Funny how when you’re thinking about a particular topic, chances are, there is someone else out there thinking the very same thing.  Doing my daily sweep of my favorite blogs this morning, I came across Momma Sunshine’s post on perception. It was as if she took the words straight from my mouth!

After writing yesterday’s post on the public vs. private “me” I began to wonder if my post came across the way I wanted it too – not in an “I’m ashamed” if my “real life” friends/family find my blog, or that I misunderstood how transparent blogging is, at it’s very root, or that I am clueless to the fact that my blog can be pretty easily found, if someone wanted to (it’s not like my name isn’t in it, or I don’t use a real email address to post comments to others blogs) – but as it was intended, the struggle with exposing my inner thoughts and feelings to an audience that perhaps I am not intending. And at the core of that is just that – it is a struggle, and it’s one you can’t really control. And that’s the chance you take with blogging, isn’t it? So, I feel at peace with how I go about mashing (or not mashing, as the case may be) my personal and professional “me.”

Another reason why Momma Sunshine’s post struck me is because I am also constantly in amazement at perception, in general. My own sense of perception of things has become so much more evident and strong and clear over the last year, that I tend to notice when people lack perception and/or hindsight on a daily basis. In a way, it frustrates me when people don’t “get” it, or jump to conclusions, rather than think more broadly, or allow themselves to think beyond what they’ve always known. I’ve blogged on this topic quite a bit (namely, here, here, here and here) and while others in my life and in my blog “family” might have their own interpretation of what I write, or of me, or of their approach to life and getting through obstacles, I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing, and in Momma’s words:

And so, all I can do is keep blogging. I will continue writing about the things that are on my mind, the things that are happening in my life. Some people will relate. Some people will understand me. Some people will read my words and know who I am through them. Other people, either through accident or design, will get a completely different view of who I am. I can’t be responsible for that.

Those who know and love me, know…and that’s really all that matters.

The last time I traveled alone was about two weeks before “the situation” began, and it was a business trip I took to Dallas. My first trip taking a plane by myself (believe it or not!), first time hailing a cab, finding my hotel, making my way to the conference I had to go to, first time staying in a hotel by myself. I look back on that time and remember being absolutely petrified, scared out of my mind, hating that I didn’t know where I was going and didn’t have Pete to be the “assertive one” to get us around. Looking back also on saying goodbye to Pete at the airport, I was a wreck, sad, scared, not wanting to leave, and he wasn’t too emotional (he would usually be just as sad as me), and I just thought he was being supportive and trying to give me confidence. Of course, it was probably because of all the doubts in his mind about what he was (or was not!) feeling about our marriage.

Looking at where I am now, while this is the first trip I’ve traveled alone (basically. my boss is coming, but not on the way home), I am not NEARLY as petrified (partially because I’ve traveled quite a bit on my own, with friends and family, but not with a significant other), I have basically looked forward to the trip (except for lack of sleep!), and I don’t have that sense of dread I used to. It feels like a huge leap for me, and I’m so glad I’ve grown so much across the board since this all began. I haven’t really had an “a-ha” moment lately on the post-divorce journey (perhaps a good thing – a sign of solid moving on-ness!), but this one feels pretty awesome (and, to be honest, looking back, Pete wasn’t really that assertive, he just appeared to be, since I had not an assertive bone in my body! He’s middle of the road, in that regard, I think, which is fine, but I saw it so differently then).

Funny how yet again – perception is NOT reality. I’m stronger than I thought, just didn’t give myself the opportunity to prove it.

