Author Topic: summer stuff  (Read 876 times)

lighter

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #15 on: July 23, 2018, 01:39:25 PM »
Makes me think of Anne. I do believe this goes back to that "primary caregiver attachment". I didn't get enough of this externally as a child... and so never internalized (or learned) the necessity of caring for myself. I see bits & pieces of this, looking at Holly and the places where she is different from me - despite her own childhood messes, she DID have me & others who cared a great deal about her.

Youngest DD is very focused on my parenting skills right now.  Very alert to what she considers my very low expectations for her and her sister.  She pulls groceries out of my arms, and sends me inside the house with my purse only.  Makes it clear it's not my job to serve, but to receive help from her and her sister. 

She wants me to raise expectations, set boundaries, and enforce them, and the house feels and runs better when I do.  Things don't fall apart,  though some part of me still believes they might. 

Somewhere, my self deprecating style, and my girls' abilities... as a mom can see them, got more and more lopsided. 

For me, honoring childrens' feelings was priority.  I think I swung harder in the permissive direction, bc of my mother's parenting style... children should be seen, not heard, should wear what they're told, not complain or give opinions, etc.    I know our parenting styles likely were more extreme bc of our differing opinions, esp during very trying years when she was with us a good deal of time.   My  Mom came'round, eventually.  Truly SAW that I was giving my girls voice, and honoring their feelings as priority.  Saw what she couldn't see, as a young working mother, with Jackie O's fashion sense.  It takes time to BE all those things.

I'm now coming'round to my blind spots.... striving for more balance.   It's a funny thing, hindsite.  Mom and I both lacked balance.  We could have contributed our strengths, and learned from each other, but just couldn't do it when I was in crisis.  I don't think either of us felt heard in those moments.  I know I never felt heard by my mother, not until the final years of her life.  It was a gift.


Change is really hard.  Even when we can SEE what's to be gained.  Just  very difficult, IME. 

Lighter






Hopalong

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #16 on: July 23, 2018, 04:08:04 PM »
Great news about your DD insisting on carrying groceries, Lighter. I think kids yearn to have purpose and when we don't allow them to give and to help, we deny something important to them. It's not doting to do everything, it's martyrdom, and that makes kids more uncomfortable than just about anything. (Said the expert mother, hahahaha.)

All I know is that guilt trips always make me want to go away. Instantly.

I used to get regular massages and loved them, but my retirement nest egg is hummingbird sized. Not in the cards.

But there is still so much I will be able to do when I reconnect with the motivation. Depression + family loss really does a number on that.

Meanwhile, church poo has hit the fan as the crisis is fully out in the open. I felt really good when a committee mate's wife, an editor at Natl Geo, told him to tell me the letter was "compelling and elegantly written." Whew.

I feel better because it's now time to carry serenity around, accepting that although some people are mad/scared/grieving/concerned... it's on the full congregation and Board now, to find the way through. The way I look at my group's work about the minister is that we were a catalyst for a conversation (huge, church-wide), not the conclusion. Some are angry, and others thank us.

I don't have to worry about the result because I finally understood that I was doing what I believe is right. Nobody else would name it, address it, or confront it. We five (with 25 others who signed with us--plus those who agreed but chose not to sign) were willing to. And so it goes.

hugs
Hops
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."

sKePTiKal

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #17 on: July 24, 2018, 09:16:40 AM »
Hops, what you did was courageous. Even if you had to process a lot of fear and depression to complete the letter. Sad to say, these days it's getting harder and harder for people to feel safe speaking up - regardless of the issue. And I don't mean, just posting an emotional reaction... but actually saying something and explaining your belief in why it's so.

The more people who yell - the less they CAN be heard, because others naturally recoil and want to defend against against the anger - and stop listening. Holly and I were just talking about that. It can feel GOOD to yell - and get that out of your system. But it does reduce your chances of being actually heard.

Says the one who consciously hides behind her adopted Vulcan intellectualism, because lots of raw emotions are pretty scary.
Success is never final, failure is never fatal.

lighter

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #18 on: July 24, 2018, 10:33:42 PM »
Hops:

I was wondering how the church situation was going.

It's a shame there's anger.  You'd think church family would care about everyone's feelings.  Want everyone to feel safe, served, and welcome.

I'd be ashamed to call myself clergy, or church member for that matter, if I attacked church members sans some attempt to feign compassion, and desire to understand.  In the coming weeks everyone will have a chance to reflect on what they believe Jesus would do in this situation.  I'm very curious about how all clergy members respond.

