Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I need to make my bones.

The epiphanies are coming at me right and left.

The words my friends say to me stay with me. They may not be easy to hear, but they are necessary.

I am learning to set boundaries.

And I'm sticking to them.

It's the strangest thing.

I had an unexpected therapy session on Monday. After a lovely weekend.

I was at the Swap Meet with TF and my Girlz. And I nearly cried when I hugged each of them. It was so beautiful to be in their presence once again...

TF had mentioned awhile back that she wanted to get a matching tattoo with me. A plumeria. And I told her that I don't really believe in getting matching tattoos with people. My maid of honor had asked me to years ago, and I refused... She and I ran into each other at a conference two summers ago. We hadn't spoken in three years.

I have a tattoo to represent my momma, and my son. That's it. I've never gotten a tattoo with a man's name on me. I wouldn't. I don't believe in it. The HRT decided he wanted to get a tattoo to "represent our relationship" and I discouraged him. (Now I wish I'd let him. Because that would be damned funny!)

But on that overcast Sunday morning, when I saw something with a plumeria on it, I realized I can get a matching tattoo with TF. Because I believe in her. I believe in our friendship. She is absolutely true and forever.

And when I told her I wanted to get a plumeria with her, she instantly understood what I was saying... And it was a moment. They will be slightly different. The accent color will be different, and she will get a letter in hers to represent her boys, and I will get a letter in mine to represent my girlZ.

And I wondered if I can handle the pain of three tattoos in one session.

And then I had her over to my home. And she brought me flowers. And then Ari came with my wine... And I made a wonderful Italian dressing with the good olive oil and the gourmet balsamic vinegar... For a dinner I made for someone worthy... Who understood why he was invited on a Sunday and not another day. And he respected that. And I set my boundaries and stuck to them, and they were respected.


So, I bounced into therapy all excited, and just gushing about how great things are. And how I'm paying my bills and I have money left over to buy new stuff for my little boy. And that I'm a better mom than I had been while I was in that marriage. And even though Mel dropped me because she thought I was a bad mom, I am proving her wrong every minute.

But on my way there, I had this moment of ClaRiTy. That I am blessed by these true friendships. That I lied to so many for so long, and that they love me anyway.

And tears spilled over when I remembered those girls from last summer... The ones who decided to use those lies as their excuse for dropping me. For cruelty.

And it made the realization of these friendships so much sweeter.

My therapist threw all kinds of positive feedback my way...

And then told me that I have to have a conversation with my husband... The one where I get to tell him I think he's an alcoholic, and to tell him the consequences of what will happen if he ever puts our son in the car if he's under the influence.

The conversation would take place last night.

Oh, but first, my electricity would be turned off. Because I never got a bill for a deposit. Or the phone call they were supposed to have placed. There was a disconnection notice, which went unnoticed, because I am somewhat bad about checking the mailbox which is all the way across the complex. In my entire life, I have never had my utilities disconnected. But, the guy I paid rolled his eyes when I said that.

Anyway, the conversation got a little heated, but ultimately, we both have our son's best interests at heart. And he will be okay.

And I got the utility thing figured out (the lady totally apologized for the "inconvenience" and admitted their wrongdoing, but it still meant I would be powerless until today).

And I spent an evening with candles and flashlights and continued with my EPL regimen.

And I find that different things get to me now while I'm reading Eat, Pray, Love for the third time.

The whole soulmate thing? The thing that had me all breathless and freaking out last time?

I almost skimmed it. Because it's just accepted. "Yeah, yeah. He's my soulmate. We're not together. It wouldn't be good for either of us. Moving on."

And today as I crossed my campus, something hit me...

I have had some pretty awful things happen since I left my husband and our home. But I have never once regretted that decision. I've never second-guessed myself on that decision.

As Elizabeth Gilbert says, "What Richard is talking about is instead admitting to the existence of negative thoughts, understanding where they came from and why they arrived, and then - with great forgiveness and fortitude - dismissing them.... It's constant vigilance and I want to do it. I need to do it, for my strength. Devo farmi le ossa is how they say it in Italian. "I need to make my bones"."

She goes on to add "So I've started being vigilant about watching my thoughts all day, and monitoring them. I repeat this vow about 700 times a day: "I will not harbor unhealthy thoughts anymore." Every time a diminishing thought arises, I repeat the vow, I will not harbor unhealthy thoughts anymore."

And it hit me today: I AM IN THAT PLACE.

I'm not beating myself up over decisions I've made that may have looked like mistakes. I'm not thinking that I shouldn't have moved here because then I wouldn't have fallen down the stairs because of a nasty neighbor. I'm not calling myself an idiot for letting the utilities get cut off. (Shut up, TF. Yes, I will be more vigilant about getting my mail. I did pick it up today. Two days in a row! Mad skillz. :P) I'm just looking at it as one little kink to work out before this well-oiled machine moves itself along.

And shut up, Zabba. Because I know I should have moved out a year ago.

But the fact of the matter is this:

Everything happens the way it's supposed to. And I am here, and I am happy, and things are good. I can see whom I want, I can be whom I want. I can live, love, and laugh.

And now I'm off to do that.


  1. Shayna,

    It is interesting how what you write speaks to issues I am dealing with in my life. Free therapy :)

    Live,love and laugh. Good for you. I hope I get there soon.


  2. You are doing great!!! Oh and the mail thing I'm bad at it too.. I've even gone so long without getting it that it was all sent back to the post office where I had to go pick it up!!! I can't tell you that the mail thing will get any easier because I'm still doing it haha...

    Love you!!!

  3. so when i saw you used this phrase a few days ago, i went and googled it. (not that i didn't like your explanation, i just wanted to dig further). i LOVE this. you're right when you said you and i are parallel right now. i am making my bones too.
    sorry i've slacked on the commenting and sometimes on the reading, friend. i'm digesting this bone thing lately. thanks for putting it in my path.

  4. I re-read this tonight....because I was supposed to. Thank you my dear friend.