Welcome to my blog!

I am Buffy, I live in Iowa with my kitty cat Meowshine and stay rather busy trying to be healthy, eating right, working out, working my full-time job and running my own custom jewelry business on the side. Thanks for coming along for the ride :)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

6 months later and never losing hope

I just re-read some blogs I wrote on from around the time my ex left me and it really made me appreciate how far I have come. I went back to the one I wrote two days after and the comments that my sparkfriends had written in response and I could feel the pain I felt and the love they shared with me. The pain and shock scream out in those words and I can feel it again. The heaviness in my chest. The feeling that I couldn’t breath because of the weight of my life falling down around me. How I skipped around in thoughts because I couldn’t get my mind to process them in an orderly fashion. The confusion of how to reconcile the world I knew before he dropped his bomb to the aftermath my life became after. In those memories I can feel it all again.

But this time with distance. This time with pride on how far I came out of that hole he knocked me down into. This time I can look and see what I was then and how completely different I am now. That was a broken version of who I used to be. That girl was a mess and now I see how much less of a mess I am. I think I forgot the extent of the pain until I re-read in my own words how bad I felt. I think I forgot how much better I feel now until I read in my own words soaked with the pain he left behind. I can see it all so clearly now, who that broken girl was and who I am now. I can see the strength it took to keep going in spite of it all. I can see how much courage it took to keep my life going in any direction besides just staying in bed. I dealt with the things I needed to. I moved my life forward and I went on.

I was reading how I couldn’t tell my family about what happened yet because my sister was getting ready to have her baby. She and her husband had tried for so long to get pregnant and finally were. The baby was overdue and she was growing more and more impatient. I did my best to stay interested, sending texts to see how she was feeling, trying to distract her so she didn’t think about being overdue, being as supportive as I could with my world in pieces and them having no idea. Finally a few days after the bomb she was induced. I remember driving down to Des Moines to go visit her after she had the baby and I bawled and bawled on the phone to my friend Joni. I didn’t know how in the world I was going to keep it together enough for them to think I was ok. As Joni always does, she was able to snap me back into what I needed to do and keep my shit together. I look back on the pictures and I can see the pain in my face though. But somehow I plastered on a fake smile and they didn’t seem to notice. I think more then anything they were distracted enough by the happiness of the baby and how much love they had for her and all that. Thank goodness because I didn’t have a lot in me to be real convincing. I guess to me that is the epitome of doing what you have to do when life is crumbling around you. Your life might be over but the rest of the world keeps going. And you can either be dragged behind it or you can get up and go along with it. At some point you decide that you can’t let the pain kill you and you have to get your head above water. And that is just what I did. I can’t tell you how or when but at some point my life wasn’t such a struggle anymore. At some point I was more ok then destroyed. At some point I was optimistic about the future. I didn’t doubt that I would survive anymore. I knew I could do it, it was just going to take time. And here I am 6 months later and doing far better then I ever could imagine. It makes me so hopeful for the future.

It is so fitting that my niece that was born in the days following my life falling apart is named Hope. I tried hard to not lose hope in that time but it was hard not to. I even got a tattoo reminding me that “when the world says give up, hope whispers try it one more time”. I heard a really good one by Dave Ramsey today on his show “No one can take your hope, you have to surrender it voluntarily. The only one who can take your hope is you.” It reminds me of that time and how no matter how close to losing hope I was, I still believed that my life would get better. I questioned it a lot but I knew somehow I would find a way to survive it. And now that I’m not just surviving but actually living my life I can appreciate that time for what it taught me. I can appreciate going through hell because I now know what type of person I will never settle for again. I will never allow a person to treat me the way I allowed him to treat me for so long. I will never be that girl again and I only have great things to look forward to. And that feels really good :)

Thursday, March 24, 2011

My thoughts on "Comes the Dawn"

I think for far too long I expected someone else to be my everything and be able to fix me. I thought that if I could just get someone to love me, they could heal my broken heart and make me worth something. It’s hard not to revert back to that mindset for me. It’s hard not to think that if someone loves me that makes me somehow more valuable of a person. It’s hard not to think that if someone pays attention to me that he isn’t going to be my knight in shining armor. He is going to make this nightmare go away and make me whole again. That somehow someone else has that power and I do not. I hear it now and realize how unfair and unrealistic that is to put on to someone else. It’s like that love could somehow make me something other then what I am. But the truth is I’m broken. I had my life shatter down around me. I picked up the pieces and its going to take time to put them all back together. And no boy holding my hand or kissing my lips is going to make it any easier. This is something I have to do alone and learn my lessons from. I have to become happy and content with myself before I can bring anything good to a relationship. Otherwise I’m just setting it up for failure.

