It’s a wrap, and a prediction

I had another date with The Rock again last night. Sushi and drinks in a beautiful town in central Jersey. The conversation flowed, he was sweet in his gestures and well, probably not for me. I can’t quite pinpoint it but I’m not feeling it. It may be that he is pushing a relationship with me, to be exclusive, and honestly, I’m not ready for that yet, or maybe I don’t want it with him. Probably the latter. It’s a wrap on this one for me.

As a self-described relationship girl, this probably comes as a surprise to many who don’t know me, but I won’t be with someone just to be with someone. Been there once and it was a disaster. And it’s also the reason why I won’t be with someone who has continually hurt me, just to be with someone. Been there, done that and trust me, it does not ever end well. It’s too hard when you have to keep wondering when they will hurt you or leave you again. I can’t do that to myself. If I want you in my life you will know it. I’ll fight to save a relationship if I think you and I are worth it, but I can’t do all the saving. I am very picky about whom I allow in my life (if an ex is reading this consider yourself lucky or possibly unlucky because at times I am relentless lol).

And most likely the reason I am not ready for a relationship with anyone right now is VG is still in the picture. Next year at this time I predict I will be writing about how we make our long distance relationship work (lordy I hope I did not jinx it!). I won’t go into details yet, I need to keep them private from everyone in my life. Sometimes oversharing harms the outcome. It is between he and I, but a conversation happened that was a game changer for both of us. I will share when I am ready. But it is good, really good between us, and about to get better. A reunion is imminent and I can’t wait to see those hazel eyes and crooked adorable smile. I’m smiling just thinking about him. It won’t be easy, his work schedule, school for me, and distance all bring challenges to us seeing each other frequently, but we promised make the best of the time we can allow. We both feel that the future will eventually hold a different scenario for us when it comes to distance, and it’s a good scenario. Patience and understanding with each other will be the key to us making this work.

And I received the best possible news this week as well. My Dad’s cancer was downgraded to low grade after his procedure. This basically means that it will be watch and wait with checkups every three months. The cancer has not spread. His 89th birthday is Tuesday and today I celebrated at his house, there was so much to celebrate.

School starts in two weeks (insert screaming face here) so I’m planning some beach days before it happens. My life is about to get quite hectic, but in a good way, and my love life is about to take off, in a great way. Fingers crossed.

Have a great week everyone. Stay positive and strong, xo.

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Under your spell no more

via Daily Prompt: Trance

I was under your spell for so long, not thinking clearly as if in a trance. I let you rule my thoughts and even worse, my heart. I saw signs of you everywhere I went, still do. I heard songs that reminded me of you, still do. So many reminders, so many memories that eventually came with so much hurt, of which at times, there still is.

But slowly I have begun to find the antidote to the spell you put me under. It is called self-worth and it is more powerful than anything you can dish out to hurt me again. I know what I deserve and I know you cannot give it to me, you’ve proven that more than once. And my resilience, even when handed some of the worst pain in this world, has proven to me that I am strong, and worthy, of a great life and a great love.

#dailyprompt

 

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Hope 

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Healing is Solitary

via Daily Prompt: Solitary

Healing is a solitary process. Friends and family may be there to listen, comfort and dry your tears, but healing from heartbreak is an internal process that you must face head on. You can do your best to keep yourself busy in order to keep those thoughts which haunt you over and over again at bay. But there are times you just feel the crushing ache, sometimes it happens in the morning or randomly throughout the day or at night. For me, it is the late evening right before I go to sleep.

