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Archive for October, 2009

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I had a rough morning.  Actually, I had a rough morning following a rough day yesterday.  Work has been a source of negativity for me for quite some time.  And yesterday was no different.  I’ve been doing all the things I said I would do to clean my side of the street, but somehow it’s not enough.  It barely making the work environment bearable.  Everyday I feel like I lose a little more of  my passion  and confidence – that spark that use to make me special and the very best at everything I did. 

This morning I prayed.  I prayed like I haven’t prayed before…like I haven’t prayed for my marriage.  My job has been the greatest challenge in powerlessness.  I’ve done everything I can possibly do to make things better, and yet nothing is changing.   This morning,  I couldn’t even bring myself to walk out the door.  So I decided to sit on my living room couch – praying and crying to God for clarity. I asked God to help me find my serenity with these things I cannot change at work and the courage/passion/drive to change the things I can.  After my tearful and heartfelt conversation with God, I was able to muster enough energy and resolve to walk out that door and face another workday.

I decided I’m going to start putting my feelers out for a new job.  I don’t know where to start or where I’m going. I’m lacking in confidence and enthusiasm.  I’m not even sure I remember what I’m passionate about anymore.  Yet all I know is that I have the power to change this job that makes me unhappy on so many levels.  I also need my Higher Power to give me direction, help me find the one thing I’m really passionate about.  For so long, my only passion has been ML. Now that I’m not focusing on him as much,  I feel so lost with no purpose or direction.  However, I trust that if I quite my mind and let God do His will, I’ll find the answers I’m looking for.

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choices

What started off as a relaxing Thursday night, ended in total frustration.  You see, the trackball on my Blackberry broke off several days prior and I decided to order a new phone to replace the old one. After discussing my options with the sales representative, I was quoted a decent price for a new Blackberry phone with a $100 mail in rebate and a new two year agreement.  I decided to go for it and purchase the new phone.  When I received the new phone and called to activate it, I was informed that my mail in rebate would not be eligible.  So after being quoted a certain price, I was expected to either pay the additional $100 or return the phone.  After speaking with a regular representative, a supervisor and the supervisor’s supervisor, my options were limited.  Either activate the new phone and lose $100 or return the phone and wait for a reimbursement on my credit card that takes up to two billing cycles.  This had me livid!  So, either way, I was being screwed over – either spending the additional $100 or having to wait 60 days for my money back once the company got their phone. 

I was completely frustrated to the point of tears. After explaining the situation to my husband and going on and on about “my crappy options”, I decided to take a breather for the night and watch some TV with wine as I originally planned to do.  ML had shut himself off in the other room.  Again, this upset me.  Here we go again with him isolating.  I wanted to share a little TV time with him, and he’s off in la la land in the next room.  After an hour of waiting for him, he comes out with my old blackberry with the trackball attached. Granted, the phone looked like a child’s science experiment, but it was functional.  Instead of being thankful, I was annoyed. “I don’t want that ugly phone!  What am I suppose to do with that?”  He said: “Well, you wanted options, this is an option.”  I decided I didn’t like this option and promised myself to continue in my search for the right answer.

After ML had left to work in the morning, I decided to take a closer look at the phone. The phone was actually a little over a year old.  I actually got it the day before I was leaving on my destination wedding trip.  I remembered being so excited to get my new Blackberry and playing with it the entire time at the airport as we waited for our flights.  However, like my marriage, the phone had a very rough first year.  During my beach getaway with my sister, I left the phone out in the sun too long and it acquired some screen damage. When ML came to pack up his stuff after we had separated, I flung the phone at him out of anger and frustration causing it to get all scuffed up.   Not to mention my own “klutzy” nature, dropping the cell phone on numerous occasions.  I thought a new phone – like leaving the relationship with my husband – was the magic solution to my problems. But what is a new phone if I’m still a hopeless klutz? Or a new relationship if I’m still a crazy codependent? I immediately called ML to thank him for fixing my phone and to apologize for my bratty behavior the night before. He seemed really happy that his efforts did not go unnoticed and accepted my apology. At the end of the day, I decided to choose my eyesore of a phone instead of keeping the new one, like I choose this less-than perfect marriage. The phone (like my marriage) may no longer be shiny and new, but it’s still works – and that’s all that matters!!

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The other day I ran into a photographic project by Dina Goldstein titled “Fallen Princesses”  while reading my daily blog fodder.  Goldstein decided to place our beloved Disney Princesses in the real world, dealing with modern day issues such as: illness, addiction, self-image issues and war.  I think the final product is a thought provoking look at our obsession with fairy tale endings. Below are some of the photos from the series:

Cinder 3

Snowy

Rapunzel  II

Belle

 What do you think of Goldstein’s interpretation? Do you relate to any of the “Fallen Princesses” in the series?

