Number 4

This is my fourth holiday season since I “left home.” The first year was tough, but felt good because I was no longer getting berated, belittled, abused and attacked. But it was horrible because I’d just left my family and felt wretched about it. The next year was a little better, and we even spent Christmas Day together. My husband and I were talking and our family was still family-ish. Last year was really rough. I was struggling with emotions and loneliness and not knowing what to do about this “boyfriend” and going through Divorce Care and realizing that some friends and family were no longer there for me. Parts were good, and I had both of my sons for Christmas Day. But there was just so much emotional crap thrown in there. Yeah, and some people close to me were going through some tough stuff as well. I wrote about that last year. I guess this year is a little better. So far. I am STILL lonely. I STILL struggle with depression and hurt.

But I’m leaning more and more on Jesus. This morning I just didn’t want to get out of bed. I felt so stupid for being a foolish woman who has driven everyone away because of my damn standards. I stopped and realized I was listening to lies. I asked Jesus to wrap His arms around me and hold me. To tell me how much He loves me. That I am dear to Him and that He is near to me. Romans 8:38-39 tells us, For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,  neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” I am starting to value His presence more than other people. And that is huge for me. Because no matter how much people love us, they are fallible, disappointing. But He is perfect. And His love is perfect. And it drives out fear. I have plenty of fear for Him to be kickin’ out.

I’m slowly healing. Slowly. The hurt isn’t as raw as it was. It isn’t as devastating. It’s there, it’s big, but it doesn’t OWN me. I’m not sobbing on the bathroom floor. I cry, but it doesn’t OVERWHELM me. I want Him to OWN me, to OVERWHELM me. The horrible beauty in being crushed is that we are so ready to surrender our uttermost to Him. We don’t care about our self anymore, we’d rather just disappear. It makes turning all of it over to Jesus simpler. I was just thinking this afternoon, I just don’t know how to do it. How to be a person. I don’t know how to be a friend anymore because it hurts. Because I feel so empty. So broken. But not having friends around me, caring about me, having fun, is so miserably lonely. I just don’t know how to do life anymore. I wish I could opt out. So how simple, then, is it, to tell Him, “You take it, you do what you want with it. I don’t know how to do it, you do it.” That, crazily, gives me something to be thankful for. That he can work through such sadness to create what I know will, eventually, be beautiful. Not because I believe I deserve being made into something beautiful, but because I know Him. I see what His hands have wrought. And everything He touches is His Glory.

I’m practicing being in the moment and being thankful. I’m trying to recognize when my expectations are misplaced or I’m believing lies. Psalm 37:4 says, “Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart.” I’m to find my delight, my joy in God. Not other people, my home, clothing, family or events or circumstances. And if I’m finding my delight in the LORD, I’m not expecting those other things to be all that. Those things come and go, for sure. Instead, I can focus on Him. He doesn’t change. He doesn’t disappoint. He is beyond what I can hope for. And believe me, those words don’t just roll of my tongue. I’ve had plenty of times when those words would have made my eyes roll. I wanted something else. I wanted things to be the way I expected contentment to look. Family, home, love, friends. And all over Facebook, that’s what I see people being thankful for. And I start to tear up and feel sorry for myself. But if I’m practicing thankfulness, I have to find Him and praise Him. And then I focus on the most amazing things. Like breathe. Sunlight. A general love for people, not the ones who love back. His face. And I can find real Joy there. I wonder if that verse doesn’t mean that He will give us the things that our heart desires, but that He will create desires in our heart.

God, create a pure heart in me, and renew a right attitude within me.
Psalm 51:10

Although I’m still hurting, I know I’m healing. And I know my Healer. He is faithful and good. He has big arms for hugging. Big enough for us all. 


Thankful Butt

IMG_5916Not surprisingly, I’ve been pondering thankfulness… and I’ve always considered myself a thankful person. And I think I am, but more accurately, I am a “thankful but” person. Not “thankful butt.” “Thankful but” means I think about all the blessings I’m grateful for, but there’s always a “but” there. Like, I’m so grateful for my family, but one son is far away in the Navy and we are no longer together as a “real” family since our divorce. So, it doesn’t feel like I have a family anymore… and then next thing I know I’m feeling sad and blue about my broken family. Which happened yesterday as I set the table for our Thanksgiving dinner. Just two places. And I’d invited my friend, but (see, there’s another one) he hadn’t responded, so I guessed he wasn’t coming. As I made the table pretty, the turkey was roasting in my oven, there were pies and stuffing and potatoes and cranberry and champagne, the weather was gorgeous and I have a view of the bay that is amazing, and there I am doing “but.” But only two of us. But my friend should have rsvp’ed. But one son is so far away and I worry about his safety. But what happened to the rest of my former husband’s family and why do they not include us in any celebrations anymore? And those stupid buts are bringing me down.