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I had a long talk with someone on Wednesday who has been through some pretty horrible relationships but is now content and married, late in life. After a bitter failed marriage and a few bad relationships that followed, she realized that she needed to do some serious self-reflection as to why her relationships were not working out. She realized that the men all had something in common, they were broken, irreparably broken. Everyone has issues and a past, but the men in her life all had issues that they could not deal with in a normal healthy manner. One drank too much and became verbally abusive, another would pick fights with her when things weren’t going well for him, another had so many family issues that he couldn’t deal with he would disappear for days, and the reasons go on and on. She realized that she didn’t want the person who couldn’t deal with life and treated her as his punching bag or second choice. She wanted the guy who, even if he has issues, is able to function and deal with them in a healthy manner and treat her as a true partner. I completely related to everything she was saying. I have been there too and allowed these type of men in my life as well. I am not issue free but the man in my life doesn’t have to be perfect, but he needs to have his life together. She gave me this advice – the cycle of hurt ends when you stop it from happening. If you keep allowing the same people who hurt you into your life, it won’t end. Free your mind and your heart, no matter how hard that seems. You will be better off, even if you feel as if you can’t imagine life without him.

I know I am strong. I know I won’t go back to someone who doesn’t have my best interests at heart because I feel lonely. I am better than that. I am stronger than that. As crushing as missing him hits me at times, I keep remembering that he hurt me, very badly, more than once. You can get a free pass (I use that term loosely) and work it out the first time, but the second time and any chances thereafter, you get no more passes, no matter how much I miss you or how much you try to convince me you won’t do it again. Because you will do it again, maybe not immediately, but you will. And I will not allow my heart to feel the solitary crush of heartbreak, not again, not from you. I am worth more and deserve better than that. It has taken me a long time to get to this point, but I am relieved and happy that I did.

As for my life right now, I had another great beach date the other day with the Pill Pusher. He is an interesting guy and great for casual fun. This Saturday I have another date with The Rock. I have to say The Rock has been calling and texting, not overly and not intermittently, just the right amount. He lets me know he is thinking about me. There is definitely potential looming, but of course I am taking it very slow and will see what happens. I don’t know him well enough yet, but I am liking what I see so far.

Moving on is never easy, but not ending the cycle of hurt is even harder. If you don’t allow yourself the opportunity to see what happens and keep hoping for your past loves to come back, you will be only allowing the opportunity for heartbreak to win again. And I, not matter how difficult it is to close the door, am slamming it shut this time, and changing the lock and key to my heart as well.

#dailyprompt

 

 

 

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Just Settle In, or Not

via Daily Prompt: Grainy

This post was not meant to harm anyone or point to anyone particular in my life. I have done a lot of self-reflection the past two years and have also heard and listened to a lot of what people in my life have said to me, either about my life or their own. I wrote this to make us all think about what we allow. The events that have unfolded in our country the past few days are in my own opinion – horrific and disturbing. The response from our President has me thinking how anyone can defend his rationale. To me it is indefensible. But he repeatedly showed us who he is before his campaign, during it and now after it. And sadly so do many people in our lives as well, and we allow it to happen.

These events also had me thinking about how we all make so many excuses in our lives for our own and other people’s behavior toward us. We try to smooth things over instead of feeling the grainy, harsh truth.

Why are you settling for the partner you have to constantly make excuses for?

Why are you settling for the partner who makes you wonder how you fit in his/her life?

Why are you settling for a job you hate when you can at least try to make a move to do something which makes you happier?

Why are you settling for behavior from your partner that you, as a caring and loving person, would never inflict on them yourself?

Why are you allowing people in your life, be it colleagues, supervisors, friends, partner, to belittle you and just brush it off as they’ll never change anyway?

Why are you continually allowing someone to treat you as an option?

He promised to change. He said he missed me and loves me and will never leave again. I need the paycheck and there is nothing I can do. My supervisor doesn’t care about how I feel and what happens to me anyway. I’m just going to take the lead on the project and do what I have to even if she constantly undermines my every move, I’d rather not rock the boat. He said it will all be different this time, even though he hurt me in the past many times. Who else is better out there anyway, might as well stick with what I know. He didn’t mean it. I have no voice and what I say does not matter. I’d rather be with him than be alone. We’ve been together so long he deserves a chance. Oh that’s just the way he is, he doesn’t mean anything by it. He was (insert here – drunk, on drugs (I had an ex who I used to use this excuse for), depressed, angry, etc.) he didn’t mean what he said or did.

Why do we settle? Loneliness, fear of the unknown, habit? Why?

