Always Learning

Honesty… This has been a gut wrenching week at work and personally. I am finding my way through to the other side and trying to take the value from all that has been happening.

I am learning that I can be genuinely me and love others really hard. Sometimes that’s not enough for the other person. Sometimes it’s too much for me.

I am learning that just because I messed up in somebody else’s eyes does not make me a mess up or a failure. Everybody gets to make their own choices about where they would like to lay blame and about what they hold on to.

I am learning that if there is no space for me to be less than perfect then this is not a space that I belong. I am so less than perfect and will not spend any more time in this short life proving to others my worthiness.

I am learning that thankfully I get the same choice. I can reflect and I can always look at what I could’ve done better. I can apologize, I can make amends and in the end, no matter what somebody else chooses, I have to choose to make amends and give grace to myself.

I am learning that the names people might call me or the ways they may talk about me say much more about them than they ever will about me.

I am learning that only God can give me the validation I truly yearn for. Only I can choose to reject or accept it.

I love deeply and I care about the impact of my actions on others. I believe often, hardships happen because I have to remember to turn that caring and love inward and give myself what I’m craving from another. There are always lessons.

Today is a new day, joy comes in the morning and it is here. Let the haters hate but please, please let me remain who I am made to be and to grow stronger in that. I am so grateful for the small handful of people who remind me of who I am.

It has never been all about me. It is about the one who made me and continues to hold me up when everything feels like too much. Cradled in Gods love, it is here that I reside, I just forget to remember this at times.🙏❤️

Happy Thursday loves.

Let’s just explore.

“I’M JUST CURIOUS WHY IT IS AGE APPROPRIATE FOR KIDS K-5 TO LEARN ABOUT HIDING UNDER THEIR DESK AND NOT THAT SOMETIMES PEOPLE HAVE TWO DADS.”

I posted this the other day and boy did I ever get feedback. If you have been around me much at all, I have a reputation for enjoying open dialogue, considering other perspectives and respecting those whether I agree or disagree.

Yesterday, a person chose to comment in a condescending, foolish, ignorant and attacking manner. I am glad they showed their true colors so I could see them for who they are sooner rather than later.  I don’t have the energy to fight that.

I am open to learning and hopeful that readers or those commenting are of the same mindset; or will at least please respect these boundaries. No matter the stance taken; please be kind; respectful and compassionate.  I promise it’s easier to hear those efforts.

To all the rest of you who have kept dialogue healthy and respectful, no matter your viewpoints, I thank you. This is how we grow.

Now…I want to address my thoughts on the original post and explain my stance. Not because it is needed; rather, because I believe this is a topic worthy of discussion and I don’t want to take the lazy way out and stop the conversation.

Here is the quote…”I am just curious why it’s age appropriate for kids k-5 to learn about hiding under desks and not that sometimes people have two dads.”

  1.  I read this and thought to myself; “good point.  Why is that?  It is definitely worth exploring.”
  2. I did not even consider it within the school context.  I considered it within the context of the dear children and families I work with.  I thought of it in the context of living in a society where we teach fear, judgement and intolerance far more than we teach lovingkindness, grace and acceptance.  I would agree wholeheartedly that SAFE discussions need to happen at home.  That’s ideal.  Guess what?  It’s also not our reality.
  3. It was said that this was not an accurate quote bc it compared apples and oranges.  I would say it compares physical safety and emotional safety.  Both are significant.  Both are social issues.  Both impact our children on a daily basis; even if we turn a blind eye.  Hiding under a desk bc of danger of death and bodily harm and hiding who we (or our families) are bc being authentic in real life offers us another kind of death…equally tragic.

I am truly grateful for all of the thoughts shared.  This is where I was and where I am still coming from.  Also, if you have not gotten to know someone who is different than you in a way that you are uncomfortable with, I implore you….seek them out and get to know them.   More love, less fear.  This world is scary enough on it’s own.