 

Click here to see the rest of the photographs in the  “Fallen Princesses” project.

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Couples Therapy

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We are scheduled to meet with a marriage counselor tonight. Surprisingly, part of me is not looking forward to this meeting.  I think I’m a little “therapied out” at the moment. In addition, between work, therapy, group meetings & phone calls, there’s not much time left in the day for anything else.  I wouldn’t mind incorporating a couples session with our existing therapists (both ML & I go to our own individual therapists), but to add an extra third party to the mix seems a little redundant to me. Dr. X ( my therapist) seems to agree, suggesting that we might benefit from seeing either herself or ML’s therapist for couples sessions every other week because they are both already familiar with our stories.  While ML’s therapist thinks that going to a separate therapist for couples counseling is best. ML seems to be siding with his therapist, insisting on a neutral third party therapist.

So here we are.  I’m not sure we’ll be able to afford another out-of-network therapist, but I want to give it a try – even if it’s only for ML’ s sake.  This seems to be very important to him. He even researched, contacted and scheduled the appointment with the therapist (to my pleasant surprise!). So even though I’m not exactly feeling this at the moment, I guess one session can’t hurt.

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silence

ML and I had a rough weekend.  For the last few weeks, everything was going wonderfully.  ML was being kind, considerate and compassionate.  But like the subtle change of the season, so are the changes that have been occuring in our relationship.  The changes have been small: anything from walking to the next room to watch TV alone (while we’re sitting together) or not engaging in conversation on our date nights.  I’ve been keeping mum about it for the most part, but while we were out to dinner on Friday (and again he was not engaging), I couldn’t take it anymore. I told him I noticed he’s been quiet all night and is everything ok.  He then replied:  I don’t have anything to talk about.  I was crushed.  Here we were at a fun restaurant on a Friday night.  The tables were packed with young couples and groups of friends having a good time together, and then there we were sitting quietly while eating our meals. I even stuffed my face too much as means to distract from the silence ( and perhaps eat my feelings while at it). It wasn’t that we had nothing to talk about, but that he wasn’t even trying to talk to me, even if only small talk.   On the way home, I told him how hurt I was that he had disengaged during our entire night together.  The whole conversation then escalated with me in tears and him saying how unhappy he feels.  He feels unhappy because he feels like he’s walking on eggshells.  I know changing was not going to be an easy process for him, but I never expected him to be unhappy.  The night ended with promises that he will try harder next time and me too tired to even care. 

Saturday pretty much came and went without much interaction. I went to visit my sister most of the day and he attended his Saturday night meeting.  Sunday, I worked from 8AM to 4PM.  When I came home, I suggested that we go get a bite to eat together and go pick up a few things at the supermarket.  During the meal and shopping excursion, we had very limited conversation, except for the occasional “pass the ketchup” or “pick up  a pack of the Chips Ahoy cookies, they’re on sale” comment.  By the time we parked the car, I couldn’t help but break down in tears.  I asked him what was going on with him. I feel so hurt. I feel like he’s detaching from me.  I tell him that we don’t need to talk every second, but we barely exchanged words the entire weekend. Our schedules are already packed with work, meetings, therapy and phone calls, how could we have nothing to talk about when we share so little time together as it is?  I’m scared that this a sign that things are going downhill again.  The only thing he could muster up was an “I know”.  I left the car  with such a heavy heart.  Where do you go when you pour out your heart and only get an “I know” as a response. I was hoping that he would take the opportunity to communicate with me, but he didn’t.  I knew that this situation would escalate out of control if I didn’t do something.  So, I decided to call some program folks. I didn’t mention what was happening with me & ML, but just talking to someone and getting my bearings helped bring me some serenity in that moment.

The night ended quietly.  I cooked a lasagna. We watched a little Dexter. And the weekend ended in silence.  I feel a little loss.  I don’t understand what’s happening.  I don’t understand why ML is pulling away.  Maybe he’s white-knuckling it. Maybe he’s getting too comfortable.  Maybe he’s on the verge of relapsing.  I don’t know anymore. I try to keep the focus on me. I tried to take care of myself this weekend, but that doesn’t mean that ML’s silence didn’t hurt. Or that I wasn’t disappointed all over again and completely exhausted.  Though I managed myself pretty well in this situation, I still feel very sad and just writing this is making me teary eyed.  I’m going to a meeting tonight.  I don’t know what else I can do.

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