Being silent was a poor option you could sit with.  You should be able to speak out.  Writing that letter, bringing this into the light.... takes guts. 

I think Jesus would have listened to you with compassion, the sought to resolve the situation to the benefit of the entire group.

Lighter

 


Hopalong

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #19 on: July 25, 2018, 08:33:09 PM »
Ahhh thanks, Lighter.
We pretty much threw a bomb into the sanctuary so there's lots of fallout. It's hard on folks.
But we DID do it with grace and integrity and fairness and facts. Lots of facts.
So we're getting appreciative responses too. Quite a few people are uneasy about him and we may just have put it all into words. But we don't control the outcome. I've been responding to queries explaining that I view our group's Letter to the Congregation plus the 8-page Questions & Answers document we've distributed as a catalyst, not a conclusion.

There's going to be an all-congregation meeting on Aug. 5th to address the crisis. National denomination reps are coming to help facilitate. I'm very glad about that, because our Board has contorted itself into protecting the minister and have unwittingly bought into his framing of critics.

BTW, I'm not Christian. Just a Unitarian Universalist. But big difference. (I'm personally very happy with my childhood memories of Jesus. As an adult, Christianity became unsustainable for me.)

Hugs
Hops
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."

Hopalong

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #20 on: August 09, 2018, 11:14:40 AM »
Well, church drama's mostly over. I'm relieved. At the big meeting, minister's fangroups had been rallied and made emotional testimonies about his wonderfulness. (Nobody addressed his leadership issues or the huge decline in attendance, pledges, finances, and infrastructure since he came.) OR, his posting on FB "Fuck___s" in reference to the congregation. Our group was not acknowledged, the board Pres. ate up half the time with long-winded facilitation (infuriated some) and the national reps said nothing, just sat in a semi-circle up front with the board.

I spoke my minute. Said positive things about his personal warmth, and my deep objection to his stereotyping of "older members" which has spread ageism in the community. Then time was up.

Later, our steering committee met again (my house, last night). The leader, who started it all, is quitting the group's leadership because it's too much for her health. Another, a quiet lifelong member, said she's already disengaged and after the big meeting, has removed the church from her will. The two remaining, including one close friend, are both very dominant, and argued over stupid stuff. I got upset and told them their tone was affecting my decision about staying or not (on the comm).

The steering comm will need new members if it's to continue. The two want to plan another big gathering. I'll go, and depending on whom they recruit then to join the steering committee, if anyone, I'll stay on it or step back. (Probably the latter.) They've got to get some folks with emotional IQ (not their strong suits) and also a writer. I've written my brain out and edited everything for our messaging from the get-go and did, if I may say so, an incredible job. Multiple congregants expressed how grateful they were for the detailed eight-page Q & A and our moving opening letter. But these two are dismissive of how intense that work was, or how valuable. I know I gave my best to the church I love, for right reasons, so I'm okay with the outcome. It's not all about me and if the young-uns are bewitched by his charisma, Nish though it is, they'll learn.

I knew I would be okay and after the minister and Board began multiple messages to say "come express your support for dear minister!/"dear leader" -- I had a strong sense we wouldn't win the day, and told the committee so. I think a few of them were too into believing we'd win. It's going to be a long slog for the church to figure out who they want to be. I'm not quitting but will just continue my involvement in ways and at times that feel nourishing and right for me. And a couple of newish people I like very much are going to start a monthly gathering elsewhere that I'll go to.

I'm relieved. The two bossy ones don't know how offended I was last night or how unappreciated I felt but it's real. It does me no good to be that sacrificial when more mature people do appreciate when I dig that deep and for months to donate that much effort at a pretty high skill level. It was utterly draining and affected my health in a significant way.

I also noticed that I slept well last night and I think that's probably my biggest indicator that it's better for me to step way back from the drama. I played my part, and I'm not up for it. But I'll wait until their summer gathering to find out what their next plans are. I don't think "the two" have any idea how they come across.

Hugs
Hops
« Last Edit: August 09, 2018, 11:18:56 AM by Hopalong »
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."