I have been guilty of rationalizing behavior too, whether my own, or someone in my life. But I have also learned I have a voice too and I matter.

I had to prove myself in my job. It was not handed to me. I could have easily just sat back and finished out my contract and looked for another position in the same field in which I was bored but was familiar. I am a single woman –  I do not have another income coming in, I don’t have someone else to rely on – but at that point I forced myself out of my comfort zone and ventured into the unknown, into a career that I love. Has there been push back from some people? Absolutely. It has not deterred me. Was I scared? Of course I was, but I stopped blaming the VP that let me go and started embracing the opportunity that was not a definite and fought for me, my happiness. Was it easy? No, and it still isn’t, I’m learning my way every single day.

I read and hear on a daily basis the excuses people have in relationships and settling. I have done it too, I am not exempt from this behavior. But you need to ask yourself why are you settling? Why are you allowing someone in your life to behave in a way that you would never allow? Why are you continually justifying your partner’s behavior? If you have to do that there is something very wrong – with what you are allowing but most of all why you are allowing it. Stop glossing over the temporary good to try to justify the bad. There is give and take in every relationship, but how much are you giving and how much are they taking?

Some of us love to be alone. Some of us, myself included, love to share our lives with someone. Neither one is a wrong outlook, but if you are settling for someone who has not always had your best interests at heart or protecting it when you gave him or her that gift than you are settling for all the wrong reasons.

Ask yourself the hard questions. I have and I realized that I have to stop making excuses and justifying behavior. It may lead to uncomfortable realizations and sometimes painful decisions, but one thing I promise, as someone who has been through quite a lot of painful and difficult situations, you are stronger than you think and you will be okay. You never know what happiness awaits you.

I am not here to judge you or your relationship, only you can look deep inside yourself and decide what you allow and why.  I don’t have an easy road ahead and I haven’t had an easy road to follow either, but I know how good I am and how much I deserve to be treated as the amazing, compassionate and loving person I am. No settling, no excuses, no justifying or rationalizing going forward. Make yourself that promise too, and live it.

#dailyprompt

 

 

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In a pickle

via Daily Prompt: Prickle

Oh wait the daily prompt was prickle not pickle!

I had two dates this weekend. Friday I scheduled a beach date with a really hot dude I’ve been talking with. He is a pharmaceutical sales rep so I’ll call him Pill Pusher (is that bad? Lol). Fun place for a first date given my love of wearing only bikinis so he basically got to see me in all my glory. It was fun, low-key and he gave me a kiss goodbye that made my skin prickle and my toes curl. We have another beach date coming up soon this Wednesday.

Then major stomach troubles hit me Saturday and left me feeling crappy most of the weekend but especially Sunday night. But I downed some Pepto to calm my stomach issues and went on a coffee date yesterday evening. Due to my feeling nauseated all day I did not drink coffee but had some mint tea. My date was handsome, a geologist (I’ll nickname him The Rock and don’t I wish) . Three-plus hours flew by and we made plans to see each other again soon. He texted me within minutes of leaving to say what a great time he had and he was looking forward to seeing me again. Awe so sweet!

When The Rock and I were leaving we gave each other a hug goodbye and kiss on the cheek. I am glad he did not try to kiss me because I honestly felt as if I was going to vomit as soon as I stood up. We made a little small talk by our cars and I kept praying to the vomit Gods to just hold off a little longer. I called one of my best friends to tell her about the date. The closer I got to home I knew something evil was about to take over and rushed off the phone with her. And yes if you have ever seen Linda Blair in the classic movie “The Exorcist” and her vomiting on screen, that was me, all night long and most of this morning too.

So what is my pickle? Both guys made my skin prickle! And funny thing is both have the same first name which puts me on high alert when texting them too! I have to say though what a pleasant surprise that both were interesting and really, really good looking guys. No pressure, just fun, is my motto. Pill Pusher is  not looking for a relationship and that is perfectly fine with me. The Rock is and that is also perfectly fine with me, nothing will be rushed by either of us. I am glad that I went on both dates – it’s not easy starting over but it’s much easier than allowing the same bullshit dudes back in my life – and just waiting for the hurt from them again. No more recycled boyfriends! I am proud that I never answered “you know who” and even let that door crack open a little – too much self respect.