Surrendering yet again


Oh Sarah! I am getting ready to pay bills and I think I’ve been so crazy busy that I haven’t opened my personal computer since the end of February. I hate that bc it means I haven’t done any serious writing and that’s so important to me. Good reminder, right?

Anyway…I opened the computer to something I had started writing and had never finished.

I had written….

“I am furious with myself this morning. I wonder when the day will come that I will value my own worth.”

“Online dating has made it so we can connect with men of whom we have no knowleged. They can reinvent themselves each time and we don’t have the benefit, (nor do they), of relying, at least to some extent, on reputation for integrity or lack therof.” These are wise words from my dear new friend that my brain currently has on repeat.”

“This notion is obviously not limited to men. It just hit me so hard. My dating experiences as of late have not been what I would hope for at this time win my life. I have met shallow and decietful men who do not affirm their words through their actions. Still, I am no man hater. I love and adore men. Truly. Every experience has held value for me, even when it hurts. The bottom line for me, know your worth, respect your own boundaries, and remember that no amount of bandaids heal a wounded heart.”

There it is! And that experience my loves, came shortly before going on the date with Mr. Married (I did not know, shortly followed by getting a jolt of reality regarding my last ‘relationship’.

I realized my pattern of years of dating men who are really not good for my soul and I think that’s quite enough! Enough of my poor choices and settling, enough of not respecting myself, enough of seeing my dreams vs accepting reality.

I made a conscious effort to let go of the unhealthy ‘situationships’ that I had in my back pocket and have been praying hard. I’ll write more on the whole situationship thing later, it deserves it’s own accolades. I am not interested in being used or in using.

There is beauty in surrender. I needed to remind myself of that. Letting go and waiting…I heard nothing from any of the aforementioned. I told myself not to be bitter. Not to be angry. This is all opportunity for growth. Still, ouch.

Today…I am here. Waiting for date number three with a treasure of a gentleman. He is kind. He is smart. He is goofy. He asks how I am and seems to really want to know. He makes me laugh. He is affectionate and compassionate. He seeks God. He is tall. He has dreamy sparkly eyes and he is goodness. I know that.

I have no clue where this is going; nor do I have expectations. I didn’t expect him at all so I have no right to try and determine the outcome. I am simply enjoying the experience with all of my heart and I overflowing with gratitude for these moments.

I also know we are both quite human and on
our best behavior as this unfolds. Trying to seek adventure over anxiety in my heart.

However this ends up, I trust that he is not a part of a pattern that I am accustomed to. What.a.gift. I have learned the ick. Now I must unlearn the ick and learn my value in healthy situations.

I keep praying that my boundaries stay healthy, that I remember whose kid I am (God, Bill and Joyce all share custody), that my walls tumble down, and that I open myself up to the experience of goodness, no matter the outcome.

I’d like to say this isn’t hard for me. I’d be lying. Instead, I will say this…I welcome the challenge of healing.

Thankful

So…I just wanted to share.
I had a first date with a man last night that I have been talking to for a few weeks.
For the first time in what feels like so long, I was super excited and nervous AND without expectation for this date. That’s what I was going to share yesterday, but my jaded self wanted to wait and see if the date even happened.

It was incredibly fun! There was stimulating, intelligent conversation, laughter, a bit of deeper sharing and it just flowed. My favorite part (besides all of this and that he is lovely to look at and smell); he didn’t seem to be running his own agenda.
After dating people who have left me feeling used (I totally have accountability in getting into those relationships) and empty; this was so refreshing. So far, there is nothing about this gentleman that makes me go ‘hmmmm?”

My worry is that in the past, I have misunderstood stable and healthy for boring. I’m determined to stay aware and keep honest with myself. I want to be a partner; I do not want to be someone’s therapist or mother. I am a natural nurturer and a therapist in real life; I just have to remind myself that in dating I want to be a partner in something real and reciprocal.

I am looking forward to the second date (again unusual for me). Whether it is one date, two dates or so much more; I am thankful beyond words for the encouraging experience.

Simply. Beautiful. Chaos.

In less than ½ a year from now, I will be 50 years old.  

