Hopeful

In the last two years I wrote 741 posts, have 45,045 views, 17,759 visitors, 16,513 likes, 7,331 comments and 1007 followers in WordPress alone. I’ve been nominated for countless awards, especially in the beginning but yet to accept one. All of these are more than I could dream and hope for when I started this blog. I thought nobody would pay attention. I have no niche, my posts are uncategorized, my ramblings like my moods are often dark and out there; in short: not everyone’s cup of tea. But miraculously there are people who find my blog interesting enough to read and even follow, I’m immensely grateful for that. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

What I’ve been doing this year aside from blogging… Well, I published three E-books and I am currently writing my first novel and have 71,954 words on paper so far. I still have four E-books to publish next year and the concepts of book two and three of my novel are steadily forming in my mind. I already know where to go, the trick is finding out how to get there successfully and converting the images I see in my head into words that are cohesive and understandable (and of course readable) for other people. I’m inspired, I’m hopeful, I’m determined to follow my dreams and see where it lead me. Happy New year to all and here’s to following our hearts’ desires and let’s not forget to bring our brains with us. We need it to keep our feet on the ground and to talk some sense to us once in a while. Success everyone!

P.S.

I don’t believe in resolution. I will just continue what I’m doing and take it from there one day at a time following my feelings and instinct sharing my thoughts and those of others who move me and tickle my curiosity and see what happens, hopefully something wonderful. I love surprises good or bad but have no expectations so there will be no disappointments. I will continue to try my very best to reach out to the readers and who knows I will find more kindred spirits.

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The Truth About Marriage, Monogamy And Long-Term Partnership

Everyone around us struggles in marriage.

But you wouldn’t know it because most people feel bad about their struggle, so they hide it.

 I have yet to meet a couple who were not challenged to some degree.

As a couple’s coach and relationship specialist, I work with this all day, every day.

If you are married, or you are going to get married, it’s important to read this thoroughly. It may help you be more realistic.

The media and our culture inundate us with misinformation about how relationships are supposed to be. Many of us still think that when we find the one all will be well and they will complete us. Or maybe some of us think a “conscious” relationship means that we somehow transcend our issues, triggers and neurosis.

When we finally do commit to a long-term relationship and the warm fuzzies of the honeymoon stage wear off after six months or a year or two, we finally get to the goods of a real relationship.

One of the first things we discover is that it is challenging.

We struggle, blame, judge and even hate. We shut down, we distance, we run away. We do and say mean things or we just freeze in fear. We do all the things that we did as a child, (but probably don’t remember) or we act like our parents—the thing we’d swore we’d never do. We then suffer because our fantasy of what we thought a relationship was supposed to be doesn’t match our lived experience of the real relationship we are in now.

We discover that a relationship is full of pleasure yes, but that it is also full of pain. It’s not just happy, but it’s sad. It’s not just blissful, it’s depressing. We don’t just experience warm fuzzies, we also experience cold iciness and rage.

Then, we judge ourselves against the one-sided marriage paradigm that was sold to us. We get depressed thinking that perhaps we made a mistake or something is wrong with us. Or, we blame our spouse and hold them accountable for our pain, which is also depressing.

Some of us might feel alone and struggle to tell anyone about what’s really going on, perhaps because we don’t have those kinds of friends. And, even if we did have friends that would accept us in our funk as we fumble through marriage, our culture trained us to hide our relationship struggles so we put on our upbeat face and continue hiding. We unconsciously embrace the game everyone plays in this culture to be a half-version of ourselves.

But when it’s quiet and no one’s looking, we might be courageous enough to look in the mirror and acknowledge that we are in pain, that we don’t know how to get through it, and that we are in unknown territory.

We might take the next step and admit we can’t do it alone, so we finally reach out to someone for help. We might first talk to a close friend, a pastor, a therapist or our parents to get their councel. But often what we receive is not what we need. The most common response we can get is advice, problem solving and fixing—all well intentioned with the agenda of getting us back to “normal,” which translates into getting us back to our happy place.

This lack of validating our experience has us feeling more alone and even stupid. Remember, other people don’t want us to suffer. Our suffering makes them uncomfortable. So, if we are not careful and we want their approval/acceptance, we might abandon our true feelings and take their advice and try to get back to being happy again. But meanwhile under our mask, our suffering ensues.

Next, if we are religious or spiritual, we may look to our texts and self-help books to support us. We might even pray to God to make our suffering go away. We might even meditate and try to pseudo-embrace our pain all the while secretly wanting it to go away.

Yikes!

This entire process is common, normal, and I see it every day.

In my experience as a relationship guide, people finally get into a marriage and have no idea what’s at stake and no idea how to proceed. It’s like being lost in a thick forest in a far away place with no map.

Add kids to the mix, years of financial stress, miscommunication, less and less sex and an inability to do real conflict, and we have a recipe for affairs, divorce and stuck marriages. If we are honest, we finally start to admit we have few to no skills in the long-term relationship department.