I’ve really been digging a lot of what The Quest for T has been blogging about lately, so I thought it was only fitting to use today’s quote Friday to “borrow” a quote she used recently on her blog. It goes a little something like this

“Life is not what you see, but what you’ve projected. It’s not what you’ve felt, but what you’ve decided. It’s not what you’ve experienced, but how you’ve remembered it. It’s not what you’ve forged, but what you’ve allowed. And it’s not who’s appeared, but who you’ve summoned. And this should serve you well, beloved, until you find, what you already have.”
~Notes from the Universe

This quote SCREAMS perception to me, and I just love everything about it. It IS all about decisions (often, over feelings, or driven by feelings), memories (post-experience), and, for me, most importantly – not what you have forged but what you have ALLOWED – I equate this to letting it all go and just BEING, and taking it all in, to in turn, learning from it and becoming something even more kick-ass because of it – what is this it? It’s LIFE. It’s HURDLES. It’s CHALLENGES. It’s PAIN. And, it’s HAPPINESS. It’s all of the above. And that’s what I’m doing…I’m living it, and learning something new every day, whether I realize it or not at the time, and I’m just really enjoying that, it’s been a continued amazing journey for me and every day brings a new revelation. Can’t really get much better than that, can it?

Happy Friday everyone!!

Happy (quote) Friday everyone! Today’s quote follows along the theme I’ve come back to quite a bit over the last few months, in particular, about finding that slice of happiness no matter what, “seeing the forest from the trees,” taking a step back and just taking stock in all the good in life, rather than harping on all the bad (when oftentines, the good FAR outweighs the bad, yet we let it steamroll us into sadness, negativity etc).

Sooo, today’s quote:

“We tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting something we don’t have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.”~Frederick Keonig

I just love this quote for so many reasons – it articulates what I feel I’ve learned and captured throughout this journey in one simple sentence. And, it can be applied to everyone’s lives, not just those going through divorce, but any hardship. And it is so utterly true – it ISN’T what we don’t have, it is what we DO have that we need to appreciate, cherish, and be absolutely thrilled for, not the things that we don’t have…whether that’s money, or a partner, or a better job, or skinnier thighs, or a whiter smile, or blond hair when you have red, or smaller feet!

Be happy, be thankful, be appreciative…it doesn’t get much simpler, and that sense of perspective and perception is really a learned trait. I feel I’ve learned it, yet am always working on maintaining that (especially in a moment of sadness, or low self-esteem etc). Lesson learned…over, and over, and over again.

Happy Friday everyone…hope it’s a good one!!

I don’t know about you, but context is everything. And when you don’t have context, you don’t have the full story, you don’t even have half of the story, you just have one small piece floating out there with nowhere to go. That’s usually why I try to put as much context as I can around my thoughts and perceptions and observations, but if they’re taken out of context regardless, then what is said vs. what is perceived can be quite skewed.

With that vague explanation FOR CONTEXT (lol), it can be frustrating when what I explain about whatever I am feeling or observing, or concluding is taken as fact (when it’s not – it’s my opinion or perception of something) and not for what it is – my ruminations. I guess that’s the risk you run into when you blog – that level of transparency is there for anyone to see, whether you want them to see it or not. And while I tend to limit who I actually tell or show this blog (I don’t post it on any of my Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter pages etc) and don’t reveal my last name, the Internet is easily searchable and I can’t control that.

So, what I can do – and what I will do – is focus my posts, as I usually try to, as much as possible, be as fair as possible in what I am saying and do what I love to do and what I have done since starting this blog in February – share my triumphs, share my anxieties and worries, my feelings and in short, my journey. Because it will continue and I’m looking forward to every post, every comment, and every new visitor I get. So, bring it on!

I LOVE to work out…I know, I know, that sounds crazy. I always have liked working out, but since “the situation” began, I sort of threw myself into working out more and more. Partially because, sure, the benefit of working out (better body, not going to complain about those kinds of benefits!), but also because it felt soothing to my soul. And let me explain that…because it sounds more “airy fairy” that I mean it to, in all seriousness.

