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Happiness

Old 09-17-2015, 08:09 AM
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Happiness

I am happy today, but not because I'm faking it or forcing it or convincing myself that I am a happy person anyway so it just fits my personality. I am happy because I am free to be me. Because I worked hard to discover who I am and what I want and what I don't want. Because I took the steps to leave a 23 year relationship of craziness with no job, no recent work history for myself, etc.

I have LOTS of ups and downs. Days where I am near tears fretting over how I will pay my bills next year or whether I should trade in my car or refinance the one I have or move into a cheaper rental..etc....etc. But, my financial fears and worries today are nothing compared to what I was fearing and worrying about over 1 year ago and for the past few decades.

I love my life today and wouldn't trade it for anything. So, for those of you who are struggling, who are wondering when the pain stops (I know there's a sticky above on this topic too), who want to know how to press forward, I want to let you know that there are others here who have been where you are. I was a basket case, a mess of indecision, I had my priorities all screwed up. But, somehow, I found peace and I found serenity and then I found freedom. And, with that freedom came a price to pay and it was called financial insecurity and sometimes even loneliness. I wouldn't trade it for anything!

One year ago, my life looked very different. Today, I have a decent job(they pay sucks but it has insurance and I'm getting good work experience), my son is doing so much better with counseling and Al Anon, I have a great set of friends who I can call and they will support me and love me right where I'm at, and I have a wonderful boyfriend who is NOT an addict/alcoholic or emotionally stunted or immature.

I have learned how to set boundaries, how to say what I mean, mean what I say, and not say it mean. I have learned to ask for what I want in relationships without fearing abandonment or abuse. In my current relationship I have been able to ask him for what I want, tell him that he hurt my feelings, and tell him he made me angry without fearing his response. The funny thing is, it always works out. There is no drama, he listens and responds and sometimes wonders why I waited to talk about stuff. I am learning one day at a time that my happiness is an inside job. A program friend of mine in another state told me recently that I give off a vibe and that vibe attracts people to me. Honestly, I think my vibe is program in action, patience, and willingness to let God's work in my life unfold, the giving up of control of that which I cannot control. That has brought me peace, but certainly not perfection.

Hugs and love to all of you today!!!
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Old 09-17-2015, 08:46 AM
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I'll have what you're having!
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:51 AM
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Awesome! !!!!!!
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:54 AM
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Congrats Liz -

I know it has been a long, hard road for you - so glad that you are living Happy, Joyous and Free ~ you deserve it!

big pink hugs!
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Old 09-17-2015, 10:25 AM
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You're awesome Liz!
You're an inspiration to me
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Old 09-17-2015, 12:46 PM
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Thanks for the awesome post! You sound great!
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Old 09-17-2015, 01:49 PM
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Funny, but recently I confronted my new bf about something he said and I was so afraid to bring it up. I was taking something way too personal. I actually told him that I was angry about what he said and I explained how I was taking it personal and that that part was on me. I asked him to explain what he meant so that I could understand it better. He did and he didn't seem phased by my request. He then told me, "Liz, if I had a real problem with you or with us, you'd know it. I'd tell you. I' m a very direct person so don't ever hold back. I have no issues with you, honestly."

That was an amazing thing to hear for me because I figured he'd have a few bones to pick by now. I know I had a resentment brewing but now that I've brought it up and communicated about it, it's over.

Healthy communication is something else, let me tell you! I have to work constantly, though, to use my tools and to break through my fears. It's always one day at a time for me.
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Old 09-17-2015, 02:01 PM
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I'm liking your guy more and more every time you post about him. He sounds very GROUNDED. And so do you!
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Old 09-17-2015, 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by LexieCat View Post
I'm liking your guy more and more every time you post about him. He sounds very GROUNDED. And so do you!
Yeah, I kinda like him too. He's got my kind of sarcasm: the kind where you can tease goodnaturedly without hurting someone's feelings or crossing any lines.

Thanks Lexie. Even if we broke up tomorrow, I know I'd be grateful for the lessons I've learned so far. I also have learned that if our relationship doesn't work, that I will be OK. Acceptance is just another piece of my recovery puzzle and I am learning how to accept each situation exactly as it presents itself to be.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:57 PM
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What fantastic posts! Thanks for sharing.
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Old 09-18-2015, 05:03 AM
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Its so wonderful to see how you have evolved Liz and what an inspirational post!

I think money is such a key motivator as to why people stay. Certainly money is a reason to plan. I have realized over the past two years money is the last thing to worry about in life. I have always worried about money its how I was raised. My parents have always worried and fretted about money though they have more than they will ever spend. I am not in that situation; however, I did come to a realization when my parents were ill over 18 months and I did not work for 5 of them taking care of them. When I worked all the time I worried about money, yet when I was not working for 5 months while still worrying I made it just fine (with no help from anyone). Yes I changed my lifestyle to do so yet it doesn't feel that different. Actually its better because I am not tied down financially to sh!t that doesn't matter.

