...random thoughts, opinions and secrets on children... aging... cooking... crafts... nature...divorce...second chances...
and whatever else I deem curious...
~Copyright 2017. Hootie~

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Hoping in Tomorrow...

I don't have writer's block.  When there isn't anything posted, it is because I am dumping my thoughts on my private blog, or in my paper journal.  It means I am trying to decide what to share next. My personal goals are to accept how my life has played out.  I need to understand it, and why things happened as they have.  I need to understand my role, my needs, and my desires.  I am moving forward with my life.  If my writings can help someone else along they way, that makes me happy.  Not many truly understand what it is like to live with someone who has a personality disorder.  I didn't even realize that's what I was doing until I started to find my voice and put myself first. Our current political situation in America makes me feel the entire country is living through something very similar to what I have survived. The difference...  I was in the inner circle, and politically we are all at least one step removed.

I have been reflecting on what I have publicly written.  I do not have regrets for writing, but I realize that two posts ago I might have shared more than many people can handle.  As I re-read it, I know it doesn't sound like what happened could have been real.  It was.  I am glad that I documented in the moment exactly what did happen.  What I experienced was something that started long ago, nearly 33 years ago, and gradually built up.  I have been slow to mentally let things go, because I have had a lot to sort out.  It is something that I hadn't realized I had allowed to happen.  What I experienced was intense for someone in the line of fire. I have a little PTSD due to what I lived under, and it sometimes flairs up.  I am learning to recognize my triggers, work through them and not let them set me off.  Experience make us stronger.  There is risk in living, and in relationships.  Friendships are less risky than deeper, personal commitments.  When humans pair up, we trust that other person is on this ride with us, and are not working against us.  We trust they are going to build us up and be proud of our successes, not be jealous, or competitive and try to out do us.  I am a soul who loves deeply. I know people are thinking, "I wish she would move on all ready", etc.  I am, and at the pace I've needed. And I've needed a lot of time! I realize that what I have shared has been incredibly personal.  Sharing has been a necessary step in my healing.  My choice has been to write.

At this moment, I feel as if I have my hand on the door handle to my future.  You know that saying, When one door closes, Another opens up?  I feel like I am just about ready to turn the handle, open the door, AND in walking forward through the door, enter the next chapter of my life.

This is an exciting, yet scary time.  There is nothing standing in my way, except for myself.  Only my own fears are holding me back. I am still a little fearful.

Am I strong enough to speak my voice when I don't agree?
Am I able to let my opinion be known?
Am I ready to let down my guard and really open my heart to another?

Summer is here, and I think I'm ready for another adventure.

~Lisa Kroll
     spreading Love,
               and Understanding,

Sunday, May 14, 2017

To Date or Not To Date...

That isn't really the question.

HOW does one make connections so they can date?  
THAT, is the real question.

Dating sites in my 50's?!  
Not what I expected at this stage of life.  How can I learn to play this game?  I would love to meet someone who is looking for a friend to share his life, for a lover, a confidant, and a partner in crime*.

I have been with a few people since my divorce, but I haven't really dated.  In the Divorce Support Group I attend, it was suggest a divorced person really needs to allow one year to heal for every five they were married.  According to that schedule, I still have a few years to go.  I did have one on-again, off-again relationship over the past year.  I actually still really like that guy, and it doesn't take much for me to tell anyone who will listen about his great qualities.  He's a good person.  Unfortunately, we are just not at the same place in our lives.  I have nothing tying me down, while he still has the responsibility of his children, and I didn't get the feeling I was someone he wanted to go with on adventures.  He's got a lot going on in his life, and I know he will find the perfect person to fit into it.  That person just isn't me.   

What message does this picture send? 
I need someone who is ready to go on adventures.  I am experienced at playing old married couple, but I had anticipated I'd be traveling at this stage in my life.  With my children out of the house, the National Parks are calling me.  I want to check all 50 states off my bucket list as I explore the wonders each has to offer.  My passport is current, in hopes of being whisked away for even grander adventures in Canada, Ireland, Italy, France, Spain, Great Britain, Sweden, Brazil..and wherever else needs exploring.  I can do all this alone, but I'd like a partner to share this adventure.  I need someone who has disposable income and feels I'm worth spending that extra money on.  If that sounds harsh, or wrong, it's not meant to. Although nice, I don't need diamonds, but I do need adventure. I don't mind sharing the bill, but I need to feel wanted and just a little spoiled.    

I am told I just need to do those things I love and I'll cross paths with another like soul.  I hope that is true, but I am of little faith.  Will I?  Am I even approachable?  Will I ever really be asked out?  I am not getting any younger!!!

A man who is divorced in his 50's seems to wants someone who is in their 30's, they don't want a woman in her 50's.  Do older men even realize what they are missing out on?  Older women offer stability, and life experience, as well as their own financial independence.  

