Love Doesn't Hurt....So Why are You Hurting?

It’s taken me thirty years, a couple of heart breaks, breakdowns, breakouts, crying screaming, yelling, bitterness, anger, resentment towards men……..to realize that love doesn't hurt. For whatever reason many people like myself have equated love to pain. If it doesn't hurt, it isn't true authentic love. We confuse the downright wrong relationship deal breakers with everyday normal trials that couples go through.  Love should never be disrespectful or deceitful. I don’t care how many good qualities the other person has.  Being cheated on, lied to constantly, manipulated, used, abused, degraded, and demeaned. Is not love my friend. Being the other woman/man isn't love, someone only being available you at three in the morning isn’t love, having to fight over women for the love of a man isn't love. None of it is love. Love is pretty simple. There isn't anything complicated about it….But we will talk about it later. This very revelation was confirmed to me today while watching a clip on YouTube of this show called Scandal who every woman in America seems to be oh so crazy about. There is this one scene where the main character, Olivia has been proposed to by this man twice, twice she accepted the proposal, and twice she gave the ring back. So in this scene he is basically asks her why she doesn't want the life he wants to give her. I mean after all he’s a successful Senator, never been married, no baby mama, strong, good looking, and very ambitious. You know the type of man women pray for. And here we have Olivia who is in a relationship with a man who is married who has constantly time and time again broken her heart. So I mean to the naked eye the choice seems to be very clear. Available single man vs. unavailable married man. No brainer. This is where the story gets real twisted…..She turns him down. In this grandiose speech about love she says and I quote:

“I want painful, difficult, devastating, life-changing, extraordinary love……

Okay so let’s break this down for a minute. So you want painful love? Come here so I hit you with this “love tap” right across your head. And when you ask me why I hit you I’ll just smile and say “because I love you girl!” You want your love to be difficult….as if life isn't difficult a by itself self. You want to see difficult….go down to your local hospital and look into the eyes of a cancer patient who was just told she has three months to live….go to a homeless shelter and observe a mother and her two children clinging on for dear life because she finally decided her husband wasn't going to hit her anymore….better yet go to the millions of homes in America who are a paycheck away from being in foreclosure, knee deep in debt.  You want your love to be devastating….*rolls eyes*.  So you want your love to look like the events that took place in Oklahoma ….a natural disaster. You want your love to mimic the events of 9/11…a state of emergency. Or maybe you want your love to look like the event’s that took place in Sandy Hook….An American Tragedy. What is this a soap opera? 

You want something life changing….How about believing on the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life…..I’m just sayin’. You want extraordinary love….I don’t know a love more extraordinary that that guy who was accused , beaten, mocked, spitted on, made to carry his own cross, bound, nailed, and left for dead….uh what was his name again….oh yeah that would be Jesus. If your current love situation is painful, difficult, and devastating….ask yourself why. Why would you think this is what is suppose to be like. Why are you still putting up with it, is it because you don’t want to be alone? Are you worried about what your friends or family or going to say. Or perhaps you want your child to have both parents so you suffer so to give him/her a “better life.” Can I tell you there is absolutely no excuse to stay in a situation that is emotionally, mentally and physically damaging to your health. NO REASON. If you want to experience something extraordinary and life changing I heard that there was this really good book full of life, truth and infinite wisdom. And I bet He’s been sitting around just waiting for you to open it. You got to go find out for yourself. I can tell you how valuable you are until I’m blue in the face. You won’t know the truth until you seek it.  So turn of your IPod and stop listening to that silly little sad love song that has been on repeat for the last three days and pick up your Bible so you can know what love truly looks like.


DIY Offenders: Stop Trying to Fix Him!

In the midst of me reading the previous blog I posted I had a self revelation.  Here’s my confession, one of the main reasons why I remained in relationships that I obviously knew weren't good for me was the simple fact that I could mold and change my significant other into the person I really wanted him to be. I know someone out here in the internet world can relate. We women in general have a bad habit of thinking and believing that we can “fix" a man.  As if we can take a screwdriver, take the screws that hold his skull intact, move some wiring around in his brain and BOOM perfection! PFFT!  I mean seriously we think we can lull him into submission with our feminine wiles and so called bag of tricks. We cook him good meals, wash his dirty clothes, and listen to his daily problems, so called dreams and aspirations.  We know he isn't worth a pot to piss in, but we hold on to that ONE quality that makes him oh so desirable. Forget that he cheats, forget that he doesn't have any real goals, forget that he is content on living off your dime….nah forget all that because he’s keeps you warm at night…okay girl. So because of that ONE good thing we remain loyal and supportive in the hope that he one day will “get his act together”. 