And of course VG (we never actually broke up so I don’t consider him recycled lol) and I are talking more than ever, and we hope to see each other this weekend. Hopefully we will. I am ready to see him.

Happy Monday everyone, best wishes for a good week. And no, neither guy has gotten sick from me, at least not yet – I checked in with both today 🙂

#dailyprompt

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Finding Joy

One thing I can say about my life is that it never goes as planned. I have friends who have gotten married, had kids, decent jobs and life hasn’t totally changed their paths. Of course we all encounter changes – loved ones die, get sick, jobs are lost – but for the most part these friends lives stay on course. Marriage and kids – the traditional route for many.

Then there are the rest of us – those who have encountered divorce, death of a spouse or partner,  children who have passed away (this is horrifically heartbreaking), job loss, devastating financial loss. We had dreams too but those dreams were so cruelly taken away.

There are those who like to say this is God’s will, he has a plan for you. I don’t want to offend anyone but I do not believe there is a supreme being up there deciding who suffers more or less. Not everyone believes in the same God as you, some don’t believe there is one at all. But one thing we can control is how much and how long we allow ourselves to suffer.

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I am reading a very interesting book right now – The Book of Joy, Lasting Happiness in a Changing World. The book is a compilation of a week-long conversation between His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Two men of different faiths but bonded by suffering, loss and encountering and overcoming great personal adversity. You don’t have to be Buddhist or Christian to appreciate this book. It speaks to all of us, no matter our faith or lack of.

I am halfway through the book. I don’t look at it as a self-help guide per say but it will make you think about situations in your life and how you react to those situations. It is okay to feel sad, upset, angry, broken but only you can find your own inner happiness.

I wish I had an answer on how to find happiness and joy in our lives but that is only something that you can create for yourself. The people around us may bring us joy and happiness but only you can be the warrior in your battle to find peace, contentment and true joy and happiness. I won’t say this book has changed my life but it has made me reflect deeply on my own life. I am good, I am worthy and I deserve to be joyful. One thing I know is that I will never let anyone tear me down, they may bring bring sadness and heartbreak into my life,  but that is temporary. No more toxic relationships, be it romantic, familial or friendship will be allowed. No more exes back in my life that did not choose me or chose to leave or hurt me will be allowed either. These decisions are not always easy, we miss people, we cry over people, but if that is how they treat you then they do not deserve your time or your heart. I always preach forgiveness but that does not mean you can keep allowing someone in your life who has hurt you over and over again, without any thought of how they have hurt you.

From now on I choose me. If you are broken I will support you, but I will not be your punching bag, nor will I fix you. But most of all, if you leave me when I wanted you in my life and then when you return you expect to be worthy of me and my love again then you are sadly mistaken. I am stopping the cycle of heartbreak because I love me too much to allow you to hurt me again, over and over.

I highly recommend this book. It may not change your life but it will make you think and question your own life and the endless suffering you are allowing yourself to endure.

Three of my favorite passages/quotes from the book are:

“Wherever you have friends that’s your country, and wherever you receive love, that’s your home”. The Dalia Lama reflecting on an old Tibetan saying.

“Sadly, many of the things that undermine our joy and happiness we create ourselves. Often it comes from the negative tendencies of the mind, emotional reactivity, or from our inability to appreciate and utilize the resources that exist within us,” said the Dalai Lama. “The suffering from a natural disaster we cannot control, but the suffering from our daily disasters we can.”

“Start where you are. Do what you can. You will be surprised by the JOY.” – Archbishop Desmond Tutu

 

 

 

 

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The words “I Love You”

The other day my friend’s eight year old son looked at me as we were walking on the beach and said to me “I love you Karen, you are one of my best friends.” My heart absolutely melted. He is one of the best kids I have ever known. He completely owns my heart. And of course it got me thinking about those three little words.

