Hiding for Family

So it’s been a little bit since I actually got to write here and I apologize to anyone who might actually be reading this blog. But there are a lot of things that have kept me from things I wanted to do for the last couple of weeks. One of them involves my family. I warn anyone that this subject might be a little controversial and possibly a bit on the shocking side for some of you out there.

I grew up in a very conservative, religious household. I know being from the South, that’s a shocker right? lol My parents were strict but not overly so and they wholeheartedly believe what they taught us growing up. I truly respect that and I don’t necessarily disagree with most of it. My youngest sister is a full time volunteer in the ministry work and I know she enjoys it and her faith is what keeps her going much of the time.

However, the truth is…ever since I left my ex-husband, I’ve been living differently from the way I was taught and brought up. It’s not that I no longer believe or that I am openly rebelling. More like, I just got tired of trying so hard to be a perfect follower and feeling like a failure. I got tired of being exhausted and tired, frustrated and angry because others weren’t living up to what they were supposed to be as well and making things more difficult for me. I got tired of sacrificing my own happiness and what I wanted to do for everyone and everything else. I got tired of trying so hard to be “good” and feeling like I would never be good enough. I cried myself to sleep frustrated and disappointed so many nights that I lost count. And I admit that I got tired of hearing some variation of, “If you only keep trying and stay on the ‘narrow road’, God will reward you in the future. Yes, you’re miserable now but think of all the future blessings!”

Do I blame my parents for the way I was raised so I ended up so out of balance that I always gave to the point that I didn’t feel I deserve to be happy? No, not really. (Although my father is a huge perfectionist when it comes to himself so he is always feeling like a miserable failure too.) Do I blame the religion for not teaching everyone that God always blesses those who do try to be obedient? No because they do. Do I blame God for me being miserable and deciding that this was too hard? Absolutely not! I just find that, for now, that’s not how I want to live my life.

So what’s different? Well, technically, I’m not supposed to have divorced my husband and I’m definitely not free to date or remarry. It might shock you to learn that I’m currently dating two men who are both wonderful. (And yes they know about each other.) We’re talking about eventually, possibly, all three of us living together. I also enjoy spending time reading and watching some things that were considered too risque and would never have been allowed in my parents’ home. If my family or the leaders of the religion were to find out, I would be put out and my family and friends would never speak to me again unless I ‘cleaned up my life’.

I fully know this and was prepared to face this head-on. I don’t like living a lie and I honestly don’t like feeling like a hypocrite. So why haven’t I told everyone and faced the music yet? Because my grandfather is not going to be with us much longer. Because my grandmother on my father’s side has Alzheimer’s and also won’t be with us much longer. Because my father is going through enough mental and physical problems that I’m just waiting for his doctor to confirm that he has Alzheimer’s and he’s only 66. Because my family needs me to translate ‘medicalese’ and help be there when my grandparents on either side finally go and help take my dad to doctor’s appointments. My mother is not mentally and emotionally strong enough to handle it all herself. They lean on me and I can’t help them if they shut me out of their lives. So I go on trying to pretend that I’m still trying super hard in the church and being the same daughter they have always known. Do I feel guilty about this? Yeah, honestly I do a little. But they need me and I know I will have to eventually face up to whatever the future holds.

So am I a terrible person? I hope not. I go a long ways out of my way to make people happy, safe and comfortable. I don’t hurt anyone if I can help it. I try to not be a burden on others and I try to be someone who people can lean on. I’m striving, not to be perfect, but to be different and happy. I’m striving for balance and peace. It’s a struggle that will go on for a long time but I’m honestly happier than I’ve been in a long time.

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Queen of Clean, but only if left alone!

So I absolutely love to be around people I love. My friends, my family, my boyfriend. I’m not the type of person who does well if left alone for too long. Don’t get me wrong, I can enjoy my space sometimes I just need some time alone but generally speaking, I guess I’m a pack animal. lol I don’t need anyone to entertain me or even keep up a conversation really. I just enjoy having someone else around for company. My two cats try hard and my striped, short-haired will (I swear she does this) carry on a conversation with me often but it’s just not the same.

That said, there is one time when I really, really want everyone to go away and leave me alone…when I want or need to clean the house. The everyday pick-up time and cleaning up the kitchen after cooking or changing the sheets, yes I appreciate the help of my boyfriend when he’s here. And he’s here a lot. But what I can’t understand, what I can’t explain well to anyone is why I need to have a day once in a while where I’m alone in my house and put on some tunes and start cleaning. I can’t explain it to my boyfriend, I could never explain it to my ex-hubby and I can’t explain it to any other man in my life really. But I really need you to go away! lol

Apparently, I’m not the only woman who feels this way. I’ve talked to co-workers and friends and they say they all feel the same way. That sometimes, we just need a day alone in our house where we can set it back in some kind of order. And we need it without anybody around on the phone or coming in and out. Ladies, if any of you have a good explanation, I’d love to hear it! One thing I can say is that I hate having to dodge someone else while I’m in “the zone” or asking them to move or watch them make a sandwich and leave crumbs on the counter or a knife in the sink when I just scrubbed the kitchen until it was spotless. I don’t want to have to tell you where things should go or have to let the bathroom air out before I can clean it. 😛 I just want to be able to dance and sing to the music as I put things back to rights. And I need you to go away for a bit to let my brain air out while I do it.

Comments? Questions? Judgments? I’ll take them all! lol But for now, as I have the house to myself this evening, I’m going to go clean off the dining room table.

