Tag Archives: procrastination

Being Busy

27 Jun

I know I have been away a bit longer than just through the weekend.  Ooops.  I have been running all around like a crazy person lately.  Some of it has been good – but it sure has been hectic.  So here’s a quick rundown.  This weekend I attended a wonderful party that I wish we could have stayed at longer, then drove 2 hours to a fantastic concert.  After seeing 4 amazing bands we then had to brave that 2 hour drive back home… not so fun.  Good thing the next day was Sunday, though, because sleeping in was definitely in order.

Fast-forward to Monday when we had a terrible storm blow through.  Winds reached 86 mph, there was driving rain, hail, lightning, and some tornadoes a little farther out from me (thankfully I didn’t see any).  The wind and rain were so hard and heavy that water was actually forced under the front door at work and caused a semi-flood in our foyer and warehouse.  Oh, and it knocked the power out.  I’m sure you can imagine the fun time that ensued attempting to clean up the water in the dark.  Thankfully we have lots of windows – except in my office (of course) – yay!

Since I live only about a mile from work the power was also knocked out at my house.  We weren’t quite like the people in the picture above, although I did have tons of candles lit.  Thankfully my Dad lives next door (another story entirely) and he has a generator.  We plugged in an extension cord and stretched it on over to run our refrigerator, A/C and television.  That really was a lifesaver!  Except our cable and internet were also down.  Thank goodness for Criminal Minds on DVD!

Work was an entirely different story, though.  We really, really need our computers to be able to invoice items and all of the other daily operations.  Generally power comes up pretty fast for the business where we are, but not this time.  There were over 100,000 people without electricity not counting the businesses.  We thought we would get power back in the morning on Tuesday, but when I called there was still no estimated time to get it back.  I tried limping through work on my tablet and cell phone, but by mid-day it was obvious that wasn’t working and becoming more and more clear that power wasn’t coming back.  Cue shopping trip for a generator, setting it up, gassing it up, and stringing together several extension cords throughout the office to get our key equipment up and running.  Let me tell you, it was fun crawling all around on the floor – not!

Did I mention that in the middle of all of that I was recruiting for a job opening?  Trying to set up interviews on a tablet in the dark is not as fun as it sounds.  I also conducted a few phone interviews and coordinated with the President on his schedule for face-to-face interviews.  In my dark office.  Oh yeah, and I had a funeral to attend in the middle of all of that.  I also had to sing 2 songs yesterday so I had to get some music together and try to practice – without a printer or the internet as a guide.  Thankfully I’m good under pressure and can “going with it.”  No one had any clue that I hadn’t devoted my normal hours of preparation and practice.  Everyone said I did wonderfully.  Phew!

Today we finally have power, internet, and phone service back in the area – at home and work.  That is such a relief, but it also means picking up the slack for the past 2 days without power.  I promise I will get back to thoughtful writing and introspection… Tomorrow.  I’m feeding my procrastinating side today.  Well, not really – I still have a therapy appointment, chiropractor, and dinner with the girls in my group tonight – all by 6:30 pm.  And I need to pick up a Redbox rental on my way home to care for my sick husband – who has been vomiting today.  Hopefully it’s not from the boil advisory we received for our water – because I drank that stuff, too (The power outage also knocked out the water processing plant, so we could have any number of unknown bacteria in our water – which they didn’t deem worth telling us until 12 hours after we had been drinking said water from the tap).  See you around soon!

Taking the Leap

26 Apr

Yesterday I was contemplating changing the name of my blog to focus more on me and more on the positive.  I took my friend Ben’s advice and slept on it, and today I decided to make the change.  I have officially changed the title of my blog to Beautiful Mess.  I have also updated the website address to www.beaingabeautifulmess.wordpress.com.  I am already glad that I have made this leap.

