Daily Archives: December 30, 2017

2018 One Word – Partake

Choosing one word for the year is an interesting thing.  I always think I know how it will play out, but it always surprises me.  I'm sure this will be the same.

It often starts with a feeling.  I get a sense of what I need to focus on.  Sometimes a clear word.  Sometimes just an ethereal idea.  After pondering on it for a while, usually several days, I settle on the word.  Always a bit before the end of the year.  I've known my word for next year for a few weeks now.

And when I choose a new word, I tend to start changing my life to fit it, even before January first.  Can't help it.

This year's word is PARTAKE.  As usual, I have a very clear feel for what it will be, even if I can't quite say it. 

The first word that came to mind was consume, then consumption.  It was an idea that I needed to be more aware of what I take into my mind and body.  Consume was so completely not the right word, and consumption made me feel like I was in the 1800s with some disease.  I had to work on it for a bit.

But partake is so totally the right word.  It's not about devouring something.  It's about accepting something.  It has a spiritual feel to it.  It helped me flesh out my view for the year.

It's both about not partaking in something unhealthy for me and choosing to partake of things that are.  The duality of that might not be obvious.  But I can choose not to partake of certain negative things and go on my merry way without too much change.  When I'm presented with good options/opportunities, I need to partake of those.

See?  It's totally clear in my heart but tough to communicate.

I've already started to prepare and to put it into practice.  It's very compelling, this year's word.

In a simple and obvious way, I've whittled down my viewing and music choices.  I already leaned on the less adult side.  I already limited my movies to PG-13 and my TV to TV-14.  This cut out so much objectionable stuff.  (For me.  Let me be clear - this is about my tolerance, not a judgment on anyone else.)  But there's still so much that I'm not proud of, that I know isn't good for me, but I was hesitant to get rid of because I like it.

I've gone through Netflix (where I do almost all my viewing) and cleared everything from my queue that's rated more than PG.  I've also cut out some things that are PG but with content I know isn't in accordance with this plan.

I've created a new music playlist without swearing and without sex.  I already had a pretty clean selection, but once in a while I had a song I wouldn't play around other people's children.  I figure that's a pretty good indicator.

These seemed to be a good place to start, easy to discern. 

I tend to be porous, picking up on the emotions of people around me.  Not just aware of them, but carrying them, whether I want to or not.  Until now, I didn't make the connection that I have that same experience with the media I partake of.  It soaks into me in much the same way, whether I want it to or not.  I believe these changes will help lighten my soul.

But it's not just about making better choices about what I consume.  It's also about how much.  And when.  And so many other things.

And as I've begun to put it into motion, without really trying, I've found interesting thoughts cross my mind.  When I was disappointed with something and wanted to be critical, I paused.  We live in a society that seems to relish complaints, criticism, and sarcasm.  They're easy to throw around.  But when I paused I heard these words in my mind - "Partake of positivity."

I found it very intriguing.  When I stop myself from complaining or criticizing, I've always thought of it as an outward thing.  I'm doing this to them, for them.  I'm stopping negative feelings and expression from leaving me and going to the other person.  But in that moment I saw it from a different perspective.  Partaking of positivity, inviting that into my heart, stops the rest.  It strengthens me, lifts me.  It's not that I stop myself from saying or doing anything negative, because that just goes away.  It's just gone.

I know I'm not explaining this very well.  It makes sense to me.  I hope it makes a little sense to you.  And I hope I can observe and document it a bit better this year, so I can share it with you as I go along.

Do you have a word for 2018?

The Free Floating Anxiety Chronicles

I am not fond of posting multiple times a day but when something has me so out of sorts…it really helps me work through it if I vent so here goes…

R’s appearance, uninvited Wednesday night (to his credit, he did text first for the first time in weeks, but when my lackluster response was met with ‘since you’re so disinterested…and I didn’t reply otherwise, yet he still turned up, no desire to talk or listen to me, yeah, he’s digressed to the elitist narcissist he always was, money changes people.

