Life in pieces

If you know me in person you know that my life has been the messiest and craziest it’s ever been.

Every day has become a roller coaster of emotions due to divorce and custody proceedings, fears and attempting to calm a tumultuous sea.

My heart is so overwhelmed. My mind has had challenges or questions I hadn’t anticipated. My soul is hurt.

A high level of uncertainty is impacting every aspect of my life.

I don’t even know how often in a few months I will have my child in my custody. I finally have the baby boy I loved, cried for, and dreamed of for years and he might not be with me every day… it’s heartbreaking to think about.

The choices my (ex) husband made years ago broke my world to pieces a year and a half ago and have created aftershocks in my current life.

All I want is to be happy, safe, and have my happy little family with just some level of certainty.

Someday. Maybe someday.

Childhood Fears

Lying in bed a couple of minutes ago I was suddenly hit with a memory from my childhood. Barely any recollection was possible, however I could clearly recall that in the midst of an elementary school weekend church retreat, surrounded by my classmates and leaders that I saw 2-3 times a week: I was terrified. Terrified of being alone, forgotten, rejected, and that no one understood me. As I tried to follow the memory deeper; remember more of what I experienced or what happened, I came up empty. My memories of my childhood are very slight and 80% of the time are sad/depressing. It’s challenging to remember the good things I experienced, the carefree times that all children should have. Instead when I search my childhood for memories – I’m greeted with an overwhelming amount of fear.

How our childhood, and what we are capable of retaining from our childhood, affect our “grown up” lives is a bit unnerving. Those fears we experienced when we were 4? Yeah, they still show up in our lives when we are 24, 34, 44,etc…  In my own personal life, I tend to push people away – exert my independence as far as I possibly can, which sometimes causes me to injure myself. Teamwork? More like “how much can Danielle do without anyone else’s help-work”. At least I am able to recognize my lacking ability to rely on others. I’m afraid to ask too much of others only to be denied and rejected.

Even though I know that I will never be rejected by certain ones in my life… And even though I know that I will always have outstretched arms to run to for support… I still have these nights where all I can recount from my childhood is the fear of being rejected. My heart is and always has been very sensitive; that’s one thing that I don’t think will ever change, but maybe someday when I look back to my childhood I’ll remember the better times.

Follow Your Inner Moonlight…

Don’t mind my random ramblings…

Things are going well, in the full scheme of things. Yes, there are challenges – but that is how life goes. Tonight I am stuck. I have quite a few things to do for school, as well as personally, but it seems as though my mind is on vacation. At the least, it is preoccupied with trying not to dwell on the facts. The facts? The facts are things that are and cannot be altered. There are those which are good. And then there are those which are not. There are the facts which push you to grow. And then there are the facts which seem to stunt you where you are. Any and every part of life has its facts. With school, work, home, relationships, personal and other – everything can be broken down into one of these categories.

Finding the time to sit down and do my school work is challenging. Being motivated to write essays on topics I do not even begin to have any sort of passion for is practically impossible. Putting a project together on a country which I have already visited and didn’t necessarily enjoy is low on the list of interesting things to do. I know what I want to do, but I do not know how to get to that point. Without a doubt, I want to work with children in orphanages. Show them some sort of love and kindness – prove to them that there are people out in the world who truly do care and they are not alone. My heart twists every time I see parents who yell at their children calling them names or demeaning them in any sense. Sadly, I feel like I see that every day.

I’ve always been a great actress, and I feel as though that should be a requirement for my job. So many days I walk in and do not want to smile, talk, or be peppy and warm. All the things which are required to be a great employee in a major retail store. Work isn’t a place to bring your personal life in to, so I leave it at the door. I try to at least. Every once in a while when I’m not helping a customer I find myself feeling entirely overwhelmed and struggling to maintain my composure. I do though, every time. Because I am capable of handling anything that is thrown my way.