I have beeing taking other leaps of faith in my “real” life, too.  I am still working on letting go (see my post Letting Go… Easier Said Than Done), and I have been seeing much more success in that area lately.  In the last few weeks I have let go of my feeling of responsibility for my husband going back to individual counseling.  I told him why it was important to me, how it would make me feel if he went back (safer, loved, and important), set a deadline…  and he took care of it!  I realized how good it feels to give away responsibility for things that weren’t mine to take responsibility for in the first place.  I want to be the “fixer” but then get frustrated that I’m having to do all of the work.  The only way to stop that is to stop “fixing” and start asking for what I need.

I have also worked on my procrastination (see Procrastination… Check).  Last night I went back to my women’s support group for wives of sex addicts, and remembered how much I love being able to connect to other women who are going through the same thing.  It was like going back to your childhood home – that feeling of nostalgia, welcome, and being transported back like nothing ever changed.  Of course things had changed a bit – for all of us – but there was the same camaraderie and understanding.  Blogging and being part of an online community are very valuable, but there is something about being in a room and speaking face-to-face with other people who honestly know how you feel that is validating in a way I can’t quite describe.

That’s certainly not to discount my blogging buddies!  I have also been inspired by other bloggers a lot this week.  I have found several women this week in the forums and blogs who seem to be going through the same internal battles that I am.  One really struck me today:  If Happy Ever After Did Exist – Diving Off The Cliff.  Her blog in general always hits home – it’s like we are living parallel lives.  In this particular post she talks about coming up with her expectations for their marriage recovery, then handing them over to her husband to let him discover his own way to meet them.  That is exactly where I am right now.  I get to set the bar, but my husband has to find his own way to get there.  It is his problem to solve.

Just like me, the whole process is somewhat terrifying for her.  The overriding fear is what will happen if he doesn’t do the work.  I have those same worries.  If I’m not there driving, will he take the wheel or crash us?  What if he can’t figure out his own way? What if he isn’t motivated?  What if he just doesn’t meet my goals or expectations?  It used to paralyze me.  It is still really, really scary if I’m being totally honest with myself.

But I’ve realized that all I can do is make goals, set deadlines for when I want to see things accomplished, and be ready for him to either do it or fail.  And if he fails I have to decide what that will mean for me and what actions I will take in response.  I guess that is the scariest part – am I ready to deal with failure?  Historically I’m not very good with it and have done everything I can to avoid it at all costs.  For now I am choosing to feel positive.  I’m not pushing away or burying my fear, but after I feel it I try to let it go.  I am choosing instead to believe in my husband and that he will step up.  I have to give him the opportunity to shine.

So for now this play-by-the-rules, need-to-be-in-charge, scared-of-failure woman is taking a giant leap and letting go of the outcome.  I’m going to trust, face my fears, and stop worrying if my husband will be there to catch me.  I just have to believe that he will be.  Thanks again to My Ideal Woman, Repairing Shattered Pieces, and all of the other people out there in blog world who have been reading, supporting me, and helping me to feel positive and empowered about myself!

Being a Procrastinator

23 Apr

Since I have vowed to myself that I will be honest in this blog I have to admit something.  My husband is not the only procrastinator in this relationship.  I think one of the reasons that the D-Day Antiversary (I’m stealing this term from someone on SI because it is perfect) hit me so hard is that I wasn’t as prepared as I should have been.  This post is not about my husband.  I am not discounting that he has put off a lot of things that are really important to me, stopped going to individual counseling for 6 months, and has been passive in the recovery process.  But I’ve got to focus on me, and I’ve been just gliding along, too.

This weekend I realized that some of the books I started reading at the beginning of this process are still sitting unfinished.  In the first month or two after D-Day I threw myself into the process of figuring out what happened, dealing with my emotions, trying to find a way to grow, and reading anything I could get my hands on that helped me understand what was going on and put it all in perspective.  I had individual counseling sessions every week, I attended group sessions with other betrayed wives every Wednesday night, and if it wasn’t related to infidelity, sexual addiction, or working on my marriage I wasn’t reading it (and I’m a lifetime, avid reader of just about anything).  Then I burned out.  So here are my personal 12-Steps into and back out of the destructive procrastination cycle.

