Wednesday, 25 April 2012

What's worth fighting for?

Bear with me, I am just getting started with these thoughts... but I had someone recently say to me, "Don't give your heart away. You are worth fighting for."

But here's what's funny. It wouldn't be fighting in the traditional sense. Some guy walks up to Jane and notices Ryan Reynolds to her left and Daniel Craig to her right, and thinks, "Oh, shoot, I have to fight Green Lantern and James Bond to be with Jane."

Well, as awesome as that would be, I'm thinking it's a bit unlikely... however, there are things we have to fight against all the time, albeit less glamorous than movie stars.
We have to fight with the impulse to close ourselves off and withdraw from others, even when we can look at the situation and see very little chance of making or keeping a connection. We have to continue to try.

We have to fight with our own selfish tendencies and above all else, we have to fight to hold our loved ones in high esteem. Author Malcolm Gladwell wrote about a study of couples who were observed by psychologists. There was one determining factor that predicted if the couple would stay together: lack of contempt. If we feel like we are authorized to speak to others contemptuously, we poison the relationship (and deep down, are insecure ourselves). If we are addressed contemptuously and do not defend ourselves, we are not honoring ourselves. There is no room for contempt.

We have to fight with each other sometimes. I once dated a guy who didn't like me enough to fight with me; instead, he'd freeze me out with contemptuous eye-rolling and imply that he was so much smarter and more mature. Guess what? That romance went to hell in a handbasket. (Of course, this is open to interpretation. Disagreeing is one thing, slapping each other around is quite another.)

We have to fight for our ideas and opinions, or at least get to the point where the two sides respect (even if they don't agree with) the other side's views. If you don't have respect, you don't have much of a friendship. I know plenty of people who make decisions I'd never make, but that doesn't mean they can't be my friends.

We have to fight to get through the day sometimes. Do I ever know about this! I fought with pain and illness (still do!) and it's a process. I try to handle it gracefully, but don't always succeed. I also work in a place where shit happens all the time, and things do get ugly once in a while. If I come home, break out the comfort food, and pop in an Adam Sandler movie, guess what? My day just kicked my ass. But, as they say, the show must go on.

We have to fight to get respect from difficult people. This is always a challenge. I find that the minute you say to someone who is being difficult, "OK, have it your way, but I can't have any part of this," their respect for you grows by a hundred percent at least. I once worked with people who were constantly criticizing my work, even though they couldn't keep their business afloat. When I left, suddenly I was valuable. Suddenly, they didn't know what they'd do without me. Suddenly, my value was apparent; maybe it was because my work improved toward the end of my tenure because I knew more about what was going on, but in any case, it's hard for me to go to a place every day where I'm not treated with respect. I imagine I'm not the only person with this challenge.

We have to fight to change our situations in life. This can be one's weight, health, employment, housing, friends... anything. We have to be aware enough of patterns in our life to change them when they need changing. Overcoming addictions is a real test of a person. Here's a secret: I'm not strong enough to break an addiction so I can't let any addictions take hold. It's true. I never smoked. I never drank too much (except for that one time, and learned my lesson!). I never even learned how to BAKE because I didn't want to have to burn those calories later; have you ever seen how much sugar goes into making brownies? I mean, really!

We have to fight against our own bad habits. Even if something is normal doesn't mean it's good for you. Take, for example, the American diet. Why does KFC include a chocolate cake with their calorie-laden greasy family dinners? How on earth is this helpful to anyone? But people see this and accept it. Shoot, why not eat dessert every day? (Hint: it's because you will too much gain weight!)

We have to fight against our upbringings and make better choices for ourselves. An example of this is someone who grows up in an abusive home and chooses not to abuse others, even though he/she has been conditioned to do so. A less severe example is taking in a scene that is familiar and being able to say to yourself, "This isn't the kind of reality I want for my life; I'm going to make other choices to create a different outcome." Maybe it doesn't work every time- certainly, everything we attempt isn't always successful- but at least it's a step in the right direction.

I am just getting warmed up. Diva, feel free to add whatever you want.


Sunday, 22 April 2012

Why do I have so many questions? Ha ha ha

Today, Diva and I met up in a spiritualist community. I was excited going into the situation; I wondered if we'd see a medium, if one of her deceased friends would have a message for her, if I'd get any advice for the issues that I constantly wonder about... as with most situations, I theorized more about what would happen than I probably should. I mean, I'm not exactly a role model when it comes to letting go and letting God. I'm a better example at running all possible scenarios through my head and wondering which will happen.

