Archive | April 2017

A Gypsy Wanderer ~ Vacation Anticipation 

A Gypsy Wanderer & her Random Thoughts……

5 more wakeups and Florida bound. To the place where I fell in love.

It’s true. You really can fall in love on a vacation. I did.

St Pete Beach Florida was the scene of all the emotion. St Pete Beach is the object of my desire and love affair. I fell in love with a place. A home away from my Oregon home. Something that has taken me quite by surprise.

I am going back.

In 5 more days I board a plane for Tampa Bay from Portland Oregon. I will spend most of 3 weeks with my love, in St Pete, and even though as I sit and write this while coping with a cold virus those 5 days to paradise seem endless. Tropical sunshine is just what is needed, it’s been a long dark cold winter on my high desert of Oregon.

Last year my bestie “T” and I spent two glorious weeks on the Gulf of Mexico in Florida, and I fell in love. I felt like I had come home.

Now don’t get me wrong. I am a definite native Oregonian, I am devoted to my Oregon. I have a deep love for the Pacific Ocean that lines my state on its western border…..but I have to tell you, the moment I stepped onto that white sand and dipped my bare feet into the balmy waters of the Gulf I was a goner.

The difference between the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf Coast of Mexico is night and day. The magic love I found such an affinity for on the Gulf Coast of Mexico was the most surprising and significant souvenir I brought home to Oregon with me. How can a person be homesick for a place they’d only spent two weeks at?

But I was. I am.  I have been for almost 11 months.  Since I serendipitously found a song by a native Floridian who’s music expresses my feelings perfectly. I have been a fan of  JJ’s for a few years but this song’s significance didn’t hit me until I came back from Florida last year.

I go back in my day dreams, I revisit with my bestie, I watch the video of our last sunset in St Pete, I listen to JJ.

 

So although my head is heavy with a cold virus, my throat sore and my voice is sketchy I am SO ready to return. So ready with my Bestie “T “and our St Pete Host Mikie to explore more of the Sunshine state. This year we will also road trip to places east of St Pete; going to Gainesville, Daytona Beach & St Augustine…..I will get to dip my bare feet in the Atlantic Ocean for the first time.

Packing now!

Going “home.”

 

©ttaylor

Sitting On The Fence of Decision

I can fake a smile.

I can pretend that I’m okay…

but I’m only in denial.

My hearts been chained.

sitting on the fence

Time doesn’t always look you in the face. Quite often time is what holds us in the balance of our choices.

Do you ever wonder why we do some things in our lives over and over despite knowing it will not result in any different outcome? Repeatedly, every time? Probably results that we know do not serve us.

Decisions for me were times in my life when I struggled. There were these inevitable arguments between my instincts and life’s external/internal expectations. The arguments would paralyze me. Not making any decision is A decision, a decision to remain stuck. That thing we call “time” ran on while I chose to remain behind. My choice had been to remain stuck in the same place because I was stranded on the teetertotter of being undecided.

I’m certain I don’t need to explain the pathology behind my chronic indecisiveness to most, nor explain the certain kind of bliss of not taking any ownership for making a decision. If I didn’t decide I couldn’t be blamed. Right?

Denial feels like a wonderful thing….for a awhile.

Denial helps support indecisiveness in multitude of ways. But repeating not making decisions was not serving me, it was actually just another form of denial.

When finally I found I could no longer fake the smiles I began to make decisions that started to unchain my heart. Shame began to fall away.

Transparency in time.

I knew things were off for a long time, I mean 10 plus years of a “longtime.” There were misguided notions I chose to let my heart ignore.

All that was off in my life began to mess with my emotional intelligence, and this finally messed with my spiritual health, which in turn messed with my physical health.

To be as transparent about this “longtime” I had found the only way to cope with all that I was denying was to get numb. Because I was dealing with physical health issues I had convinced myself I needed pharmaceutical medications to function mentally and physically. With hindsight the truth is for me the medications helped me stay in denial, it helped me to remain numb to the pain, both physical and mental. These treatment modalities helped me to remain stuck.

So much in denial was I that it took major life alterations for myself to begin to feel again.

Which meant having to make decisions.

Some extremely frightening decisions had to be made by myself if I ever intended to expect different results; if I ever expected a resemblance of emotional and physical health again.What I had been doing by doing nothing certainly was not working except to keep me stuck. Time didn’t stick though and I was losing a lot of it. Too much of it.

A decision had to be made. Decisions had to become part of my game plan. Denial was no longer working. Faking a smile was no longer getting me by.

NOT making a decision WAS a decision. One that in time I could no longer live with.

