Archive | May 2017

May 17th: Longing for Someone

May 17th-Longing for Someone

When my husband and I divorced, I so longed for his return… for things to be different.

The people closest to me tried to be sympathetic to my feelings, but they were unable to understand my ache for him… they were all too upset… too angry at how he had ended our marriage.

And yes… it was not the best way to end things… but I found it hard to hold any anger against him when the pain, emotion, inner turmoil I felt was focused on the fact that he had chosen to leave me and share his life with someone else.

I wasn’t angry… I was profoundly sad.

I couldn’t imagine him giving up our life together.

It took time for me to adjust to life without him.

It took time for my longing to dissipate.

It took time for me to accept that I was no longer his wife and our sole contact would be related to our children.

It wasn’t easy but today… my time with my former husband is enough.

Our shared history lives in the memories of our children, and the conversations that we still have as a family.

Today, I rarely long for my past, I have perspective and work to live in the day.


“Dear God, help me to accept change. Help me to let go with kindness.”

May 16th: Anxiety, Stress, and Fear

May 16th-Anxiety

When I was going through my separation and ultimately… my divorce, I often found myself overwhelmed by anxiety, stress, and fear.

The lack of control I had in regards to the end of my relationship was putting me in a constant state of agitation.

I went back-and-forth between “fight” or “flight” either engaging in arguments with my husband in order to have any type of interaction with him and find a way to feel powerful or, I would hide from him… from the demise of our marriage by basically living in my bedroom, and self-soothing with movies and comfort food.

Unfortunately… these coping mechanisms were only adding to my anxiety, stress, and fear.

If I engaged in an argument, I berated myself for my lack of spiritual fortitude and if I hid and self-soothed, I berated myself for my lack of will-power.

It was a never ending shame spiral that intensified my fear.

Out of balance, emotionally  worn, physically out of shape and tired, I was falling deeper into depression.

With the help of good friends and kind mentors, I learned that these behaviors did not suit my needs.

I learned that the best way to conquer my anxiety, stress, and fear was to take care of my emotional and physical well-being even when it was the last thing I wanted to do.

I thought of my children… and imagined what I would say… or do for them…. if they were suffering.

I held that image firm in my mind as I began to take better care of myself through, spiritual footwork, healthy nutrition, and daily exercise.

Each of these three things began to work in my favor, turn the tide of my despair, and send me moving forward.

I found that my stress and anxiety began to slowly dissipate as I put more effort into my well-being and less thought into my fear.

“Dear God, help me to take care of myself when I am struggling. Help me to find comfort through healthy means.”

May 15th: Sacrifice

May 15th-Sacrifice

Sometimes I get into a place where I am focused on the “all about me” of life.

It happens… where my problems, needs, wants, concerns, seem to become more important then anyone else’s.

In my marriage, I must admit, that there were many times when my husband’s needs were not met due to the simple fact that I was resentful about a time when I felt he had let me down.

Maybe it was my youth that stopped me from taking the higher road.

Maybe it was the fact that our relationship seemed out of balance to me… always tipped in his favor… and so I was unwilling to bend.

Maybe I was just intensely focused on myself and believed that my focus on our life together, our children, gave me the right to ignore his individual needs.

But today, I know that sometimes I must sacrifice my needs for the greater good of the relationship.

I know that when someone I love is under duress, being pulled in multiple directions, feeling that their time is worn thin, that they are unable to re-charge, that maybe I need to put my own wants aside and allow the person I love to take a moment and just breathe.

If my own needs are not pressing… not life-threatening, or paramount to the relationship…

If this is not a repeated pattern of emotional neglect…

then can’t I take the spiritual high ground, and make the sacrifice for someone I love?

Wouldn’t I want them to do so for me if I was emotionally and physically worn and in need?

“Dear God, help me to see the world from all perspectives. Help me to step back and make sacrifices for those I love.”

May 9th: Honesty

Camie Gross Dean May 8th

Being completely honest with myself is not always easy.

There are times when I hide behind the denial of the truth… unwilling to accept the reality of a situation.

During my divorce… I found it very hard to be honest about the painful experience that lay in front of me.

I wouldn’t accept that my marriage was over… and I was sure that if I just kept pushing for the outcome I desired… it would somehow magically work.

It didn’t.

After a period of time, I was able to put my fantasy aside and embrace honesty.
I started by accepting the situation and admitting that we were not going to be able to reconcile our differences.

I then focused on my own spiritual footwork so that I could move through my emotions and evaluate my part, my responsibility in our break up.

Finally, I worked to be honest with my family and friends: it was difficult to say out loud to others: I’m getting a divorce.

I felt embarrassed.

I felt like a failure.

But over time I realized that I was not the only one who had suffered a great loss through divorce and that there were so many people ready and willing to share their own experience, hope and kind words.

Honesty is telling myself the truth.

Honesty is being straightforward in my conduct.

Honest is embracing my integrity.

To move through my pain I must first be completely honest with myself.


“Dear God, help me to be honest when I am afraid. Help me to look at the reality of the situation when it is difficult to do so.”

photo credit: Camie Dean Gross

May 8th: Choices

May 8th-Choices

Lately I have been struggling with difficult choices.

