Thursday, October 13, 2011

just another day on Facebook...

I’ve been bad. I've been very bad.

Well, not in the normal sense of the word. I’ve been good really. Very, very good. But I’ve still been bad.

I’ve neglected my blog. I’ve neglected my blog reading. I’ve neglected my bloggy friends. And I am sorry.

I have been writing. I just haven’t been posting.

The other day I was on Facebook. Yes, I know…the ultimate usurper of time. It doesn’t help that I have the app on my phone. Thank goodness I had the sense to turn off notifications pr I might not get anything accomplished. However I would know when Chrissy was stalking the Home Depot paint counter…again. Lots of people have been complaining about the new interface that Facebook has. I kindof like it so haven’t entered into that arena of conversation. I personally like that little ticker on the right for updates and the section that gives you the ‘people you may know’.  Most times they aren't people I know, or perhaps people I have known and don't care to know now and then surprise, surpirse! today that little box showed a name and face of someone that I hadn't thought about it awhile. There it was! A bloggy friend from across the pond.

My mind jumped and I smiled at the computer screen. “No! Can it be? Matthew!”

I found Matthew by accident a little over two years ago. One day early on with Blogger I was clicking the ‘next blog’ tab. I was new to the whole blogging experience, didn’t have any followers and wasn’t following anyone myself except for Chrissy who got me into the whole damn thing. I was entertained by what would come across my computer screen. Some blogs were in languages I didn’t even know existed, some were on topics that I had no interest in, some were just online photo albums so Auntie Gam and Uncle Ed could see how big the twins were getting. But one more click brought me to AbodeOneThree.

He stopped blogging a little while back, took some time for himself. I used to go and check...sneak in to see if indeed he truly had. He DID announce that he was shutting it down, but I didn't want to believe that he would, so I would check. He was a man of his word and nothing new would appear. And one day I just stopped checking. So imagine my surprise to see his name. And then to find that he IS writing again! (However...he didn't renew the domain name AbodeOneThree and someone snatched it up. He is current;y under the moniker of ReloadAbode-which you can click on and find here...)

Sometimes I ponder on how amazing the effect of “coincidence”. Is there truly a thing of coincidence? Is it really fate in some other form? Is it destiny? What IS it, exactly.

I’m a believer in free will. I always have been. I like to have a certain amount of control over my life. Oh sure, there are times that I’ve not had any control and hand my fate and happiness over to others. THIS practice has not turned out well for me in the few times I’ve done it. Note to self: I am my own captain. This is MY ship. I’m at the helm. And double note: DO NOT EVER FORGET THAT.

I never thought of myself as a control freak, but the other day during a small dissagreement my ex-husband told me that I was. Personally, I think that he was just trying to push my buttons and wind me up, which it did, but his comment got me to thinking about control, free will and coincidence. How much of my life do I really control? I find that in my life ‘things’ happen that I have no control over, some things I force into being and others…well, who knows. I’m still on the fence whether those things actually happened or if it’s was just some huge conspiracy to make me believe that they did.

Was it coincidence or fate that brought me to AbodeOneThree? Was it fate that landed his blog on my computer screen? Was it fate or coincidence that by reading HIS blog I strove to be a better writer myself which in turn gave me many followers? And was it coincidence that made me write this post today after seeing his name 6 hours ago? The many followers then became friends of sorts. Many of whom I’ve never met, but feel a connection to just the same. Is it fate, coincidence or destiny that two of my followers, Jules and Carlos, who live in different countries altogether are now a couple because they were both followers of my blog? Is it coincidence that when I am in need someone or something just pops in and takes care of it? Or is it fate that I met this man whom I really enjoy on the anniversary of my breaking it off with my old boyfriend? He whom I met the day that my ex-husband was getting married? Is that me that is controlling these things, or is it a destiny of sorts…

After his comment, I had to look the actual definition of ‘control freak” up in Random House. It’s answer: “to exercise restraint or direction over; dominate; command…To hold in check; curb.: it’s origin is the Latin “contra” meaning “against” and “rotula” (wheel), indicating movement. So essentially – control means to move against. The exact origin of freak is not known, but possibly can be traced back to the old English “frician” which means “to dance”. To put this all together then, we could say the control freaks are those who “command the dance” or those who “move against the dance”.

Maybe I am in a way a control freak. I DO like things the way I like them. I would rather drive than be a passenger. I feel more comfortable when I know where it is I’m going…so I plan ahead and map things out. I like being on time. And like it even better if I’m early. One way to stress me out is to be late meeting me for a tee time…I’ll be the one jumping about from foot to foot looking like I have to use the toilet simultaneously looking at her watch every 5 seconds! And I AM one hell of dancer that commands the dance. So do those things make me control frenzied?

