!LIVING OUT LOUD!

stop being afraid

I came out to my Mother last week. I didn’t explain that I am bi sexual but prefer women. I didn’t tell her about the time in my life before I became involved with my ex-husband when I was “out”. I simply said: “I’m seeing someone and her name is Jo Ann.” She reacted as if I had told her I was going to the movies. And she told me she’s happy for me. She acknowledged that I’ve been through horrible relationships. She said I deserve to be happy. Now that she knows, I feel like I can breathe and relax into this new life I am creating with the most amazing woman I have ever met.

I honestly think the most difficult thing in the world to do is to be who you really are without filters or denial.

To not lie to yourself and “push down” that icy feeling in the pit of your stomach when something is really wrong.

To follow the thing that makes your heart sing with joy and not put it on “the back burner” when something is really right.

To risk rejection, heart break, failure and lack of acceptance.

To let go of caring about what other people think.

I am 47.  I will be incredibly blessed if I live another forty years.

I want to LIVE OUT LOUD!  I want to be brave enough to I risk living my truth without guarantees.

I am working on not wasting another moment of my life living in denial or using filters based on fear.

I am completely terrified!   

 

 

Patterns

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The patterns that I keep repeating in romantic relationships can no longer be ignored. They surface in waves of unwanted revelation. Theses waves of truth wash over me and are forcing me to get completely honest with myself.

Although I am aware of the patterns, I have absolutely no idea WHY I keep repeating them.

I’m going to start online therapy to address these issues. It has a very high success rate as your therapist is accessible twice a day as opposed to once a week. I’ll keep you posted.

The Patterns:

  1. Someone shows an interest in me and I start to pursue them. I have always begun my relationships with people that gave me their attention. I chose to be with them based on their attention to me not my interests in them. In some cases, I wasn’t even attracted to them.
  2. I have never “dated”. I have always started a physical relationship quickly. I always make these encounters into love relationships. Even when I have only wanted a “hook up” I will try to make it more meaningful than it is or should be.
  3. I will stay after multiple “red flags”. I will ignore the warnings. EVERY SINGLE TIME they will turn out to be abusive but I will bend, mold, and compromise myself to make the relationship work. In my late teens and early 20’s I had two relationships that were physically abusive. All of the rest of my relationships have been mentally and emotionally abusive.
  4. EVERY SINGLE PERSON THAT I HAVE EVER BEEN ROMANTICALLY INVOLVED WITH HAS UNADDRESSED MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES. Cutting, depression, what may have been untreated bi-polar disorder, anger issues, etc.

 

Perhaps the greatest truth that I am facing is how incredibly ashamed and scared I am of what my family, some of my friends, and society will think of me. I am struggling with the fact that one of reasons that I have gotten into relationships with men so quickly is because I am deeply attracted to women. And being in a committed relationship with a man protected me from having to face the possible rejection of my family, friends, or society.

This is only a very small piece of the puzzle. My past relationships or encounters with women have included all of the above patterns minus the physical abuse.

I feel like a coward. I DO NOT LIKE CARING ABOUT WHAT OTHER PEOPLE THINK OF ME OR MY CHOICES.  In all other aspects of my life I don’t care.  Hiding this aspect of myself from the world due to shame feels like a betrayal not only to myself but to the people in my life who are members of the LGBT community that I love deeply, support completely, and celebrate always.

Please know that my intention here is to help others on their journey by sharing my own. PLEASE GIVE PITY TO THOSE WHO ARE TRULY IN NEED NOT TO ME. And no matter what: NEVER HIDE YOUR TRUTH FROM ME. I will never judge you. 

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We Are Sacred

childless rock

A couple of years ago, I decided to make the day before Mother’s Day my own personal day. I’ve decided to call it My Other’s Day instead of Not a Mother Day. My Other’s Day has a more positive ring to it don’t ya think? 🙂 I realized quite some time ago that as a childless woman there is no celebration for me or those who are like me.

Childless women nurture the world by giving of their time and energy. We are the ones who pick up the slack, drive sick friends to appointments, rescue those in need, volunteer at various charities and organizations, answer the phone calls in the middle of the night, take the nieces and nephews to give the parents a much needed break. We are the confidants, the ones who can be trusted to show up when no one else is able. We stand in when a “Mom” is needed and the biological one is unable to be present (these are the moments we treasure). We are the friends you can always count on. And we still show up to help the Mother’s in our lives celebrate the children they were blessed with. We like the countless Facebook photos of cute babies and kids that Mom’s proudly post. We, celebrate birthdays, births, and milestones. We spend hundreds of dollars a year on gifts for the precious children that are not our own. And we love each and every one of those children with our whole hearts. We really get how special and important they are!

Women who are childless not by choice are sacred beings. We give of the time we have that is not filled with caring for children without asking for acknowledgement, gifts, or praise.

 

sisterhood

 

To all of my sisters who did not get to be mothers: take today and acknowledge yourself. Do something nice for yourself. The world could not function without the contributions you make.

And please know how very special and important you are to me!

Peace is a Commitment.

quote-nonviolence-means-avoiding-not-only-external-physical-violence-but-also-internal-violence-martin-luther-king-15-90-33 Over the past few weeks I have come to realize that peace is a commitment. I made a decision to give my will and my life to the care of a power greater than myself more than a decade ago. And I am a Buddhist. Therefore, non-violence and peace are the principles that I want to practice.