My experience with dating sites is, one gets what they pay for...

Free dating sites:

They are okay, but it's hard to filter out who talks to you.  Not wanting to be rude, I'm afraid I've spent too much time being kind and sending messages to people I will not date.  Talk is cheap.

Pay dating sites:

Depending on the site, you might be able to filter for location, social habits, education, etc. My experience is that there is a lot of activity for the first few weeks, and then because the pool of "fish" isn't very big, you are paying to look at the same fish.

Does this say, I volunteer?  I am capable?  
Being in my second year of my career, and loving my home and town, I don't really want to move so I can date.  Surely, there are more fish close to home worth looking at, and who want to look at me!?! Ones who just aren't in the pool because they are also intimidated by the nature of on-line dating. 
How do I reach this pool of fish?  

When I do check out the dating sites, I have certain parameters in mind. I assume others do as well.  I wonder, as my profile pictures are looked at, if guys are thinking is this someone I could share my time with, or more? That's what I want them to think, because I dislike feeling like just some fish who the fisherman will filleted and then discard.  It's hard to want spend my money on a site to meet people, when I'll be made to feel like I'm just a notch in some one's belt.  I think, regardless of ones age, dating sites are mostly a place where people turn to find someone to hook-up.  That's not what I am looking for in my life.       

Remaining positive minded and forward thinking, I have a list of what I'm looking for in someone. I trust that the Universe is listening to me.  

I want my someone to be older than me,
kids are fine - but no kids at home,
a non-smoker,
educated, a Masters or PHD is not necessary, but I enjoy smart conversations and so should he, and he will not be intimidated by the fact that I have my Masters. 
He will be someone who enjoys a nice glass of wine from a local winery or craft beer from a local brewery.
Grey hair is fine, in fact, I'd like him to have hair that I can run my fingers through, but this is not a deal breaker.
I'd like him to be taller than me, so I can wear my heels. Heels do make a lady feel sexy.  
He must love cats, and want to own a dog with me because I miss W but I don't want a dog by myself. Not yet anyway.  
And he'll love nature and the outdoors:
stars, sunsets, sun rises, the beach, the mountains, snow, the ocean, wild life and wildflowers,
he will be active and he will need to own hiking shoes/boots.
He will enjoy traveling/adventures and coffee shops.
He will understand my need to write.  
He will enjoy the food I make and will enjoy working with me in the kitchen.
He will be fit, but not too thin.  He will enjoy my curves.
He will play games with me and not mind when I pull Bananagrams out of my purse while we are having a drink at the bar, in fact, he might even suggest we go play trivia, just because. 
He will volunteer and want to give back to his community - more than just attending meetings, he will be a person of actions, putting his money where his mouth is.    
He will love music, museums, concerts, and live theater and want to attend events.
He will love my family and I will love his. 
He will laugh and know that life is short, so he will treasure the time we share together. 
He will have many friends, and share them with me, as I will mine to him, and he will enjoy people. 
He will be romantic and want to spoil me, and he will be healed from his past relationships. 
He will be spiritual, and respectful that I am still finding my way with my faith.  
Mostly, he will be ready for a partner, too.  

I know this is quite a list.  
Am I a dreamer?  Of course!  But, I believe in love and am ready for it to find me. 

          ~Lisa Kroll 
               Eating, Praying and Loving, still.

*figure of speech, this does not mean breaking the law and doing illegal things!!!  

P.S. I could write an entire post on how does one pick out the pictures they will display on a dating site...maybe I will.  Stay tuned!  

Friday, May 12, 2017

Emotional Manipulation...an example

Mother's Day... a day when we honor our mom.

More than likely, mom is the woman who carried us in her womb for nine months.  She protected, nourished and loved us, before we even entered the world.  When a man and a woman have a child, it is possibly the most intimate experience they can share. Not long ago, men weren't allowed into the delivery room, but now they are not only welcomed, but are active participants, being asked to cut the cord that binds their child to his or her mother.  The woman may carried their child, but the man is the witness.  He witnesses the growth of his child as he or she goes from being a home pregnancy test result, to a small bump that grows into the size of a basketball.  He witnesses black and white images on an ultra sound machine.  He is witness to that incredible event of the birth of his child.  He witnesses as the child travels from the safety of the uterus, through the pelvic bones, and out into the world where the first breathe is taken.  A man witnesses the transformation of the amazing body of a woman.  There is no doubt, a woman's body is truly amazing.

I have given birth to two children.  To me they are blessings beyond compare.  I no longer need to protect them as I once did.  The nourishment I offer is mostly emotional, with a side helping of real calories. I love them more than they can every possibly know.  They are two amazing human beings...a product of the childhood they were given.  