  I mean sure, if you think about it he probably would get his ACT together for a little while. He will play the role of a lifetime that would even make Victor Newman jealous….Soap Opera role at its finest hour.  He will ACT interested, he will ACT like he hears your concerns, he will ACT like he cares, and yes he will ACT like a changed man. He will do all of this just to get you off his back and keep you around.   But just like any long out and drawn out story line, it eventually gets tired, dry and boring.  The problem with acting is eventually the cameras stop rolling, the bright lights fade and he eventually gets tired of playing that role. Next thing you know he’s on to the next script…that probably has a new female lead.  And what you left with?  A laundry bag of clean clothes that he is one his way to pick up, a hot meal wrapped up into a to go plate, a bag full of tricks tucked away under the bed, a very real broken heart….and no man. In other words you have a whole bunch of props but no supporting cast.


 Listen, there is only one you and because there is one you that makes YOU a beautiful creation. God didn't put you here to be treated like an extra in some acting role, you are your OWN leading lady. Let me drop this Gem on you, in 1 Peter 3:3-4 (NIV) it says that “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes.  Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” In other words you don't have to be fake. You don't have the greatest and latest clothes, expensive jewelry and fancy hairdo's You don' have to have the image of the "perfect" man either to validate who you are either.Not to sound all preachy and cliché but when you figure out who you are in Christ, there is no way a man or anyone for that matter can treat you like dirt. You are an asset to the world. You just didn't fall on the face of this Earth by circumstance. You have purpose. And messing with these people who aren't meant to do anything but delay your purpose need to be removed from your life ASAP. Don’t be afraid to be alone. Being alone doesn't equal being lonely. Go out, do something with your life. I’m sure you have friends and family that you can hang out with. Get out there a live a lot ( not a little J).  God knows the desires of your heart, he knows what you want. It’s not your job to go out there and find it….HELLO that’s why he’s GOD and we are HIS children. He already has that handled. Be patient that man will find his good thing in you when its right. 


Relationship Offenders

In relationship, as much as we try to avoid it, we usually date the same type of person. Chances are everyone you've dated or dealt with have something in common with each other. Seriously, think about the people you've dated, and I bet you can find that one thing that links them together. Much like our friendships, we choose those people that seem safe and familiar. This is how we find ourselves in unhealthy, dead end, worthless, and often just downright stupid relationships.  We don’t even give ourselves a second to breathe before we jump into a new relationship.  I’ll use myself as an example….

My freshman year in college (2001) I dated a guy who by all accounts was very controlling and mentally abusive.  I didn't see that at first because, like must men, he was on his best behavior.  As the relationship progressed, he would start to mention little things about my appearance, who my friends were, how late I stayed out the night before etc….Me not knowing any better I started to conform to his demands. Of course the demands just got more ridiculous and more demeaning. It got to the point where I couldn't even look him in the eye. If I did that was a sign of disrespect. And along with all of this he cheated on me. I remember catching him kissing a girl in front of my dorm and instead of going out there to confront him; I just walked in the opposite direction. I was actually afraid that he would see me and somehow I would be blamed for what he did.  Eventually that mental abuse turned physical. It took my mom and my friends to finally convince me to let that relationship go. But by them the damage had been done and would affect me for years.

This set the stage for a series of relationships that all pretty much ended like this one.  They didn't all end with physical abuse but they all ended with me carrying some type of emotional scare. And instead of being along and letting that scar heal properly, I often ripped that band-aid off and jumped right in a new relationship. This why it’s so easy for the person being hurt to blame the other party for their  heartbreak not even realizing that they are the common denominator. I’m not saying that what has happened to the "victim" is their fault, not at all. But we are responsible for choosing the people we decide to date and marry, aren't we? I mean if we really and I mean really evaluated the person we see ourselves potentially being with. If we were honest about the flaws we ignore, the things we really don’t like but put up with. If we really did an authentic assessment of the relationships we find ourselves in, I would dare say that we would think twice about the guy with the six pack abs or the girl with the dreamy eyes. We wouldn't get so caught up in that physical. And let’s face it, when people start showing you qualities that you don’t like, they just don’t seem that attractive anymore anyway. But by then we feel like because we've invested so much time, we are obligated to “make it work”. Listen, I don’t know about you. I’m not a remote, you can’t change my batteries and  VIOLA I work again. You can’t change my channel to something you feel is more desirable, and you certainly can’t cut me off when I say something you don’t like. If I have to try to “make something work” relationship wise I don’t want it. I understand that in relationships both parties have to put forth some effort to have a successful union. But you can’t force something that doesn't belong.

