall apart sometimes in order to pull your refined-by-trial soul back together. Sometimes things suck, and it’s ok to say so.

If you think that having rainbows and lollipops poof out of your arse all day long is normal, please send your unicorn to fetch me for your next seminar.

Certain expectations are healthy; to be treated fairly, to be compensated fairly for work, to be able to live freely without discrimination and most importantly, to feel validated when you feel every emotion, including the ugly ones like fear, anger and sadness that make most folks uncomfortable. These are healthy, and necessary expectations.

For anyone who has experienced loss, Christmas can be a really tough slog, regardless of expectation.

As we near the midnight hour, and our corner of the world slows down, I think I will take some time to stop and consider what expectations are helping me move forward or holding me back. Discerning between the two is where the magic happens, because as much as our human brains would like the world to be black and white, it isn’t.

Christmas magic appeared unexpectedly as I went through the motions of making the traditional food that goes on our Christmas table, and I am grateful. Happy even. I’m looking forward to tonight and tomorrow, and am thankful for having people to share the day with.

Wishing you joy this Christmas. Wishing you a soft landing if  you are among those who have experienced loss at this time of year.  Wishing you the wisdom to discern between healthy expectation, and hokey platitudes. If you’re having none of that, I’ll send over a dish of ambrosia for your narwhal.

 

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The Warm Fuzzies of Dysfunction

consentAs my fingers pressed a code-lock into the keypad, followed by the clicking of my heels on the tiled floor, I thought to myself, “Wow, you’ve come a long way lady! I wonder what they’d think of me now?”

I thought about having a conversation and catching up on everything they’d missed out on since I last saw them.  All it would take is a quick dial of the phone, and I could hear their voice. Who knows what miracle might happen?

I had a moment of indulgence, fantasizing about the good times and talks that we’d had. I thought about how nice it was to have that relationship, the intimacy of knowing someone well, where they came from, and how they became the person who they are today.

But,  the short answer to my warm and fuzzy, nostalgia inspired questions is; Likely the same stupid, twisted stuff they thought about me back then. In plain-speak my dazzling belles of the ball, that means that whatever they once thought of me, or might think of me now really doesn’t matter.

That’s the ultimate truth about dysfunctional relationships – they’re dysfunctional. Unhealthy. Less than anyone deserves, and a complete and utter waste of a precious lifetime.

Dwelling too long on the few sweet drops of goodness of a bad relationship does way more damage than lack of exercise, too much hooch, or saturated fat. It steals your future, and kills your self-worth.

Dysfunction is often just  a nice way to say abusive, and it’s dangerous because it stems from the most intimate and trusted of relationships. You know as well as I do darling that the more intimate the relationship, the deeper the potential wound.

Today my cousin posted a quote about doubt, and I think it’s a very apt thought with regard to the difficult relationships in our lives. Whenever you find yourself doubting someone, or your relationship with them, whether they’re a lover of the hot-sweaty-jungle-sex-kind, or even your one and only mother, consider this;

Cherish your doubts, for doubt is the attendant of truth.

Doubt is the key to the door of knowledge; it is the servant of discovery.

A belief which may not be questioned binds us to error,

for there is incompleteness and imperfection in every belief.

Doubt is the touchstone of truth; it is an acid which eats away the false.

Let no one fear for the truth, that doubt may consume it; for doubt is the testing of belief.

The truth stands boldly and unafraid; it is not shaken by the testing.”

~ Rev. Robert T. Weston, Unitarian Universalist minister

Unfortunately living within a dysfunctional relationship poisons everything that is good in your life. That is the well into which dysfunctional people drip their contagion.

Too often, hindsight wears rose-coloured glasses, forgives like Gandhi, and seduces like a Parisian whore,  making you think that you’re the bad one for establishing and keeping healthy boundaries.

Your past is the past, and the people in it are usually there for a reason.

Keep your chin up darling, and your sights set on the life and loves that your heart truly desires. You’re just too beautiful for anything less.