I am proud of who I am. 

 My heart is tender and compassionate.  I am smart.  I am witty.  I am hard working, kind, loving and I have a lot to give.  Also, I am stubborn to a fault.  I can take a lackadaisical and scattered approach to life.  I sometimes am far more considerate of others than of myself; and at the same time can be selfish and run by motivating factors that I wish didn’t motivate me.  

I am reflective, I am unique.  I struggle with small talk unless it is obligatory.  I have been told that “I am too much”; and it wasn’t in the ‘good’ too much kind of way.  

Tears come as easy as laughter. Food, whiskey, wine and coffee; being consumed by work and men temporarily fill a hole in my heart that longs for something deeper. 

 I relish digging in the dirt, breathing in nature, talking with God, reading the Bible and also reading Anais Nin, bubble baths, writing, being with those I love, and being alone with my neverending thoughts.  Those things feed my soul.

I love hard.  It is difficult for me to let go of things that once were or things that might’ve been.  I prefer seeing the possibilities over the reality at times.  

I am human.  Messy. A student of this life.

 I am beauty in the chaos; with an emphasis on the chaos.

I am simply Sarah.

I know who I am.  I know my value.  So why, why, why do I so quickly forget that when it comes to men?  Why do I push things under the rug that I know are harmful to my heart; contort myself to make another person comfortable and chase the love someone does not have to give me?  And, why for the love of all things good, do I equate healthy men with boring.  Not cool Sarah.  Not cool.

These are the thoughts I ponder tonight.  

I was going to write this entire synopsis on my dating journey and sexual awakening; it turns out that’s not really the gist of what is on my heart.  Kind of.

What the gist of it all is isn’t about what the men have or haven’t done in my life; it’s about searching for a deeper understanding of why I have allowed myself; perhaps even put myself in less than stellar situations.  Why have I decided to continually settle, be in relationships where someone mistakes me for a momma or their personal therapist, or place more value on whether I meet their standards than raising my own?

I desire a reciprocal, romantic, respectful relationship where passion is very much alive.  Is it the fear of growing old alone that pushes me into the zone of what isn’t best for me?  Is it the comfort of having someone that drives me there?  I don’t know.  

I do know that exploring the places I am accountable is a good thing.  I do know that although I  don’t ‘need’ a man; I totally desire a companion and that’s okay.  I just need to figure out why I am still so willing to compromise on my ‘non negotiables’ and then I resent the hell out of them bc of my choices.  That makes no sense. 

Wish me luck.  It looks like I have some hard work to do and some healthy boundaries to establish; starting with me.

I’m here.

Super honest Sarah here…(like I know how to be any other way…)
Sometimes, I feel so close to the edge. Like incredibly alone, like I am on an island all by myself.
I know this isn’t a true story, I have a whole lot of friends and family that are all portions of my heart.
I just don’t have anyone in my head and heart experiencing what I am experiencing and I miss sharing that with someone who REALLY GETS ME.
I desperately want to see and be seen, accept and be accepted, love and be loved in the ways that matter. I don’t want to grow old alone. I know I will be okay if that’s the case; it’s just not what I pray for.
Sometimes it’s so daunting and scary. Sometimes I think about the parts of my life that I have invested into someone else and lost myself only to watch them go find exactly what I wasn’t to them and it sucks.
Sometimes I am impatient, especially with myself.
Feeling a teeny bit blech and trying to focus on the gratitude.

I’ve noticed that I have gotten more and more guarded what I share when I write. That’s probably a little good and a little not great.

Learning to not be reactionary and to certainly recognize the opportunity that being quiet offers me to grow is a gift to myself….and to others.

I’m debating taking myself off of social media to reset myself. It was such a beautiful experience for me when I did it in grad school. The thing is…social media is a lovely little sense of connection in these weird days of covid and all the other divisionary things so I hesitate to take it from myself.