Mother's Day 2013

In February of that year, he had started pushing me away.  What was wrong with me?  I didn't seem to be doing anything right. I sought therapy to find answers on what I needed to do to help change myself for him, for us.  We were still sleeping in the same bed on Mother's Day.  When I awoke that morning, I turned to him and confessed that I missed "us", I missed being intimate.  Had I expected the lashing that followed, I would have remained silent, I would have kept my thoughts to myself.  

I didn't expect what followed.

me-What are you thinking?

            him - What are you thinking? 

me - I realize we are probably just going through something, but I miss our intimacy. 

           him - When did you see your therapist last? 

me-Two weeks ago, and I'll see her this week. 

           him - Why aren't you seeing her weekly?  Are you taking your meds?  
            Have you been taking your Xanax? 

me-The Xanax is only for panic attacks and I haven't needed those for some time now.

           him - What do you talk about in your sessions?

me-Well, I did tell her I miss our sex and she told me I need to back off and not push things. 

           him - What else do you talk about?  
            I mean, I know your sessions are private and not my business.  

me - Well, I worry about how much you ride, and you are the one who told me about Over Training Syndrome.  I wasn't even sure that was a real thing, so I googled it and you seem to fit all the symptoms. 

           him - That's part of being a high level, competitive athlete.

me - I know, I don't understand since I'm not an athlete.  

            him - That's absolutely right, you aren't.   

me - I just don't know any other high level athletes to compare my concerns about you to. I also am concerned because you seem more jovial with others than you are with me.  I'm just trying to figure out what I need to do to help this out.  I realize I'm a pleaser and I shouldn't worry.  I just feel like you give 150% of yourself to your cycling, and 150% of yourself to your job and there is nothing left for you to give me.  I feel like there isn't a balance.  I feel like all I get is a peck on the lips.

            him - "That's all I have for you." 
             You suffer from low self-esteem and you need to work on that.  It isn't my place to tell you daily that I love you, or that I find you attractive or that I think what you are doing is good. 

me - Well, do you feel that way about me though?

           him - Not all the time.  
           You are 49 years old.  When are you going to start taking care of yourself? You have a basket of pills under the bed and you are comfortable taking those to manage things rather than to exercise, and walking the dog doesn't count as exercise.  You need to get your heart rate elevated. 

me - I have so much to do around here.  I don't have time to exercise too.  

            him - What do you have to do?  

me - I have to shop, and cook, and clean, and walk the dog, and work. 

             him - Your priorities are off.  You need to find time to work out.  How much are you on the computer during the day?  How much are you on there morning, noon and night?  I challenge you to write down how much you are on either the computer or your iPad. 

me - You know, my mind just races.  I'm worried maybe you are having an affair. 

           him -  Is your goal to keep gaining weight?

me - I've actually lost 10 pounds since December. 

            him - Well, I can't tell. 

me - I don't care if you can't tell.  You can ask my doctor, they have official records. 

            him - "I'm not attracted to someone whose gut sticks out more than their tits.  
             Are you surprised to hear me say this?"

me - no (I was in absolute shock.)

            him - "I mean, come on (and he touched his own chest) have you looked at me?"  
                (exhale and pause) Do you want me to hold you? 
me - no

I took three xanax that day and emailed my therapist.  
Above is from my email.  Every word is true.  
This is what emotional manipulation from a Narcissistic looks like from the inside.  

I walked Winston as my escape after that conversation.  When I returned he asked if I wanted to go to Goose Pond and see what it was like.  He had asked me this once before.  That previous day we were to go after he went riding his bike.  When the time came for us to go, he was too exhausted.  Today I told him no thanks.  He asked if I didn't want to go because the birds were mostly gone.  I told him I really didn't want to spend any time with him.  

At my next therapy session my therapist told me I could believe what he tells me about myself, or I could go out into the real world and see what the rest of the world has to say.  She suggested I take a trip by myself.  You might recall that I went to the Grand Canyon on my walkabout.  Mother's Day 2013 was the catalyst.  

In September of 2013 he moved out of our bedroom.  In April of 2014 he moved out of the house.  On Mother's Day of 2014 he showed up at the house.  He was mad that I had changed the locks.  I told him he was the last person I wanted to see on Mother's Day.  He asked why.  I said don't you remember what you said to me last year?  His response, "I remember.  You're still in shock aren't you?" 

I needed to write this and share it publicly so I can be released.  I have held this in my heart every day.  When I look into the mirror now, I see someone who was hidden and is emerging.  I need the poison he fed into my soul to be out, and completely gone.  

I claim Mother's Day as mine.  

I do not suffer from low self-esteem.  
I am a warrior.  
I am roaring.

                  ~Lisa Kroll
                      Mother, Survivor, Love Warrior