Dancing outside my comfort zone

There Comes a Time When the Only Thing to do is Make Use of the Only Truly Effective Form of Therapy.

I’m a solitary person. I’m more likely to withdraw into myself and write my problems out than seek the help or counsel of someone else. Tonight, that meant sitting in the bar where I dance, writing nearly 1000 words in the Notes app of my iPhone.  Ice Cream Therapy

I’m a very direct person. If I don’t like something someone is doing and it’s someone I care about, I’ll usually do my best to communicate my feelings. I limit the proverbial “cold shoulder” to three circumstances: when the other person is so emotionally engaged that anything I say would only escalate the problem, when I’m so angry that I’m likely to just spew venom(in which case I’ll likely address it later when I’ve calmed down enough to at least make an attempt at being reasonable), or if the offending party is someone I don’t care about.

This attitude has come back to bite me on more than one occasion. Sometimes it’s because I expect my friends to be honest with me while they fall back on social niceties and remain silent, but all too often I just misread the relationship and what I thought was a friendship was just an acquaintanceship from their perspective, making me as disposable as the packaging on the Lean Cuisine they had for lunch.

Such seems to be the case yet again. Admittedly, I did behave badly. I’ve apologized and tried to make amends with everyone involved. Things are pretty much back to normal with those I did consider acquaintances but the ones I considered friends are wearing fake smiles and taking pains to keep their distance. I’d like to say it doesn’t hurt and that I don’t care but there’s no point lying to myself. It does serve to remind me why 60 years in this body has taught me to be very sparing about opening my heart, even in friendship. I’m not one who is able to take friendship lightly, nor do I successfully protect my heart on the increasingly rare occasions when I give it.

It just baffles me that people can act like they care until you make a mistake and earn their disapproval.

But the Universe saw me for the overly trusting, heart-breakingly sensitive soul I am and gave me a passion which can be followed without a lot of human interaction. Instead, I can stand on the sidelines watching other people interact, and yes, play those social games I never learned, by my own choice. They become characters in my stories or part of the landscape in the articles I write while I again try not to be fooled into bringing my heart out of the bubble wrap where I’m reminded to keep it every time it gets stomped into a bloody mess.

Hope Springs Eternal

I guess in some ways I’m a romantic. I keep hoping I’ll find friends and maybe even a partner who will care enough to protect and nurture my heart instead of treating it like garbage. But after 6 decades, my hope is waning. Like Tinkerbell, I desperately need a reason to keep believing; keep hoping; keep loving without reservation. But for now, I’ll stuff those hopes down until they smother and focus on living my own, personal, private passion. For that I just need to dream and write. No messy human contact necessary.

And yet as I let the unhappiness fade I remember the choice to be happy is mine alone. I can choose to allow the insensitivity of others affect my mood or I can flip them a mental bird, wish them a nice life and get on with mine. It still means going it alone but I’m in great company. I know for certain that the company I’m keeping would never abuse my heart and wants only a life of joy and fulfillment for me. I guess there are times the Universe dumps sadness into our lives so we can fully appreciate how wonderful, how bountiful our life truly is…and how overrated most people’s idea of friendship is.

The Silver Lining Inside the Latest Cloud

And yet, as I get busier  doing the work I love, it occurs to me that perhaps endings are simply a part of freeing up more of my time. People can be a distraction and I create enough of those without any outside assistance.

And I remember one of the few biblical quotes I really like:


To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

My personal brand of therapy has led me to conclude this is simply a time for me to be solitary and tend to things which need to be tended.

There Will Always Be Gratitude

What would a blog post from me be without gratitudes. I can always come up with at least a few, and I won’t disappoint you tonight.
1. I am grateful for life’s lessons even if I repeat the painful ones more often than I’d like.
2. I am grateful I’m comfortable in my own skin…and my own company as there are times when it’s the best place for me to be.
3. I am grateful for the people who teach me what friendship is not.
4. I am grateful for my writing. It’s my friend, my solace, my sanity, my therapist and my passion.
5. I am grateful for abundance: lessons, life, limitations, aspirations, motivation, writing, opportunities, stepping outside my comfort zone, peace, harmony, health, joy, philanthropy and prosperity.