Big hugs to you!!!
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Old 09-18-2015, 06:00 AM
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Good to hear your happiness!! Hugs and peace to you today!
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Old 09-18-2015, 06:23 AM
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I just love good news.
Especially when it shows that we can heal from our codie issues and move
forward into happier lives.

Thanks for sharing this Liz
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Old 09-19-2015, 08:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Hawkeye13 View Post
I just love good news.
Especially when it shows that we can heal from our codie issues and move
forward into happier lives.

Thanks for sharing this Liz
You're welcome!

I was thinking about this thread last night and realizing that I will never NOT be a codependent person. I just have tools I can use today that I didn't have years ago. And, I truly believe the biggest tool I've used is vulnerability. I have close female friends today whereas years ago, I held women off at a distance without even realizing I did it. I put up walls that I didn't even know I was putting up. I didn't want people to see me for ME because I had so much shame and guilt and fear.

Recovery has allowed me to take down most of those walls (not gonna lie: I think I still have a few protective walls up but I'm working on it) and it has allowed me to truly believe that I can, not only love myself, but that I am worthy of love from others.

And, another thing I've learned over the years is that all relationships come to end at some point: whether it be through death, through parting of ways, through communication differences, through personal growth and spiritual growth issues, etc. If we can just learn to accept the person and the relationship as it is TODAY and not worry about next year or 3 years from now, those relationships become that much more enjoyable. When I future tripped about the END of the relationship, that was when anxiety and fear crept in and created doubt about whether I was good enough for a friend to keep me around or good enough for a man to love me for me. But, when I focus on today and work on MY RECOVERY tools every single day, I find that it gets so much easier to let the past be the past, let the future take care of itself when it comes to my interactions with other humans, and allows the present to be exactly what it's supposed to be: a gift.

Now, if I could just quit worrying about my son's future, I'll find peace, right? LOL! Progress not perfection!

And, the other thing I wanted to share about my new man: the one thing I love the most about him is that whenever I call him or he calls me, he is always (and I mean always) happy and jovial and greets me with enthusiasm. He never falters on his attitude, I always know what I'm going to get with him, I never question what mood he's going to be in. He is consistent, emotionally stable, and present. Even if his RA(rheumatoid arthritis) starts acting up he will show up and be with me if we have a date set up and the worst he does is just get a bit quiet and subdued when he's in pain or exhausted. So, even though he doesn't profess his undying love to me or tell me he thinks I'm beautiful, he shows up in different ways in our relationship and I know, in my heart, where his heart is. I think acceptance and letting go of expectations has really helped me find peace today. I pray that for everyone here who is struggling when I read their stories and remember what my life was like for the past 2 decades. What the heck took me so long to make a real change?
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Old 09-19-2015, 08:50 AM
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What a brilliant post! Thanx for sharing!

I too am totally worried about finances. About 6 years ago I had a break up that left me losing my house, almost lost my car, I had to forgo paying bills and my credit still suffers, I was living off $100 for an entire month of groceries and made just a little too much to receive government aid. All this on top of the break up and all sorts of other issues going on!

When I made the decision to let go of that toxic relationship, I was determined that I could do it on my own. But not only did I "fail" at that, I ended up moving in with my parents who are alcoholics (though I wasn't really aware of that reality at the time), and 2 years into that living situation, my step dad gets liver cancer and eventually passes away from it.... and in full codie mode I stayed to "help and console" my mother who is now drinking more and more to cover her pain. And of course, having lived with her and focusing on her needs my own financial life has suffered.
And, I am so scared to move out on my own because "what if I fail again"?

I am so grateful for your inspirational story! It gives me hope!
And I think that since I am now aware of all the alcoholism around me and of my own behaviors, I am better equipped at being financially independent and making better choices.
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Old 09-23-2015, 06:46 AM
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Thank you for sharing!!! I hope to be where you are soon. I have moved on, established my independence, but I'm still nervous about the dating and boundaries. I'm scared I will fall into the same co-dependent trap again. Its nice to hear you are doing so well. Keep up the great work!!!
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Old 09-23-2015, 10:08 PM
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Originally Posted by unsureoffuture View Post
Thank you for sharing!!! I hope to be where you are soon. I have moved on, established my independence, but I'm still nervous about the dating and boundaries. I'm scared I will fall into the same co-dependent trap again. Its nice to hear you are doing so well. Keep up the great work!!!
Oh, I still fall into my codependent stuff. Not really issues with boundaries (I worked on that a lot in therapy and I practice it today in my current relationship and things are good) but I struggle with unhealthy obsessive thinking. I use my program friends, meetings, family, and my relationship with my Higher Power to get me through.

Honestly, things are truly good with my new guy. He is buying a brand new house (new build) just down the road from me and he wanted me there when he put the money down and picked out the structural options. He would ask me, "What do you think?", when the agent asked him about certain options, LOL. It's nice to know he values my opinion.

Now, on the other side of things: He currently lives 15 miles from me but when this house is done, he'll be 1.8 miles from me. That will certainly bring out the stalker in me, LOL! No, really, it's something I'll have to work on with my sponsor. It's a gated single family home community but I'm sure I'll have the gate code and I'll have to really work hard to control my CRAZY.
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