Dysfunction Junction

Day 12

I’m a big fan of signs. Signs are everywhere, including “Danger” and “Stop”. I also carry a personal history of ignoring those signs. Dysfunctional people still gravitate toward me, but at least not at the rapid rate they used to when I was abusing drugs and alcohol.

I have found hidden treasures from being in dysfunctional relationships. One particular relationship stands out as one of the most important catalysts for my personal growth. I’ve transformed into a balanced, well adjusted human because of my experiences with this person. I didn’t even know I was dysfunctional, until I was in so much pain and was forced to take a long hard look at my behavior. I addressed it in a support group for people suffering from the effects of codependency and addiction, and it changed my life. I’m more decisive and clear about boundaries. I focus on myself, allowing others to take care of themselves. Now I’m more available when people ask for help, because I’ve filled up. But that doesn’t mean I can save them. That’s not my job.

My deep emotional work has made it easier to have healthy, balanced relationships with everyone in my life. If you would have asked me in the throes of my tragic circumstances, I would have begged for it to be different between us. But I see how much I’ve learned and how I’ve grown. Without that dysfunction, I could have missed out on the gift. βœ¨πŸŒΉπŸ’œ

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Buried Treasure – Your Intuition is Talking…Are You Listening?

Day 11

I’ve been uncomfortable a few times today. I decided to go holiday shopping at Target first thing in the morning, thinking I’d take about 20 minutes and get out in Nature or meditate. I got sucked into the vortex, and left there with just enough time to regroup, meditate for 7 minutes, then pick up my kiddo. I’m grateful I got to sit and meditate, but I’m seriously disappointed with shopping. The lights, ringing and beeping sounds, and the mind boggling amount of stuff to catch our eye is overwhelming.

I went a’scrolling on Facebook for a longer time. It’s all mindless blather after a certain point. Then I commented and some guy was nasty to me, and my day was basically ruined. I’m being only slightly dramatic. It really affected my energy. If I had gone on a hike this morning, I would never have even looked at that post.

Here’s the thing. I have limits and boundaries that are in place to help me avoid all of this stuff. My intuition helps me gauge what’s best for me. I’m aware that I don’t want to shop. My ego told me I should really get to it, probably because I know my big kid is worried about presents this year (a whole other story, but it’s never really about the gifts). Anyway, I ignored my intuition. I also know better than to engage with anyone being even potentially mean on a Facebook post. If I hadn’t commented, how would my evening turn out? Well, I did go shopping and I commented on a post. I microwaved a chilled glass bowl of rice last night. Just before I did it, I heard myself say I think I should heat it up on the individual plates. I ignored the message, and the bowl cracked.

The messages are loud and clear. My intuition is saying, “Hello! I have a message for you! Are you listening?” That’s where I see my abundant gifts. By not listening to my intuition, I got a reminder of what happens when my ego-centered fear takes over. It just doesn’t work. Tomorrow is a fresh new day, and I’m sure my intuition will guide me toward a much more peaceful, joyful path. That is, if I choose to pay attention. βœ¨πŸ¦„πŸ’œ

Buried Treasure – Tangled Web of Words

Day 10

I’ve recently become aware of some unhelpful things I keep saying repeatedly out loud when I’m frustrated. I’m messing with my mojo. I can’t manifest anything good with that shit. So I decided to change. It’s weird, I know. I mean, is it really possible to change my language, and my life, just like that? Yes! I’m living proof. And I’m going to tell you how.

After incessant complaints that kept repeating themselves, I reached my limit. My intolerance about whatever situation warranting the habitual negativity or martyrdom is getting tiresome. That’s part of the gift. The other part is that I listened to someone about something seemingly unrelated, and one day I woke up. That’s right, it was as though I had awakened from a bad dream. I suddenly heard myself saying the same crappy things all the time. Like every day. Now I magically pause, think of something else to say, and use that instead. Out loud. Our words are important, folks!

