I’m at the office today. I’m in the process of selling my company and have so many loose ends to tie up. I’m the biggest procrastinator I know. I put off paying bills, not because I don’t have the money, but because of the effort it takes to stop what I’m doing right now and get my checkbook out. I’m the person that never gets around to sending in the mail-in rebate. I let gift certificates expire. It’s so much easier to say “I’ll do it later”. I put things in a pile for “later”, and before you know it, I don’t even notice the pile exists. It gets covered with other piles of “later”, and when I finally decide to take care of it, I can’t figure out which “later” pile it’s in. So now, it’s later. I’ve got to finish all of these tasks before the sale, yet I’m writing here instead. Typical. I think I lack discipline. How I created a successful business is beyond me. My house is a disaster. Seriously, it looks like an episode of COPS. You know, when they bust into a drug dealer’s home and there’s piles of laundry and papers and dishes everywhere because the residents are too busy doing drugs and ordering pizza to care about tidying up. I hate it, but not quite enough to prevent it. I blame it on being busy, which I am, but that’s not true. It’s just easier to do it later. No, that’s not true either. It’s just easier to say I’ll do it later. I judge myself for these decisions. I like having a clean, organized house. I just can’t do it consistently. I’ll have my spurts, and get it done, but before you know it, it’s back to being a COPS house. We have an open floor plan, so when I do clean it up, it doesn’t take long. Of course, that’s just because I throw it all in my bedroom. It’s amazing how quickly I can clean it up when I want to. I can get more accomplished in the 10 minutes before company comes over than I can in a week of being alone. That being said, NO ONE gets to see my room. No one. “Sorry, but I can’t give you a tampon. Oh sure, I have some, but that door doesn’t open with company here. Use this Christmas dish towel, instead”.
Marriage counseling sucked. We both listed our complaints. We both struggled to list what we liked in each other. We both insisted we were there to save our marriage, not dissolve it. We both did our homework. We called it “fake it till you make it”. He faked pretending to want to spend time with me by taking me out to dinner. I pretended wanting to have sex with him. We both knew we were faking. After a few months of this “deal”, he was happier than ever in our marriage, and I felt like Kristen Wiig, 10 times over. As we sat in therapy, I blurted out, “This just isn’t working for me. I can’t feel it.” Our therapist seemed perplexed, and decided to delve deeper into our lives, by asking about our childhoods. Bulls-eye! So, here’s where marriage counseling led to individual counseling, which led to me finally becoming aware of what I really was….I was a caterpillar stuck in a cocoon. When you’re not aware of being in a cocoon, you just think that this is how life is. I had never put myself first in a relationship, ever. I don’t think any one person should be “first” in a relationship…they should be equally “first”. Both partners should desperately want the other to come “first”. I have always been placed second, or placed myself second. That’s the rule in my cocoon. That’s how it’s always been, so it’s all I knew. If I tried to put myself first, I felt selfish. Putting myself first never worked, anyway, because I had always only chosen partners who were in cocoons, and caterpillars can’t share cocoons. My husband is in a cocoon, but it’s his cocoon. His cocoon has different rules. I could go in his cocoon…it’s roomy enough. But it wasn’t comfortable. It was dark, like mine, but colder. I was so used to mine, that the darkness was kind of cozy. I liked the warmth. It was familiar, like an old, tattered security blanket. You wouldn’t think shame would be so cozy, but when it’s all you know, it’s safe. Once I started putting myself first, once I started letting go of my shame, once I started breaking out of my cocoon… I realized that caterpillars hang out with caterpillars and butterflies hang out with butterflies. I’m a butterfly now. I’m not flying yet, but I’m a butterfly. I see my wings. I’m moving them…figuring out how they work. It’s not easy to start flying when you’ve been suffocating your entire life. You have to learn how to breathe again. You have to learn how to move again, because moving is different when you have wings. You’re not sure they will even work. They are beautiful, but it’s kind of scary thinking about your first flight. What if I jump off the ledge and I’m not strong enough to fly? Maybe I’ll just go back into the cocoon for a little bit, just to rest. The things is…I don’t fit in my cocoon anymore, or his. If I tried to go back, my wings would break. It takes me a week to put away my laundry, so imagine how long I would put off repairing my broken wings?