Twoapenny

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #21 on: August 10, 2018, 08:21:48 AM »
Hops, I'm glad some sort of resolution seems to be drawing closer, even if it doesn't sound like one that will be entirely satisfactory.  I'm sorry that some people haven't appreciated how much you've done or the personal cost to you of doing it.  It does seem that there are people who think things magically happen and don't seem to understand how much work or skill goes in to putting some things together - and I'm sure, knowing you, that you spent a lot of time making sure you got the points across without sounding unkind or unnecessarily critical, which is in itself a great skill.  I'm glad you have a splinter group forming that you can join and that you feel able to carry on attending the church in your own way.  It sounds as if you found a good balance between giving it your best shot but recognising when all that can be done has been and that you need to think about yourself as a priority.  People do fall for a charmer!  But I think others see beneath the facade and know not to get to close.  It sounds as if you've done your best to warn people.  If it's fallen on deaf ears then it would seem to be a good time to get in that lifeboat and know you did your best xx

sKePTiKal

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #22 on: August 10, 2018, 11:04:52 AM »
I hope the rest of your summer is way more fun than that Hops!
Success is never final, failure is never fatal.

lighter

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #23 on: August 10, 2018, 11:15:33 AM »
Hops,:

The two dominant leaders will understand how unappreciated you were when they have another letters to put out.  Likely not until then.

Step back, and know you can always change mind or accept small piece of work if asked with respectful gratitude in future.

Or not.

Important thing is relief you feel when stepping back.  Self care time.  End self sacrifice chapter.  At least for now. 

You kept expectations reasonable, and so are ok with outcome.  Very wise Amazon Hops.  You did well.  I'm glad your taking a breather.

Thanks for the update.

Lighter

Hopalong

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #24 on: August 11, 2018, 02:40:08 AM »
That's really supportive, guys, thank you!

I especially liked the "splinter group" idea (great phrase, Tupp)...immediately thought of a newsletter name: The Splinter.

Ha! We have been kind of a splinter in the minister's and Board's arses, and maybe good change will ultimately come of it.

Thanks again for listening to this long and windy tale...

Hugs
Hops
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."

lighter

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #25 on: August 12, 2018, 08:02:43 AM »
I wish Seth Meyers could show up, and share a A Closer Look on this subject before a sermon......to provide perspective for the congregation.

Lighter




Hopalong

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #26 on: August 13, 2018, 09:52:59 PM »
Boy, that would be amazing.

Well, I escaped this weekend for a quiet break at a friend's lakeside home. I wouldn't want to live there but the boat rides and simple past times were helpful for perspective. No romance there (we were both clear about friendship from the get-go) but really nice just to relax and talk and look at water. Plus, pooch on the boat was heroic. He drove it fast and she shook in my arms but still coped and liked friend a lot. I found the area lovely but lacking in some things I value. Little culture and what there was was zero diversity, kinda culturally too conservative for me. Very nice retreat tho.

Life's gotten a little too intense this year between church and working for dear ole Ngent,
who's just fallen out of bed and broken his shoulder and wrist on his first night at the new
nursing home. Breaks my heart for him but there it is. Because I was away, the PoAttys had
to step up and manage it all, and they're champing for me to be solely in charge of emptying
his apartment and other things. I can do it and do appreciate the earnings. But I will be ready to move on more to new clients that don't come encumbered with three "managers" who resent the burden of their voluntary post, don't have clear plans for who does what, and who tend to throw up their hands and "order" me to do stuff, forgetting I have new clients too.

It'll be okay but I'm a little tired of absorbing the huge drama they make of all of it, when
I've been tuned into him in a closer way for a long time. I tend to focus on his comfort and emotional well being, while they are obsessed about his estate, money, etc.

I'm hoping in upcoming months I'll be able to rethink the balance in my life a lot. Could involve
new plans, simpler schedule, whatever. One step is exercise. I'm committed to one baby step that still means something to me...a friend in worse shape than I am, also scared about the health consequences of becoming sedentary, is going to walk with me once a week. She lives at a distance so that's all we both can do together when she's in town weekly. But it'll get me going so by fall I hope to be back to vigorous walks daily. Will be good for me AND pooch, and I'm grateful to have company as I get started. That psychological hurdle of motivating myself has been hard to clear.

Hugs
Hops
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."

Twoapenny

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #27 on: August 14, 2018, 04:24:46 AM »
Boy, that would be amazing.

Well, I escaped this weekend for a quiet break at a friend's lakeside home. I wouldn't want to live there but the boat rides and simple past times were helpful for perspective. No romance there (we were both clear about friendship from the get-go) but really nice just to relax and talk and look at water. Plus, pooch on the boat was heroic. He drove it fast and she shook in my arms but still coped and liked friend a lot. I found the area lovely but lacking in some things I value. Little culture and what there was was zero diversity, kinda culturally too conservative for me. Very nice retreat tho.