But you know what…I want real. Real life. Real stuff. Real people. Real interactions. I am not sure the world will every go back as it was; that’s reality. I believe we are made for relationship; in many forms. I’ve spent a good period of time frozen in my personal life and I am done with that. I had a little experience last weekend that reminded me, connection feels amazing. Feeling seen and heard and getting to see and hear is a beautiful luxury. I try to give that to my clients all day, every day and I forget to give it to myself; accepting short term substitutions in the process that leave me feeling blech and full of self flagellation. I think sometimes the brief connection reminds me of what my heart truly desires and there is always a bit of hurt when it is just that, a short term substitution.

I recognize that my love and joy is found in the most simple of things. Wrapping myself in the warm embrace of my family; laughing and crying with friends; great conversation, delicious red wine; a yummy smelling candle; children and animals and the elderly and the crunchy ice on the ground. There is pleasure in knowing that I could fill endless pages just naming all of the things that give me love and joy.

There is delight to be found in the maybe mundane if we don’t see it for the magical that it is. I find I am so busy on social media and the computer all day (can’t help that), that I’m wasting precious time on false connection.

I want real. Real life; real stuff, real people, real interactions.

Is that so bad?

Let it go

Dear sis,

It’s not your monkey, not your circus.

Let go and let God.er

Release the past.

Eyes focused forward, past behind you. Your eyes aren’t in the back of your head for a reason.

You are no longer in the same lane.

You are not responsible for the choices people make. You am not responsible for anything but your own thoughts, your own feelings and your own actions.

Even when it hurts and even when you can see the train wreck happening… Let that shit go, it’s not yours and it never was.❤️🙏

I’ve been pondering what my ‘word’ of the year will be; praying about it and trying to assimilate all of my thoughts into a word.
Have you met me? This is not a task for the faint of heart. One word.
I’ve got it, not a doubt in my mind.


Aligruent

It’s a new word, I know. It combines aligned and congruent. It’s so new that it might not even be in an online dictionary yet. You can trust me. It’s an official word.


Aligruent: Making sure my insides and outsides match; ensuring that the choices I make line up with the life God has planned for me; to align with myself; to be my own ally; in a state of harmony and compatability with myself; to be comfortable in my own skin; to be full of gratitude (I added that although it’s not a part of the definition).

ALIGRUENT

HAPPY 2022!

Endings. Lessons.

You know… Over a year ago, a wonderful man came back into my life. We had initially met in 2018 when we were both really broken and we had a super fun time together.

We drifted apart but remained friends, checking in with each other over the years. That man came back into my life at the beginning of Covid.

A friendship grew into a real life relationship. We were a couple. 🙂 We even decided to put it on social media….”in a relationship “!

I remember when we did that, I was terrified. I was wondering what people would think. Were they think we were like giddy high schoolers?. Kind of we were… This part was a first for both of us.. And man did it feel good to know someone was proud to publicly and proudly “claim” me? Yes!

Would they judge us if it didn’t last? Would they relish in our togetherness and then make scandalous stories up about our demise? It was scary. We did it anyway.

So what’s the point of my sharing?

Relationships can be very scary. Each person has been traveling their own journey and very likely, one or both parties have been hurt before. Now we are supposed to trust and love again… Things that deepen (or don’t) with time.

If we are willing participants, relationships, whatever the outcome, teach things about ourselves.. Sometimes they teach us absolutely beautiful things that we are proud of… Like how big we are really able to love. Sometimes they teach us things about ourselves when another layer is exposed and we know that we need more healing. Either way… There are lessons to learn and beauty to be had.

Back to that wonderful man… We had time together filled with ups and downs just like life. We grew individually and together. We taught, loved and supported one another. In the end, we are better as friends in this season.

We are both back to “single“ as our relationship status on social media. I don’t feel silly or dumb. I feel thankful for the journey and proud that we opened ourselves up to the experience.

“Single” doesn’t change our value, our worthiness, or our desire to love and be loved.

Single doesn’t change that this man is one of the most extraordinary, big hearted, warriors that I have ever known.

Single doesn’t change how thankful I am for the journey, whatever the outcome.

We don’t love to win or to lose. We love to love.