A Modern Woman on the Move

in hot pursuit of the great green light…

Posts Tagged ‘thanks

Transitioning…

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Alright, here we are.

I made big promises about updating my blog with zine reviews and my life and whatever, but I haven’t been doing that.

To tell you all the truth, I have really been struggling the last few months to do most things. I have only just barely been keeping up with publishing Stumptown Underground and pitching in with the Portland Zine Symposium (that’s probably because they’re collectively organized, so I have other people helping keep me in line). This is mostly because I have been kind of depressed. Okay, not kind of, majorly.

This has been the first big bout of sadness I have had in 7 years. The last one was situational as well (read as: an unhealthy and draining relationship). I have been trying to figure out a serious relationship (in which I’ve had a boundary-pushing partner with a lot of issues while also trying to deal with my deeper issues popping up because we’ve been together for quite a while and because I am not getting all my emotional needs met), struggling with developing some new hobbies and a new line of work (which I have been open and honest with a few of my friends about, but which I can’t tell everyone about), I haven’t been biking and exercising enough (which would be a healthy way to combat some of these down-in-the-dumps feelings), and I was thinking that I maybe needed a break from most everyone.

I have a bad habit of isolating myself when I am sad. Primarily because I don’t want to bum anyone else out, but also because I feel embarrassed for being sad or depressed. This is horrible to do because, when you’re sad, that’s when you need your friends (your support network) the most. I am really thankful for the close friends I have that remind me how good it feels to talk to someone….. It’s what’s finally bringing my foot around to my ass to kick myself back into reality. Also, friends remind you that you’re worth getting your needs met and being in a loving relationship if your relationships get rocky.

My primary relationship was getting really rocky for a lot of reasons and it’s finally time for things to change, one way or another. Being with someone that is mostly inclined to see and expect the worst before the hoping for the best has been killing my usual appreciation and happiness with life. I hate this. I have had real problems in life, real struggles in situation I had no control over (an abusive parent and an abandoning parent), so I am not interested in treating life as horrible now. I am thankful to be alive, I am thankful to be me, I am thankful for my independence, I am thankful for every opportunity to love and be loved. I am, however, very much an emotional chameleon and the attitude of the people around me, especially people close to me, affects me profoundly. It’s hard when I hang out with someone depressing or angry, but it’s also what makes me so empathetic. I am thnkful for my close friends who have been reminding me of some key things as I have been getting caught up in the tornado of this partner’s problems and started feeling ways that are just not me…. It’s unacceptable for someone to get angry with me just because I am sad, especially when I am very supportive to that someone and their anxiety issues. It’s unacceptable to have a partner who will consistently lie to me to dodge any potential conflict. It’s unacceptable to have a partner who tries to superimpose their past relationships onto our relationship and onto me. It’s hard to draw the line and to know when to say when to say enough is enough, however, when you love someone and you feel like you can help your love… When you think that you’ve seen progress and you should just stick with them through this next things and then they will treat you nicely again… Or maybe this problem, or maybe once we get through that thing, or maybe just after this issue. With someone who is so overwhelmingly negative but also can be terribly charming and funny, the ups and downs are too extreme.

Knowing the distinction between the genuine effort it takes to navigate a healthy relationship and realizing that a relationship has engulfed you and taken you away from the other parts of your life is difficult. When you’re used to thinking everything will pass and be alright, it’s hard to see if someone you love actually has a problem of treating most problems like crises that they can never handle (so they just shut down, get angry or run away). Escalating more often than helping and resolving. For us it was especially hard because he brought me into a new community that I discovered I enjoyed and had a place in… Finding what my place is and learning a lot of new dynamics took a lot of patience, bravery, self reflection, mistakes and time…  But I don’t want to abandon the other communities in my life just because a new hobby is challenging. Figuring out that balance has been hard.

I am trying to get back to my own life and strike a balance again. I kind of came out as having been depressed and trying to get back to reality on twitter/facebook/to the friends I saw, but I wanted to take the time to really sit down and write about it more… This is in order to keep talking about it so that I can keep myself consciously working on these balancing issues, but also to put my feelings/experiences out there in case anyone wants to talk (or just wants to silently relate and be reminded that you’re not the only one).

And I think I am doing okay. I am going out more again and I getting back in touch with myself… My confident, independent self that has fun and appreciates that life is truly beautiful. I want to thank my close friends for being there for me. My close and supportive friends are the reason I am able to come out on the other side of all  these changes and balance myself back out with my new hobbies in tow, while also drawing some lines with my primary partner. My friends who reminded me that the rest of my life is still here and they still want to hang out even when I am sad. I am lucky for all of you and I can only hope that I am half as good of a friend to you as you all are to me.

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Written by lovemotionstory

February 7, 2011 at 10:21 am

A Thanks to Community!

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As a nanny who spent over 3 years working in the Hollywood District (going to the Jazzkat’s Coffee Bar, Hollywood Library, etc. almost every weekday) and a vegan of 6 years (almost as long as I’ve lived in Portland), there are some communities I feel I need to say a big thanks to for their support over the last few weeks. I have been working on this post for 2 weeks, it’s hard to find the right words…

My first thank you goes to the community of the Hollywood District in general, for supporting Whitney Baskins, a barista-turned owner who took the coffee shop she worked for and managed to make it even better. The people of the Hollywood District, especially the librarians, have been so supportive and dedicated to her and it’s amazing to watch. Thank you for showing myself and Whitney something we already suspected: When a small business owner works in their shop, involves the neighborhood, and hosts events supportive of the local culture, the community will enthusiastically be there to support that owner and the business.

My second thank you goes specifically to the healthy eaters of the Hollywood District. Whitney worked hard with Heidi Lovig (who made all the spreads and vegan cheeses on the new menu) to make healthy food options available in Hollywood, and she has received a lot of thanks from the neighbors, residents or workers, for filling that missing option.

My last and biggest thank you goes to my fellow Portland vegan community! When Whitney first asked me for help launching her new menu at Jazzkat’s, I turned to Janessa and Webly for help making sure Heidi’s vegan cheese was up to snuff. They worked with me to plan a private tasting a couple weeks before the menu launching and they each gave honest feedback to Heidi about her vegan spreads and cheeses, as well as some no-nonsense advice on her soon-to-be-launching, vegan cheese company. I was so excited to help my friend Whitney get her new menu off the ground and even more excited to see a woman planning to start a locally made vegan cheese company, because I feel guilty every time I pick up FYH or Daiya, knowing how far it has to travel to hit my shopping basket. It was inspiring to know that Janessa and Webly were just as interested in offering their support. Janessa and Webly are such dedicated and helpful women who really back their ideas and values with their time and consideration. From there, countless Portland vegans have popped into Jazzkat’s to support the new menu that includes us in every way. In just the first week into promoting the new menu and one week before the menu’s actually launch, Whitney told me her sales were up 40%!!! That is amazing. Let no Portland business sell short the vegan demand in Portland.

Thank you, everyone, for supporting my friend and local businesses that invest in their communities. You are all amazing!