That someone is my friend Vanessa, who sees my questions and situations in pictures surrounding me (she’s psychic, so she gets visuals). I got a few messages from her about boundaries, compromise, emotional holding, and anger. That was all from me asking somewhat unrelated questions. My energy just shows up like that, especially if I’m grumbling all the time. All I did was ask questions and was willing to accept the answer. Apparently, it’s working. I’ve calmed down. It’s like a switch turned down or completely off. I choose different words that will support and balance me, and my children hear all of that instead of the angry garbage. It could be something as simple as me changing “what the f***?!” to “Wow, that’s surprising”. There was water on the counter tonight and I was initially pissed off. To say I’m a little tense lately would be an understatement. I survived the puddle of 2018. πŸ˜‰

Watch your words. They really can make a huge difference. I found a new approach to life’s conundrums and mishaps. I feel a lot lighter letting go of all of that. I still have some kinks to straighten out, but I’m on the road to a more relaxed way of being in the world. It makes me want to giggle just a little. Why? Because life is not that serious after all, right? πŸ˜œπŸ’œ

Buried Treasure – Anger

Day 9

If I’m yelling, it’s because I didn’t address my disappointment or set a boundary soon enough. If I’m angry, I could be because I’m desperately sad or tired or scared. Anger is a catalyst for change.

It’s totally ok to feel angry. So many of us have been taught that it isn’t ok, then we have nowhere to put that anger when it comes up. We can’t have healthy expression if all we’ve been told is to suppress it. Everyone gets angry, but we don’t all throw things, scream and yell, blame or badger. If I find myself slamming doors or doing any of those other things, I need to pause and help myself stay present. Then I need to ask myself, why am I getting so mad about this? What can I do about it? Can I control the person or situation? There’s a strong chance I can’t control anyone else, and the only way I can control the situation is if I caused it. I can choose to shift my attitude anytime.

I’m telling on myself here. I’ve been yelling and snapping at my kids. I let my anger build until it’s too late to stay calm. Lately, I’ve noticed a calmer response in place of my former explosions. I don’t exactly know what happened, but I do know that I’ve begun to take better care of myself and I set and maintain clear, strong, consistent boundaries.

Boundaries getting crossed are my biggest reason for getting angry these days. I’ve also been afraid of pushback, and that must be why I’m more relaxed now. I don’t care quite as often about whether or not a person (like my kid) will accept my boundary. I’m prepared for resistance or disagreement, and I’m pretty used to meltdowns.

I’m grateful for the messages I receive from my anger. I need to pay attention and focus on getting my needs met so I can express any anger in a healthy way. Then I can move on with my day, and probably enjoy it. ✨

Buried Treasure – Pain

Day 8

Over the course of a decade, I’ve been noticing strange aches and pains that stay around a while until I deal with whatever my body is trying to tell me. Physical ailments are a message that I’m out of balance.

I’ve recently had an unexplained, unresolved sore right shoulder blade. What’s interesting is its familiarity. I had the same pain just over 9 years ago. Back then, I had no explanation for it staying around no matter what I tried for relief. One day it disappeared. I recall what was going on around that time, and now it all makes sense. It must have disappeared when I released some big feelings about a situation with someone. Well, I apparently have had more of those feelings stored away, because I developed a face rash for nearly 7 years, and that recently went away when I acknowledged the feelings. So why is the shoulder blade pain happening again, and why does my elbow hurt, too? I must have more to express and release.

I’m incredibly grateful for my body’s unique ability to send me important messages about my health. My intuition has everything to do with this stuff. I know deep down that I have more emotional work to do. My eating habits are also an issue. On the surface, I appear to eat super healthy. But I know something is wrong. I don’t feel well. I need to address it or my body will retaliate. Pain and discomfort can tell me that I’m off kilter, but how do I fix it? If I pay attention to my intuition, I’ll find my answer.

