Then & Now Project: The journey from “I do” to “I don’t” to “what now” is complicated. This project shares snippets from my book – taken from my journal then. These posts reveal pieces of the journey in a “that was then, this is now” format with my posting days matching journal entry days. (Sort of a time-fusion.) I hope this project focus will offer food for thought in your own life – whether you do, don’t or might. XO
Now that I’ve officially fallen flat on my blogging b!?#@! I will confess to what I can only identify as spring fever rebellion. (So much for the idea of matching posting days with journal entry days.)
How to proceed from here? I could “catch up” by fudging the posting dates. If you just got here you’d never know. Then I could shrug my absence off to a mysterious Internet snafu for those of you who get this on feed. Or – I could just offer short snippets to get us current and ask for your forgiveness.
Hmmm. Guess which one? (You get to practice forgiveness!) In the interest of saving time, I am not posting any 2010 comments. Instead, I have selected a progression of short journal entries and spirit dialogs that will hopefully tell the story and share the “classroom” in a self-explanatory way. If you have questions, just ask. Here we go!
JOURNAL THEN –––
Journal, April 8, 1994 • “… When these racing hormones kick in, the idea of finding comfort or distraction in another man is tempting. But then I think, I have never taken this kind of time just for me and I like what I’m discovering. Am I not worth my own attention? Why get lost in a quick fix?”
Spirit Dialog, April 9, 1994 • “The real work is not in the struggle, but in the careful observation of and accepted responsibility for your creations … It is not a spell you cast, nor magic. It is like what you call intervention. Divine intervention is, in part, your own, as you are of the Divine. You choose to be aware of this now in the work that you do and so, in a way, are setting the pace as [Ray] must keep up with your growth …”
Journal, April 9, 1994 • “It’s time to get back to that young gal who used to dig through trunks to find vintage clothes she could wear to high school! The one who wore her grandmother’s costume jewelry and her mother’s ‘50s jackets and blouses! The one who wore black nail polish that smelled like cherry and pale pink lipstick as eye shadow because the cosmetic companies had not yet invented it!”
Journal, April 10, 1994 • “What is best for me? … there’s a difference between my way, based in fear and control, and me first, based in love and concern… So much of what I do is still within the context of the relationship. What I believe I need to do, to “keep the door open” and not jeopardize the relationship further … Is it really in my best interest to continue to hope for Ray’s return, and thus keep the ground fertile and tilled for that possibility? Is it in my best interest to be keeper of the field when my other half is out “fertilizing” another field?”
Spirit Dialog, April 11, 1994 • “… good practice for you, as you are correct in that you still put the relationship first. This is not bad, as the whole is important. However, this is part of your dynamics because its base is upon a feeling of unworthiness to come before the relationship, rather than love for the whole … You have feared to love yourself, as you have set yourself up to earn your own love by doing and giving … This is why you have difficulty being.”
“You must then consider what best suits your temperament and do so with an attitude of “being” you and not “doing” Ray … Watch what you give power to or you will fall in line with Ray’s abstractions and prolong this period… This is why your motives must be clear in taking care of yourself. You do deserve better treatment, but from yourself. A self that is not focusing on him!”
Spirit Dialog, April 12, 1994 • “Your fear is that this is a calculated risk, which is why you must do your part. Not just for you, but for [Ray]. He is counting on you to remember your part … his fear [is] that he might get lost in this … Trust this! You prayed together. You did this together … Ray must remain blinded to accelerate the correction so you will secure the understanding you need … There has to be a degree of doubt to make you do the work. But there has to be a degree of “knowing” while it is occurring, as the knowing is part of your opening up. This is a lucid dream. What you do for yourself, you will do for Ray.”
Journal, April 13, 1994 • “It appears that both my negative and positive [core beliefs] are being challenged by this separation. I say I believe in love. In love’s ultimate goodness. If I really believe that, why am I so afraid now that Ray has left? When he was with me, I believed that love, our love, could overcome anything. But now I see his love as withdrawn and limited. Maybe if I could still see love in him, I wouldn’t be so fearful … God, I am placing all love outside myself! No wonder I’m afraid. Can I forgive myself for seeing love as fickle and unattainable? For identifying love only with a body?”
Spirit Dialog, April 15, 1994 • “When you seek truth, why do you think you will find only lies? … You can get lost in the signs and not do the work. You have been told. Believe that it is true … There is still much in your past to heal …”
Journal, April 16, 1994 • “Mom should be here soon. I’m so glad she’s coming up. How odd. Just a few months back, I thought Ray and I would be in Florida this very weekend, celebrating Mom and Dad’s fortieth anniversary … I know this is hard for her. She loves Ray and won’t condemn him. And I don’t want her to … Damn this is tough.”
Journal, April 18, 1994 • “Mom is helping me anchor in my little house … She found fabric that matched some throw pillows I’d bought with Lea a few weeks ago and made valances for the living room windows while I was at work today … but they didn’t turn out the way she wanted. When I got home she seemed frustrated and upset. I could tell that she had been crying but was trying to hide it. The look on her face shot straight to my heart. I knew it wasn’t about the valances not turning out. It was the whole thing – my life, my marriage – and her wanting to make it all better, all right for me … How odd to be in such pain and feel so much gratitude at the same time. I look around and see Mom encouraging me to come out in my home …”
Photo courtesy of Linda Pavlick
Journal, April 22, 1994 • “Ray, Shelly is not the betrayal. Not now. Not even six years ago. The betrayal is that you saw me slipping away, and all you could do was stand in judgment and deem me hopeless. How is it you stopped believing in me? You were burying me alive with every mental thought of leaving … You saw me in my weakest, most fearful moments … I trusted you not to abuse me with that. I do not have one friend today who would judge me as hopeless and see leaving me as the solution … This is where I feel betrayed. You withheld love, when love could have healed.”
THOUGHTS NOW –––
- Post Number Twenty-One: This is an a la carte post. But everything on the menu is about love. Every one of these excerpts suggests a thought to nurture your spirit. Loving self. Loving others. Loving unions. Me. You. Us. Betrayal comes whenever we withhold love so consider this: Where have you “withheld love, when love could have healed.” When you looked at yourself in the mirror? When you looked across the table at another? When you looked out at the world?
- A Funny Thought: I abandoned the Bernadette of 1994 the past few weeks but am grateful she did her work and did not abandon me. Because she did what she did, I can do what I do.
- About This Post: I’m attempting to merge the nine months recorded in Bernadette’s Pages with the present here – but still can’t figure out how to format it in a neat and tidy way. So, it’s probably going to be raw and choppy in places. I’ll throw in some quotes and bullets to guide you along. If I lose you somewhere, let me know. I’ll come back to get you.
- If you landed in the middle of this project: Click here to start at the beginning!
The Messy Room and my Facebook Page are two ways that I share the “HOW” of it! Please join me and SPREAD THE WORD. You CAN get here from there!
Excerpts ©2006 from Bernadette’s Pages: An Intimate CrossroadPin It