Collapsed Section of I-85 bridge

Ok, so it might seem strange that the first thing I really start to write about is a news story. However, how could I let it go when I’ve never seen such a thing happen in Atlanta?! Atlanta, Georgia is known for terrible traffic…day, night, weekends, holidays, week days. Everyone is always in a hurry, there are tons of cars on the road, and inevitably somewhere between where you are and where you want to go there’s either a wreck or construction holding you up.

So when you have a catastrophe to a major artery like I-85 and part of the bridge just drops out due to a fire, you’re talking major news and a major pain in the…neck. This is going to be an ongoing problem and cause some horrific traffic issues over the next few weeks. It’s the end of Spring Break for a lot of people, Gwinnett County has a lot of people (and all of them seem to take 85 N), and anyone travelling through Georgia will curse having to try to come down I-85.

Why am I bringing this up? I hate sitting in traffic and people who drive like they got their license out of a fifty cent toy machine or as if rules of the road don’t apply to them are a huge pet peeve of mine. But I’m trying to see the bright side of things. I don’t usually have to go that route. Yes, it will cause more people to probably go the way I have to for work or whatever else I have going on, but I really am working on not dreading this and looking at this in different light. It happened on a Thursday after most traffic had slowed down for dinner. Friday already has lighter traffic and the DOT in Georgia is actually pretty on top of things in general and reportedly on top of this specifically. I don’t really have anywhere I have to be this weekend. I have a job that I love and I shouldn’t have to adjust my route anywhere for this disaster because I don’t drive that direction typically. I also have a good vehicle and I love music.

I might have to leave a little earlier than usual for a while but considering I don’t have to be at work most days until 9 am, I’m cool with that. I’ll put on my tunes, take a couple of deep breaths, and use the time in the car to do memory exercises or call my mom (on the hands-free!) I hate to be late so knowing this happened, I just have to plan ahead and know that everyone else will be aggravated by the inconvenience. But hey, nobody got killed when it collapsed so I’m grateful for that. This is just an exercise in mental adjusting for me and I’m up for the challenge! I just hope everyone else is too. 😀

Intro to my Blog

Where you learn a little about what this blog is all about.

Welcome to my personal blog! I’ve never had a blog before but I’ve wanted to start one for some time now. So I know you have some questions about it and this first post will hopefully address those. If you have others, feel free to ask anything you like in the “Contact” section!

So what’s the point of this blog? This is about my personal journey through life as I try to improve myself and “discover myself”…words of wisdom I’ve picked up here and there, observations, blunders, heartaches, funny ‘schtuff’, and general thoughts on various aspects of life. I’ve divided posts into categories that you can find on the right side of the screen.

WAIT! I know you’re thinking, “Why in the world would I want to read what basically amounts to someone’s diary?!” Well before you totally dismiss this, hear me out. I’m a human being on this road of life with you. Maybe you’re struggling with some area of your life and want to hear about someone else’s troubles too. Maybe you are looking for something deep and profound (Though I don’t know how much I fit that category! lol) to help change your perspective. Maybe you are looking for someone who can relate to your problems or other areas of life. Maybe you just want to be entertained. (I’m nothing if not entertaining when given a chance! 😛 ) The truth is that I’m out here, sharing some very personal things with you just because I think you might benefit from some of them. I hope you think that’s brave because I admit I’m a little nervous about it!

So who the heck am I anyways? Well, you can call me Elizabeth. I’m a Georgia girl, born and raised, several generations rooted here. I’m over 35 years old, have 2 cats, a full time job in the medical field (NO I’M NOT A NURSE!), and I’m divorced. Doesn’t mean I’m the crazy old cat lady! lol I am not looking for a relationship. I’m currently in kind of a complex situation as it is! And I have no kids and no plans for any in the future. I get along with just about everyone and I don’t hold back honest answers when asked for my opinion. (And sometimes even when I’m not asked. lol) But I’m always kind and try to be understanding of others.

As for the title of this blog…what does it mean? Well the truth is, as the oldest of 3 kids with a perfectionist father, I have tried all my life to be perfect. I have OCD tendencies and I’m extremely hard on myself when things don’t go according to plan or the way I really want them to. Recently, as in the last couple of years, I’ve made a lot of changes in my life and I’m learning to stop striving to be perfect and live up to everyone else’s expectations or standards that I set so high for myself that I’ll never be anything but disappointed when I can’t reach them. I’m exploring life and things I like. I’m looking at the way I think about a lot of things and asking myself is that really the only way it has to be. And the truth is, my life is totally different than I ever dreamed it would be or should be! And I’m freaking HAPPY, truly and deeply happy! I’m loving the journey I’ve put myself on and I’m learning that I will never be perfect but I do need to keep striving for something in my life or else I’ll become stagnant and boring and just…exist. I don’t want to just exist! I want to continue to grow…my way. So I’m striving, not for perfection, but for “different”. I want to continue to make changes as I see a need for them or a desire to do so.

I’m going to be sharing some personal stuff on here so it might get a little bumpy or not exactly for the “whole family” as it were. You might decide that some posts are interesting to you now but later they might be. I’ve categorized them in some instances under what part of my life it’s about. But I hope you’ll enjoy the ride, find some inspiration, share some things yourself and ask whatever you like. I will be posting on average 1 to 2 times a week, sometimes more or less depending on time. Enjoy your day! And in the words of Truman (The Truman Show), “In case I don’t see you, good afternoon, good evening and good night!”

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