Addiction, coaching, Law of Attraction, Love, Motivation, parenting, women

Is true love actually possible?

I had an interesting conversation today with a woman who I have been getting to know. She is currently married, though not very happily, and she said that she doesn’t think she knows anyone who is truly happily married. She said that she is not even sure that true love exists or that any man is capable of truly loving her. This was not said as a self esteem problem. This was not doubting her worth. It was doubting the capability of the man.

I found this especially interesting because I have been in a few relationships over my life, though I am single now, and I know that 3 of them have loved me completely. I know that there is no doubt in my mind that their love was real. The first 2 were mostly timing and growing. We were in our 20s when we got together and though the love and relationships were nice, as we got older we just grew apart.

The last was my son’s father. We loved each other fiercely and unconditionally. There was no doubt in my mind about that. Now, that did not mean that we had to stay together. In fact we loved each other and our son so much that we eventually realized that being apart was the best option. He was an addict. He had demons that he just couldn’t get away from, and eventually they killed him. But I loved him, and he loved me completely.

We were constantly off and on depending on his sobriety. This was very confusing and disruptive to our son. Eventually I had to just put an end to it. Not because I didn’t love him, and not because he didn’t love me.. but because we both loved our son.

I think that the problem with finding “true love” is that people want the fairytale, but no one lives “happily ever after”. There are always problems, and there are always lulls, and people are always taken for granted as time goes on. None of that has to do with love.. I used to say that love is not a feeling.. it is a verb. Love is an action that we have to do everyday. I am a huge Doctor Who fan, and in an episode he states that “Love is a promise” and I feel that too.

When we were first thinking about and discussing having a family Neil and I talked about a lot of things. We were planning on getting married.. we were just saving up. I wanted a HUGE affair.. I never got it. He relapsed and my father died and after a while a wedding wasn’t all that important. But my FAMILY was. That’s what we had decided when we chose to have our son. We are now family. We will love each other forever. There was no leaving. Again.. that does not mean that we had to stay romantically linked or even live in the same house. When it became dangerous I had to tell him to leave.. but it did mean that I was always his first phone call and he was always mine.

I recently remembered a time, about 6 months after my father had passed and Neil was out of rehab and things were getting good again. I had spent most of that time in yoga pants and a messy bun. On this particular day I put on real people clothes.. just jeans, but it was something. I let my hair down AND BRUSHED IT. I even put on a little makeup. I didn’t think much of it. I was just having a day that I could breath again. I walked into the dining room not thinking about it and I heard him audibly gasp. I actually took his breath away. He was even a little embarrassed by it, but he just said, “you look beautiful”. I remember how that made me feel. After months of grieving my father and over a year of heartache over Neil’s relapse I had been in quite a depression.. and there he was. Telling me how beautiful I look.. telling me that I actually take his breath away.

This man had seen me at my worst. He saw our son being sliced out of me “Aliens” style.. and I was the most beautiful thing he’d ever seen. He loved me.. and I him… and nothing bad that ever happened between us ever changed that.

After he died I had some conversations with his mother and some of his friends. They told me how through all of our ups and downs that he never said a bad thing about me. That he always talked about how amazing I was. How strong I was. What a great mom I am. He loved me.. emotionally.. and in his words and actions everyday. Even on his worst days.. he kept his promise.

Love is not a cure all. Love is not how it ends.. True love.. is family.. it’s forever. It’s calling them on their shit.. and telling them when you’re proud.. it’s taking the call when they overdosed and crashed their car. It’s cleaning up their sick father’s poop… it’s knowing.. that no matter what has happened between you, and no matter where anyone lives.. that person always wants what’s best for you and always has your back.

coaching, Law of Attraction, Motivation, parenting, Wellness, women

Creating your own life

I have spent the last decade plus reading, watching, and learning as much as I can about the nature of reality as explained by everyone from Priests, Physicists, Psychologists and Self Help Gurus. I find all of them have a certain amount of credence, and to be honest most of them sat pretty close to the same thing. Reality is what you make it.

I am Catholic. To me this means that I believe in the idea behind the Bible.. I understand that the Bible was written by humans and that humans have the uncanny ability to put their own spin on everything, but when I speak with the clergy of my church or read the Bible myself I find a pattern repeating throughout. God helps those who help them self, Jesus is said to be quoted, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”.

Physicists have discovered with Quantum Theory that nothing happens in the real world without first being observed by consciousness. That our own observations and thoughts change the way the Quantum world plays out.