I also did a Google search just to see if there were lists of signs and symptoms control freaks. Then I thought…”Wow. Is this being too controlled researching control?” Yikes. All this thinking about control is making my head spin. And the list? Yowzer…look at the list!

You might be a control freak if you are:
Preoccupied with negligible details?
Want to present the “right” appearance?
Fail to let go of unfortunate details from the past?
In ‘work mode’ while not at work?
Huff, rage and/or pout when you don’t get your own way?
Critical of others or yourself?
Concerned that others may do things “wrong”?
Attempt to get another person to change?
Feel paralysed to act because you might not get it “just right”?
Tell others how they should live?
Feel uncomfortable if you don’t’ get the last word?

As I was reading through, I was nodding my head in agreement “Yup”, or nodding in dis-agreement “N.O. with a capital on both!” or tilting my head from one shoulder to the other “Well- it’s all in the interpretation….see.”

I mean, I DO like details. And schedules. But I can roll with it, I just like a plan. It keeps me in my comfort zone. I prefer to be knowledgable or have knowledge of stuff so I’m not caught by surprise. MacGyver would be proud. Present the right appearance? Sure. I’m not about to show up to a black tie affair in a pair of cut-offs, or a wake in a low cut red dress. You probably know me well enough by now to know that I probably wouldn’t WEAR a low cut red dress anyway, but you get the idea.

How about details from the past? Sure sometimes. It’s hard not to! If you were me you’d still hold a little grudge against someone who daily judged you and withheld physical and emotional love all the while taking everything you had and gave with nothing given in return. But I don’t consider it dwelling… I consider thinking of it as a warning to myself so I will never, ever be in that predicament again. It’s a good thing.

Work mode? Bah. That’s my parents fault. THEY taught me work ethics. And again, it’s good. My home is always ready if guests arrive. Huff and rage? No way. Critical of others? Guilty. But YOU would have criticized that gal at the Bier Market too if you’d seen what she was wearing! And of myself? Not too much. There’s always room for improvement. One more lunge set couldn’t hurt. But no…I’m now on the top of my game: emotionally, physically and mentally.

Yes, yes, no, no and well yeah, maybe.

As I finished with my nodding and taking notes I realized that I didn’t WANT to be considered a control freak. There is such negative connotations with that phrase and yet as I’m bobbing my head to the beat of the sentences, I guess maybe I am. A little. But that would mean my ex-husband was right?! That I am? Oh boy. THAT in and of itself could land me into more therapy sessions if I actually subscribed to the practice.

Recently I hung a board on the wall in my daughters room next to her bed. It looks like a big shiny opaque glass sheet but it’s a dry erase board and it’s magnectic. I like to sneak a peak at it from tine to time to see what she’s put on it. Photos are posted, like the one of her above; quotes and sayings floating around her group of friends at school; names of some of her 'besties' know, little pre-teen girl stuff.

The other day she added in bold letters: “I wasn’t born perfect. I was born my SELF.” Pretty cool statement from a pretty cool kid. I love that. Maybe I'll turn her statement into a self mantra or tattoo it on my arm so I won’t forget. 'Cuz I like it. She's got a great attitude and view.

No. I don’t think I’m a control freak. I just like a reasonable amount of control. It’s more of a responsibility thing, something that I've aquired over the years. That and knowing I’m just in a position now that I know what it is I want and know how I should be treated by those around me. My friend Harlan left me amessage the other day on the one year anniversary of my kicking shithead out of my home...he said "Yea is right nancy and BRAVO! You found the self respect to demand the same in return adn you deserve to settle for not ONE IOTA short of that!" If I’m not agreeable it’s probably because I’m now learning that I don’t have to bend to others demands or wishes. I AM Helen Ready singing “I am woman”.

And this woman, whether a control freak or not, has had one hell of a summer. (and early fall...)

I apologize for not sharing that with you earlier. I bought a picture at an art fair this summer that reads “Life is a Daring Adventure or Nothing.” Something about it spoke to me. Was it coincidence that I found it? Or divine placement of something that I needed to see. Whatever you want to call it, I like it.

Yes. Guilty. I’ve been bad. I’ve been gone. I’ve been away.

But I’ve been living an adventure. MY adventure.
It's been pretty awesome.

And look-y here! I’ve lived to write about it! You can thank Facebook for that too. Because I wrote this after I saw Matthews name on that little sidebar of 'people you may know'. See how this works?

Bah. It’s kismet.

Footnote: Thanks you Matthew for your silent inspiration! It feels good to be back amongst my friends...