My baby puppy, Ava, will be turning two years old soon. It is easy to see she has not had the attention she deserves. It is difficult to give her the attention when I barely have any time when I’m at the house with her. I have found that losing two hours a day driving to and from the house has been detrimental to my ability to raise her properly, and also to accomplish essentially anything when I am at the house. It is “the house” and not “home” because it isn’t my home. I don’t have a home. I don’t have a place where I truly feel comfortable enough to relax, cook dinner, have “me” time. Since moving out of my apartment in Mechanicsburg in August 2010, I haven’t ever felt home. I’m not a person who can survive without a home – I need it. I require it. Otherwise there’s a lot of unrest.

On the outside everything looks great. Everything looks perfect at times. It isn’t until you get into the meat of things do you realize how many things are not even close to perfection. There’s a constant striving – striving to be the best daughter, friend, confidant, equal that anyone ever could be. I’m afraid to disappoint anyone. Every move I make I wonder who it will affect and how. Through this I’ve put myself through more stress than I ever should. This stress has truly taken its toll on me the last couple of months. Since the beginning of the year I have dropped a couple of pounds because I lost my appetite, and when I would force myself to eat I would get sick after only a couple of bites. On my tiny frame, a couple of pounds is impossible to miss. Especially when it’s closer to ten. Attempting to resolve and push my body back into something more normal is no fun, but it’s where I’m at.

It’s times like these that make it so apparent as to how desperately I need to dance, write or paint. Express myself in one form or another. After 25 years I still prefer to dance even though my body revolts as soon as I stop moving. It’s always been, and maybe always will be, the truest form of freedom I know.

And yes, I still say that things are going well in the midst of this. I have some challenges to overcome, some issues to accept, recognize and ultimately grow from and a lot of fear to deal with.
In some sense or another though that is all of us.

“Follow your inner moonlight; don’t hide the madness.” – Allen Ginsberg

Who Said?

Who said…
… Life was easy?
… There wasn’t more to understand?
… Getting over someone should take half the time of the relationship?
… School is easier than a job?
… 24 hours is enough in a day?
… You aren’t allowed to drink too much every once in a while?
… Screaming is not okay?
… Getting lost is not an adventure?
… Your age catches up to you?
… It isn’t okay to divulge your sweet tooth with double dark chocolate gelato?
… Dreams mean nothing?
… Memories that make you smile should disappear just because of who you were with?
… Crying is silly?
… It’s bad to be jealous?
… You should be content with what you have and never desire more?
… Your heart can only break once?
… There is no reason to fight for what you want?
… You can’t make a difference?
… Your life means nothing?
… You aren’t important?

Words Tangled in Blue

Sometimes the situations you find yourself in are the type you never imagined would be part of your life. Sometimes you find yourself being overwhelmed emotionally and you have no idea what to do because you are in such a new situation. Sometimes you are unable to fully process the feelings and emotions because you do not have the opportunity to as the result of a chaotic life.

It doesn’t feel like we are only two days away from Christmas. I’ve now been on holiday for the last five days. It’s at this point in time I believed I would have been able to process what has occurred in my life the last few months. I believed I would have fallen ill and been confined to a bed for at least 36 hours as my body attempted to catch up on the rest I had been neglecting it. I believed I would settle into myself.
I am calm, but far from being collected. There are dashes of moments which flit by in which I feel completely settled, the rest of the time I’m a whirl. On the outside things are fine. When it comes down to it – I’m still a great actress. This has happened the last two Christmases and I am at the point where I wonder when a Christmas will pass without all of these overwhelming emotions. Part of me can blame the time of the year and the season for the overwhelm. Another finds it possible to blame the experiences of past Christmases and the lack of my facing them. Another recognizes that there are things I need to face and recognize this year, otherwise they will result like years past – built up and overwhelming over the next few years. But how does one face the unknowns? The past? The concerns? Why is there always something? If not here and now in the present, it lurks from the past…

Oh the joys this season brings me.