Psychologists have long said that we are all to take responsibility for our own actions and that the best way to do that is to understand our own feeling and how our thoughts control those feelings. The “chemical imbalance” often blamed for the plethora of mental illness are actually sparked in part by the words we feed to our consciousness everyday. If we are constantly telling ourselves that we are useless, depressed, and our lives suck.. our brains will produce less and less serotonin and/or dopamine and that’s exactly how we will feel. If we tell ourselves we are strong, and think about all of the wonderful things in our lives that we are grateful for then we will create more and more of those “happy” chemicals and we can change the way we actually feel about life.

Self Help Gurus have said pretty much all of this under the category of living in the “Now”, the Law of Attraction, Mindfulness… or whatever catchy name we all choose to identify with.

The reason why I find this information so incredibly interesting and incredibly infuriating is that it’s true, and most people choose not to believe it. When people come to me for help they want there to be an outside influence that can change their life. They want their problems to be someone or something else’s fault. When I explain to them that their life is an accumulation of their life choices and that to change it they just have to change the way they look at life and start making better choices people actually get mad at me.

It amazes me that people would actually choose to be a victim because that way it’s not their fault than to choose to be the hero in their own story. I know that for me I will always choose to be the driver in my own life. I know that things “happen to me”. I know that my life has not been perfect and I’ve had situations arise that weren’t my fault… but I was 100% responsible for how I handled them. If I messed up.. then I am 100% capable of fixing it. I will take that over victim-hood any day.

 

coaching, Health, Law of Attraction, Love, Motivation, parenting, Wellness, women, Women's movement

You are your habits.

Habits are really hard to break. It doesn’t matter how many tricks you read about, it doesn’t matter if there’s a “change your habits in 28 days… or your money back”. You may as well ask for the money back now, because habits are hard to break. Now, that is not to say that they are impossible and you’re stuck with it forever.. but it’s going to take work.

I know someone who every time he walks past the kitchen he opens the refrigerator. He is constantly surprised by this fact. He could have just finished eating dinner and just walks into the kitchen to throw away a piece or paper.. heĀ  opens the refrigerator. He can be walking through to head up to his bedroom or to the bathroom.. opens the refrigerator. It drives him insane. He doesn’t even mean to, it just happens. It’s a habit.

downloadI know someone else who has to have the TV on at all times. She walks into the house and automatically turns on the TV, whether or not there is something she wants to watch or not she turns it on and scans or searches or just keeps it on for background. This inevitably causes her to sit and watch instead of doing things on her “to-do” list, but it’s a habit. She doesn’t think about it, she just does.

I saw a meme on social media today about how parents are advised to put something “important” in the backseat with their babies as to not forget them, and people are going crazy, “what is more important than your baby!”.. but this is not about important, this is about habit. People so commonly do things out of habit they sometimes are at a detriment to themselves or their loved ones.

One man eats when he’s not hungry. One woman sits mindlessly watching TV. One parent drives to work on auto-pilot forgetting that it’s his/her day to drop the baby at daycare. All are important, some just have a more immediate result. All are the result of habits. Drug abuse is often called a “habit” and to a certain extent it is. When someone starts to feel a certain way they turn to what has worked in the past.. their “habit” for feeling better.

There are good habits and obviously there are horrible habits. All are easier to create than to make. So when you see something that says, “break habits in 28 days” what it’s really saying is create new habits.. that is possible.. but again.. not all habits are good, and even good habits designed to take the place of bad habits are not as easy to make/break. If you want to make it a habit to take off your shoes every time you walk into a house.. sure, a month later it may just be ingrained in your head, you may not even think about it. Your neuro-pathways have been sparked and you have reminded yourself enough that it’s habit. Same as your drive to work.. it’s auto-pilot.

If you want to stop yourself from looking in the fridge, or get yourself into a new exercise routine, or find better ways of coping with problems than drugs.. that’s going to take time. That’s going to take more than reminding yourself for a couple weeks. That’s going to take creating a new sense of self.. because those habits are linked to your personality, your ego. Those habits are part of what makes you you and how you see yourself as a person.

If you want to break major bad habits you have to decide that you are not a person who does these things. You are a non-smoker. You are a healthy person. You are strong. Because the moment you are a fat person trying to act differently your brain stops listening. The moment that you are an addict trying to be better.. you’ll have all the excuses why you it is who you are. You can’t go to the gym.. you’re too fat, people will laugh. It’s ok if you eat the cake.. you’re fat.. and everyone else is. It’s ok if you use again today… all your friends are and you don’t want to lose your friends.

You are not those things. You are a being that inhabits a body. You are whatever you tell yourself that you are. If you decide that you are healthy and are only going to do healthy things, and keep that in your mind, your heart, and your self.. your ego will evolve. Your habits will form. New habits, based on who you decide that you are. If you are an excuse… then you’ll never run out of those.