What is your pain telling you? Many of us are discovering that we carry our past traumas in our bodies, and can develop chronic conditions. Some of us have healed by doing work on releasing emotions associated with the traumas. Of course that can be only part of the process for some, but for me it’s huge. Once I acknowledge and express my emotional pain, my physical pain goes away. It’s so weird and wonderful. It feels like a magic wand has been waved over the affected area. Miraculous. 🌸

Buried Treasure – Poverty

Day 7

I’ve lived on paltry earnings for years. Somehow I’ve made it work. I loved my job working with teens, and now I’m a mama without an outside job and my kids are pretty awesome and worth it. I’ve qualified and accepted subsidies for a few years now. This week I was reminded of the not-so-hidden gifts of being in need of financial help.

People really come forward and give of their time and money. Organizations providing subsidies are actually proving themselves to be extremely supportive and helpful. The other day, someone who works as a counseling coordinator at Head Start brought over a huge bag for Noa. She had been out sick and absent for 3 days, so the worker decided to drop it off at our house. I was in awe of what Noa received. I do believe this angel dressed in human form was the one who personally shopped for all of these wonderful gifts. She got two new pair of boots, about 6-7 long sleeved shirts and sweaters, 5 pair of jeans, two footed pajamas, an art set and a doll. She had just received a brand new winter coat the week before. I’m so thankful for their generosity and what it took to make that happen (for more than a dozen kiddos besides Noa, I suspect). I also have a sneaking suspicion that my message is to keep her at Head Start.

After almost a week away from school, neither of us wanted her to go back. I’ve had some reservations about taking her there. Then that holiday gift package showed up. My intuition must be telling me something, right? As much as I’ve appreciated subsidized child care, I’ve also wanted to choose a learning environment that is more congruent with our values and teaching style. There is a notion, though, that suggests she can broaden her horizons and I can trust that she’ll be ok even if some things don’t resonate.

What has poverty taught me? I can survive and sometimes thrive on very little actual money. Prosperity comes in many forms, and I’m abundant in many ways. I’ve also learned that I have privilege. I’m on the high end of the spectrum when it comes to being low income. I’ve mentioned before that I can get help from my parents and have plenty of resources. I’m educated and knowledgeable, and have skills and talents to earn income in creative ways. My situation is temporary, and I will eventually be self-supporting and financially comfortable. Most importantly, I’ve learned to appreciate the flow of support from people in our community, most people I will never meet. Thank you for giving me more faith in humanity. One day, I’ll be the one with offerings like the ones you’ve given me and my children. I’m eternally grateful. πŸŒΈπŸŒΉπŸ’œ

Buried Treasure – Grief and Rage

Day 6

Grief isn’t always about death, and rage isn’t always about anger. Sometimes, rage can be a cover for grief. That was my story this afternoon. I got enraged by a tiny box that once held tree decorations. It had little paper dividers that Noa had taken out and could not be easily put back together. I kept trying and they kept falling like an unstable house of cards. I completely lost my shit. It was weird and uncomfortable. What’s even weirder is I got them to come back together easily in a calm moment afterward.

Allow me to set the scene. Cue the sappy holiday music, warmth inside when it’s freezing outside, and my angelic children putting up ornaments on our amazing little Christmas tree. Orion is helping Noa put them up, ever so patient with her. After I finally get the evil little paper things to go where I want them, I start crying with the realization that I lost my mind over a box. During a sweet family moment. I listen to these Christmas songs that speak to my sadness and longing, and go into my room. I start bawling and grab my stuffed doggie friend Matteo. Ahh, that’s what’s happening. I’m grieving. Christmas reminds me of some tender times with a particular someone and it’s been a very long time since we’ve celebrated this holiday together. My abundant salty tears release the pent up rage and I feel strangely better.

I’m sure that happens with a lot of people during this time of year, so I’m boldly mentioning it in a public forum, because I want you to know you are not alone in your grief. You might not be healed for a while, and that’s totally ok. Healing has its own timeline for each of us. My biggest tragedy today has been my greatest gift. For that, I’m blessed. πŸ•ŽπŸŽ„β€οΈ