"The courage to live my own life".

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by goldenguru, Dec 13, 2007.

  1. goldenguru

    goldenguru Active Member

    I'm pretty sure I read that quote somewhere in the CD forum. If it's your words - I want to give you credit.

    I have been in a real funk - like many hereabouts. Partly the holidays, partly the empty nest, and other stressors I haven't shared.

    Yesterday was a particularly difficult day for me. Who knows why.

    But, this quote just kept running around my head. "Find the courage to life your own life".

    So, I decided to make a really nice candle light dinner for me and hubby. He was so pleasantly surprised. The entire evening was wonderful.

    I had to force myself to forget about my kids, my mom, etc.

    I had to force myself to find my own enjoyment.

    It was an epiphany of sorts - which I am not articulating very well.

    My admonishment to myself - to you - to us all - is to find the courage to live your own life. However that looks and whatever that means.

    Create those moments that you enjoy. Be good to you.

    And to whomever spoke those words - "Find the courage to live your own life" - thank you.
  2. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    I'm a big fan of compartmentalizing. One room is where I wear a mom hat. I close the door when it's too difficult to function or I don't have to be the mom.
    I wear a daughter hat in another room which I close when I don't need to be in that role.
    Forgiveness is a biggie for me but it's hard to not relive the experience and carry it as a huge stone on my back. I forgive and then try to keep the door closed on the experience. It's never forgotten but it's behind that door so I don't have to relive it day in and day out.

    I love when every once in a while I can wear a hat that gives me pleasure, peace or satisfaction. Sometimes it's being with friends, or siblings. Almost always when I'm with husband. In that role I am sometimes wife and sometimes his girlfriend, sometimes confidant, always always try to have laughter.

    I just don't know how else to not allow the negative to contaminate all the positive.

    Glad you found the courage to seek a place where you can experience satisfaction, happiness, joy but all of it leads to hope.

    in my humble opinion.
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member

    Fran...I love how you describe your relationship with your husband.

    I have had periods of that with Tony but we are going through a rough patch since his stroke...sigh. He isnt noticeably physically affected but there are some lingering neuro problems that he doesnt acknowledge. Doesnt make for a fun time around the house.

    Of course, Im not a barrel of laughs myself most of the time either...lol.

    I also like the idea of trying to find the courage to live my own life. I think I will discuss that idea with Joy today.
  4. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Thanks Janet. We suit each other. Neither is a walk in the park. We are both headstrong but we like each others company. We don't fight dirty but we disagree a lot. We do have common goals.

    I hope you and SO find your place(so to speak) in each other's heart again. Sometimes it's talking in a different tone of voice or holding off with the sarcasm. My biggest help is apologizing when I'm wrong. It allows me to not be defensive and make a line in the sand. Instead we are relaxed.(he is also able to be wrong without me holding over his head) Laughing at ourselves goes a long way to seeing each other as human beings and not the enemy.
  5. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    I think that sometimes, as women, we think that living our own lives is equal to selfishness. It is so far removed from being selfish. It simply means that you acknowledge you are an individual life, seperate from but connected to other's lifes by tiny gossamar threads.

    Luckily, I was raised with the epitome of a healthy marriage as a model. My grandparents, God rest their souls, gave all of us the biggest gifts by alllowing us to see, in an age where it was not the norm, that marriage does not mean you give up who you are. You can have seperate interests, friends, activities. It give you something to talk about when you are together. There were many times my grandmother would take off and go with her women friends on retreats--sometimes for a week. My grandfather loved working with Big Brothers and enjoyed taking different religious classes. My grandfather loved to dance. My grandmother did not. When I was 17, he and I took square dance lessons together so he could have a partner. She loved the movies---he hated to sit in a theatre---so she often went with her friends. But their love was always there. They kissed after morning prayer---before he left for work, when he came home, and after evening prayer. Always--
    They allowed each other the freedom to enjoy life. It was a thing of beauty that marriage.

    I think being a wife and mother is great. But, I, like Fran, wear so many different hats in life. I enjoy each part---not always, but when one gets too cumbersome---there's always another to wear for a while.
  6. Penta

    Penta New Member

    I think what you are saying is something like "Fake it, til you make it." There are some days when past traumatic life events loom in the front of my mind and I have to force myself to put them away and put on my good face. Once I do that, everything falls into place. I can have a good day, if I choose and usually, I do.

    Life throws many roadblocks in our way....often without warning and getting around them isn't always easy.
  7. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    I am feeling like all of you today. Thanks for the encouragement and the thought about courage. I have always been the one to put others first especially my children. Even now I feel it seems weird to think about me first - but I have had to to keep my sanity. If you dont - no one else will. I believe that it is hard to find who we were before we had children again - I was a totally different person - when children came along I devoted my whole self to them - I lost who I was before. I am trying to find myself again - my son is still in jail - sometimes I just cant believe it - how we raised him was not to wind up there!
  8. Scent of Cedar II

    Scent of Cedar II New Member

    What an interesting thread, GG.

