Bad Vibes Forever

You know what creates bad vibes? Dwelling on things that happened in the past so much, that you are unable to move forward.

If I dwelled on everything that happened to me in my marriage, I wouldn’t be able to get out of bed, let alone book a movie. But there are occasions when a memory re-surfaces, like yesterday and I shake my head in disbelief that I ever allowed such ill treatment from someone.

I was around sailboats and I got to thinking about the last time I had been sailing with my ex. He had told me that we were meeting another couple and that the man had insisted we go sailing. I thought it odd we wouldn’t meet for dinner, but he brushed it off and convinced me it would be fine.

As we approached the boatyard, the weather took a turn for the worse and it seemed clear to me that the sail would not happen and we would go to dinner instead. My ex can be rather convincing, so he pushed for the sail, despite the two other couples and myself questioning it, so off we went.

Shortly after we set sail, the man seemed confused as to why we didn’t go to dinner, saying he had suggested it, but my ex insisted we would rather sail. I looked at my ex and he squeezed my leg and gave his usual “caught in a lie” grin.

One woman made a comment about where our boys went to college and how expensive they were. There had been a lot of this chatter as of late, but no mention of the fact that they were paying their own tuition. My oldest is leaving Uconn with 200,000 in debt.

As the sail went on, the winds grew stronger and waves started coming over the boat. We were all soaked, visibility was getting worse and we had no business being out on the water. The other couple wasn’t happy, the wife of the captain was miserable and my ex was in his glory because he was asked to take the helm. That was when it hit me. The evening wasn’t about meeting another couple, it was about him showcasing his sailing abilities on someone else’s boat because he couldn’t afford his own.

The longer I stayed on the boat, the angrier I got. I thought about all of the times he tried so hard with others, but not with me or our children. It must have been exhausting doing all of that pretending! Then I realized I was pretending, too. I was pretending that it was okay, but I knew it wasn’t, and the more I observed him, the more realized I didn’t know him at all.

And just to make sure I got the lesson, the storm got so bad, the owner hit another boat. I mean, you can’t make this stuff up! It was as though the Gods, the Universe, whatever the hell you believe in, wanted me to really see who and what I had devoted my life, my time, my attention, my heart, my all to. And once you see, you can’t un-see, your vision only becomes clearer.

When we finally made it to the walkway that dragged in the water and swayed with the wind, I couldn’t believe we had to cross it to get to shore. One man helped the two other women across and I stepped down waiting for my ex to help me, but when I turned around he was still on the boat. “I’m gonna help him take the boat back to his dock and then I’ll be back.” He said, and off they went.

The other people left as soon as they hit the shore and there I was all alone in a dark parking lot. I ran to the car and locked the doors. As I listened to the wind howl and watched the sea crash angrily on the shore, I burst into tears. I knew without a doubt that I wasn’t married to a person who saw me as a life partner, I was married to a person who saw me as a convenience and as long as his needs were met he would have a need for me in his life. Love had nothing to do with our relationship. You don’t leave a person you love…ever.

I hear stories all the time from women who are married and the things that their spouses do to them or what they are putting up with to maintain the relationship, but I say nothing. People will tolerate bad behavior until they don’t; it is not up to me or you to push them.

Healing doesn’t come from ignoring what happened to you, it comes from understanding why it did. We can only ever attract into our lives what it is we feel we are worthy of, so if you attract a partner who treats you poorly, then there is a part of you that doesn’t feel worthy of someone who will treat you well.

If we don’t love ourselves first, we will attract people who treat us as though we are replaceable, commonplace and unworthy. Bad vibes for sure. So if you want to get rid of bad vibes, you gotta work on the part of you that is attracting them and set sail in another direction.

Where Are You Swimming and Who is it With?

“A shark in a fish tank will grow 8 inches, but in the ocean it will grow to 8 feet or more. The shark will never outgrow its environment and the same is true about you. Many times we’re around small thinking people so we don’t grow. Change your environment and watch your growth.”

It’s pretty scary to stand on the shore of the ocean and think about diving in and swimming all by yourself. It’s mysterious, beautiful, haunting, inviting and intimidating all at once.

We might be a bit intimidated by the enormity of it, but a shark thinks nothing of swimming there. It knows it thrives there and that it is at home.

But what of people who have outgrown their environment and the people in it? Where do they go? What do they do? It’s a real predicament because while they have become conditioned to swimming in a bowl, they know if they stay there, all that they desire and dream about will never be obtained. You see, it is impossible to dream big in an environment and with people who dream small.

People who fear this change will remain in the bowl, no matter how uncomfortable or unhappy they are. But those brave souls who feel called to do more and be more, know they have no choice but to leave because staying in the bowl is keeping them small when they have the potential to be really big.

If you have outgrown your environment or the people in it, you know you can no longer swim in the bowl. This is going to greatly upset those in the bowl who are content with the way things are. There will be questioning, backlash, and many attempts to make you feel guilty or responsible for them somehow, just to keep you in the bowl. This is by design.

Have you ever noticed that when you are doing well, someone comes along and distracts you? I recently heard this brilliant woman who has an Instagram account called, “The Quietest Revolution” explain it like this: one of the easiest ways to get someone to consistently and constantly fail, is to distract them. Who is always distracting you when you are doing well? I bet it’s someone swimming in the bowl that you have outgrown.

Love with conditions wants to keep you in a bowl you’ve outgrown. Love without them wants you to keep swimming and actually encourages you to. Love without conditions is not bothered by the changes in you, they are intrigued and maybe even inspired to do the same.

So if you currently find yourself standing at the edge of the ocean right now, with no one by your side, you must have gone through some pretty tough stuff. And while others may question what you are doing or try and stop you, you feel a sense of calm and you no longer feel the need to explain yourself to anyone.

This is freedom. Freedom from caring what others think and knowing that anyone who really loves you wants what is best for you, not what keeps them feeling comfortable.

You are not here to play small. And staying in the bowl with people who are threatened by your playing big is not only doing yourself a disservice, it is doing them and the world one as well.

So go ahead…dive into that ocean! Allow yourself to swim without barriers, boundaries and restrictions and watch with wonder where it takes you.