The first step for me was taking a mental break from 24/7 self-help reading (Step 1: Much Needed Respite).  It actually wasn’t a bad decision because there is only so much that a person’s brain can take in, process and applyGame of Thrones was about to come out on HBO, and I got a great deal on the box set of books from Amazon.  I told myself I would just read the first book as a brain break, then go back to the Shattered Vows book my group was working through.  After all, we were only covering a few pages at a time and I was already caught up to our current place.

This seemed much more appealing…

… than this.

It sounded great.  But I devoured the first book and was through it in just a few days.  I told myself I didn’t take nearly enough “time off” from dealing with all the emotional crap.  I deserved at least one more book…  Before I knew it I had read all 4 and the Shattered Vows book was sitting somewhere collecting dust (Step 2: Enjoying my “Vacation” a Little Too Much).

But I was still going to my group every week, I still had individual counseling, and my husband and I had even added in marriage counseling.  Surely that was enough…  In fact, maybe it was too much (Step 3: Rationalization).  My group meeting was late at night (starting at 7:30 and not ending until after 9:00 pm most nights), far away (at least 45 minutes, over a bridge, and through a few tolls), and all of this constant thinking about the infidelity was really starting to get me down (of course I was clinically depressed at that time and in complete denial).  Still, I kept going because I did really love the women in my group and the support I got.

Then in July my husband lost his job, had surgery on his deviated septum about one week later (it was already scheduled), and my grandfather died (the same day as my husband’s surgery).  Now I was reeling emotionally not just from the betrayal but also because my grandfather and I were extremely close.  Although he was sick with cancer and we had known for a few months, his death was due to a slip and fall that was completely out of the blue.  On top of that we had medical bills, a significantly reduced income, and a very unsure future in more than one way (Step 4: Life Happens).

Being the “fixer” and overachiever I am I decided to get a second job.  It was a good idea, and I was able to get one surprisingly quickly as a tutor at a local franchise.  I would be able to earn a little extra money, help pay down our bills, and give myself a little much-needed reassurance that we would make it through this.  The only problem was – I had to be available nights.  And Wednesday was a big tutoring night, especially for the SAT kids that I specialized in.  There goes group (Step 5: Over Functioning).  Sure, I kept in touch with some of the ladies (still do) and told myself I would swing by on nights when I wasn’t scheduled to teach.  But somehow that never happened.

Then my husband started school and got a part-time job (that transitioned to a full-time position).  Our schedules got hectic.  We barely saw each other since one or the other of us always seemed to be out of the house for something – work, school, second job, therapy, group meetings (him), etc.  We had to cancel one marriage counseling session, then never made another one – mostly because we arbitrarily decided we didn’t really like her (Step 6: Justification).  My own individual therapy sessions petered out, then stopped (Step 7: Withdrawing).

Before I knew it I was stuck on this hamster wheel of working, scarfing down a few bites to eat, then working some more.  If I ever did get “down time” I felt extremely exhausted and mostly wanted to fill it with sleeping, watching TV, or some other mindless activity (Step 8: Major Depression).  The 5th Game of Thrones book came out, and I pre-ordered it through Amazon.  It was on my doorstep bright and shiny the day it was released, and you can bet that I cracked that sucker open immediately and made time to read it.  I should have realized then that my excuses for not continuing my full-on recovery were just that (Step 9: Denial).

Something happened around September of last year that caused enough impact that my husband and I found another marriage counselor and gave that process another shot.  I can’t remember the exact incident (that’s how foggy everything had become), but I do recall that it was something that I strongly requested my husband take initiative on.  Whether it was guilt, anger, something surrounding our 1 year wedding anniversary, or an entirely different matter I’m not sure.  But it was a really great decision, and the psychologist was a really great choice.   We started going weekly.  I noticed that we were communicating better, connecting more often, and having fewer arguments.  I somehow allowed myself to believe that was enough – that I could bury everything else and we would be great (Step 10: Coasting).