Life's gotten a little too intense this year between church and working for dear ole Ngent,
who's just fallen out of bed and broken his shoulder and wrist on his first night at the new
nursing home. Breaks my heart for him but there it is. Because I was away, the PoAttys had
to step up and manage it all, and they're champing for me to be solely in charge of emptying
his apartment and other things. I can do it and do appreciate the earnings. But I will be ready to move on more to new clients that don't come encumbered with three "managers" who resent the burden of their voluntary post, don't have clear plans for who does what, and who tend to throw up their hands and "order" me to do stuff, forgetting I have new clients too.

It'll be okay but I'm a little tired of absorbing the huge drama they make of all of it, when
I've been tuned into him in a closer way for a long time. I tend to focus on his comfort and emotional well being, while they are obsessed about his estate, money, etc.

I'm hoping in upcoming months I'll be able to rethink the balance in my life a lot. Could involve
new plans, simpler schedule, whatever. One step is exercise. I'm committed to one baby step that still means something to me...a friend in worse shape than I am, also scared about the health consequences of becoming sedentary, is going to walk with me once a week. She lives at a distance so that's all we both can do together when she's in town weekly. But it'll get me going so by fall I hope to be back to vigorous walks daily. Will be good for me AND pooch, and I'm grateful to have company as I get started. That psychological hurdle of motivating myself has been hard to clear.

Hugs
Hops

You've had a lot to deal with for a very long time, Hops, I think it's only natural that other things fall by the wayside.  The regular walking sounds like a great idea, such a good way to get fit, good for the mind, opportunities to meet/chat to people/dogs etc and no cost other than your outdoor clothing.  Sounds great.

Makes me sad to read of Ngents interested parties only being interested in the finances.  Seems so common.  A friend is visiting next week; they are looking to buy a holiday home near us from an inheritance she recently received from an elderly aunt.  The aunt's estate was split equally four ways between the siblings but I bet you can guess who of the four was the one who looked after her, visited her and put complaints in about poor care when she was concerned about the home aunt was in?  The siblings were on the phone wanting their money before the funeral had even been held.  Horrible way to be :(  I think you are wise to step into other things as they come up and start to look for more balance in your life, Hops, I think we all need that xx

lighter

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #28 on: August 18, 2018, 06:16:49 PM »
Hops:

Ngent is lucky to have you in his life.  The three " managers" are what they are.  Sadly,  handling necessary details, sans larger  scope of care, is their limit.

I look forward to hearing about your plan for streamlining your life.  Excercise is great endorphin producing activity leading to more positive feelings, ime.  You deserve self care, and reflection on current needs, and life choices.

Lighter
 


Hopalong

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Re: summer stuff
« Reply #29 on: August 29, 2018, 08:38:00 PM »
Thanks, Lighter.
I've gotten headway on the balance, though it sure is baby steps.
One thing I finally realized I hadn't fully accepted since it's embarrassing. And I did accept it.

When I become sedentary for a long time (out of depression, usually) I have a HELL of a time getting myself to start exercise again. BUT, if I plan it with or around seeing a friend, then I can get my ass moving. It's been three weeks now since the friend and I committed to walk together every week, and sure enough, the in-between walks have been much easier to talk myself into.

It's a weird contagious thing. I guess I have a harder time being alone lately than I've admitted to. Once I admitted it directly to my T last week, and accepted that this is how I feel, I no longer felt shame at my difficulty making myself exercise on my own. I just accepted it, scheduled the weekly commitment with my friend, and have found it much easier to seek out walking opportunities in between.

Today, wound up visiting a help-client in the hospital. (She had fallen and didn't turn up when I went to pick her up to take her to an appointment.) The hospital has big long corridors and stairs (optional). I grabbed each chance and also walked briskly back to the garage.

It's All One, as Dr. Bronner would say. When my friend and I started three weeks ago on our one-day-week commitment, I found myself immediately eating more salads and less junk, walking more in between our meets, and generally behaving less like an unhinged lonely loony.

I've already lost several pounds. Funny how that works....

I never, ever, lacked information on WHAT to do. I know that in granular detail. I just was missing the piece that loneliness was the real reason.

xxoo
Hops
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."