My husband has finally done it. I hate him. Now…how to let that go?

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Wanna read an example of something crazy? Something you might even call “the final straw”?
Here ya go.
My husband, who has not visited me in 6 months because he’s so “busy” just offered to come retrieve my leased car. This would leave me absolutely stranded without a vehicle. He’s too busy to visit even once in 6 months yet he’s totally willing to strand me without transportation.

What a guy, what a guy.

But, instead of endlessly examining the above details, let’s move on to the real point of this post. How to finally let go of this fury and anger? Listen, he’s a douche. A jerk. Selfish, shallow and utterly dishonest.

Repeating those facts over and over doesn’t change anything and it certainly doesn’t make me feel better. It only encourages me to hold on to the anger.

And here’s another annoying fact.  Holding all that anger, bitterness, betrayal and fury inside only hurts me. ME, not him. I can actually feel it hurting me, turning my insides to mush. 

The best advice I read today says that the only way to let go of anger is to love.

Love the person.

Ask God to love them.

Pray for God to love you and to also love the person you hate.

Can I be honest and admit that I DON’T want to do that right now?  I want God to hate him, too! To punish him! To strip him of any delight or peace or joy! To banish him from success in any area…

Annnnnd this is exactly where I trip up. It doesn’t feel right. Wishing retribution on him just feels wrong. Instinctively, I know that it’s not my place to mete out judgment.

But, if that’s not my place, what is?

I inspire. I encourage. I delight. That’s what I do, and it’s truly, honestly what I do best. Anger, hate, and confusion only sap my strength, dilute my creativity and in the end, steal my light.

So, guess who I’ll be praying for tonight? Me. And, for that jerkface too. :/

This is a person who has experienced forgiveness... and it's not easy!

This is a person who has experienced the difficult task of forgiveness… it’s not easy! Or quick, unfortunately.

Today’s Positives:

Gym- abs, rear, arms, more rear

sold a tag sale mid-century modern chair for $90 profit

had coffee with a friend

Did you have any positives today? I’ll bet that you did :) Tell me below in the comments, I’d love to read about your victories today, no matter how small.

Gone Girl…is the idea of a happy marriage a fantasy?

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I’m watching Gone Girl for the first time tonight. So, it’s fiction and dreamed up by a writer to satisfy the needs of a plot driven story.

But still I wonder…

Is the idea of marriage, fidelity, openness, “realness”… is that the real fiction? Is the reality of marriage only TRULY about very old and ancient bonds= securing financial resources, child-bearing & rearing stability, and …what else? When you cut out all the fluff, is that really all there is? Is there nothing else?

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This movie – and real life – makes me ask the question: Is fidelity a foolish expectation?  Is love and romance only real for a short period of time…and then it evaporates into pain and agony of lies and betrayal?

When I was young, really young, I remember being confused and terrified about the idea of marriage. I didn’t want to get married. I couldn’t reason how one could stay married if someone cheated on you. But, people do cheat. Somehow I understood that such a thing was a real possibility and I just couldn’t accept it, nor wrap my mind around it. These thoughts were probably a result of sneaking my mother’s magazines and reading articles which were waaay above my age range.

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Biologically, women have many more connection tendrils that connect the right and left hemispheres of the brain, connecting the action side with the emotional side. These two sides interact almost simultaneously in the brains of women, less so for men. Those who study evolution and biology theorize that this biological fact stems from the needs for the female of the species to maintain group dynamics in order to raise offspring. Males had the biological function of mating and protecting, hence their action oriented biological makeup.

So how does this relate to modern love and marriage? Why is infidelity, lies, and other types of betrayal so painful?

Does it have to be?

Or, does the pain come from crushed expectations for a fantasy life always had an expiration date?

I don’t have the answer. But, here is a piece of advice that no woman I know ever seems to follow.

“Marry a man who loves you more than you love him.”

Divorce and the constant sadness…What to do about it?

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Divorce was not part of my plan. :(

Divorce was not part of my plan. :(

Divorce. An ugly word and soul wrenching reality. I’ll write more about that later, but right now, I want to write about TODAY.

Today is a miserable day. I have to drive to Florida from Nashville to turn in my car which we leased about three years ago. I really adore this car, it has all the bells and whistles, gets amazing gas mileage and is cute to boot. But it’s not going to be mine any longer. My husband decided to trade in his Mercedes at the time and he bought a new Toyota truck but we leased my car. He’s always had control of everything financially, and at the time, young foolish me, trusted blindly. Well, that was trust poorly placed. He’s not trustworthy. Nor reliable.

It’s not reasonable for me to buy out the car, considering my current lack of financial stability. My job for the past several years was working for my husband. This has impacted my job search and the job I have now basically only covers my rent and food. Taking on a car loan (which he keeps insisting I do) is not, in my opinion, the right move for me. Some have suggested that he just doesn’t want to pay the turn in fees and if I buy the car, he’s off the hook. That’s probably very true.

So, those are the reasons that today is just a miserable, angry day.

I desperately want to change my mindset. This emotional tsunami that constantly threatens to overwhelm me feels as if I’m stuck in a washing machine of awful feelings, just sloshing around and over me, tossing me to-and-fro like a piece of driftwood.