It has been easy to keep my commitment to peace when life is normal and all is well. However, I have given up my commitment at the drop of a hat on many occasions when people “don’t act right” or “everything goes wrong”.

In other words: when it’s convenient I keep my commitment to my principals.

However, I have realized that I must keep my commitment even when it is difficult. 

Not doing so is like saying “Oh I’m not going to drink anymore but I’m still going to the bar every night.”

Martin Luther King Jr. said that Nonviolence means avoiding not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit.

It’s an inside job.

And if I am truly going to remain open I cannot fight against anything or anyone. I have to accept what comes and feel what I feel about it without trying to make it be something that it isn’t. If something or someone is not good for me I simply need to walk away instead of attempting to bend it or them to my will.

This doesn’t mean that I’m achieving saint hood or that I think I’m better than anyone else.

Honestly, I’m just tired of fighting. My inner peace means too much.

 

Remain Open

Epiphanies come upon me of late like waves crashing on the shore. Within the past few weeks I have come to understand that I have been standing in my own way.

I mostly have done this through my impossible expectations. I will have a picture in my mind of how things are supposed to be.

I will fall off of the edge and into the pit of dark despair when the picture never comes to fruition. I set expectations for myself that are not humanly possible to meet.

With people I will not trust what I see and know within myself about them because I want to believe the picture I create of them more than I want to know the truth they show me. When I can no longer push the truth down and it doesn’t match the picture I have created, I feel betrayed. I feel like I have failed.

Iyanla Vanzant sums up the reason my relationships failed

My only goal right now is to remain open. As a result, I am very sensitive and emotional lately. I find myself getting choked up and/or crying easily.

I am profoundly afraid. I have absolutely no idea what is going to happen or what I am doing. I never really did. I don’t think anyone does. However, up until very recently, I had those pictures that I had created. And I thought I was headed toward them.

My heart has been cracked wide open. I will allow it to remain so. Sprit has been guiding me to simply BE OPEN. So, I will simply be afraid. I will be confused. I will cry or become teary. I won’t apologize for it. I believe I am being guided to truly embrace all that happens instead of resisting it.

Epiphanies while driving last week

 

2016 : What’s Out & What’s In

Last Week after the Burning Bowl Ceremony I had a powerful realization for 2016

The Buddha said that all suffering is caused by self-grasping. It has recently occurred to me that my grasping and striving is entirely the problem. Honestly, what have I been doing all of these years if not trying to achieve some goal or obtain some life style in order to complete myself thus growing my ego?

For 2016 I have make no resolutions, no goals, no plans. I am simply going to remain open. However, I am a big believer in starting any new year from the mind set of Out with the Old, In with the New. Here’s my list of what’s Out and what’s In for 2016:

Out

Expectations

Pushing down the truth and ignoring the guidance I am being given

Hiding my bisexuality

Being ashamed of how others see me

Placing so much importance on how others see me

People who take more than they give

Jumping into bed and making a relationship out of it

Negative people

Accepting intolerant people

Attachment to out comes

Complaining

Talking about my break up

Being afraid that I will not get a job in my field

Letting go of who I think I’m supposed to be and how my life is supposed to be

Self-grasping in order to grow my ego

In

Being on my own and not in a relationship or dating

Having a deeper relationship with my Goddesses (Kwan Yin & Green Tara)

Being proud of my sexuality

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Writing

Following the guidance of my Kwan Yin & Green Tara

Following my intuition

Allowing people to be who they are without trying to change them

Letting go of people that are unkind and intolerant

Speaking and thinking positively

Spending a lot of time with the people I love

Traveling more even if it is only a day trip and not an elaborate vacation

Completely letting go and trusting my Goddesses to connect me with a job where I can be of maximum service in the right way and in the right time

Being who I am and living the life I have been given with gratitude

Getting out of the way and allowing my Goddesses to lead

Believing who people are when they show me the first time

This year, I really hope that all of you find peace and love each day. Remember that we are all in this together. At the end of it all when we lay down for that final long sleep, we will not remember the jobs we had or the houses we bought. We will remember the people we have loved and how we treated them.

The Things That Matter Most

TSarah and Tara VA Beach

Love is what matters 

This weekend, I’m in Hampton, VA visiting two friends that mean a lot to me. We went site seeing in Virginia Beach today and have plans to visit a Buddhist temple tomorrow. It has been such a pleasure to spend time with them. They are in my tribe. They are wiser than they realize.

Tonight at dinner my friend Sarah said something that really resonated with me. She said: “You know, people are so interested in chasing and getting things. But all I want is to be happy. I want peace and happiness. You know? That’s what’s important. That’s what I care about.”

After I dropped my friends off, I turned Sarah’s words over in my mind. As I was driving I had an epiphany: I have lost my focus.

Since my break up, I have realized a lot of truths of late. However, in the midst of managing my crisis, I forgot the greatest truth: I must focus on the things that matter most.

  1. Showing up for the people in my life and being of service in whatever way I can.
  2. The deep and abiding joy and peace that is the greatest blessing from my Goddesses Kwan Yin and Green Tara.
  3. Loving the amazing people that fill my life and spending as much time with them as possible.

When my short life is over, I will not remember the days I spent pursuing a living or what I failed to do. I will remember the people who filled my heart and whom I was able to help in some small way. And I will have known great peace and joy.