Whenever I was/am feeling down, or stressed, or upset, working out has a way of relieving that. Whether it’s running it off, spinning it out, or sweating it out DVD style (weights, step, kickbox, the list goes on) to my absolute hands-down fitness idol Cathe Friedrich, I always feel more focused, centered, and in some cases, relieved (depending on my mood and particular workout drive). Now, I basically work out every day, and it’s just part of my day, part of my routine, and helps keep me balanced in every way. I just LOVE it.

Tonight was an example of that…my week back to work post-most-awesome-vaca-ever (top 10-er!) has been pretty dry and uninspiring, and I firmly believe working out keeps my mind and body challenged, when other areas of my life may not be challenging me the way I want it. I went to spinning tonight with CSB (aka holy grail of hotness…and hot, and flirty, and fun, he was!) and this huge wave of adrenalin and inspiration and happiness washed over me. It was the best feeling and I just felt happy, and powerful and strong. It’s a good euphoric feeling, and I never want to let that go – in all aspects of my life, beyond working out. If I could bottle it up, I would!!

…and if you are thinking I am crazy for a) loving to work out and b) BLOGGING about loving to work out, then you just learned something else about me…I’m a fitness freak of nature, what can I say? I’m not perfect, I have to work at it constantly (in part because I refuse to NOT enjoy food and a little wine here and there – life’s too short to limit yourself!!), but it makes me, me, and I wouldn’t change anything about me (except maybe, just maybe, adding two inches to my frame – hehe!).

Happy almost-Friday!!

So, I had another very enlightening conversation with Pete, randomly, last night. I mentioned that I signed the divorce papers on Monday, and he said, yeah, I know, I saw what you wrote on Facebook. I had written “signed, sealed, and delivered” – thinking that was a vague phrase to use that most of the people on my page wouldn’t understand, but for me, it felt like this “situation” is finally coming to a close. He said it hurt his feelings and he was really angry at my yesterday, because it felt like I just wanted to get rid of him and was rubbing it in his face. His perception – but not truly reality.

First of all, there are so many things wrong with that statement, it’s ridiculous – he left me, not vice versa, and just because I am moving on and feeling a sense of closure, doesn’t mean I am trying to get “rid” of him as a friend. As I have mentioned many times before, our relationship has evolved into something of a friendship and I feel peace with it (while many would feel angst, stress, or resentment), so I felt the need to then explain why I wrote what I wrote.

I explained that, last October, his “signed, sealed and delivered” was walking away from the marriage and giving up. For me, I had no closure, and I was forced to find my way and myself and move on. The fact that the divorce is finally moving ahead IS my closure, it is helping me feel grounded and as though I can move on, and look forward to the next phase of my life (that I’ve already started, of course, but the divorce, and selling the house, will cement that further). When I explained that to him, he seemed to “get it” more and realized I wasn’t trying to hurt him, but I think he also understood where I am coming from through all of this.

Then we got into a conversation about how it ended. He remarked that this time last year, he started feeling “f-ed up” and confused and unhappy, and that was the beginning of the end for him – unbenownst to me. I asked him if he regretted anything and he said he regrets giving up and walking out, that he should have tried harder. I asked him if he thought it would have mattered, or if it would have dragged things out, hurting me more. He said he didn’t know, but he was sorry for just running away (that, to me, is a sense of regret, in not so many words). He said we had the perfect relationship but that we were just best friends at the end. And I explained to him that yes, I thought the same, but only after he pointed that out, but that what neither of us did is try to recreate the spark that helped us fall in love in the first place, and that just because we didn’t fight, didn’t mean we were good communicators. He agreed with that, too (but only after I pointed it out…). And I said that I do want to be friends, and I think we can continue that, because that is what our 10 year relationship has always been rooted in.

That was basically our conversation…it was eye-opening, I think, for both of us, because perception never IS reality, and you really need to see what’s under the covers to really know what’s going on. Things are never as they appear on the surface, are they?

~~~

side note – wish me luck on date #1 with match.com boy #2 tonight 🙂 I am starting to feel a little nervous, but not nearly as nervous as the first date I went on, because at least now I know I can do it!!