So, this has to stop. I need to be grateful for blessings. Period. No ifs, ands, or buts. Get over it, Lisa! God has been so good to me. I have a good relationship with both of my sons because I follow God’s wisdom and love on them. I have a warm, dry, lovely home. Yes, I’m by myself. That is a blessing, too. I have old friends and new friends. I have things to look forward to, creative juices are flowing, my health is better lately, and I can do whatever I want. My life is great, and I need to stop looking for buts. Lord, forgive me for the buts. Thank you for the blessings. Renew my mind so that I am always praising and thanking You!

Happy season of thanks-giving and joy, everyone!

broken crayons

IMG_5103Life has been eventful.

I finished the Divorce Care program. It really was huge in helping me to deal with the difficult issues of divorce and begin to move forward. I also made a couple of valuable friends that I can connect with over the pain and healing. It helped me to turn more toward Jesus for comfort. It has been very, very good.

I’ve also re-engaged with my “man friend” and things feel different this time around. I really don’t know what happened, but he seems more connected and engaged emotionally. Although I was apprehensive about trusting him, I decided to “jump in” with both feet and see what happened. It has been good. But of course there are challenges, which I’ll get to another day.

I’ve worked at developing a few friendships and that helps. I’ve started playing golf, which gets me out in the sunshine and gives me some exercise. I’ve taken a few trips this spring and summer. I’ve been working at my art and have begun developing a business plan for an idea I have. God is giving me direction and helping me put the pieces of my life back together. I definitely feel more whole and positive.

Is it strange, then, that I have lately had feelings of great remorse and anxiety over my choice to leave my abusive husband and let our family crumble into pieces?

As if, since I am stronger and happier, I have some sort of amnesia about what was happening to us, what he was putting me through, while I was there.

I encountered some friends from our church, and the husband expressed words that conveyed a hope that I would somehow relent. That I could consider going back. I doubted myself.

I have had nightmares.

But I have pages and volumes of pages with pain and despair written all over them. I struggled for years and years with the confusing and destructive treatment. No one else can understand. Not unless they have been there. I know how trapped I was in the lies and the games and the control. And when I find someone else who HAS been there, who DOES understand, it is so reassuring to hear their validation. To know it was wrong. To know it happened. I made the right choice to leave. I am okay. I am okay. I made it out.

I’m broken. But broken crayons still color.

It Isn’t Love… It Is Narcissistic Abuse

I’ve had wicked thoughts lately. Thoughts that I was wrong to leave my abusive, controlling husband who nearly erased me after 24 years. Thoughts that I wish I was back in my own home, with my old friends, in the world I had grown accustomed to. Thankfully, this article passed under my nose and I read it. I remember where I was. I am glad for where I am.

After Narcissistic Abuse

Love doesn’t destroy us. A lack of love Destroys us.

Narcissism is the antithesis of love.


Here are 5 Ways Narcissism prevents Love in relationships:


The foundation of love is truth. A whole person will insist on having an honest connection with themselves. A person who can love has the desire to live with integrity, be true to their identity and values, they know who they are and respect themselves and others. Whole people possess the desire to adhere to their personal ethics.  All these traits stem from a strong connected relationship with yourself (and a higher power).

You cannot have a relationship with someone who is wearing a mask

Narcissists are lacking this relationship with “self” and a higher power. They’re floundering inside, looking for a cure on the outside and flit…

View original post 2,130 more words

a list of words

through a fence

Negative things Kurt said to me

You are too emotional
You are too sensitive
You shouldn’t be so sensitive about the things I say (I’m being funny and you should know that)
You are the Queen of Assumption
You aren’t very tactful, you say insensitive things to me
You are not soft and sweet
You nap too much
You are too busy
You don’t take enough walks with me
You are a selfish bitch
You aren’t feminine
You ar not a team player
You are headstrong and independent
You are too lenient with the boys
You coddle the boys
You need to be more tender and nurturing with the boys
You need to be a hard-ass with those boys
You get too engaged in debates with the boys
You should make money, get a job, other women do it, why can’t you?
You care more about the boys than about me
You are not submissive like a proper Christian wife
I talk to my sons like a man talks, it’s none of your business
Your feelings are incorrect, you have too many feelings
You are kicking me in the nuts
You do not respect me
You don’t trust me
You take life too seriously
You are manic-depressive
You are too “heavy”, you need to keep things light
You push all my buttons on purpose
You have the life of Riley
Your forehead is wrinkled
You make me get angry
This pain in my chest is from the stress you cause me
You are not my soulmate
You are not easy
You laugh too loud, it’s weird
You are abrasive
You are too opinionated
You don’t need me, you’re too strong

Messages that I internalized

I’m not loveable
I can’t trust someone to stay, be committed
I can’t trust love
I have to behave a certain way to keep someone around
I shouldn’t have strong opinions, it’s not attractive
I’m not okay the way I am
Being strong and capable is not feminine

I’m a woman

Dear Men,

If you think the fact that I have emotions make me less intelligent and reasonable, that’s your opinion. In my opinion, emotions are what make us human and raise us above the animals. Therefore, if you, as a man, lack the capacity for emotion, that makes you less human, which would reduce you to the condition of being an animal, less intelligent and reasonable than I.