There are times when the loneliness really gets me and I convince myself that I’m ready for someone to come into my life. And I’m truly convinced at the time. I’m tired of feeling so many negative feelings and trying to sort it out. I guess maybe it’s an escape to an extent. Maybe with someone else I can pretend to not be so broken. Maybe I can become someone else that isn’t so damaged. Someone better. Someone more worthy of loving. It doesn’t take long for me to realize how not ready I am for it though. It’s not easy to process all the feelings I have but in the end it will be worth it. I will be a happier person and maybe someday that will translate into being a happy person with someone else that is happy too. Maybe not but at least I will have a happy me and I’m ok with that.

The truth is I don’t know why I’m in such a rush. I am really enjoying being single. I like being able to do whatever I want, whenever I want. I like being able to make my own plans and not have to consider anyone else in what I’m doing. I like being able to spend time with all my friends and feeling their unconditional love. I like reconnecting with my family and spending time with them. I like making my lists of all the things I want to do and being able to do them. I like that all the energy I spend on myself is not wasted, like it was when I spent that energy on my ex. Now all my love and attention is on me and it feels good.

All we have is today and tomorrow is not guaranteed. In life, in relationships, in so many things. I love the quote “plan as if you will live forever, live as if you will die tomorrow”. You never know when the world as you know it will be gone or when your last day at all will be. I have lots of plans for my life and I know that it will take some time to accomplish it all. But the great thing is I’m working toward it and moving in a forward direction. If I die tomorrow I might not get all my stuff done on my list but I won’t have any regrets. I did what I could, with the time that I had. And when I die and if I never find that special someone I’m ok with that too. I know that I have so many people who love me and the love of some unknown boy isn’t going to make that love or me mean any less. I will know that I loved myself and that I lived the best I could. I will know the people that I do love will know and what I leave behind will be worth far more then I could ever imagine. And that is something that no one can take away from me

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

"Comes the Dawn"

After a while you learn
the subtle difference between
holding a hand and chaining a soul
and you learn
that love doesn't mean leaning
and company doesn't always mean security.
And you begin to learn
that kisses aren't contracts
and presents aren't promises
and you begin to accept your defeats
with your head up and your eyes ahead
with the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child
and you learn
to build all your roads on today
because tomorrow's ground is
too uncertain for plans
and futures have a way of falling down
in mid-flight.
After a while you learn
that even sunshine burns
if you get too much
so you plant your own garden
and decorate your own soul
instead of waiting for someone
to bring you flowers.
And you learn that you really can endure
you really are strong
you really do have worth
and you learn
and you learn
with every goodbye, you learn...
Author Unknown

A friend of mine shared this with me today. I have a lot of feelings about it and want to nail them down but am having a hard time articulating them right now. Much like a lot of my feelings lately. But I wanted to share, see what kind of feelings it brought up for how. How it spoke to you? Maybe see how that is different from mine.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Recipe to try this week...

I usually set goals for myself to accomplish for the week. It helps keep me focused and helps me refocus on the new week ahead. One of my goals this week is to cook at least one meal at home. I have been eating out a lot and am finding it hard to cook for one now. It's just one of those things I need to get back into the habit of. So here is what is on tap for this week...

Garlic Chicken and Spinach with Orzo


Chicken Breast, 12 oz
Orzo, Barilla, uncooked, 8 oz
Olive Oil, 2 tsp
Garlic, 1 tbs
Spinach, fresh, 3 cup
Campbell's low sodium chicken broth, 2 cup
Water, tap, 1 cup (8 fl oz)
Parmesan Cheese, grated, 4 tbsp

Pinch of red pepper flakes
dried basil
Original recipe called for fresh parsley and since I didn't have I used some dried

1. Add chicken broth and one cup of water to a pot, bring to a boil. Add orzo pasta, cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until al dente, or until orzo absorbs most of the liquid. (leave some liquid in pot. Mine was mostly soaked up and made the orzo stick to the pot. I just added a bit of water to it)

2. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, and cook the garlic and red pepper 1 minute, until garlic is golden brown. Stir in chicken, season with remaining seasoning and cook 5 minutes, until lightly browned and juices run clear. Reduce heat to medium and mix in cooked orzo. Place spinach in the skillet. Continue cooking 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until spinach is wilted. Serve topped with Parmesan cheese.(I served out one portion and added 1 tbs of the cheese to it)

Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 4
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 400.5
Total Fat: 8.0 g
Cholesterol: 77.0 mg
Sodium: 481.5 mg
Total Carbs: 44.2 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.6 g
Protein: 37.9 g

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Happy and Cheerful? Me? Really?