Then over the weekend of March 31st everything I was keeping deep inside busted out in one torrent of emotional vomit.  And like my reaction to vomiting in real life, once it started I couldn’t stop it (I have been hospitalized twice for dehydration related to uncontrollable vomiting – once as a baby and again 3 years ago after an unfortunate food poisoning incident).  Since then I have come to realize that all of the feelings and hurt I had about the infidelity and my husband’s sex addiction didn’t just go away.  I was just covering them up with activity, denial, fear, and a false sense of accomplishment (Step 11: True Self-Discovery).  I was reverting to the “hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil” mindset that if I didn’t acknowledge something it didn’t exist.  It’s the completely non-fun adult version of “peek-a-boo” – I put my hands in front of my face so I couldn’t see my pain then acted surprised when it jumped out at me.

I decided this weekend to recommit myself to personal growth and healing.  I found the book Shattered Vows and dusted it off – literally and figuratively.  I have already found a lot of things that I relate to and can apply directly to where I am today.  I also pulled out the marriage book The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, and we worked through one of the “quizzes” and the exercise that followed.  I asked my husband to commit to doing at least one of those per week together.  He gladly agreed.  I have also combed through some of the books that other women recommend on SI, and ordered myself 4 of them with a gift card I won the weekend I had to work (D-Day Antiversary #1).  The way I figure it there is no better way to treat myself and use those winnings than investing in my own health and future.  I will not be passive in my healing again (Step 12: Resolve).

Peek-a-boo, I see you!

Looking Forward to the Weekend

20 Apr

The last few weeks have been incredibly emotionally draining.  Besides all of the thoughts and memories brought up from the D-Day Anniversary I have also been dealing with a lot of stress at work.  I was supposed to be out of town this week at a training, but had to cancel at the last-minute and stay behind because of a “crisis” at work.  All week I have been on and off the phone, multi-tasking like crazy, and generally being all things to all people (even more than usual).  So I am super excited that today is Friday.

Why so excited you may ask?  What fascinating and amazing weekend activities do I have planned?  Absolutely nothing.  Literally.  I did have a semi-fun weekend planned with a trip to a Wine Festival that is about an hour and a half away.  I had two discount admissions courtesy of Groupon that would include souvenir tasting glasses, all the wine we could drink, music, cooking demonstrations, and various other festival-like activities.

Alas, my procrastinating husband has put off yet another school project to the last possible minute.  That means he now has only 2 days to start and finish a project that a good portion of his grade depends on.  Not to mention, he should have already registered for Summer classes but has yet to figure out what classes he should take, what time they are offered, and when and where he needs to go to take the placement test required for math.  Oh – and he also needs to LEARN math so he can pass said test.  Those things combined with new anti-depression medication that doesn’t encourage drinking and the prospect of a rainy weekend has killed my chances of going to the wine festival.  I hope my sister and her boyfriend enjoy it.  Here is what I plan to do now – As little as humanly possible.

I probably should be at least a little upset.  I am frustrated by my husband’s lack of responsibility and general motivation.  But I am learning to let that go.  It is possible that I could be co-dependant and I have definitely been an enabler in the past.  I am trying to move past those things and let him fall on his face or succeed completely on his own, even if that means he ends up with a 70-something.  It sucks.  I don’t like to see others struggling while I sit back and watch with the ability to help them.  It seems cruel.  I also have very high standards and hate it when someone doesn’t live up to their potential.  But apparently that is my co-dependance talking (I’m still not sure how much I buy into that whole thing).  I will go into all that later (probably), but right now I think I’m going to start my weekend early by giving my brain a break from deep thinking.

So, to recap – My husband will spend the weekend basically chained to his computer and a math book.  Meanwhile, I will be perfectly content with the couch, a blanket, and a few good books.  In fact, as an introvert, that sounds like an absolutely perfect weekend to me.

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