This is such a waste of time! This became clear to me twice today:

1) First, Diva and I had our auras photographed. Hers was balanced between the upper and lower colors in the chakras, whereas mine was red through green- the lower energies. I didn't hear enough of Diva's interpretation because they were playing great music and I was dancing around to ELO until I realized he was talking to her about it. Then, we get to my picture and before it even developed, the guy said, "Don't be ruled by your passions." Diva's man in tow asked if I was in love, because my aura had a lot of red in it. We laughed about that! No, that would be way too fun. I just pay way too much attention to the conflicts in my life... without even thinking about the new conflicts there will be when the current conflicts are resolved. Ah, jeez. I need to get back into meditating. The mind needs to quiet down for a change. I also need to get back into theatre. It's good for me to sit in the dark for 2 hours and be immersed in some drama is separate from my reality.

2) We met the most fascinating woman and talked with her for a while. It was a fascinating conversation that covered a lot of spiritual topics. In the age of Pisces, Jesus was the primary spiritual leader, but now that we've entered the age of Aquarius, it's a new kid on the block named St. Germain! I had no idea. We talked about healing and different therapies for ill health, such as using sodium bicarbonate to treat cancer! I have to look that up. Apparently someone with leukemia started taking Alka-Seltzer for stomach upset and reversed his disease. Amazing. The conversation meandered for a long time and was really cool.

After that, Diva said she was done, that we didn't need to do anything else today. We'd done enough.

It was a gorgeous day. I had the sunroof open and sometimes the windows too, as I drove. I sang along with a few songs and realized that I was truly in the moment. It was great.

Hope you had a fine and lovely Earth Day weekend,


Saturday, 21 April 2012

Venus in Hiding, Just Like Us

"Romantically, you will be hosting Venus in a very secret place in the chart for a long time, a place associated with clandestine relationships, but when Venus moves out on August 7, the affair would come out into the open, not necessarily of your choosing or your liking. The relationship may not be one you initiated, but one you were drawn into, and you may not know your new partner is not single and not available. It's a tricky situation, further complicated by the fact that Venus will retrograde May 15-June 27. Be careful.

A better way to use this energy is to make a move toward making reconciliation with a former love. Next month, Venus will retrograde, which means "go back" to an earlier time. Venus will retrograde from May 15 to June 27. No guarantees, but you might find your former partner feels the way you do."

-Excerpt from our horoscope by Susan Miller this month (my sun sign/ Diva's ascendant)

We were never together, so there has been no reconciliation per se, but I am emailing with an old crush of mine these days. It turns out he had a crush on me too, back in the day. Isn't that funny? He lives far away so there aren't any hopes for a hot date in the future, but it is nice to converse with a man once in a while. I've really missed it.

More than that, I've missed keeping company with men who hold down jobs and who aren't unmedicated and bipolar. Yes, I know it's important to love and accept people as they are, but my last boyfriend was a doozy! One of the best quotes about love came from my sister recently. She said, "I know my husband loves me, but I'm not going to test that love by quitting my job!" You have the ethereal (chemistry, love, compatibility) on one hand and the practical (ability to pay bills and not engage in consequence-laden high-risk behaviors, for example) on the other. I am no authority on love relationships, but at least I understand that. My ex-boyfriend had 3 jobs in 8 months, and that's not even half the story.

As much as I appreciate the work of astrologer Susan Miller (although she's taken 6 months to ship out the book we ordered, a "guide to 2012" which is 1/3 over in about a week), I highly doubt that Diva or I will manage a clandestine relationship while Venus goes into hiding. She has more options than I do, given her geographic location, bigger circle of friends, and better health, but she's getting her life together, and that's not the time to add in a secret boyfriend.

I am still regaining my foothold in the world of healthy people. It's amazing how far I got knocked down by illness. Certain new-agey theories say that I brought this illness on, but I have to disagree. When you have a genetic predisposition to something (and in my case, aren't even aware that the problem exists in your family tree until after the diagnosis), I'm sorry, but all bets are off. Shit happens sometimes, you know? You just have to deal with it and get better to whatever possible.

I thought it was funny that Venus is in hiding, because that is my and Diva's basic response most of the time anyway. We are both famous for taking loooong breaks from dating, and when things go bad, we run away, run away quickly. I don't know about her, but sometimes I'm struck by the futility of it all and just want life to be "normal," which of course means "single." It's only been in recent years that I've stopped trying to reset my life to what it was before said male came into the picture.

So it's Venus, Jane, and Diva in hiding. Will anything come along that's worth our while, that will draw us out of our shells? Apparently not until after August 7, but with all the stuff we need to do between now and then, who cares?

Yours truly,
Jane Q. Phoenix