Blessed Be

I invite you to visit my Facebook pages, Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author and HLWT Accounting. Please also drop by my website, www.shericonaway.com and check out my Hire Me Page. I’ve created these pages as a means of positive affirmation and would be very grateful if you’d “like” them or leave a comment! Thank you!

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Comments on: "Another Lesson About Friendship" (4)

  1. Yeah, I learned that the hard way too. This has been a tough year. Sometimes I take things way too serious and read things harsher than the reality, because with rose tinted glasses sometimes you also get tunnel vision. Hurt and anger throw shadows around everything, especially your own perception. Unfortunately, there are times you may never get a clear picture, so have to make decisions on past actions.

    LOL I read this twice. I think maybe the UNIVERSE is trying to teach you what it is also teaching me Hold your tongue when are feeling emotional you cannot be objective enough to read the situation right or fair at that point. I have to admit I also sometimes regret holding my tongue too, but more often I don’t.

    Silence tho says a lot and just a look to throw back at them with silence. OR turn your back and walk away when they are being ugly. They know they are being ugly and judgemental just as you may know you were rude or said too much.

    It’s hard to judge “a heart” when you are emotional, as in hurt, angry or resentful, because that is what they are doing to you too. It is the long-term actions that will tell you their truth.

    Friendship takes work, forgiveness and effort on both parties. It hurts tho when you do the work and it is not returned. It is hard when a friend hands you judgements, instead of understanding. Sometimes you have to step back look at what they said and decide if there was any truth in the judgement, and then if it was fair.

    I know you can fall into the PIT of hurt. The friendship is no longer fun or enjoyable and if not careful you beat to death with the volley of hurt, judgement, anger and resentment.

    .And sometimes the universe just wants you to take a look at your measuring stick, like any relationships there are ups and downs/ One carries while the other lets things drop. It is the real heart of the person that makes all the differences.

    Long-term angsts, issues and ups and downs get hard to carry for the person who is experiencing them. You have to watch close not to allow those hangups to become everyone else’s burden. I am speaking from current experience. What was once fun and engaging becomes a chore and most just are not going to stick around. They can’t fully understand because they are not experiencing it.

    It is funny you sometimes post about the very things I have just experience or I am experiencing. My take– I need to not hang onto the chaos even tho it is exploding around me and chose to be happy. Do what makes me happy. My friends will either understand or forgive or maybe the universe is showing me something I need to see to make better decisions for myself.

    Juneta @ Writer’s Gambit

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    • Juneta, if your replies get much longer, I’m going to have to give you a guest post! 🙂 But seriously, you pretty much nailed a lot of things, but mostly, the reason for taking my blog back to its original purpose: to share and help others see that the challenges they’re facing in life are being shared by others so they’re not alone in their frustration, anger, pain or confusion. I’m grateful this post touched you enough to share so openly. My thoughts are with you. The one thing I have learned is that life’s downs are always balanced by equal or better ups. Hang in there, my friend, and thank you for your thought provoking and honest comments.

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  2. LOL, yes balance is KEY to enjoying the ride of life.

    One thing someone told me is to never complain, but reshape the negative words or thoughts into a positive statement because all things happen for a reason.

    The universe is clearing out the old and preparing you the good things ahead, but you are standing in its way with all the old perceptions of friends, life, whatever, habits and in changing the way you look at the world it will change your life.

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    • And that is exactly what I meant in the last comment by “flipping” the negative. I think it’s an opportunity for us to find the positive aspects of a situation and turn our focus to those.

      Yeppers! The Universe surely is doing some Spring cleaning on my life again!

      Liked by 1 person

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