Deciding to make major lifestyle changes was frightening but staying stuck was scaring me even more.

I began the long task of excavating myself to discover what it was that wasn’t working for me and I made drastic changes.

The first one I made was possibly the most important change. I changed my habit of over-thinking everything, every step, every move. I made a vow to begin the change and decided to listen to my instincts while learning to trust them versus the dwelling and rumination of second guessing.

Making decisions about everything from my marital status, removing toxic medications and toxic relationships were the most difficult choices to make for this lady who typically found it a struggle to decide what to take out of the freezer for dinner.

Don’t believe it if you are told an “old Lady” can’t learn new tricks. Not true. Although the new lessons might come slow, taking their time they’ll come. Just make the decision to learn to change your “ways.”

It will be seven years in July that I made the most drastic decisions. Making physical changes in moving my residence to living alone, then the gradual removal of said pharmaceuticals that were doing far more harm than any good. All the while filtering those in my life and the weight I give to respective relationships.

With great joy I found my health and my life reaching a place of good I had not been in for a long, long time.

Time to make changes in my life I decided to jump off the proverbial fence of indecisiveness of being stuck. Deciding this is the time when I finally choose to take ownership for my well-being and the serenity of self peace.

The changes inside me are not changes most see, some who do see the changes see them as misguided deflections, but then there are those who do see the authenticity that I am striving to live today.

No more fake smiles.

No more denial.

thelser2019

Drawing Lines In The Sand.

Don’t take it personal.

There came a time when our mutual respect for life and one another got muddied. It isn’t important who might be more culpable or not in fostering the circumstances, the fact is communication broke down. It took two. Please don’t make it personal when my choice is to remove myself.

Drawing lines in the sand with someone really isn’t personal towards them, it’s absolutely about finding the self-importance to not allow anything or anyone to become chaos in our life. That’s not personal, that’s survival.

We typically don’t live in a bubble, we have all kinds of interactions with all kinds of people and circumstances. To not create boundaries would allow people, places and things to run amuck in our presence. A good and wise friend shared with me a priceless mantra that I quickly adopted, I am paraphrasing: We have three options when dealing with chaos in our lives: ” We can change it, we can accept it, or we can eliminate it.” Pretty clear to me.

Addressing the “eliminate it” faction of the mantra…. interesting isl that to “change it” or to “accept it” is seen as all that is good and selfless, meeting with approval by most. “Eliminating it” however is seen as evil and selfish, met with disapproval.

Boundaries are a necessary layer to a healthy life and healthy satisfying relationships, but there is no denying that creating boundaries requires skills, and unfortunately those skills are seen as negatives. Sadly so many of us believe we don’t have the right to set boundaries; let alone know how. Knowing when and how to draw lines in the sand means knowing and understanding what our limits are; what we can change, what we can accept, and what we need to eliminate.

Adopting skills aimed specifically at drawing lines in the sand means that we are honoring our self-value enough to get real honest with ourself first, and then with those who we need to draw lines with.

Own limits.

Identify physical, emotional, mental and spiritual limits, know what we can accept, change what we can’t accept, or eliminate it.

Trust feelings.

Red flags or cues tell us that we’re letting go of boundaries, ask what is causing that? Where is the discomfort coming from? It’s a tell when someone acts in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable, it’s a cue there may be a line being crossed, a violation of boundaries.

Direct and transparent

Maintaining healthy boundaries may need a direct communication about our boundaries. There will be people and circumstances that might bring about a need to be more direct and transparent than we are comfortable with. Just do it. With kindness.

Give permission. Fear, guilt and self-doubt are motivators for remaining stuck, Give permission to trust that we are not meant to be able to cope with any and every situation. Give permission that when we feel drained by the interactions of others and circumstances that we deserve to have boundaries in the first place. Perhaps it would serve us to know that boundaries aren’t just a sign of a healthy relationship; they’re a sign of self-respect. Give permission to set boundaries and work to maintain them.

Self-awareness. An awareness that boundaries are about honing in on our feelings and honoring them. Notice if we start slipping by not sustaining our boundaries.

Past and present. Family roles can be obstacles in setting and preserving boundaries. Ignoring our own needs might have become our norm.

Self-care a priority. Give permission to put yourself first so the need and motivation to set boundaries become stronger. Recognize the importance of feelings and honoring them.

Be assertive. It’s not enough to create boundaries, we actually have to follow through. assertive communicating when a boundary has been crossed and establish an “accept it, or change it, or eliminate it” stance.

Getting real honest with ourselves helps foster getting real honest with where our boundaries need to be placed, and to explain them and to maintain them.

©ttaylor2017