I say it to my friends often. As I’ve said many times before I have the greatest circle of friends I could ever hope for and I try to never take any of them for granted. I say it easily about foods I like. I say it about my job. I say it about the beach, the weather, clothes, etc. I know that I love myself and who I am, even though at times I may not always like myself.

I have written that I never hear it from my family. I said it to my Dad today as he left to stay over at the hotel near the hospital where his tests and procedure will be. He choked the words out back to me, I know he is very emotional right now.

But I also realize that I have not heard it uttered from a man, in a romantic sense, since 2014 – the last time I was in a long term relationship. I wasn’t even sure I really loved him at the time so it was probably even longer than that since I heard it from a man who actually really meant something to me. Writing about it makes me sad because I have so much love to give, the right man.

I felt like I may have been on the verge of it with new/old guy and look how that turned out. I think if VG and I move forward it will be love. I care about him deeply but it is not love, at least not yet.

I long to hear those words again but it has to be from someone who treats me like I am a part of his life and includes me as a true partner, who shares experiences and builds memories. Someone with whom I hope to eventually live with, not necessarily married to, not sure I want to do that again, but someone I will wake up next to and smile, just knowing he is beside me, in every single way.

I have to keep believing he is out there, maybe waiting for me. Or who knows maybe he has been beside me the whole time. But whomever it is, he must be worthy of all I have to give, because when I do, he will know how lucky he is too.

 

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Slow and steady wins…

via Daily Prompt: Amble

Will slow and steady win my heart? My relationship with VG was always pretty slow moving but right now it is more of an amble down relationship lane than a fast reunion. Mostly on my part right now, somewhat on his. But in the end maybe waiting for a good thing to happen takes time? I have never had a relationship progress this slowly, but then again my past ones didn’t work out so maybe this one is different for a reason. We have really gotten to know each other and have weathered quite a few storms together in our lives.

I had a conversation with a close friend of mine today and I have come to a decision. I am no longer going to talk about VG to anyone. I constantly get the question – have you seen him? and I feel like I need to explain myself or what is happening every single time. And I have to admit it is tiring. I am seeing other people in the meantime – not looking for anything long lasting right now, just having some fun. I have forgotten what fun is. I am still healing and hurting, and it is not fair to him, or to me either, to see him. I miss him and yes I do want to see him, but I want to give it my all when I do. It sounds hard to understand but it is what is going on in my heart and my brain so I don’t expect anyone to understand or agree or rationalize it either. But I have to admit the constant questions exhaust me.

If it is meant to be with him we will work it out. If not, then I will move on. He is a great guy with a deep caring soul and when I am ready to see him and he me again then we will, no matter how long it takes. I am very much an open book but this chapter needs to be kept private for now. Maybe it is not so good to always be an open book. Everyone has opinions and suggestions and advice, I am guilty of it too, but sometimes you just need to understand that there are two people in a relationship and only they know how they feel and where they want to go.

I do know that I won’t be with anyone who lets me go multiple times or doesn’t treat me like an equal partner. Those days are over. If someone lets me go, more than once, they do not deserve to have me back – I am sticking to that. I deserve someone who wants me in his life – and stays the course through good and bad.

I still believe there is a reason he has stayed in my life, however that may have been, the past few months. I’ve had people diminish it and say that you haven’t seen him. We never lost touch no matter what. Our contact ebbed and flowed, but it never went away. And he never dumped me because of me or him. We may have lost our way and maybe it took all of this stuff happening in our lives the past year to bring us to a place that will bring us back to each other, better than ever. It is almost a year ago that I began talking with him and I am happy that he has been part of my life.

VG is a good guy and no matter what he deserves the best in life and there are not many exes I would say that about. So in closing I will only share bits and pieces of us. I’ll still be writing and sharing about me and how I am coping – just maybe not so much about he and I – at least not yet.

And on a side note please send positive thoughts and prayers for my Dad. We will find out after Wednesday how far the cancer has progressed and treatment needed.

#dailyprompt

 

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It’s my Blogiversary!