I want to be unaffected by this and all the other things that are going on right now.

I want unwavering peace. That is one thing, for sure, that I don’t have.

Thankfully, I do have wifi and a computer. And since I’m a researcher by nature, I did a google search.

Here are my favorite three suggestions for changing your mind (illustrated by a few adorable bulldogs) from a blog post by Tejvan Pettinger.

Don’t Sit Around Doing Nothing

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I will do something. Probably. I will probably do something…

The worst thing for a negative frame of mind is to mope around feeling sorry for ourselves. Ruminating on our bad luck / worries / fears will not diminish them in any way. Exercise can be a powerful way to bring about a new consciousness. Negativity is often associated with boredom and lack of purpose. Stop endlessly checking emails and surfing web, look for something good to do.

Force Yourself to Think of Three Positive Thoughts.

I'm trying, I'm trying!

I’m trying, I’m trying!

If you are feeling really miserable and have a low sense of self esteem, try thinking of 3 good things that you have done. At time our own mind can be our worst enemy and very self critical. It is important not to lose a sense of balance; for the various bad things we have done, we have also done some good things.

Don’t Think Anything You Wouldn’t Say in Front of People

It's going to be okay. Remember, I'm here for you.

It’s going to be okay. Remember, I’m here for you.

We often think things we would never say in front of people. If you are annoyed, disappointed with someone else, imagine what you would say to them in person. Sometimes when we are with people we are forced to behave; even if we are not particularly sincere the effort to avoid negativity can help us to overcome our bad mood.

Chicken Soup with Turnip and Rosemary

It’s cold season around here. I’ve just recovered from a vicious cold that created so much pressure in my ears that my eardrum ruptured!  I had no idea that could happen.  Sheesh.  I’m feeling so much better now, and thanks to a few natural remedies, I was able to survive and avoid taking antibiotics.

This is what the horrible cold virus looks like up close....

The horrible, awful cold virus….

So, even though my husband now has my cold, I am in no danger of re-catching it, thanks to all the Cootie Killer Antibodies now flooding my bloodstream. Yay for me and my awesome immune system :).

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Fun fact for a rainy Monday: Did you know that the traditional comfort food for colds & flu, Chicken Soup, is also an amazing natural immune system booster?  It’s true! And, it’s now a fact, according to the FDA and a study from National Taiwan Ocean University.

Chicken soup (I think it’s best when made from the whole chicken, not just chicken breasts or other pre-packaged parts) has now been found to have “high levels of potent antioxidants.”

I guess our grandmothers already knew that, didn’t they? :)

But as for me, well, I forgot. That is, until I was smack in the middle of my horrible cold week. At some point, I weakly remembered

Chicken Soup + Colds = Good Thing.

Pulling myself together, I shuffled out the door and bought myself a chicken.  Believe me when I say this recipe is killer. I think it  might be one of my top 10 best recipes I’ve every created. And, it DID make me feel much better. But, sick or not, this soup is delicious.

Chicken Soup with Turnip and Rosemary

Start with your chicken.  For the amazing flavor that makes this soup so delicious, you need a whole chicken, not the pre-separated chicken packages of breasts, chicken strips or what-have-you. Make sure you rinse, pat dry and remove the gizzard package from the chest cavity (if it’s in there).

Chicken soup with turnips and rosemart

Chicken soup with turnips and rosemary

Place chicken in pot. Pour 32 oz of chicken stock over the chicken. Add a bit of water or more chicken stock till the chicken is covered at least 50%.

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Place bay leaf and fresh rosemary springs in the broth. For the fresh rosemary, I cut two springs about four inches in length each. Add teaspoon of salt and a teaspoon of thyme.  Turn on your burner. You’ll want to bring the broth to a good boil, then reduce it to a strong simmer.

Fresh rosemary from my tiny rosemary bush.

Fresh rosemary from my tiny rosemary bush.

While waiting for the stock to boil, chop up your carrots, onion, garlic, and turnip root. I bought pre-sliced baby bella mushrooms, but if you buy whole mushrooms, chop those up, too.

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Toss it all in the pot.  It should be boiling nicely now.  Turn down the fire till it’s a good strong simmer, then put on the pot lid.  You’ll cook this for 1.5 hours.  At the 1 hour mark, throw in your chopped kale.  When finished cooking, turn off the fire and remove the chicken from the pot. Remove skin and bones, shred, then return shredded chicken to the pot. Stir and enjoy! Yummy!

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1 whole chicken

4 carrots (chopped)

1 whole yellow onion (chopped)

2 cloves garlic (diced)

1 turnip root (chopped)

2 springs of fresh rosemary

bay leaf

Kale (I used about 2 cups, chopped)

1 tsp salt

1 tsp thyme

sliced baby bella mushrooms, about 2 cups (or mushrooms of your choice)

32 oz chicken stock (plus aprox 1 cup of water or additional stock)

Place chicken in pot, pour in chicken stock. Add bay leaf, rosemary, thyme, salt. Add chopped carrots, mushrooms, onion, turnip root, garlic. Bring to boil, then turn down to rapid simmer. Cook 1.5 hours.  At one hour mark, add kale.  Remove chicken from pot. Remove skin and bones.  Remove as much meat as possible, shred and return to pot.  Enjoy!

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