“It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Maya Angelou, Phenomenal Woman: Four Poems Celebrating Women

bad poetry

Life has been busy.
I’ve been working and spending time on myself, too.
There are a lot of things I’m processing.
I’m thinking a lot about boundaries and how to set them and maintain them without feeling selfish about it.
Meanwhile, I’ve also been doing some real housekeeping and found some old journals in boxes in the garage. I thought I’d share some of my old bad poetry. I didn’t date it, so I really don’t know how old it is. How bad it is will soon be obvious.

the back of the closet

I put on the “right” clothes
and I hung myself neatly on
a hanger and tucked myself away
in a plastic bag
in the back of the closet.

I spent years
trying on new clothes
and myself still hung there
getting mussed and wrinkled
in the back of the closet.

And years later I
pulled myself out
of the plastic bag to have
a laugh, a look
and remember.
But I didn’t laugh.
I remembered.

I remembered a song.

I remembered a lap.

I remembered a rainstorm.

I remembered myself.

I thought I’d try myself on
but I didn’t think myself would fit anymore.
It didn’t matter that it had stains and wrinkles.
Once it had fit.
Once it had been just right
and now I couldn’t remember why
I’d stuffed myself in the
back of a closet.

man love

Made with Repix (

Yeah, I don’t know why exactly, but yesterday was terrible.

I went to Divorce Care Sunday evening as usual and for the first time, I talked to the group about how I was feeling the day I chose to get the hell out of there forever. Maybe that’s what put me in the hole. And I talked about how disappointed I am that I’m pretty convinced I’m never going to find real love (man love, not Jesus, not my sons or friends, but man love) in this life. So I guess that means EVER because there’s no such thing in heaven. I know, Jesus is supposed to be enough. And I’m supposed to grateful that I have eternal life and happy that I wake up in the morning. But, although I know Jesus loves me and I cannot comprehend the magnitude of what He accomplished for me on the cross and how precious I am to Him, I want a man of flesh and blood to love me. And although I am joyful that one day I will see my beautiful Savior and live forever with Him in glory, I want some love right here in this world. Man love. And I am this amazingly great, loving, fun, patient, clever, caring person that would be a great companion to someone. And I really like sex. Like I said, man love. With someone healthy and kind, not a mean, abusive, controlling mofo.

And there’s no promise of that. As a matter of fact, the prospects look bleaker every day. It’s so sad that my man-friend doesn’t return my feelings, because we had fun and I thought we were a good match in a lot of ways. But he doesn’t. And there really is a part of me that just wants to say, “What the hell, life is short, enjoy whatever you can share with him.” People say not to “settle.” Well, what if there isn’t something I’m waiting for? What if God doesn’t have a man up His big sleeves for me? Why shouldn’t I enjoy my time with my friend and relax? I don’t like the fact that he occassionally sleeps with his ex-wife, but, oh well, I know he’s not in love with me anyway. Why not enjoy what I do have with him? It is better than being alone for dinner again. Sleeping alone. Waking up and doing it all over alone. Without any hugs or kisses or love.

Well, like I said, yesterday was terrible and last night was awful. I admit the tequila bottle in the cupboard is not as full today as it was yesterday. And I cried. Sobbed, really. And I broke down and called my man-friend. He actually answered. And he listened and asked questions and talked and eventually I heard his snoring. God, I MISS him. Makes my cry just writing it. He called me this morning because I asked him to. He doesn’t love me, but he cares. Is that enough? Probably not. Like I said, I want man love. I don’t know what to do…

tune in to your hunger

I’ve been working on eating right (ie: dieting) and getting exercise in an effort to pull myself together and put life on track. When you find yourself in real depression and despair, do you realize how utterly STUPID this advice is?

• Soothe your senses: “Find other ways to comfort your body besides food, such as taking a warm bath, wrapping yourself in a soft blanket, or sipping hot tea,” Albers suggests.

• Tune in to your hunger: When you think you feel hungry, Fain recommends pausing and asking yourself: am I really hungry or am I feeling something else? “You may find that what you’re really craving isn’t a cookie or a bag of chips, but a heart-to-heart talk with a friend or a loved one,” she says.

• Eat a varied diet: Nutritional deficiencies can make depression worse. So focus on eating a variety of foods, including whole grains, vegetables, fruits, lean meats, and low-fat dairy products. Consider meeting with a nutritionist who can create simple, balanced meal plans for you.

• Boost your energy: Seek activities that give you energy, such as going for a walk, playing with your dog, or listening to music. “When you do something that brightens your outlook and improves your mood, you’ll be less likely to overeat and make poor food choices,” Fain says.

Actually, No, I’m not really hungry, I’d like to just step off a cliff or will myself into non-existence. Sure, I’d like to soothe my senses with a bottle of tequila and a quick, fast drive into a brick wall. I’d like to take my cat for a walk but I haven’t been able to get out of bed for two days and it’s too much work to wash my fucking hair more than once every few weeks so I kinda look too scuzy to show myself in public. What the fuck is a vegetable? I might cut a nutritionist’s throat if she suggests something other than chocolate or caffeine.

Who writes this shit?