Since then, I have gone back to high anxiety, paranoia, and a dark cloud of anxiety over my head. It’s impacting my sleep whereas the four days R free days I had, I was starting to feel calmer, more at peace. What this proves to me is that while much of my anxiety is indeed free floating and often without a discernable trigger…this ‘friendship’ has become toxic for me.

He will never cede to this, he will remind me how good I’ve got it, how he fixed the furance, fixed my car, gives me the credit card to put gas in the car…He will flout every kind thing he has done for me in an effort to make me feel guilty and like I am betraying him. I know this because it has happened a few times before. Do his bidding or you are disloyal and a user.

This is the very definition of a toxic relationship. The man calls himself my friend, but didn’t offer me a Christmas ‘bonus’ of $20 bucks so help with my kid’s Christmas. When I even mentioned it, he scoffed indignantly and said, ad nauseum, “I’m buying you a car, what more do you want from me?” Needless to say, this hurt. And after six years trying to atone for how poorly I treated him 20 years ago when being given the wrong diagnosis and meds…It was plain insulting. Cruel, even.

He never asked me if I wanted him to buy me a car. He just deemed mine too old, too ugly, and I AM BUYING YOU A CAR. What no one realizes is if I go for this seemingly ‘good deal’ I will never escape being under his thumb. His acts of kindness are just that, until I displease him, then I get flogged with them and made to feel like an awful ungrateful monster.

This is the epitome of a toxic situation.

I honestly thought with his wife home from her job I’d be free of his visits for the better part of a week. Oh, and before you say, Just tell him no…Yeah, last time I did that, he got huffy then spent the night texting me about needing this part and that part, even though I told him I didn’t feel well and was tapped out. If I don’t perform, be it him not wanting to be alone or jumping thru hoops to do his bidding…He turns on me. In true narcicssist form he cannot see the err of his ways. He never will.

A year or so back he demanded I come into the shop and mostly it was to fetch lunch and keep the phone from bothering him but I was crying and told him, “I have a sick cat at home, she may die and I’d like to be with her.” To which he said, “I should think you’d rather be here than watch that.”

WTF? It wasn’t about my comfort because of course I don’t want to see an animal sick or dying. But it was important to me to be there so the cat didn’t die alone and he just could not relate because his emotional IQ is so low. And yeah, EQ is just as important as IQ. Smart but soulless does not work for me. I should have abandoned ship then and there.

Instead I have let the situation metastasize and now I am at a loss how to bow out gracefully without bringing his wrath down on me. You may wonder why I care, once I am out from under his thumb, I will be free. But R seldom lets it go, he will bully me or simply write me off as if I betrayed him. It’s scary thinking just to save my sanity and lower my anxiety I have to risk blowing up a friendship. But the more I think about it, the more I realize it’s not a friendship, not really. He doesn’t even send a birthday or Christmas text, treats my kid like an annoyance even in her own home. When he got this ‘real’ job and started making good money and now that he knows the shop is merely a side project to line his pockets…Throw in the forcefed political bullshit and it’s become an unbearable situation for me.

The fact that his reappearance, even in a social situation where he didn’t even mention the shop, is setting off alarm bills. He once bailed on me because he felt my mental health issues were dragging him down but he will never accept that the same is now true for me in this situation. So how to be diplomatic, calm, fair, and cause as little turmoil as possible…I tried to tell the psych nurse how it was breaking me down, but she could not have cared less. That leaves me on my own and just handling the whole thing has me panicking.

Top that with inexplicable free floating anxiety…I have to save myself at all costs. If he won’t accept polite, then…burn the bridge. It’s not worth it anymore being treated like the poor relation forced to do his bidding while he lords his well paying job and this magic car promise over my head.

Personally, a true friend to me would be someone who while not pleased with my choice to walk away would at least be understanding and supportive.

Sadly that has never been the situation with this person, except when he was the one ditching me for being too erratic and stressful.

Toxicity personified.