Most importantly, we should start doing a self evaluation. Find out who we are, what we like, what we are willing to put up with and what things are total deal breakers.  Be honest with yourself. No one knows what’s on your list, so you can’t hurt anyone’s feelings. Once we make that checklist, we have to stick to it. There is no need to make the list not stick to it. That defeats the purpose and you can easy find yourself back in the same type of relationships you are trying to get out of. At the same time, don’t make your list so hard and so detailed that no one can measure up.  For most, dating is a process we go through so we can find a potential mate and eventually marry. So why not take the process seriously.  If that means you are alone for the time being then so be it. There is so much to this world than being attached to another human being. Companionship is one a small piece of the many wonders and splendors that God has given us. So while you wait for that special someone….go get a life why don’t you. J


Two Years Later....

Wow. It’s been about two years since I've updated this blog. To be quite honest,  I kind of forgotten about it. It wasn't until I was having a conversation with two good friends of mine that it dawned on me that this blog is still floating out there in the internet world.  After reading a couple of entries, I was encouraged to take a stab at this blogging thing again. I had my reservations about this because this meant I would have open up again, which these days haven’t been so easy for me. In fact when I started this blog, it was originally intended to chronicle my life after my divorce and to help others out who may be going through similar situations. But as life would have it….it got a hold of me in its relentless grip. I felt weak, unworthy, depressed, isolated and most of all, like a big fat hypocrite. I mean how am I going to give advice about how to get through situations when I don’t even know how to get out of my own mess? So I let the blog go and never gave it a second thought. It wasn't until a couple months prior to me coming back to the blog that I was encouraged to write again. So I started to, I kept this notebook with me everywhere I went. Anytime I thought about something worth putting into words, I wrote it down. And I must say it was some pretty good stuff. But yet again, I just didn't feel comfortable sharing. So back to the present, I made promise to my friends that I would give this another shot.  In fact I made this promise some weeks ago and have failed to produce anything. I have sat down at this laptop and have made a couple of attempts to write and failed. I just wasn't in it. I didn't “feel” it. Then today as a sat here mindlessly scrolling to Facebook, it dawned on me to just be me. Just start writing. It doesn't have to be anything profound or life changing. Just break the rut I find myself in and see what my fingers produce. So here I am writing, with no particular topic in mind. So I decided that this would be a great opportunity to reintroduce myself and kind of give a brief rundown of where I am at this present time.

Life has been hard. Life has dealt me some blows. As I said before, I felt like the grip on my life was tight and suffocating. I have fought so hard to get where I am now. I have fought the spirit of depression like my life depended on it.  And at those times I feel worthless, it took all my strength to even get on my knees and pray about it. And when praying just wasn't cutting it, I just sat in the dark as I allowed God to pick my parts of my brain and minister to me even though I refused to talk to him.  Life has been interesting. Life has giving me some really hard lessons. Some of them I got right away….some are still being worked one…and some I still to this day don’t understand. God has placed some pretty interesting people in my life. Some of them just downright scare me honestly. It’s as if they have been watching my reality show that is my life for these 30 years. They know things about me that I have shared with no one. It isn't fun to have someone tell you about yourself.  That things called conviction is very real, and if you aren't careful you can find yourself rebelling against the very thing that is meant for you to here. But I digress. Life has been sad. So sad to the point where I just refuse to cry about it. I mean it takes a lot out of me to shed tears. To the point of complete exhaustion.  The refusal to cry is something new for me. I use the cry at a drop of a hat. Now….I just feel all cried out. Quite frankly, I just get tired of crying about the same things so I just don’t do it. Don’t get me wrong, I still cry. In fact I cried today at church. But it’s almost like a process. Like a spirit of stubbornness is sitting right there in my tear ducts clogging them bad boys up saying “not today you won’t.  I have a lot to say on this subject, but I will save it for another time once I've processed through it.  But most of all life has been full of joy and happiness. Through my suffering God has given me great lifelong friends.  I highlight this because for a long time I felt so trapped and alone. I felt like no one can relate to me. It was a time in my life where I sought change and I knew for that to happen, I needed to have a good support system. So for a while I dealt with things alone. I didn't go out, I didn't know how to have fun without doing the old things I use to do so I just stayed home. And when I did go out….I just didn't feel like I fit in more. I felt like I was just out there floating in space.  An outcast is what I felt like, and no one likes feeling like the one that doesn't belong. As I started seeking God, I prayed for people He can place in my life that I could be me around. He not only gave me one, he gave me another that never really left, one that is just totally opposite and no one I ever saw myself being friends with. It’s funny how God works that way really. And when I look at them, I just know that these people are going to be my lifelong God given friends. Through my friends I have really found my joy. We each have our strengths and weakness but as a whole we are complete….This God given friendship didn't just happen upon us. It was already settled in the heavens that this would happen at the right place and at the right time. Knowing that I no longer have to go through my issues alone is such a relief. And even in my worst of times and circumstances….they love me anyway.

Dedicated to Tanja, Kenny, and Amber….You inspire me daily. I love you!