Someone made a comment to me yesterday that after all that has happened to me that they were surprised that I’m really a happy cheerful person. It was surprising to them because I should be a depressed, upset, negative person. I took this as a great compliment. I used to be a very negative, self abusive, angry person. I held on to my past hurts like I could not survive without them. They defined me and that was the life I lived. Always the victim, always sad about something, always seeing the bad in things, always at the whim of others whether it was going to be a good day or bad day. I was raised that way and really didn’t know life could be any other way then miserable. I hated myself, my life, everything really.
I have fought so hard against that person and somehow found the optimist in me. I came to love myself and care what happened to me. My life was suddenly all in my control and I had the choice of being happy and content or being sad and miserable. I finally saw my life as my own and was determined to make it great. I was no longer defined by what had been done to me or my past.
I was so afraid I was going to lose that girl when all this happened. I was so scared of reverting back to the old me and becoming a bitter shell of a person. And who could blame me? There definitely was a part of me that wanted nothing more to fall apart (and there were moments I did) and just stay in bed and shut down. But there was a stronger part of me that knew that life goes on with or without me and I had a choice. I could lay there and let myself die, become a shell and just live my life going through the motions. Which to be honest is the easiest way to go. But that isn’t who I have become. I’m not that girl anymore and no divorce or accident or whatever is going to change that. I’m that girl who fights for herself and her happiness and I’m so glad I didn’t lose her.

So many people look at me with pity in their eyes. I can see it and I can feel it. Hell I feel it for myself sometimes. I look in the mirror and question how in the world I’m still standing. And I know that my life is kinda sad now and I get that. It’s been a rough 6 months. I’m not made that they pity me. I would probably pity them too. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, it’s just what it is.
This comment made me realize that I’m also looked at as a positive and happy person too. People have told me how well I’m doing and while I hate hearing it, I also appreciate it. Inside I don’t feel like I’m doing well because I compare it to how I want to feel and be great and fine with everything and I’m not there yet. But that is when I have to shift how I think about it. When I think about how I could be handling things and how bad I could be right now because all that has happened, I realize that I am doing well. I’m doing the best I can and my best is better then others may have handled it or better then old me would have handled it. And maybe the part of me that hates hearing it is the part of me that was the negative woe-is-me girl that wants to feel awful and weak.

I was reading an article about how if you experience a close tragic death it helps you to deal with other traumatic events down the road, losing a job, divorce, another death, etc. And it makes sense because you have been through the stress and trauma before so you know what to expect and you know that you make it out of it ok. Maybe a little battered and broken but still ok. You see that life goes on and you will eventually smile again. You will one day be able to laugh and be happy. You will never be the same but you will come out the other side. It’s hard to see in the middle of it though. I remember thinking in the very beginning of this that I really wasn’t convinced I was going to come out the other side. But I guess there was always a little voice in there that told me I was going to be ok. And the more the days past the more I knew it was going to be a really long and bumpy road but eventually I was going to be ok. I had survived the death of my best friend, I could survive a divorce. The more I progressed through it I was more worried what the end product was going to be coming out the other side though. But by the sounds of it I’m on my way to being better then ok so I’ll take it.

It’s really an amazing thing to be able to define yourself not as your past experience or what others have done to you and to define yourself by your own terms. When you decide who you are and how you will live your life no one can take that from you. You own your life and the sooner you realize that you have control how you live it the sooner you can be on the road to doing great things with your life. I maybe a work in progress but I’m working toward something better and happier and that makes things a little easier to handle. I might fall and trip but I’m gonna keep going because I’m worth not giving up on.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Letting go

Divorce is a tricky thing. Not just the separation of a relationship you thought you’d be in the rest of your life, but it really messes with your self esteem.

I not only lost the part of me that was a wife, sister/daughter-in-law, partner, all of that, but I lost so much of the progress I had made with my self esteem. I always said when I was younger that I had no self esteem and it was something I fought hard to change. I banned all that negative self talk and spoke to myself as if I were my best friend. I focused on my positive qualities and didn’t pick myself apart. It’s funny too because I didn’t think my self esteem was tied to him at all. I was the one rebuilding it and he did little to help me feel better about myself. But that kind of rejection is bound to rock you to your core.

How could I tell myself I was amazing when the person that was supposed to love me forever didn’t feel that way? How was I supposed to not feel like a failure when I couldn’t hold together our relationship? If I couldn’t mean more to him how could I possibly love myself? If he could just throw me away like that, how could I convince myself that I was worth anything at all? I couldn’t see past what he did to me and what that meant I was. But the truth is I’m so much more then his actions and what he did. It will only define me if I let it. I don’t want to be a bitter divorced girl the rest of my life. I refuse to let that win.

Now 5 months later I still have a hard time not letting those negative thoughts get me. I have a hard time thinking anyone could possibly want me if he didn’t. I don’t know that I will ever be able to be in a healthy relationship and be able to trust anyone again but that isn’t something I have to worry about now. Right now I focus on the positive things I do have in my life and not the things I lost. I’m honest with myself and try to see the life I want, not the life I don’t have anymore. The truth is that life sucked. I was miserable. I was lying to myself, trying to make it work.
Now I have the world at my feet and can truly do whatever I want with my life. The self esteem will come back. I know that I’m worth more then he gave me. I built it up once before and I can do it again. It might take some time and it might be hard but I know I’m worth it. And that makes all the difference in the world.