The feelings we bottled up or tried to hide begin to leak out, sometimes as a slow drip, and other times as a raging mountain torrent. Or we feel afraid to move one way or the other, so we stay frozen in inaction, unsure of how to proceed. Meanwhile our body bears the burden as we compartmentalize our pain in silence, all the while we get sicker and sicker year after year.

Eventually we start to see that we learned what was modeled to us. We realize there was no relationship class in school. We just digested what was modeled to us.

We look around, compare ourselves to others and think, “they seem like their marriage is great, so what’s my problem?” But remember that under the masks of everyone around you is a hidden layer, a layer they, like you, would rather hide.

When we don’t want to find out for ourselves what marriage is all about and the wild, rigorous, enchanting, painful path it forces us to face, we end up settling on a myriad of outdated and ineffective views given to us by our parents, culture, traditions or teachers. And in doing so, we perpetually avoid the massive opportunity for healing and growth that is staring us in the face day in and day out for years on end.

So, a gentle reminder that when we bought, without knowing it, the old way of relating, what I call “relational ignorance,” we set ourselves up for a big ol’ fantasy-slow-burn-let down. And, when we choose to keep living it this way, it’s supposed to suck.

Marriage is work. A real relationship is work.

It requires skill, a powerful context, embodiment and our rational thinking mind. It requires what I call “relational awareness and literacy.” A real relationship includes all of us, all shades, all colors, the dark, and the light. It’s happy sometimes and it’s sad sometimes. And, many people bail because they keep trying to live a fantasy that doesn’t match up with reality. In other words, the territory doesn’t match the map they were given in childhood.

Relating well then becomes an art, a master skill, to really see relationship as a path to our own wholeness and freedom.

Relationship is what we are all designed for. It’s who we are.

And marriage, if we have the proper view and tools, is an alchemical journey catapulting and demanding us to become all that we are.

But remember, we must say yes to growth and have a willingness to learn how to face all that comes up within the confines of marriage, monogamy and long-term partnership. And, once we do, we’re on our way to marriage empowerment and fulfillment.

-via Jason Gaddis Elephant Journal

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Daily Prompt

Pillage

When the world will come to a halt
And words will be frozen within
Feelings halted in dark corridors
Emotions buried in piles of debris
World will be shocked to react
Humanity will be jolted to numbness
These idiosyncrasies’ will have no effect
No philosophy will be able to decipher
World will be shown the truth and futility
So much hurt, pain, wars and bloodshed
World will be scarred beyond recognition
As we hide behind political correctness
We have already marginalized humanity
From the deepest cosmic philosophies
We may have erred many times and still do
Lest we find ourselves orphaned one day
This abode will not be our shelter anymore
Left deserted, emptiness will reverberate
Opportunity lost, we have plundered it
Not much of a path is left for tired limbs
Our journey of futility and exasperation
Disconnected from the cosmic bonds
World will be a standstill, and time frozen

-Standstill by Amitav Radiance

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Silence

deep
profound
solemn
comforting
breathless
rustic
suffocating
deadly
deathly
crippling
peaceful
serene
nocturnal
expectant
petulant
ominous
sullen
morose
disgruntled
anxious
companionable
respectful
reverential
introspective
spell-bound
imposed
painful
resentful
pure
complete
unbroken
small
golden
empty
deafening
prayerful
reflective
thoughtful
mournful
awestruck
terrified
horrified
prolonged
fitful
tearful
melancholy
icy
aching
poignant
meaningful
infectious
monastic
pregnant
convenient
sudden 

Lonely.

lonely-woman

A Christmas Story

Up and down the streets she ran
With black satin sack in hand.
Filled with sharp knives
She planned to end lives.

From house to house she crept so quietly
Looking almost, no, indeed shadowy.
But she was not alone with her sack
There was something riding on her back.

Green eyes gleamed riding through the night
Glaring around so full of spite.

“Who are you?”
A man’s voice asked
“You don’t know? I am not masked.”

“Get out of here! What do you think you’re doing??”
“Out of here? I think not. You are the one I’ve been pursuing!”
“Pursuing? You’re nuts! Get the fuck outta here!”

“Right now I can feel your fear!”
“Ha! That’s rich. I’m not scared”
“Like I even really cared”
“That’s it, I’m calling the police. They’ll have you pinned.”

The shadowy girl just grinned.
The man went for the phone
In one second he hit the floor with a moan.

Those green eyes glared down
“Ha! What a clown”
What a sweet voice.
The man looked up at those eyes
“Time to say your goodbyes”
With one swift move of a vase that man was gone.

“This isn’t so hard now is it?”
The shadow shook his head
The blood flowed red
“We have a long night ahead.”
He kicked the pieces of vase
“Yes, I know, Sweet face.”

With that the shadows did flee
That man didn’t even get a chance to plea.
Hours passed
This town sure was vast.
They went tapping down the road
Carrying the sharp load.

“Let’s go home now, honey.”
She huffed. 
“Quickly now, before it gets sunny!”
Up the stone pathway she ran
At the door they gave the town a brief scan
“I’m dreaming of a red Christmas.”

She turned the handle of the door
“This time of year is always such a chore!”
He sighed as he hopped from her back
She tossed down her big black sack.