In my day-to-day life, when it comes to making decisions at work, or giving others advice… I excel at being decisive and direct.

But… when it comes to my heart… when it comes to love… I often still struggle.

My divorce left me wounded and so, when I find myself confronted in a relationship with a difficult choice to make, I’m not quite sure how to react:

If I react with haste: I berate myself for not being patient.

If I don’t react or set boundaries: I berate myself for being a people-pleaser, a doormat.

I am amazed, after all of this time, that I am still triggered by the painful experiences of my past.

Today, when faced with difficult choices, I ask myself the following things:

Is it good for me?

Is it good for my family, my love ones?

Am I making this decision out of fear?

Have I set aside a significant amount of time to give careful thought to my choice?

Have I talked it through with friends I trust? Looking at all angles before making a decision?

Will there be consequences to my choice and can I accept them?

Difficult decisions should not be made in haste.

It is important to not be rash when it will affect my own heart and the heart of someone I love.

“Dear God, help me to be calm as I work through my feelings related to a difficult decision. Help me to trust in my own internal compass and your guidance.”

May 6th: Fear: False Evidence Appearing Real

May 6th

Most people in my life are amazed that I am afraid of anything… I tend to come off so sure of myself and strong.

But like everyone… I do have fears… some real… some perceived… and though I am often brave, their are times where I allow my fear to get the better of me.

Lately, I have been full of fear: fear of rejection, fear of being out of control, fear of sharing my thoughts and feelings, and this fear has been driving my actions.

I do not like being dominated by my “shadow self” by my self-doubt and insecurities.

It leaves me in a state of apprehension and worry and soon… my focus on what is important in life: the people I love, my work, my creativity… all take a back seat to my fears.

When I find myself in this place… I must remind myself that I am reacting to “false evidence appearing real.”

This fear is my own creation based on:

Memories of my past hurts driving my emotions in my present relationships.

Fear of my own actions or reactions that I am projecting onto other people.

Fear that I will fail… that I will be perceived as weak for letting someone know that I need help.

It is hard to stand back from the emotion of fear when it overwhelms but to walk through it I must do just that: observe it… acknowledge it… and admit to myself that this is my ego struggling with the unfamiliar and clinging to what I know and trust even if what I know and trust… is dysfunctional.

I must be brave when faced with “false evidence appearing real” and pray for guidance as I move through it and towards a higher spiritual path.

“Dear God, help me let go of false fear and focus on the truth. Help me to willingly and bravely acknowledge my apprehension and worry as I work towards letting it go.”

May 5th: Change and Balance

May 5th

Change is never easy for me.

Even when I know it is for the best.

I am a creature of habit.

I like to keep those I love close to me.

I don’t like when circumstances arise that create distance and change the mood of a relationship.

I tend to react.

I tend to become afraid.

Even when I believe in my Higher Power’s plan… there is still… something… inside of me that worries like a fearful child: I want to clutch tightly at what is mine.

One of my most trusted friends said to me the other day, “Have you ever been in a row boat?”

I wasn’t sure what this topic had to do with change, but I was willing to listen.

“When you are on one side of the boat,” she said. “And someone is riding along with you on the other side of the boat…. you float smoothly… in perfect balance.”

I imagined the image of this row boat in my mind. I pictured the glassy river, the calm of the air, two people riding peacefully along side-by-side and I let myself become quiet.

“Now what happens when you try to cross over to the other side of that boat and sit very, very close to the person you are with?” She asked.

I couldn’t stop myself from laughing out loud… her image was so crystal clear.

“We tip!” I said.

I haven’t been able to let the image go all week and to be honest, I doubt I ever will.

Whenever I react… try to hold someone close…. reach to grab on… push and beg… I am putting myself in a position to “tip” my own boat.

In situations where a relationship is in the process of change, it is better for me to stay on “my side of the boat” keep my life in balance and hope that we will once again find our mooring: our shared togetherness.

“Dear God, help me to understand when change surrounds me. Help me to look at it with a calm mind and a kind heart.”

May 3rd: Space

Pine Glades Lake, Everglades National Park, FL

I often become attached to my idea of a relationship and… sure that I absolutely know what’s best… push forward with all of my will.

One of my best friends recently said to me that this is one of my best and worst qualities: that when I love someone… I give my entire heart freely and bravely.

But I am learning that sometimes… it is best to give passion a bit of a space… to see if it is the intensity that is driving my feelings.

It is easy to fall in love: the feeling of newness… like a drug… is addictive and seducing.

But I have to look past that at the person that I am with and decide: Is this the best partner for me?

Slowing things down, giving the relationship space, allows me to do just that.

If I stay in the relationship just to “experience” a feeling of euphoria brought on by the newness of it all… then I’m not being true to myself.

I must use space to let the intensity cool and decided if within the confines of a particular relationship if it is a complimentary bond for both myself and my new partner.

If not, I must be honest, and let it go.

“Dear God, help me to be humble and truthful in all of my relationships. Help me do what is best for all involved.”