Clothed in Ivory

I’ve mentioned it a few times but never have I completely explained the story…

Last January, fresh off of becoming engaged to a guy in PA, I returned to California for the Spring semester at school. Every day I woke up asking for a sign as to what I should do – stay in Cali or move back to PA. Every day I searched and begged for a clear sign from God. Just one sign, that’s all I needed. The second to last Saturday in January I had decided that it was time to go to Sacramento and try on dresses. Just for fun. Because that’s what an engaged girl does!
When I walked into the store with three of my friends, I didn’t have an appointment. Because of a little bit of patience and others canceling, I managed to attain one 10 minutes later just as we were ready to walk out the door. As I found myself describing what I had envisioned for my dress I realized how real the engagement was. There was one dress which I had particularly noticed in my searches online. Sadly the store was not carrying it that day but the assistant said she would find a few others which were similar. Back in the fitting room she helped me get into one which was elegant, but I didn’t have that feeling. The second one she brought made me look 12 (because that’s easy enough to do already). The third went on and immediately I began to smile. The smile that slides across your face when you know something is right. Never one to believe something could be that easy, I tried on 9 more dresses (so a total of 12) before returning to that third one. The one which when I put it on for a second time felt even more right than the first. The smile was broader, the feeling was more right, the material was more soft, the fit more perfect. It was more in all ways good.
It was then that I was told someone in the store was purchasing the dress for me. The most beautiful dress was being given to me as a gift. The dress which was beyond my price range, someone wishing to remain anonymous was purchasing for me. The dress which symbolizes innocence and purity, was found. My sign which I had been asking for was being handed to me.
So I stayed. Grew and moved beyond the things which were holding me back. Eventually ended the engagement and stretched into the me of today. All because of that beautiful ivory gown.
The dress was a gift, and is a gift. It still hangs in my parents’ house. I refused to look at it for the longest of times. Just the other week I took my first peek at it and it is more gorgeous than I remembered. I have finally reached the point where when I think about or see the gown, I smile. Previously I believed it was too good for the occasion which it was to be worn. But I realized it was only because the guy wasn’t the right one. The dress will be worn, as a reminder of how good God is as well as symbolizing the innocence and purity it is meant to.
This time around, I’m determined to do things right.

Not Over vs. Impacted

It’s crossed my mind multiple times lately how over my ex I truly am. I suppose that my continual looking back doesn’t make it seem that way though.
Here’s the thing – I really am over him. The hurt, pain, trials, heartache… There’s no reason to not be over the relationship. However, I have been impacted by it. Perhaps that’s why some people come up with the conclusion that even after a year I’m still holding on.
The other week I was on the phone with my best friend discussing the relationship and I mentioned how someone had just questioned whether or not I was over it. She was astonished that anyone would ever consider even asking me that.
I will not claim that this past year has not been a maze. I will not claim that I was not an emotional wreck the first few months. I will not claim that I never think of him. I will not claim that I never miss being with someone.
What I can claim however is that no part of me wants to be in a relationship like the one I was in. No part of me wishes to have my ex in my life at this time. No part of me is able to recall being in that relationship without also recalling the hurt.
I learned a lot from the relationship – so I will often pull on those lessons in my daily life. In no way does that say I’m not over the relationship. Rather, proves that I have come so far that I am now able to recognize the bad from the good.
Preparing for this month I was a bit lethargic, sentimental, and overall reminiscent. With what I believe is good reason though. I don’t find it possible to hit your one year anniversary of ending an engagement as well as what would have been two years of being in that relationship without thinking back and recognizing what all has happened in those years. To date, two years ago I was arriving in England – the land I consider home. One year ago I was in PA working and celebrating a good friends’ 21st birthday. So what? I remember a lot of things and when exactly they happen. Doesn’t mean that I’m stuck in the past and unable to look toward the future chasing after the goals which I have in my life.
Everyone’s past experiences impact how they live.