He swept the dirt from his clothes
“The living should thank us”

She brushed her hair
“Those we killed were too much to bear”

She hopped up on the windowsill
“They made me positively ill”

She stared out into space
“And…back to my loving place”
She turned to her evil little doll
He leaned on the wall.

“Wanna open presents now?”
He smiled
“My goodness, child”
He laughed quietly under his breath
“What a quick transition from the subject of death!”

~Disclaimer: Though I found this piece among my old documents I doubt if it is mine. I am not this wicked 😉

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Daily Prompt

Relax

Bad things are going to happen.
Your tomatoes will grow a fungus
and your cat will get run over.
Someone will leave the bag with the ice cream
melting in the car and throw
your blue cashmere sweater in the drier.
Your husband will sleep
with a girl your daughter’s age, her breasts spilling
out of her blouse. Or your wife
will remember she’s a lesbian
and leave you for the woman next door. The other cat–
the one you never really liked–will contract a disease
that requires you to pry open its feverish mouth
every four hours. Your parents will die.
No matter how many vitamins you take,
how much Pilates, you’ll lose your keys,
your hair and your memory. If your daughter
doesn’t plug her heart
into every live socket she passes,
you’ll come home to find your son has emptied
the refrigerator, dragged it to the curb,
and called the used appliance store for a pick up–drug money.
There’s a Buddhist story of a woman chased by a tiger.
When she comes to a cliff, she sees a sturdy vine
and climbs half way down. But there’s also a tiger below.
And two mice–one white, one black–scurry out
and begin to gnaw at the vine. At this point
she notices a wild strawberry growing from a crevice.
She looks up, down, at the mice.
Then she eats the strawberry.
So here’s the view, the breeze, the pulse
in your throat. Your wallet will be stolen, you’ll get fat,
slip on the bathroom tiles of a foreign hotel
and crack your hip. You’ll be lonely.
Oh taste how sweet and tart
the red juice is, how the tiny seeds
crunch between your teeth.

-Ellen Bass

insomnia

daily prompt

Finding My Place

I was born in a country that is rich in culture and tradition both bad and good. I’ve never been there for the last five years but the last time I came to visit it was difficult not to notice the immense changes that had happened since I left it some thirty years ago. It didn’t come all of a sudden like so many things in life, the changes came gradually, almost unnoticeable till one day you can’t help but staring at it full in the face. The moral and values I grew up with are almost nonexistent and the respect and camaraderie that once held the community together are nowhere in sight. Probably still exist in some forgotten villages somewhere in the mountains where people are not yet fully immersed in materialistic way of life and commercialism but I doubt it. Social media has long tentacles and they can even reach even those who are innocent of its existence and have no means of acquiring expensive gadgets. There are computers in schoosl or internet cafes in town and sooner or later they will discover the amazing fantasy land called cyber world and once tasted it can become addictive as in most cases. My beloved country is changing and it’s not for the better, If I had difficulties living there before because of narrow one track minded prejudiced judgmental people who put label on everything according to their limited cranial capacity and understanding and looking down on anything that is not according to their tastes, I cannot possibly live there now.  

Being brought up isolated by tyrannical parents and being part of a dysfunctional family who moved a lot I never find where I belong, my roots had been pulled out before they can even have a chance to settle and get hold. We never had a contingency to grow and flourish in a familiar soil. I’ve said these already before, If I could reach for something brilliant that would be the home which been denied to me and the presence of the peace I’ve never known. Young as I was when I’ve been forced to marry a stranger and joined him in his country so my family can better their lives, my genetic make up is already set and hardened, no amount of foreign influence can change my true nature, I still crave a gypsy existence and the total freedom that goes with it. Besides, I could not and will never understand their way of dealing with things, mundane or important. The way they are not able to speak the truth and their thoughts and show their real feelings, hiding the dirty laundry inside although it’s already stinking too much in there, they rather suffer and not breathe as long as they can keep up appearances and retain (in their mind) the polished image they value and worship. 

Another thing I cannot understand about my new surrounding is the people rarely smile (unless they are intoxicated) big houses and even bigger cars and every morning I encounter them in the streets they all look like they are just about ready to murder anyone given a slight provocation. Aren’t they happy with what they have?

No, I still didn’t find the place where I truly belong. I am so much individualistic to belong to any group especially if they consist of women whom aside from the obvious I have nothing in common with. My interests lay somewhere else most of them are never been because it is not glitzy enough. Like I said in one of my recent posts:

I am neither here nor there 

Stuck forever in Limbo

My culture tampered with 

Tainted, altered, contaminated

I belong nowhere exile indefinitely

Where is my home?

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Discover WPDaily Prompt

Bespoke

Why it made me think of mail order brides?

And prearranged marriage?

Made to order adapted for a specific use or purpose,

That doesn’t sound good.

Unless you’re talking about appliances, kitchen

Or green oak beams for sun room or conservatory.

I think I’m being my usual self today

Realist, eccentric and moody.

Must be the weather, lack of sleep and entertainment

But at least I’m writing.

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Daily Prompt