Atomic Bombshell


Posts filed under 'The Black Hole'

20 Questions

Microphones

The beautiful Ana (she recently became a new mommy) tagged me to complete a 20-item questionnaire designed to help you reflect on last year and plan ahead for this one. The hitch: Toss one question and replace it with your own, then tag a handful of friends to participate.
My beloved blogroll buddies are invited to join in the fun.

Continue to view the questions & answers…

Continue Reading 7 comments January 15th, 2008

Dressing Room

Dressing Room

You’re browsing racks of clothes, trying to find just the right outfit for an upcoming event. You wade through aisle after aisle, amassing a good selection to choose from. Then you haul it all into the dressing room and start trying it on for size. This one’s too big. That one is too tight up top. The other needs to come in a few inches in the waist. And with some luck you’ll eventually emerge with a piece that fits just right.

We can use that as a metaphor to better understand how I test out ideas, behaviors, and attitudes. I like to try them on, view them from different angles, and walk around in them a little (privately) before making a decision. Figuring out what works and what doesn’t, adjusting from there to find the perfect fit. Once in a while, I’ll let someone inside my dressing room to provide a second opinion. Woe be it unto them.

Often I don’t give warning. When wrestling with an issue, I’ll just throw concepts out there to seek feedback and study reactions. Those poor people closest to me have trouble at times figuring out whether I’m simply trying something on, or if I bought it. And bless them for trying. Maybe some day I’ll be able to slow the flurry of thoughts enough to first let people know when I’m headed into the dressing room.

7 comments December 19th, 2007

Anticlimactic

When I wrote that previous entry I kind-of knew that whining about the divorce dragging on forever would be the “anti-jinx” to make sure the marriage that never should have happened would at least be over before its ten-year mark. And I was right, as this week it was declared finally, finally, final… Well, except for all the loose ends.

But hey, legally I’m now unmarried.

You’d think since I was the plaintiff in this case I’d be doing cartwheels right now. Especially after recently being contacted by the “new ex” (that he used for a year and a half after I left) and learning that he’s become even more intolerable. Perhaps that offered some validation. Or that I’d at least be excited about the future, knowing that I’m no longer a prisoner of that big bad decision I made in Las Vegas.

But no. Even after eight years of pain, even though my pastor at church would attest that I had biblical grounds, there’s still this great big part of me that knows that when I signed on for forever it meant for ever. And knowing that, I can’t help feeling like a total and complete failure.

I’m not sharing this because I need your sympathy or encouragement. In fact, being able to share these feelings is a small celebration of my liberation. I don’t have to pretend like I’m hunky-dory any more or stick to the approved topics. Introducing: More of the real me.

18 comments November 9th, 2007

Neverending

Spiral ClockSix months. That’s how long I was told it should take for the divorce to be final. At first that made perfect sense to me. With no kids of our own, no house, and therefore nothing to fight over, it should be easy, right? Yet here I am after not two six month spans later, but a mind-boggling year and a half, and it’s still not over.

To make matters worse, even once the court clerk pounds his or her stamp onto our paperwork and it’s legally over, we’re still not completely done. They have to analyze our retirement assets, slice them down the middle, and then there’s still the matter of the ultimate disposal of my car, leased in my ex’s name.

It’s a frustrating situation, but it’s worth all the struggle to be free…

Free from an emotionally (and at times physically) abusive relationship. Free to be myself without fearing constant harassment. Free to enjoy friendships without abiding his disapproval and criticism. From being ignored by the one who should love me. From unreasonable demands. From being viewed like a utility. Water, trash, electricity, wife.

20 comments October 22nd, 2007

Villainized

Darth VaderMost of my life I’ve been closely surrounded by people with super powers to keenly see only the worst in me. My mother was the first on the list. While not offering any tips to succeed, she did tell me in exhausting detail and frequency about every single thing that was screwed up about me.

I was not humble. I was self-absorbed. Lazy. Never utilized my potential. Was cruel to people. Overweight. Not devoted to God. Snobby. Unappreciative. Loved nobody but myself. Was a know-it-all, a criminal, and a whore. Her list covers every imaginable category and continues growing to this very day!

Perhaps I made the most of it though, because I sift through those put-downs, take the kernels of truth, and then make strides to heal in those areas. In a way, I turned what she intended to destroy me into a survival tool. That’s one strange method of self-improvement.

Later, I was in a marriage with the same dynamic in play. My husband pointed a laser beam at my flaws. He would infrequently acknowledge some minor good in me, but mostly to note how heavily overshadowed it was by my grave shortcomings. Everything that went wrong, even my own dissatisfaction, was said to be a result of my problems.

These constant reminders provided me with a rich supply of work to do, and I tackled it all with fervor, rarely pointing fingers back at them, defending myself only when they spoke blatant lies. Instead I did my best to examine what I could do differently to become a better person. Progress was slow, but thankfully steady.

After years of listening to all their accusations, I took many to heart, including the idea that my ego would rise out of control without “help” to keep me grounded. Their negativity and criticism was draining, but I was willing to keep coming back for more if I’d end up stronger.

I later realized it can’t be healthy for any of us, but my convictions on the matter weren’t firmed up until just the other day when I went over something Jesus said which describes me as a chronic murder victim, and my family as serial killers. That’s it… Game over.

13 comments February 27th, 2007

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