    This is what I found that I had to do, too. I had to recognize those old, negative feelings as the enemy and understand that I could choose not to give in to them.

    And then, to understand that whenever I do give in to those feelings, the negative situation wins.

    Fran, I love the way you write ~ such candor and clear-sightedness!

    I suppose I will have to go forgive and forget with my husband, now.

    He has been bugging me, lately.


  9. KFld

    KFld New Member

    I'm glad you were able to find the courage to live your own life, even if it was just for one evening. I think it helps to put things into perspective now and then.
  10. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Thanks. :flower:
  11. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    I think I can....I think I can.....I think I can....

    I found the courage to live my own life - after I was adopted
    I found the courage to live my own life - after I was burned
    I found the courage to live my own life - after I was crippled
    I found the courage to live my own life - after I was abused
    I found the courage to live my own life - after I was divorced
    I found the courage to live my own life - after I was engaged again

    I'm finding out how hard it truly is to be courageous - being a Mom
  12. Scent of Cedar II

    Scent of Cedar II New Member

    Well, everyone ~ so, what does it mean, to take the courage to live our own best lives?

    Is it about gratitude ~ about learning to see ourselves and our lives differently than we might have been taught?

    I find myself needing to focus on the following lines, lately. It helps center me, somehow.

    This is a quote, but I don't remember the writer's name.

    "In order to experience yourself more powerfully, you must will to do so."

    "If you wish to radiate from your own source and stop depending on other people...."

    (Now, how cool is that part?!?)

    "...you must work very hard at learning to trust your own mind."

    "When you succeed, you will have preferences, instead of needs and dependencies."

    "Your behavior will be calm, appropriate, and exacting."

    There is more, but at the moment I am totally fascinated with just those lines.

    And here is another interesting thing I just stumbled onto.

    husband bought me a whole slew of books by Teilhard de Chardin at an estate sale because he thought they would appeal to me.

    And of course, they do.

    But here is the thing I learned: You know that feeling of overwhelming anxiety or dissatisfaction or panic or whatever?

    In "Hymn of the Universe", that feeling is likened to interaction with God.

    Now, isn't that a unique thing to think about.

    Or did I just put everyone to sleep again?


  13. goldenguru

    goldenguru Active Member

    CS Lewis (one of my most favorite authors) once quipped "If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world." --Mere Christianity

    As I have grown older, I have learned that those feelings of overwhelming anxiety/dissatisfaction are somehow related to God. More specifically, the idea that I'm just created for something bigger and better than life on this trouble filled, heart breaking earth. Something in me longs for more.

    So - yeah - I think those feelings are somehow linked to God.

    How do we find the courage to live our own lives? Ah - the million dollar question. And I suppose there are as many answers to that question as there are people asking the question.

    For me - I had been so engrossed in living others lives (sometimes by necessity) that somewhere along the way - I lost sight of living my own.

    But - and here's the catch - in order to live my own life to the fullest, I need to let go of everyone else's. There's the rub.
  14. Scent of Cedar II

    Scent of Cedar II New Member

    "I will this morning climb up in spirit to the high places and there, bearing the hopes and the miseries of my mother, I will call down the Fire."

    Teilhard de Chardin

    Cool, huh?

    I can't find the exact quote, but you get the idea.

    And here is one just for you, GG.

    This is Maria Harris, from Dance of the Spirit.

    "We begin to look at things and people with more care, hearing words and music not heard, before. Layers, crusts, and shells which may have been built up over years become brittle, break apart, and begin to disappear. Muscles relax.

    And a realization dawns that a personal daystar has begun to shine, giving us its light."

    Maria Harris likens times of transition to journeying through a desert, GG.

    And here are a couple more.

    This one is from my favorite author, Charles Williams.

    He was great friends with C.S. Lewis, as a matter of fact.

    And with Tolkien.

    Anyway, here it is: "Perhaps, the phoenix cries, as it burns."


    I love that.

    And here is another cool one, from a Stephen Hoeller: "A pilgrim of Eternity am I, homeword bound among the stars."

    And here is one from Monique Wittig (Les Geurilleres) that I think you will like.

    "There was a time when you were not a slave. Remember that. You walked alone, full of laughter, you bathed bare-bellied. You say you have lost all recollection of it ~ remember. You know how to avoid meeting a bear on the track. You know the winter fear when you can hear the wolves gathering. But you can remain seated for hours in treetops to await morning. You say there are no words to describe this time. You say it does not exist. But remember. Make an effort to remember.

    Or, failing that, invent."

  15. standswithcourage

    standswithcourage New Member

    Barbara you are so smart!