It’s my one year Blogiversary (is that a word?). I cannot believe that one year has already gone by for my blog. I started writing as way to heal myself from all the pain I was experiencing at the time. I promised that my blog would be raw, funny, heartbreaking and real and I truly believe that it is. It is not always easy to write about your pain, but hopefully it helps someone, not just me, realize that they are not alone. Funny thing is I thought maybe at this time, this year, things would be different. But again I am dealing with quite a lot. Although some of my situations have not changed – I’m still dealing with heartbreak all over again and illness in my family with not one, but three members that are living with and have battled cancer, I realize that I have changed.

Last summer I was dealing with a lot on my plate. I was not coping very well either. But I know that I am blessed in this life to have wonderful friends that have supported me more than I can express in words. They have witnessed the highs and the very lows of my life and still love me no matter what happens.  I make it a point to let them know I love them, because you never know when you may not get that chance again. They are my lifeblood, my everything and for them I am grateful.

But one thing that has changed is me. Maybe not so much change but more the strength I have acquired. I have gotten stronger, even if some days I don’t feel as if I am. I have dealt with a lot in my life. There are things that I have not written about that only the people close to me know. One day when I have enough courage I may write about it or it may be my private story only. I’m a survivor, a warrior, a spiritual gangster. Some days I feel sorry for myself and the situations I have been put into, but most days I realize that I am a person who is proud of her accomplishments and the strength I have. I love hard, I am outspoken, I am emotional, but most of all I am compassionate. Compassion does not make you weak, it makes you understand and accept the people around you. Sure I may cry and fall apart, but I always pick myself back up and persevere. Maybe I am a compassionate badass more than a spiritual gangster.

I would walk through fire for the ones I love. And I’d like to think they would for me too. My life isn’t perfect but it is my life, I own up to my own shit and deal with the consequences with as much dignity as I can muster. And strength. It’s funny how strong you find out you really are, even when you are feeling so very weak.

Love may have come in and out of my life in waves but I’ve been lucky to have had some great loves. And even though they have not stayed the course they have all shaped me even if they have also broken my heart. Memories get easier in time and pain eventually leaves your mind, your heart and your soul, making room for what you hope are new memories and less pain.

I cannot count the number of times I have been knocked down or how many buckets of tears I have cried, but there are also countless times I have laughed until my body aches with pleasure and felt love course in my veins and fill my heart too. There has been some very bad but also some really good too.

I may not have been the best student in life, but I have accepted change fully, whether it is my job, career or relationship or family status. I have earned degrees, accepted job loss and taken on the challenge of a new career and found the joy in doing what I love. I keep on going, open to new experiences and education. I’ll be back in school this Fall for degree #4 🙂

Sometimes I wonder how much more am I able to shoulder? But then I remind myself that I have survived no matter what curve ball life has thrown me. Maybe I was put on this earth to inspire others or maybe just to inspire myself. Some days I do not believe love will ever be mine, but then I realize I’ve had love and I deserve and will have it again. I have to keep believing.

Reading through many of my older and even more recent blog pieces I still recognize that girl that was hurt, crying and feeling as if happiness will always elude her. I also read through posts where I was so very happy and believing that possibly my happy ending was in sight. Life is cyclical, it changes our plans in the blink of an eye. I have to believe that I will find romantic love again. I know my value and my worth and the guy that will experience that with me will be a very lucky man. I also know that I am loved by the people who matter in my life, but most importantly I love myself. And that, as the song says is the greatest love of all. I may not always like myself or what has happened to me, but I do love who I am and what I have to offer. And I am proud of me, scars and all. I never give up, I may give in temporarily, but I never give up.

Thank you for following me, liking my posts, commenting on my blog, advising me, and just supporting me. We are all brave to blog about our lives and share our stories and the bond I feel with each and every one of you is an amazing feeling. I could list my favorite blog posts but there are just too many that mean so much to me. They are all a moment in time, a blueprint as to who I was and who I am becoming.

Cheers to more years of blogging, just maybe without so much heartbreak this time around. And please always remember you matter and you are worth it, even if many days you find that hard to believe. You do matter and you have a purpose on this earth, we all do.

Xo

Karen

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